Your Opinion

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Your Opinion

This is a discussion on Your Opinion within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        11-30-2011, 09:38 PM
    Your Opinion

    Well, my cousin and I have been seriously thinking about trying to get a horse lately. I know you guys must see so many of the "omgzzz I neeedz a poneh" threads but trust me I'll try not to make it like that .

    We have been riding for about six years now. We have a good amount of experience caring for horses. We have experience handling more advanced and even slightly green horses. My cousin is working with a slightly green horse who doesn't really know how to jump or canter yet and working on fixing that. (She's taken lessons for about four-five more years than me). I'm working on jumping and cantering (in the arena. I can canter pretty competently on trails).

    My cousin's instructor has stated many times that she thinks my cousin is ready to own a horse. At her first show she got three seconds and a fifth and we think the fifth was unfair (long story). Take it from me, she is a good rider.

    I haven't known my current instructor for that long but she has said many things to me about me being competent and a good rider with a good head on my shoulders. People have commented that I ride well. At my first show I got three seconds, a fourth, a fifth and a no placement but I was in the most advanced W/T classes. (We had class A, B, and C which I didn't know about until I was there. A being the easiest with the least experienced riders and C being the hardest with the most experienced. My instructor chose who went were).

    This year my father gave me the go ahead to lease for the first time and my cousin has leased for a few years in a row already. We have also just gotten the official okay form our parents to be staff members at a horse camp we've gone to for a while :).

    Speaking of horse camp it's a long story but we ended up pretty much being the staff. We woke up the earliest and helped the lady who runs it cook breakfast and set up (and then afterwards) clear the table. We also usually helped set the table and cleaned it for the other meals as well. Then we helped the other riders (they were beginners) tack up and help them with their horses in general if they needed help.

    By no means have we had an easy time of being able to ride. We've had to work and slowly convince our parents for every bit of riding time. We're kind of infamous for it in fact. One of our parent's favorite things to say is "You're always trying to make a deal for more riding time" the other is "What are you guys scheming about?" (Hint: It involves horses ).

    Knowing all that, do you guys think we're ready to own a horse? Our families could afford it so don't worry about that. It's just been an uphill battle but I think we're finally ready to win.

    I do think we're ready but I respect your opinions and look forward to hearing them . Hope you didn't mind the essay just wanted to make sure you know what you're dealing with!
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        11-30-2011, 10:02 PM
    You need to answer these questions:

    1) Will you have time to give the horse routine exercise?

    2) The horse will need yearly shots and floating, deworming, a visit from the farrier every 6-8wks, and you never know when you may need the vet to come out for an emergency. Then there are other health-related things you may wind up getting, like SmartPaks and anti-thrush solutions. Are you willing to and financially able to provide for these?

    3) What sort of riding do you do? What sort of horse are you looking for? Remember that if you're looking to trail ride, you should look at a trail horse, not at a jumper with extensive show miles. Allow me to direct you to this thread: Buying a horse that's right for you.

    4) Do you know where you'll keep the horse? Will you board or keep it on your property? If you do board, will it be full board or self care?

    5) Can you provide the horse well-fitting tack?

    There probably are other things, but these are what I came up with right now.
        11-30-2011, 10:19 PM
    I can do/know those things, and I think on a pretty consistent basis what kind of horse I'd want. I like to go on and search for my dream horse (with a budget) .
        11-30-2011, 10:28 PM
    Will you be sharing this horse with your cousin?
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        11-30-2011, 10:47 PM
    My question is why not get a horse? You sound like a pretty skilled rider, and you know what time commitment is involved, and you say you can afford it, what's the hold-up? Age? Going off to college? Competing commitments?
        12-01-2011, 07:08 AM
    I'm not sure. Probably not but we might have to. We get along very well so it shouldn't be a problem if we have to.

    ThursdayNext, it's mostly convincing our parents. Plus every time we think about trying to convince them, we have everything all planned out and then we start thinking if we are REALLY ready and that our parents are probably going to say no and we chicken out. This year, though, will be the PERFECT time to ask because we will be riding basically all the time and we're both only about a year away from being able to drive.
        12-01-2011, 07:51 AM
    If you plan on talking to your parents about buying you a horse, you might want to consider what you'll do with it when you go to college. I'm guessing that's in about 3 years? 3 years seems like a long time to a teenager but years pass fast for us old folks.
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        12-01-2011, 08:30 AM
    Originally Posted by Cinder    
    ThursdayNext, it's mostly convincing our parents. Plus every time we think about trying to convince them, we have everything all planned out and then we start thinking if we are REALLY ready and that our parents are probably going to say no and we chicken out. This year, though, will be the PERFECT time to ask because we will be riding basically all the time and we're both only about a year away from being able to drive.
    I's an observation. Owning a horse, yes, means paying the bills, working it, spending time, yes.

    But it also means being the horse's advocate. Your horse won't be able to speak up for himself if someone in the stable is mean to him, or his vet or his farrier or his dentist aren't doing good work for him. He won't be able to speak up for himself if his turnout is too small or his hay is not of good quality.

    He's going to need you to do this. And you're going to need a lot of confidence to do it for him.

    If you can't find the confidence to approach your parents with this plan and the information you've corralled so far, how are you going to fire your horse's dentist? How are you going to persuade the vet that she really *does* need to move your sick horse to the top of her work-load and get him a visit THIS MORNING. How are you going to deal with it when you see one of the stable-hands behaving in a way that is not good for your horse?
        12-01-2011, 08:43 AM
    I don't know how to do multiple quotes, but will do my best to let you, OP understand my concerns from what you have said.

    In your original post, you seem to equate ribbons with ability. Riding means MUCH more than that. It means knowing how to deal with your horse when it is behaving like a brat, as well as when it is behaving like a champion. You also say "you are ready to win"......what if your horse doesn't? Not sure how being ready to win means you should own a horse?

    You say you and your cousin may share this horse. You also say you both basically have the ability to ride all the time? How do you think ONE horse can provide this? I also do not care how well the two of you get along. Sharing one horse is a recipe for disaster, IMO, unless you have a very very clear WRITTEN agreement that you both stick to.

    I owned a horse at your age, so I am all for it, however, I also had a parent who had been a trainer, was VERY involved, and could help teach me what it takes and means to own one and be totally responsible.
        12-01-2011, 03:48 PM
    ThursdayNext, I understand what you're saying. If my horse needed something though, I would have the confidence to say so because it is a living creature and I would be responsible for it.

    Franknbeans, I think you misunderstood me. I do not think ribbons equal talent. You can have a bad judge, or a bad day, and just because you show and get ribbons does not mean you're talented. I just mentioned the shows and the ribbons to give a bit more of an idea of our riding experience. Also when I said I was ready to "win" I meant the uphill battle I was mentioning...a.k.a the battle to get a horse. I have dealt with many horses behaving like brats, believe me, and I never one gave up or got off because of it. I know riding means sticking with the good days and the bad. You are right I don't think sharing would be the best idea but if we absoultely HAVE to and there is no other way possible than I'm sure we will be able to live with it. I think one of us is much more likely to just get a horse and the other one to have to wait than us sharing though.

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