Is it time for me and my horse to part ways! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-09-2012, 07:22 PM Thread Starter
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Question Is it time for me and my horse to part ways!

I have a dilemma. It makes me really sad to think about and I've had about five meltdowns in the course of two weeks! I'm only fifteen and bought my first horse about two years ago. He was free from the owner, we only had to pay for board. He was fairly green, but he wasn't hard to train (English rider). He's been nothing but good to me. He's adorable and loving and funny, good under the saddle and all around a great horse! I love him to pieces but I'm starting to dread riding and with my classwork and just plain life, I feel I've been outgrowing him. I don't visit as often and my rides are becoming shorter. I've been trying to figure out what's going on because I love him, but feel he deserves someone with more dedication and time.I feel terrible because he's just so good and I don't want him to feel like I've abandoned him. I guess I just need some advice, can anyone help?
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-09-2012, 07:37 PM
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Maybe you could look into leasing him out? Even a half lease in theory would mean he gets ridden a few more times a week.
Good luck with whatever you decide :)
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-09-2012, 07:38 PM
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If you ride at a barn that gives lessons, you can partially lease him to them and still see him from time to time.
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post #4 of 12 Old 09-09-2012, 07:44 PM Thread Starter
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Is it normal to outgrow riding like this? I'm scared I'll give him up and then not be happy!
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-09-2012, 07:53 PM
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It is totally normal to be more "into" things at some points than you are at others.

The good thing is that you understand that you have a commitment to your horse, and what (in general) needs for that commitment to be satisfied. That's VERY important, that you know this. It's also good that you understand that you might move back into a stage where you have more time for him, or are more into riding, etc. and that if you do something major now you might regret it later. Both of these things say you're pretty mature.

I would go with what the others have said: if there is a lesson program at your barn, you might think about leasing him to the lesson program and saving one riding day for yourself a week, maybe. Or you can half-lease him and "share" him with someone who really wants to try having a horse but can't afford to have a whole horse yet. That can be a very generous thing to do, if you're careful about it.

Or you could do a "free lease" which is where someone takes over all the riding and care - you are still the owner of the horse, but the horse basically acts like he is someone else's for the period of the contract.

All of these options would mean that if you come back around to wanting to be with your horse and being into riding, you would still have him. And if after a few years you realize that you just don't see riding as being a big enough part of your life to warrant owning a horse, you would be able to sell him then.

There are details to concern yourself with all of these courses of action, but you can get a lot of information about any of them from the people at HF.

Just know that you are really doing the right thing by concerning yourself primarily with what the *horse* needs and being realistic about what you have to offer, and not just being selfish.
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-09-2012, 08:03 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for your answers! I really appreciate them all I will have to see about leasing him out because that seems like my best bet right now! Thanks again.
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-10-2012, 12:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Elizatbeth View Post
Is it normal to outgrow riding like this? I'm scared I'll give him up and then not be happy!
It is normal to go through stages when you are growing up and be less into things.

However I don't think it's normal to think that your school work is getting in the way of having a horse. How many hours do you spend doing homework a night? Is it all weekend?

I highly doubt that your school work is the issue, I think you have lost interest and want another reason that seems more acceptable.

There's nothing wrong with selling a horse, I have sold plenty, but for honest reasons.
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-10-2012, 12:07 AM
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Are you outgrowing him in the sense of his abilities versus yours, or are you outgrowing him in the sense that you're losing interest? Very different things there.

Horses don't feel abandoned if you don't ride them - don't worry about that. They are very "in the moment" creatures and many are happy just walking around, eating and being a horse. Some horses really like 'having a job' and getting regular work - just like some people feel best when they're exercising regularly.

First, determine what the problem is. If you're just not really interested in horses anymore, or don't feel like you're meeting your riding goals with this horse, or whatever it is. Then, realize that selling you horse will not magically solve all your probems and make your life filled with rainbows, unicorns and butterflies. It would just relieve you of the obligation of the horse.

Good for you for recognizing there's a problem and trying to do good by your horse. There is no wrong answer here. It is totally OK to not be interested in riding right now, or just simply not into his style, or whatever else. It's all in how you handle it.

Good luck!
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-10-2012, 01:50 AM
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To be honest I went through a similar situation when I was a little bit older than you.

I'd made new friends, gone to a new school and all of a sudden I had all these things I wanted to, places to go, people to see. On top of that I had school work and my horse who was young and needed work. I had plans for the future, university, travel etc.

Anyway I'd tell myself that I was too busy for a horse, but the truth was that I wasn't willing to make the time.

Now, six or so years on, I'm back into horses again. And I'm glad I didn't have them for a while because it helped me to sort out who I was and what I wanted in life. If I'd had a horse hanging over my head I don't think I could have done that. I needed to be "free" to realise what I really wanted.

No one can make the decision for you but from what you're saying I think it sounds like you might be better off without a horse for a while. You can lease him out, but over the next few years I don't think things are going to become any easier. You'll have more school, more social demands and more aspirations. In your situation I'd probably sell, but its up to you.

Remember nothing is forever. Whatever you decide now can change in the future.

Last edited by Saskia; 09-10-2012 at 01:52 AM.
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post #10 of 12 Old 09-10-2012, 02:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for you're support!! It's nice to talk with people who have owned or gone through the same things. I really don't know what I'm going to do, but that's life. A reply struck me {sorry I forgot the username }, it said something about being free and that's exactly how I've been feeling: like I need some freedom, not an obligation. So thanks for that. This really is a great forum!!
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