Contemplating Buying 5 Years of Bad Habits - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:13 AM Thread Starter
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Contemplating Buying 5 Years of Bad Habits

Like one of the posters on this thread, I am in my 60's and have been looking for a solid trail horse for the last few months. I went out to ride a 13 yr. Old Rocky Mountain mare yesterday, who is fearless on the trail and will go through anything. She is great on her own or with other horses.

The problem is this. The current owner, a lovely person, got into horse 5 years ago, took a few lessons, and started collecting horses, mainly Rocky Mountains. For the most part, they just get on these horses, trundle along the trail, and the horses know "whoa" or canter, but nothing in between.

The mare I was riding had great ground manners, solid confirmation, and was very people oriented, but didn't know even the most basic thing, like backing up. I asked her to back up and you would have thought I'd asked to fly to the moon. And the owner simply said, oh our horses don't know how to back up. We rode out on the trails for about 1 1/2 hrs. And although this horse was pretty good about stopping, and letting the other horse get way ahead, she did a lot of head tossing for most of the ride and was agitated over the simplest of things, like me asking her to move off my leg to the right or left.

Obviously this horse has not had the basic training that I would have expected, or maybe had before the current owners bought her, but she is not what I would consider a well broke horse.

My question is, is it too late to get back to some basics with this mare, in an arena setting, and teach her proper head set, and a few other things like backing up and moving off your leg? They're asking $5,000 for this horse which seems like a lot of money to me, for a horse that has had some bad habits for a lot time.

Would appreciate any advice/suggestions.
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post #2 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:18 AM
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Sounds very much like my guy when I bought him. It has taken a lot of work (and $$) to get a trained horse. If you have the desire/ability-have at it. I personally will spend the $$ and get a broke broke one next time. He has taught me a lot though.

However-mine was 5, and only $2k, including transport 1200 miles. So, I would pass.

What area are you in?
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post #3 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:21 AM Thread Starter
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Southwestern Ontario.
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post #4 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:24 AM
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aww she knows some things, can be out by herself or with others,doesnt gallop off when others are doing it, nothing worse wen out on trail and other horses muck up and ur horse follows them by being naughty lol
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post #5 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:29 AM
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The sellers are way off the mark in their asking price in an economy that continues to sink. There are basically two trains of thought when selling - some fool will come along and pay my price or the seller honestly believes the horse is worth the asking price. When you test drove her did you ride her alone or with others. The real test is whether she will go out alone and not continually find excuses to go home. The same water may suddenly be bottomless, or the log is hiding predators.
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post #6 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:34 AM Thread Starter
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I agree TB, she does know some things but at 13, I'm surprised at what she doesn't know as far as a well broke horse goes. I'm looking for a replacement for a horse I lost several years ago and maybe I was spoiled, but moving off the leg and backing up when asked are pretty mandatory things to me, and going in a straight line without throwing your head all over the place.

I'm in my early 60's now and I just want a sweet, reliable, smooth and trustworthy horse to spend the rest of my days with. I ride mostly alone and since I'm getting pretty arthritic, I would prefer a horse under 15 hh and who is just, dead broke, and looking for a forever home.

And I'm not so much concerned about age, as long as the horse is sound. I rode my last horse well into her 20's and she was one of the most incredible horses I've ever known...so hard to replace.

I particulary thought that $5000 was a lot of money for a horse that didn't seem to know a whole lot.
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post #7 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:40 AM
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maybe find a quarter horse? They are generally calm horses,when trained right,
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post #8 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:44 AM
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Too much asking price for too little horse.

Now, if you have fallen in love with the mare, the training (or remembering her training) issues are workable. Nothing too crazy for what sounds like a decent mare. But all things being equal, you can find a better horse for much less with some more patience.
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post #9 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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TB -- have owned QH in the past and my last mare was a QH and one of the most phenomenal horses I've ever known.

It shouldn't be so hard to find what I'm looking for but it seems it is.
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post #10 of 22 Old 04-28-2013, 08:54 AM
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That seems like a lot for this area to be honest.

I just took a peek through the Kitchener Kijiji ads, and saw some decent looking horses for less.
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It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows. --Epictetus
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