Ok so I was perusing on local craigslist ads and came across this gorgeous Shire mare. Picture the horse from Brave. The owner described her as everything that I have been looking for- a slow kid/beginner safe trail horse that is super slow and calm and gentle- and a plus is that she is a drafty. :) I can deal with fact that she may not be great at loading and has no papers. She was/is a rescue and that's fine as well. (although they are not sure on her age- they say between 10 and 15 from the look of her teeth)
But I am really concerned about the fact that she has low hind end pasterns. I've never dealt with this kind of conformation fault before but I know that it is NOT good at all for the overall health of the horse- horses live on their feet- no feet no horse. The owners say that they don't know if its from being malnourished/starved before she was rescued or if its genetic.
My concerns are that maybe she is slow because she's in pain? They say she has not been lame while they've owned her but that may still not indicate if she is hurting.
Another fear is that if she is older, like 15 , are her odds of this trait degenerating into non-use going to happen much faster? Please don't misunderstand but my view is if you put the money into purchasing/caring/feeding a horse, you'd probably want to get the most use/time as possible with them before retiring them. I know that I could buy a 20,000 dollar show horse one day and it could keel over in a week due to some unforeseeable circumstance but in this case I see a posing threat but do I take the risk- woud it be worth it? I see it going two ways- Either I get burned with only a very short time of use and then a lame horse that cant/shouldnt be ridden ever again and need special treatments for the rest of her life or need to be put down to end her pain OR I get some fantastic years with her and have one of the best horses I ever had the pleasure of owning with no to little issues? I know no one can make the decision but me but still what are others thoughts? Does anybody have any experience with horses with this trait and their quality of life?
Also they are asking $1,000 for her but that seems pretty high for a conformation fault like that, and that she is grade- no papers and is a rescue but if she is as bomb/kid proof as they say she is is that a fair price? What would be a reasonable offer for her if not? Should I ask her to be checked by a vet-PPE and have her tested for those low pasterns? To find the cause before I buy her?
There is no plans yet for me buying her- I still have to find time to go out and meet her- but hopefully soon. :) So this is all just hypothetical. But I am crazy about her... just not her pasterns-call me crazy I guess lol.