Mixed emotions today - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
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Mixed emotions today

Hi, you may remember my thread on my new horse bought from a trainer that put him in a tom thumb bit, running martingale, etc. I was given overwhelming advice to get a new coach to work with, which I have and she is fantastic!

Here's my issue. I've had him for 6 weeks now. My new coach is helping me work him on the ground. His old owner and my former coach only did free lunging in the round pen. She was a huge believer of Monty Roberts. Anyway my new coach is working with him to lunge on a line and he is dense to put it mildly. He has no idea, although he tries really hard how to transition. He runs around with his head up high looking around at everything but what we are doing. Trust me my coach made him work hard today! And it did pay off but there is no way I could have done it. She said he was one of the most challenging she's worked with in awhile.

Here's my dilemma. I'm sure many of you horse lovers will sympathize. My new coach has told me he needs a lot of work. Keep in mind I have been away from horses for about 13 years. I go and get myself a hot head...oh boy. She told me we are in for a lot of blood, sweat and tears. She also told me to consider the possibility of selling him to a more experienced person. Its not because he is a mean horse just more than I intended to handle getting back into the saddle. He obviously got away with a lot in his past. Because he is such a sweet horse and not a mean bone in his body type, just thick headed, I don't want to give up on him. My coach is happy about my positive attitude and I will learn a lot with him.

I'm not really looking for advice saying you should sell him or anything. I guess I'm just needing some horse lovers to share there experience with a horse that was a challenge. As of right now I would not go on a trail ride with him. He's not focused enough. Sadly that is what I bought a horse for. But **** I fell hard for this guy. Any stories to share?
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post #2 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 10:22 PM
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Cher I can definitely relate. I haven't ridden a horse that was trail worthy in years and I would love to do trails! The horse I'm working on I just love but he just isn't the sharpest tool in the shed. When we first started he would spook at anything: trees, birds, kittens, mushrooms to name a few (yes, mushrooms). Mind you he is 17.3 hands so taking a spill on this guy is no fun! For months i worked on very small feats with him and then it finally happened - I got him on the bit and he started moving beautifully! It only lasted for a few minutes. Now when we work I can get a few minutes of great riding in. I can't take him on trails and we aren't showing anytime soon but for the few minutes of collected, on the bit riding I am so happy and it makes it worth it! I guess my advice is to be patient and be happy with the small victories until you get your trail ride. :)
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post #3 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 10:27 PM
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I've had a couple of people tell me that Rook *I'm NOT being mean here...just honest* is the ADD kid. He can't focus or concentrate on anything. So, he's like his owner. I just started lessons with a guy this past Friday who is very good with both of us. He saw right away the bond that we have...but also what we have in common. He's very patient with me, which helps me a lot; doesn't make me nervous in the least bit; and is showing me how to effectively get Rook's attention on me, instead of everybody and everything else.

You're definitely not in this boat alone. You will find the people here to be very helpful...they've helped me a LOT!!!

Honary "HFA" member...That's right, I'm admitting it!

BTW....That's NOT rain on your windshield!!!!
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post #4 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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Shasta, I had to giggle reading your reply. That's my boy. At first it was cute when he was like oh what's that? Is it a bird, oh a string it tickles, oh an icicle, what's that horse doing over there? . He has to gawk at everything. ugh! 17.3 is intimidating for me being 5 foot nothing. lol. But I'm so happy things are slowly progressing for you and your horse. That's great news! Thanks for sharing.

charlicata, Having a great coach that gives me confidence has made such a difference. She makes me feel like hey I CAN do this! You are so right about this website. I don't have any horsey friends other than my hubby so its nice to come on here and read other riders victories, experiences, guidance, etc. Some days I feel like what did I get myself into or this experience will make me a better horse woman. Its a rollercoaster for me. So, its nice to read others stories. My non horse friends are getting tired of the horse talk. lol. Thanks for sharing too.
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post #5 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 10:48 PM
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I have a some what similar story. I got Charm 2 years ago and she was as unruley, and wild as a mustang but was really owned by a sweet old lady that bred her mare in hopes of training a foal herself. Needless to say it failed and Charm was barely ever touched in the first 4 years of her life.

Then I come into the picture and buy her as my second horse and first horse to train completely. NOT the best idea. A month after buying Charm I found out I needed back surgery(which required a bar in my back so I will forever be straight as a stick almost). So i couldn't ride for a year after. I kept her at a barn that was supposed to start her training for me but instead of that they practically abused her and I wasnt around to say anything.
Buy the time I really started working with charm other then simply leading her around, which I did train her before surgery, I had owned her for a year and a half and she has been to 3 different barns.

Now a half year later Charm is green broke and does everything perfectly on the ground. it took a lot of blood and tears like your instructor is saying. Seriously though she taught me a lot and I have a wonderful bond with her. We plan to show this year

Yes, horse training is a rollercoaster especially your first one. Some days I feel terrible about how riding went then the next charm and I work hard and I feel better.

" Horses are a humans wings."

Last edited by ShezaCharmer; 01-03-2011 at 10:50 PM.
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post #6 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShezaCharmer View Post
I have a some what similar story. I got Charm 2 years ago and she was as unruley, and wild as a mustang but was really owned by a sweet old lady that bred her mare in hopes of training a foal herself. Needless to say it failed and Charm was barely ever touched in the first 4 years of her life.

Then I come into the picture and buy her as my second horse and first horse to train completely. NOT the best idea. A month after buying Charm I found out I needed back surgery(which required a bar in my back so I will forever be straight as a stick almost). So i couldn't ride for a year after. I kept her at a barn that was supposed to start her training for me but instead of that they practically abused her and I wasnt around to say anything.
Buy the time I really started working with charm other then simply leading her around, which I did train her before surgery, I had owned her for a year and a half and she has been to 3 different barns.

Now a half year later Charm is green broke and does everything perfectly on the ground. it took a lot of blood and tears like your instructor is saying. Seriously though she taught me a lot and I have a wonderful bond with her. We plan to show this year
Hi Sheeza! What a journey for the two of you! I do believe that the messier it gets the better it will be on the other side and stronger the bond. From what I've learned from his history , if I can believe any of it, is he had it rough with a dressage trainer and then they gave up on him and started him barrel racing...uh I can not seeing him concentrating on that. The past few years of his life was trail riding with a man before my old trainer got him. He loves men so I'm guessing he sees men as calm trail riding buddies? My hubby has offered to ride him if he turns out to be too much for me. I'm not giving up that easy. He is such a sweetie that after my coach worked him for a good hour an half, he still ran over to me when I went and checked on him a few hours later. Thanks for sharing your story.
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post #7 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 11:03 PM Thread Starter
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Sheza, I forgot to add good luck showing her this year!
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post #8 of 34 Old 01-03-2011, 11:42 PM
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Been there also. I was a total newbie when I bought my first horse. She was a 3yr old Quarter off the track and a real handful. She had recovered from a race career ending injury. She only had race training, so she didn't know much more than a jiggy walk and full on run. She didn't load in a trailer, she had bucked off the owner's wife and she apparently was distrustful of men. Unlike you, I didn't have a trainer to help guide me thru the rough spots in the beginning. We managed to survive each other. She ended up being my best horse. She was the horse I always went back to when my confidence was shaken from another horse. She was a school horse in her later years. She taught countless people how to ride and helped a number of people get over their fear of horses. I held her head when she passed in 2008 at the age of 31.

Your trainer is right in the amount of work ahead for both you and the horse. It may not be an easy road. I wish you both the best of luck in this endeavor.

"SUCCESS is not what horse you have . . . but what you do with that horse."
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post #9 of 34 Old 01-04-2011, 01:32 AM
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I am sorry that you did not get the horse that you were looking for, and my advise really centers around what do you want to do?

Your trainer is not saying he will never work, but that he will be a lot of effort. So what's your feeling about this? Do you have the spare time and effort to put into him, do you want to work through this? Or would you rather have another horse that you can love as much as this one, and just hop on and ride when you want to? Either answer is fine, I don't mean any judgement.

I realize it is hard when you have fallen in love with a horse, but that means that someone else could too, there is no reason to think that the horse would be mistreated if you chose a new buyer rather than just selling, if that makes sense.

But at the same time your trainer is saying that he needs work, not that he is unmanageable. So I imagine after a few weeks to a few months, of her working with him, if this is financially managible for you, you should be able to ride him with her lunging.

To me, it is not really about the horse it is about you, and what you think you can do and manage. And there is no judgement from me in this comment. I passed along my last horse as she was too much for me based on my current family commitments, she needed more work than I could commit to her. And I made a mistake buying her too, and I have owned a bunch of horses for a good number of years.

I am not asking you to schedule your life and post it here, or to tell us about your financial status, as I would not do that, just have a think on it and what you want to do. If you don't think you can manage it, there is nothing wrong with that, and actually you would be kinder to the horse to let it go to someone else who cares about it. I believe an active horse mind does not do well being idle.

But hugs to you either way, I had to eat a huge bunch of pride to let my last horse go as she just did not work for my current life, 10 years ago I could have retrained her. It hurt to let her go, but I think it hurt as much to realize I made a mistake. So it is up to you to decide where you fall in this spectrum, and I am sorry, I know it is tough.
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post #10 of 34 Old 01-04-2011, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cher40 View Post
Sheza, I forgot to add good luck showing her this year!
Thank you

And the best of luck to you with your new horse. If you decide to do this you will learn a lot and if you don't there is always another horse that needs a loving home.

" Horses are a humans wings."
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