...10 month old colt.....I kept him for my eight year old who is now interested in running barrels.....
Eight years old and they keep a colt who isn't even a year old yet?!
My brothers are nine and ten. They have the attention span of an ant. The ONLY horse I allow them around is Sammy. He's about 16 and is half asleep most of the time. He spooks at nothing. Even so, I still won't allow them around him without adult supervision.
I can see getting your kid a horse. Go for it! I loved my first horse, I got him when I was 11. But he was OLD. He was at least 20 and dead broke, just like Sam. Plus, I had a year of riding stubborn Arabians under my belt.
I don't care how 'quiet' and 'gentle' that colt supposedly is. Unless you tranquilize him every time you bring him out, he's not quiet, he's not gentle. He is an unpredictable youngster that doesn't care if the person brushing him is 8 years old or 80. He will run them over in blind panic because that plastic bag will eat him.
My nine year old, broke to ride, has been on many trail rides near and far from home spooked at his own shadow yesterday. This horse has an excellent ground work foundation and was broke properly and completely. Yet, he spooks at a shadow. His own, shadow.
But of course, one could argue that every horse is different! But have you ever worked with a under-one-year-old youngster? I have the chance to work with two. About 7-8 months now. I don't think I even really want to out of fear by the time they are three years old, I will have no hair left, having torn it all out of my head in utter frustration.
Show me a been there, done that, 10 month old who's absolutely safe for a child (12 and under) to handle, and I will eat my socks.