I am the worst horse owner on the planet. - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:07 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Posts: 432
• Horses: 3
Unhappy I am the worst horse owner on the planet.

I am seriously contemplating selling my boy. I feel that if I can make a series of stupid decisions like I made today, and put him in danger, I shouldn't have him.

My BO had just done my guy's feet yesterday and he came out while I was saddling up and asked if he could see how he rides now, how his feet look. Of course, me, excited to show him because Bug and I have been making leaps and bounds in our progress.

I take him out in the back pasture that opens up directly from the barn doors and my BO says 'Let's see his canter.' Mistake number one is about to be made.

I have been working on Bug's barnstorming. He has been getting better, HUGELY better, but sometimes, he still thinks it is okay to do so. If I am in the zone where I need to be, I can take corrective measures and we begin again. For this reason I normally canter him away from the barn at first to get him to understand that he MUST listen to me when I ease him up. We do this a few times and then we have no problems for the rest of the day.

Well, today, I thought, well, I've been working hard enough and consistantly enough that we should have no problems. I exit the barn, leaving the doors open.<--- Second Mistake.

So, ever since I've bought this horse my BO always jokes with me about how I won't ever get him to do *insert comand here* and I know it's his way of keeping me on my toes and he knows I will work that much harder to prove him wrong. Every time he asks me to show him something, he KNOWS I will do it and he knows that I will have taught my horse how to do it and there are time I think he does this to force me to prove to myself that I can do it.

But, there's also the part of me that HAS to do it. Because I am so proud of how far my horse has come from the 'monster' that no one could ride, and I love to make my BO eat his words on something my guy just 'can't' do. <----Third Mistake.

So, I head out of the barn, barely two steps before we are cantering, and I am so proud, because My Boy needs nothing but the slightest shift in my weight to know that it's okay to break right into a canter. I'm in my glory and praying my BO is watching every move. I hit the far side of the pasture and turn toward home. As we approach the barn I begin to ease him up, and wonder of wonders...He doesn't respond. And then begins to haul horsey ass.

My BO is telling me what to do and I'm TRYING I really am TRYING but, and I hate to say it, but normally in this type of situation I drop EVERYTHING and let Bug make the decisions. He has never let me down, never dropped me, never over balanced and at once will realize that something is wrong and will stop. But, today, I! had to be the one making decisions, and I made all the wrong ones.

I pulled sharply on the reins and he started to correct, he really did, especially once my BO threw up his hands, which freaked both of us out. I over corrected, because by now we were heading for a fence. I've had him run off with me in the past, he wasn't going to hit the fence, I KNEW that, but it didn't stop me from panicking.

So, he headed back toward the barn door way. I'm fighting him the whole way, instead of dropping out causing him to stop. I pull to the right to counter the fact that we were running right at a tiller, and he pulls to the left. I try to make a quick correction thinking okay, we can turn around all the way, but as I do he pulls to the right where I had been leading him. Which heads us right into the tiller. All I can see is that I have just led my horse to certain death by breaking both his front legs and I start screaming expletives along with the word NO over and over. When all I had to do was drop out. But, I didn't.

He stopped. On a dime. His front left hoof actually making a 'ping' noise as he grazed the tiller wheel. And there he stood, looking around as if someone had just taken away his teddy bear.

I turned him around and jumped off to examine his legs and feet. And then I lost it and threw my arms around him crying hysterically.

My BO and my BF kept asking if I was okay, was I hurt, was I scared, what was wrong. My BF kept saying all he could see was me flying ass over teakettle wehn Bug finally decided to stop. And I was so angry at them both.

Screw ME! I KNOW how to fall. I'm an athlete I can fall with the best of them. I can tuck and roll like nobody's business. Who CARES about me! All I could think for those few seconds as we headed toward the ass end of that tractor was 'I just killed my horse.'

It didn't. Thank the gods, it didn't. But, it COULD have. And it was all my fault. I KNEW we weren't ready to be heading in that direction. I KNEW I should have closed the barn doors. I KNEW how to get my horse to stop. I KNEW better than to do anything that BOTH of us aren't comfortable with. And yet...

My BF says it was just a dumb mistake. But, it WASN'T just SOME mistake, it was ALOT of them, all of which I KNEW better than to make and it could have cost my horse EVERYTHING.

I ended up putting it to him like this. I have a basett hound that is my pride and joy. His name is Sherlock.

I told BF if someone told me to go ahead and pick Sherlock up by his tail because they wanted to see how he looked hanging in the air, would I do it? Even if they said it wouldn't hurt him, would I do it?

He said, no, of course not.

Alright then! Why one God's green EARTH did I feel it was okay to put my horse in a dangerous situation because someone wanted to see him canter? Why, when all it would have taken was me to say, Ok, but give us a few minutes first? Why did I think THAT was okay?

I would never put my child in harm's way, not that I am comparing her to an animal. I would never put my dogs in harm's way. I would never put a friend in harm's way. Not by carelessness, nor on purpose. So, why the HELL did I do it to my horse? My second best friend in the entire world next to my one and only child.

I feel as if I should sell him to someone who won't make stupid mistakes. I feel as if I was entirely way to irresponsible and that I don't even have the RIGHT to be his owner anymore. He TRUSTS me completely and I almost took him out. I have worked for months, training him with love and kindness and hugs and kisses not smacks or whips(Not that I am against anything, I am merely saying.) I have gained his full trust. This is the animal that will stand stock still and not even flinch when I take a swing at his face to get a mosquito. Nothing I do bothers him. He feels completely safe with me, and before today I would have said he was.

He still trusts me 100%. When I remounted we had not one single problem and he behaved like a prince. But, when I got back down, I couldn't even look at him. I feel I have failed him in a monumental way and he doesn't even know it. I can't apologize, he's a HORSE, he doesn't understand what all my tears were for, all he knew was that I was upset and therefore it was cuddle time.

I'm sorry for making this so long you guys. I am just devastated. I don't make dumb mistakes like that. I am always so careful with him and everything we do we decide to do TOGETHER. I've never forced him and he has come so far for me. But, I can't even look at him without bursting into tears, knowing that today could have been our last and for some stupid freaking mistake.

He knows when you're happy
He knows when you're comfortable
He knows when you're confident
And he always knows when you have carrots.
~Author Unknown~
Dusty1228 is offline  
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post #2 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:20 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Ontario
Posts: 993
• Horses: 2
Dusty, I don't care who is talking, we have ALL done stupid things.
I am not even going to argue that this or that move you made was ok or not, because that is not the point.
The point is how you feel, and that you felt you did something where you should have known better.
That is where the saying hindsight is 20/20 came from.
You are not a bad horse owner, you are a good horse owner who made a less than stellar decision.
We Have All Done It.
Stop beating yourself up. Everyone is ok.
Have a drink, hug your kid, hug your horse.
Laugh about it.
Skipsfirstspike is offline  
post #3 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:26 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Southeastern PA
Posts: 222
• Horses: 0
I agree with Skipsfirstspike. We've all done it. When I do stupid things I sit there and beat myself up about it, and I learned that it was a mistake and put a smile on and learned to stop beating myself up about it. From what I read you are a great horse owner and seem to know what you're doing! *hugs*

Check out my blog! Keep up with my horse life!
jfisher256 is offline  
post #4 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:49 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Posts: 506
• Horses: 2
Agree with everyone above, everyone and their horse may have bad days, bad luck, bad timing. But it shouldn't make you consider selling your horse, saying just SAYING that the first thing you did was jump down and check HIM over for bumps and such, before even thinking of yourself, stopping to catch a breath or look at what the BO was doing, you looked after your horse, that, shows that you really care about him.

Heat of the moment gets to all of us and sometimes emergency dismounting is just mentally impossible whether it be embarrassing or scary or what have you. It doesn't matter. Go to the barn and give your horse a good long groom, feed him treats and tell him you're sorry, horses are great listeners and even if he doesn't know what you're saying, he knows you're spending time with him and caring for him, you're showing him that you're not the horrible owner you think you are.

Just smile, everyone has bad days. :)
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FreeDestiny is offline  
post #5 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:49 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Posts: 432
• Horses: 3
Thank you guys! Sincerely. I appreciate your taking the time to read all that, yipe. I didn't realize it was so long!

But, seriously, Thank You. I really just needed horsey people to rant to, because BF is, you know, not so horsey.

I just felt so horrible, because I AM usually so careful that sometimes people think I'm lollygagging along, ya know, but I'm always running check lists in my head and this time was just a complete ... well whatever it was.

I think the worst of it was that I put him in danger and he trusted me to do so.
I do know now, better than before how important it is to be aware of not just some things, but everything, including my own shortcomings, and if there was a lesson to be learned, believe me, I GET IT. I knew I wasn't the only one to ever make a mistake, but that was a biggun, and felt, to me, unforgivable, if that makes sense.

Truly, thank you guys for reading and for your support. I really, really needed that and I feel a little better if still pretty dang guilty & irresponsible.

Thank You Destiny. I have been able to back myself off some from the self loathing and the heat of the moment 'He needs a better owner', and I am definitely planning on spending my vacation, which starts friday making it up to him. He's gonna be bored of me by the time I'm through.

I still feel awful, but just writing it out and getting it off my chest to people who understand about WHY that was so crazily scary, has made me feel better.

Yes, JFisher , I am choosing to beat myself up for at least a little while longer. Just because I feel that it will keep me from making any more of those types of huge mistakes.

Skips, horse hug: Check. Kid Hug:Check... Must find that drink...I think it will take a day or so to laugh it off, But, I'll work on it.
<3 *Hugs* <3

He knows when you're happy
He knows when you're comfortable
He knows when you're confident
And he always knows when you have carrots.
~Author Unknown~

Last edited by Dusty1228; 08-25-2011 at 12:55 AM.
Dusty1228 is offline  
post #6 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 10:50 AM
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: East Coast
Posts: 766
• Horses: 1
Everytime we ride we have a running list in our heads. Heels down, head up, hand steady. it goes on and on. You were trying to do the right thing, nobody got hurt and that is what is most important. Everytime we rid we learn a thousand things. Consider this a learning experience. Take from it what you need to figure out how to correct it and move on. In no way shape or form do I believe that you are a terrible horse owner from this. There are so many people out there who mistreat their horse, now that is a terrible horse owner. What you did is hardly in the terrible horse owner category. I promise.

Your horse is an extension of you.
nicole25 is offline  
post #7 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 10:57 AM
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 15
• Horses: 0
Its ok. You made a mistake and he knows that you would never do anything to hurt him. and he didnt get hurt. From the way it sounds you love him with all your heart. Your a wonderful horse owner and byworrying about what could have happened you sound like an even better one.

LuckyHorsey7 is offline  
post #8 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:18 PM
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Mannford, Ok
Posts: 429
• Horses: 2
Giant hugs!!! I know of too many people who would lay the blame on the horse! Your owning every bit of what happened, that is huge! Dont seel your baby, it sounds like he is your heart horse..... hugs again!
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mysticalhorse is offline  
post #9 of 11 Old 08-25-2011, 12:31 PM
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: MN
Posts: 5,464
• Horses: 3
In all of this - I kinda blame the BO. Sounds like BO tends to 'challenge' vs encourage.

I'm a BO too. I understand there are times I need to nudge folks out of their comfort zone but nudge - not push!
mls is offline  
post #10 of 11 Old 08-26-2011, 09:25 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Posts: 432
• Horses: 3
Thanks you guys. I've been over it and over it in my head and I now know that we just have to work that much harder on our barnstorming. I have to work on the ways I use to correct situations like that and also on keeping my mind 100% on US and not what anyone else is doing, expecting or saying. What someone else wants doesn't matter anymore, because he is my horse now. What someone else couldn't do with him before doesn't matter either because I! know what he can do now.

In the past couple days it's been a constant merry go round in my head and I know I shouldn't just up and sell him. At first that was my thought train because all I could think was ...'If you could put him in that kind of stupid situation, what's next? Next time you're not thinking or paying attention?'

And to top it off, he didn't even know anything was wrong. He acted as he does when he knows he did something off, trying to hide his nose under my arm and cuddle. And he didn't even know how close everything had been. He just looked at me with those big, trusting eyes as if saying 'I'm sorry, wanna try again?' And that got to me, because I was the one who made all the mistakes and here he is with his trusting gaze, just waiting for what our next move is going to be. Having him trust me that much and having been the one to lead him into near disaster...

I can't really blame my BO that much. I've told him no before, I could have told him no again. I could have said wait 15 minutes, I'll show you anything you want. I do know that because of him I have brought Bug further, faster than even I expected, because I was told I couldn't. But, there's no reason to risk anything to prove a point, which is my own bad.

Thanks again, all, for everything that you've said. It really helps to have other horse people to put their two cents in on it and see what ya'll thought of the situation. I truly appreciate it and you guys have definitely helped me through the worst of the deep seated guilt, that non horse people just can't seem to grasp.

I really do love him with just about everything that I have, which is what made this situation so **** scary.

Thank You Guys. *Hugs to all* for saving my sanity!

He knows when you're happy
He knows when you're comfortable
He knows when you're confident
And he always knows when you have carrots.
~Author Unknown~
Dusty1228 is offline  

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