Thinking about selling my horse- help please ): - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 05:21 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: New Zealand
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Thinking about selling my horse- help please ):

I'm horrified by the prospect and I love him so much, but I have been considering of late selling my beloved gelding.
I've only had him for half a year, but I'm just not sure if it is better in the long run, for me or him, to stick it out.
First of all, he's my first ever horse, and I'm fifteen years old. Previous to buying him, I did two and a half years of fortnightly lessons, and I thought I was a pretty slick rider (not so much). He was advertised, by the people who owned the horse riding place I did lessons at, as the perfect horse for me. I was super excited and I just jumped at the chance of buying this horse because he seemed spectacular- i'd ridden him a few times and he could jump the moon.
I didn't have a saddle and I'd ridden bareback like, one or two times, so I think as soon as I got him we were off on the wrong foot, not to mention, little did I know, he had a history of bucking off girls (for a good reason).
We had a trial period because I wasn't completely stupid, and within the first week he bolted on me and ran me into a tree, which sucked, but I went through with the purchase anyway.
I brought a second hand saddle that I thought would fit him and rode him in that for a while, which was when the bucking started. Not around home, he never ever bucked around home, but whenever I went to pony club he'd do massive bucks and bolt frequently. I'm not the kind of person who ever gives up or is easily intimidated, so while a slightly more sane person would have just decided then and there that actually, this horse isn't right, I continued on.
Eventually I decided it might be the saddle and started riding him bareback. I got a saddle fitter in and she was utterly appalled by his back- made me notice the atrocity that is the high heel on his back foot. That's been filed down a little which is good, but I literally had no idea. Completely clueless.
I just thought he was bony but he's pretty much got no topline and everyone's like 99% sure most of his owners before me have had terrible, cheap saddles on him with thick pads, and when he started to show he's in pain, sold him when he bucked to gullible people like me. I know a girl who use to own him and she's literally been put off for life because my boy was utterly terrible for her.
So I've ridden him mostly bareback for about 6 months now, and I finally got a saddle the other day that fits, but I'm just getting beyond it. When I brought him I had no idea, and I love him so much, but I'm starting to think he'd be better off with someone who's willing to put more effort into him, because my budget is just so minuscule. He's a lovely boy with the sweetest nature and hasn't bucked in a long long time and everyone talks about how well I ride him, and how good our bond is, but I just get so upset because I feel like I should be doing more, and I can't trust him much because just when I do I get injured again. He's older, I got told 14 but the other day someone said more like 18, which again is so irritating that I was completely misled, but he's still incredibly talented and should be out show jumping (seriously, point him at a jump and he'll fly over it, no matter how big or scary). Not to mention I'm still not the best rider out there and he's still a big horse (16.3, and solidly built) that gets hot at times because I can't afford feed so he's been on grass. I just feel like I can't do anything with him, and that he doesn't even want to be with me anymore.
So after this grand spiel which I'm hoping most people will skip through, I'd like opinions. To sell or not to sell? I'm heart broken at the thought of losing him but I'm just so over it all at the same time.
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post #2 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 05:59 AM
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I understand your conflicting emotions and am so sorry your first chance to own a horse turned out this way.

At the end of the day, you want to have a horse so you can enjoy riding.

And because of the problems your horse has had, before you bought him, this is not an enjoyable experience.

If you are able to find a buyer, then I would sell him. In fact, why not advertise him, while you keep riding. You do have an appropriate saddle now, correct?

And, although you list him for sale, get what help you can from other good riders as you go.

Best wishes.
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post #3 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 08:55 AM
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Mid-MI
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Sorry you have to make this hard decision!

This was my experience: My first horse was a rescued 2 year old in a bad situation. I had been around horses before (free leasing on site and showing, riding with friends, lessons, etc). The owner was a friend of my dad's who was part of the legal seizure, so when my dad finally gave me the ok in order to help him out, I jumped at the chance. I got her home, I got her back to health, let her grow, put her into training with great trainers at the right time and brought her home again.

We did weekly lessons, both with trainer riding and with me riding. She was a great mare! BUT she was not great for me. I luckily was never seriously hurt. I had thought about selling her a few times, but I loved her and didn't want to part with her. My dad also told me that if I sold her, I wouldn't be able to get another one (kept her on his land, so he had a say in it). Anyway, the final straw came one day when she spooked at my friend walking next to the arena (fully visible and something she saw daily)... she was out of her mind and completely out of my control. I was able to get off of her before she really exploded. I put her up for sale and a few weeks later she went to her new home.

With her new owner, she has flourished and is the mare she was intended to be! She has been started in Dressage, which she loves, and the owner loves her just as much. With the money I received from the sale, I was able to purchase my current mare, who was a 14 year old, been-around-the-block ex-show horse and I was/am able to really love riding again! It took a while to get over the habits and fears of my old mare that I didn't realize I had (or maybe I did, but was in denial), but I love my girl and we are a great fit together!

I know it is hard, but I would say to sell him, both for your sake and his. Good luck with your decision!
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post #4 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 09:46 AM
Join Date: Dec 2009
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My guess is if you are honest you may even have trouble giving him away. Bucking bolting is not a desirable quality.
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post #5 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 10:29 AM
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Calgary, AB, Canada
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Ok, so here's what I understand are the pros and cons:
- you love him
- he jumps well

- you were lied to about his age
- you were lied to about his vices
- he bucks
- he bolts
- you are not a very experienced rider
- you don't enjoy riding him
- you have no money for feed
- you jave no money for training

So yes, I'd sell him, and not get another horse until you at least have a budget for feed...
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post #6 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 10:52 AM
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Sell, if you can
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post #7 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 11:04 AM
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Here's a thought though.

Have you ruled out any idea of pain? Bucking typically starts like that, and eventually might turn into a habit once it is resolved. However, chances are it could still be pain. Because he has such a poor topline, have you tried ortho pads? A normal pad may not be cutting it, even with a proper fit.

I know a horse who has a saddle that fits him perfectly when he is muscled up, however, in the winter/spring time when he's not ridden as often, the muscle behind his shoulders go, making the saddle fit a bit poorly. So the owner got special pads with shims in them which help keep that pressure off his front end.

The acting up at events might be insecurity, or being fresh. These are just possibilities, though, not answers.
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post #8 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 11:11 AM
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I think many of his issues sound pain related, so with proper saddle fit, he may improve. Particularly if you have some lessons with him. He also may not be easy to sell until some of these issues are worked through. However, I'm concerned that you can't afford to feed him anything but grass. How will he rebuild his topline? What about winter? What if he needs emergency care? I think if you want to keep him, you need to look for some part time work or find a stable you can put him at that will let you work off your board. Otherwise, he may be better off somewhere else.

Tug on anything at all and you'll find it connected to everything else in the universe.~John Muir
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post #9 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 12:35 PM
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Sell, I don't think this is the horse for you
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post #10 of 11 Old 04-13-2014, 12:38 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
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I think you should sell this horse, with full disclosure.

Instead of spending the money on owning another horse, I would just get more lessons or do a part lease with lessons. Horsekeeping is going to be incredibly difficult at your age because of the amount of money you can bring to the table to devote to it.

High quality lessons on solid horses and a great trainer will do far more for your riding career than owning a horse you're constantly struggling with will.
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* I'm often reading and posting from mobile and Siri loves to make a mockery of the English language.
DancingArabian is offline  

advice , bolting , bucking , horse , selling

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