Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Buffalo, New York
• Horses: 0
Dreaming of the future, with a bit of worrying. Experience with OTTBs Please
Hi everybody! I’m new to the forum. I do not currently own a horse of my own, due to lack of finances. However, I do know that I will get a horse at some point in my life, hopefully sooner rather than later lol. And because I know this, I have had this burning question in the back of my mind ever since I decided where I was going to get my first horse from, but first a bit of background about me to help you answer it.
I have been riding since I was 10 years old (I’m now 21) in lessons at a fairly well know H/J barn in my area, I rode at this stable until I was about 16. I would lease one of the barns horses every summer. I only showed in 3 shows, but got a first place in equitation at my second show. Eventually I moved to another barn where the boarders there allowed me to ride and care for their horses from when I was 16-18 years old. I also took private lessons with an upper level dressage/event trainer during that time and the barn owner offered to sponsor me in shows in order to get his barn name out there. I never ended up showing in these shows however because I was trying to prep my favorite horse that I rode for the shows and before I could get us to where I felt we would do the barn name justice my parents pulled me out of riding and horses altogether.
My most recent horse that I’ve ridden was a 13yr OTTB that had not been ridden in quite sometime because the owner had bought him for her 10yr old daughter and she could not handle him so he mostly sat in a stall without a job until I rode him. Needless to say he was a bit of a crazy man when I first started working with him, rearing, bolting, bucking, he would refuse to go to the arena when I had him tacked up. By the 3rd time working with him the bolting and bucking was completely gone, he would still refuse to go into the arena occasionally and he would rear and refuse to go away from the gate when I was working him. Eventually all the bad behavior was taken care of with a bit of persisting on my end, he got the hint that I wasn’t going to give up and let him get away with his crap. In the end I got him working softly, going on the bit consistently and coming from behind.
What my question is however is this: I love thoroughbreds, and whenever the time comes that I do start to look for my own horse I really want it to be an OTTB. I love the idea of rescuing a horse while at the same time getting a sport horse partner diamond in the rough. My concern is that the rescues and the trainers that the rescues work with won’t allow me to adopt because it would be my first horse and they think I won’t have enough experience. I would be looking for something that is young but not a baby, so somewhere in the 5-8yr range, that is easy to handle and has a willing attitude and potential to be a jumper or eventer.
I feel comfortable in restarting the horse slowly, letting them down (if it hasn’t been done already), training them on a lounge/in hand with voice commands, teaching them about things they might not know about such as cross ties etc., teaching them to work off of the new aids. And of course bringing in a trainer if I ever become unsure of myself…
I guess my main concern is, have you ever heard of a Thoroughbred adoption agency refusing adoption to a person in my situation? (particularly CANTER) And if you feel like there’s anything I can do now until I start looking to decrease my chances of getting refused.
If you have anymore specific questions about my experience, please ask, this post was just getting long.