Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Upstate New York
• Horses: 0
I have had a similar but different issue last spring. I had purchased a pinto gelding that was listed for sale as a good solid beginners riding horse. They were anxious to sell and by the time I responded to the ad, they had planned on taking him to the auction. They lived about 2 hours from me and there was no way to get to him before their scheduled trip to the sale.... However, the auction is located about 45 minutes from me and I decided to just have them drop him on the way (I'm in between)
Big quiet gelding unloaded and I was pleased with my purchase. Let him settle a day or two and then rode him...nothing eventful just your basic get on and go. Basic training nothing spectacular but I knew I could brush that up.
I bring all the horses in at night for feeding and one night after I'd had him about 10 days or so, I reached to put his grain in his stall and he went beserk. Lunged across the stall, bit my hand and slammed into the wall, pinning my hand between his teeth and the wall. I left the adjacent stall (the one I'd reached over to his feeder, and when he saw me through the bars at the front of his stall started slamming himself at the wall trying to get at me. I got out of the line of vision grabbed my phone and called someone to come take me to the hospital. Luckily the hand is very collapsible and no bones were broken...but it was purple and swelled several times it's normal size.
I, like most horse people, tried to figure out what I had done wrong...did I startle him when he saw my hand? Did he feel his space invaded? But that would only account for the original bite...not the slamming against the wall trying to tear it down do get me. I am very thankful I did just reach over the stall, if he had done it while I walked in, he probably would have killed or maimed me.
I watched him carefully the next few days.. I kept him turned out alone and made sure his food was there and I didn't bring it to him. In this time he'd go from 90 percent of the time like a perfect boy, to watching him run to the hay pile to stomp and tear at it like a crazed thing.
I live alone on my farm and if something happens to me, my critters are sunk. I contacted the original owners and they got very defensive and said, well if we'd had problems we'd have just taken him to the auction...ummmmm, you did. I couldn't place him with anyone one else for fear he would be resold as "normal" and injure or kill someone, a guy I know offered to buy him to take directly to processing, but I couldn't put the horse through that either. After much soul searching I felt the best option for myself and the horse was to euthanize him. I had to explain the whole situation to my vet and she agreed while it seemed radical, it was the best option to protect people and ultimately the horse.
Sorry for the novel, but I think you should probably do the same. Even if you place him with someone with full disclosure, there are no promises the next person will be so truthful and that the horse won't end up killing again.
You are in my thoughts. It's not an easy decision.
Last edited by Big Black Crow; 03-03-2012 at 08:59 AM.