My husband has me second guessing myself on horse purchase...advice? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 41 Old 07-04-2011, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
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My husband has me second guessing myself on horse purchase...advice?

Ok some of you may know that I'm seriously considering purchasing this 5yo APHA mare (we've actually come to a pricing agreement and I was waiting to see her with the farrier this week before making it official). I've gone to see her 3 times now and there is nothing I don't like. She has a very impressive pedigree, beautiful conformation, and a nice, quiet personality, especially for a 5yo. She's been well started and a confident beginner can easily handle her. Good ground manners. Only a few things I noticed that she'll need work on sooner rather than later, and the main one being she paces a bit between transitions, especially from walk to trot. Fixable though, and she's willing.

Here is my dilemma: I don't show horses or use them for anything other than putting around the arena and light trail riding. The two I've owned in the past were grade, older (12, 15) Heinz 57 horses that were virtually bombproof and awesome pasture pets. They were perfect trail companions and light riding horses and fit well into our lives. This 5yo has been trained english, western, dressage, etc. She is flashy and would make an amazing show horse (dressage, hunter/jumper, western pleasure). She just has so much potential and that is certainly reflected in her price. I brought my husband out to see her for the first time last night and although he likes her, he thinks that it would almost be a waste buying a horse like that and sticking her in our pasture, hopping on occasionally for a trail ride...especially when we can spend less than half her cost for a solid, safe and sound horse that can meet the few needs we have.

So basically I am asking, even though she's a great horse and more than capable of doing what we like to do, should I pass on her? I feel like she really belongs at a show home with someone who is going to challenge her and bring her to her potential, use her for what she really should be doing. I know you can use any horse for any type of riding (generally), but some are just born to do certain things and this horse would be an amazing pony club mount and has the personality and brains to get to the top...instead of maybe just sitting in the pasture and getting the occasional ride. Sorry this was so long, but really looking for opinions/advice! Thank you.
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post #2 of 41 Old 07-04-2011, 08:23 PM
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If you like the horse, and can afford her, buy her.
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post #3 of 41 Old 07-04-2011, 08:51 PM
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I agree with your husband. She is more expensive than you wanted to spend anyway so why buy a horse like that to be a trail horse. In a short time with out being worked like she is she won't look the same and will loose her conditioning and she won't be the beautiful show horse that you bought or be worth what you paid.
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post #4 of 41 Old 07-04-2011, 08:53 PM
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I agree. If I were her trainer I'd be a little upset someone wasted all that training I put into a horse.

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post #5 of 41 Old 07-04-2011, 09:00 PM
Green Broke
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I'm of two minds. I know how you feel about wanting to buy her because she's pretty & seems to be a great horse but at the same time wondering if she would be better with someone who will DO something with her.
I bought a mare last year who was awesome & actually sounds alot like the girl you've described in that she was only 6, great conformation, VERY flashy & good for a confident beginner but i too only do basic trail riding & some gymkhana now & then.
She was the sort of horse that loved to be out & doing something new (she was trained in jumping so she really liked that) but i dont jump and i could tell she started to get bored doing the same thing every week (we dont have many good trails around my place) and she didnt have any interest in barrels or poles.
I ended up selling her when winter came around to someone who could really use her & give her something worthwhile doing (jumping lol). On trade i got a wonderful little Fjord mare who is well suited for my needs.

"If a horse fails to do something that is because he was not trained to do it. If a horse fails to do something properly that is because he was not trained properly."
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post #6 of 41 Old 07-04-2011, 11:30 PM
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Why does it matter if training is "wasted?" The trainer still gets paid for the time put in. The horse doesn't know or care either way...except that the life of a plunkalong trail horse is probably a lot easier and more fun than the life of a show horse.
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post #7 of 41 Old 07-05-2011, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by bubba13 View Post
Why does it matter if training is "wasted?" The trainer still gets paid for the time put in. The horse doesn't know or care either way...except that the life of a plunkalong trail horse is probably a lot easier and more fun than the life of a show horse.

If you like her and your personalities match then give her a good life and lots of love and go show off your fancy horse on the trails!
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post #8 of 41 Old 07-05-2011, 12:42 AM
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I wouldn't take her. A prospect showhorse of that age with that sort of potential should not be ridden occasionally. She should go to someone who will push her to her best.
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post #9 of 41 Old 07-05-2011, 12:53 AM
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The idea of "wasting" a horse is silly to me. A horse certainly doesn't know the difference, and as long as it's well cared for, what horse wouldn't prefer a relaxing trail ride life? Ok, so she can go on to be a show horse, and she breaks down in 6 months because an unsuitable novice buys her due to her temperament?

You sound like a fantastic home for this horse, someone who cares about her training and knows enough about continuing it but CHOOSE not to show. You can afford to give her the best, you can afford to be a top notch home for her. This mare could end up absolutely anywhere, and if she's this docile, it's very likely she could end up with a novice who wouldn't be able to provide the same level of care and knowledge.

I don't think you're wasting her at all, I think you're doing her a service.

I hope God tells her to smash her computer with a sledgehammer.

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post #10 of 41 Old 07-05-2011, 01:39 AM
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First of all, I really like the look of her from the photos.

Second, I really, really dislike the categorization of "just a trail horse." A trail horse with three clean gaits, that accepts the aids, moves through its back, has clean transitions and lateral work sounds like a well-broken and pleasurable trail horse to me, not a waste.

I don't think training can be "wasted"; that's a strange concept. Dressage in particular is supposed to be about developing the horse gymnastically and athletically, sounds like a pretty good idea for a trail partner to me!

If you like and it feels like a good fit, and the price doesn't give you heartburn or require a separate mortgage, why not?
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