The Joys of Older Horses

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The Joys of Older Horses

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    03-20-2013, 02:29 PM
The Joys of Older Horses

I read a lot of threads where people are worried about buying a horse who is "old". Sometimes the horse really IS old and sometimes it's maybe 15, which is not "old", to me. But, I thought it might be fun to put up a thread about the joys of older horses.

I really love older horses. I guess, since I am older, I appreciate the way they are masters of conserving energy. And the way they still have the same enthusiasum for food. I adore how tolerant they are with children, (of course this depends on the animal). I dont' know, but I love the slow, patient and "wise" look in their eyes. I just want to take care of them , as if they were babies.

Wallaby likes this.
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    03-20-2013, 02:31 PM
My lesson horse Ben is 23 he is calm and I can learn from him
    03-20-2013, 03:24 PM
Teen Forum Moderator
Oh, I miss having 'old' horses around so much! Our goldie oldies have all passed on in the past year or so, a 50 year old QH mare, a our 28 year old grade who-knows-what mare. There really is something that is just...missing, without them around. Our eldest now is a spit-fire 17 year old TB and a few minis that are about to hit their 20 year mark (not old at all for miniatures who can live into their 40s), but its still just not the same! There is no old soul to come crying to when things are going wrong, and you're always worrying about 'upsetting' the younger horses or 'messing them up.' I don't know how you COULDN'T love those seniors after years of training green 4 and 5 year olds! Nothing is more refreshing that a done-it-all mare or gelding that you can just hop on without worrying.
tinyliny and EliRose like this.
    03-20-2013, 04:01 PM
My fiance wont ride anything younger than ten. He says an aged horse is like a aged whiskey. Smoother, more level, refined and set in its ways. When you get a good one, you keep it on your shelf :)
xxdanioo, Missy May and EliRose like this.
    03-20-2013, 04:08 PM
Green Broke
My mare is 20 now. I got her from a rescue last year and she wasn't even halter broke. Everyone that sees her ride can't believe she's 20. I am starting to train her for endurance this year and will hopefully be starting some dressage work.

She does not have the miles that most older horses do but she does have the mind. No attention problems to deal with and doesn't spook at a whole lot. And she adores children and will put up with beginners for a bit.
    03-20-2013, 04:27 PM
My horse was sold to me as a 13-15 year old retired polo pony. Old enough to have "been there, done that" and young enough to still have a lot of life left in her.

Imagine my suprise when my new vet came out to float her teeth a few months later and told me she was at least 23 or 24!

I was shocked...not because I now had an "old" horse, but because this horse had more get up and go than many of the young horses at the barn. She is a spitfire and doesn't look or act like she is in her 20's.

The only time I get the sense she is older is when we are having a battle of wills ( I want to continue to ride and she wants to go back to the hitching post). I can feel her tense up and get ready to throw a temper tantrum....and then she rethinks it and and realizes that bucking or rearing will only bring more trouble and it isn't worth extending the energy, and she gives a big sigh and does what I want her to do. :)
    03-20-2013, 04:35 PM
I really appreciate the valuable things older horses can teach us. I feel like they're often overlooked actually. My favorites are the ancients...I knew one 31 year old who was free to roam around the whole property where she lived. She'd lever leave the property, and it seemed she knew exactly where the boundaries were. I realize now that I like older horses for the same reasons I like older people: they're wiser and they've often got good stories!
    03-20-2013, 04:42 PM
One of my friends has a high maintenance golden oldie! He kept her safe for many years until he got excited two years ago busted out his barn (the gate wasnt closed well enough and he just broke it down) and went galloping down the road. At the time her only other option was her unbroke two year old or her Shetland since her parents were not home . I told her I would love to see her galloping down the side of the road on her fat little Shetland! She found him about a mile down the road, and couldnt walk, she had to wait till her dad got home to hook up the trailer to go get him, and the vet told her do NOT get that horse out the trailer till I get there. Sure enough he torn his ligament in 3 places, he made a recovery enough to that he didnt have to be put down, and with $150 in supplements every month is not in pain. But she can never ride him again..
    03-20-2013, 04:43 PM
I love this thread! I'm selling my 6 year old, but am currently in the process of buying a 17 year old dressage schoolmaster. He's perfect for what I want and still has plenty of life left. I am really excited to be owning an oldie again, but I'm also a little bit nervous. I've tuned up quite a few oldies for anywhere between 6 mos and a year, and have leased two horses older than 16, but never have owned a horse older than, well 6 before. Any advice?
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BigBenLoverforLife likes this.
    03-20-2013, 05:34 PM
All of my favorite lesson horses have been over the age of 25.

Each one was very tolerant of my beginner mistakes and wouldn't mind trotting around an arena non-stop while I flopped around on their backs.

Whenever I get around to getting my first horse. I hope that he or she will be 15 years or older. :)

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