Buying first horse, Advice and opinions needed.
Okay so here's my story - I started riding at 8 (im 15) i rode english for 2 years, never western, and I stopped riding because a horse starting rearing and kicking another horse in the areana when my trainer left to go get a crop inside the barn, the saddle slid almost sideways and the horse took off with me trying to hold on to the falling saddle and the horses mane. Suprisingly I didn't fall off as the trainer quickly got the horse to calm and took me off. After that I was scared to DEATH to fall off, and I told my mom I wanted to quit. I wish my mom forced me back onto a horse, it wouldv'e made me a better rider and I wouldn't have had such a break from horses like I did, but she let me quit. Well they say horses are in the blood... my uncle is a farrier and boarded horses for over 50 years. He shod the horse Secretariat , and my cousin is the president of the quater house assosication. My mom always used to hang around my uncles barn when she was younger and rode horses herself for a bit, but she hasen't ridden in over 15 years. I know a lot about horses, as I've always loved them, and I love being at a barn. But I always had that fear. Well, a good friend of mine has owned horses her whole life and almost a year ago, forced me on a 3 hour long trail ride. First time I was even in a western saddle. At first I was scared to DEATH, especially since the horses were CRAZY and green as ever. But after the first 5 minutes, it all came back to me. After that I continued to go with her to train her horses, and go swimming with them, feed them, just being around them in general. And 4 months ago I started working at a feed store and I started taking english lessons again. My trainer said, that she can deffiently see that I have ridden before, and she said that I am progressing extremely fast. For my job I went through a TON of training and know about almost any kind of dog, cat, horse, goat, lamb, bird, chicken, etc. feed. My boss also has 4 horses and is very experienced with horses. I feed her 4 horses, almost 3 - 4 times a week and I even trained her gelding (my favorite) to respect me and actually listen to me. He used to take off when he would see anyone (including my boss) with a lead rope, lunge line, halter, and HATES being lunged. So my boss asked me to work with him because she doesn't have time. Well I took time to continuely train him to back up when I put my hand up and say back up (without touching him) and I got him to the point where when I call his name, he will come to me and let me put the halter on. I got him to walk on a leap rope (without taking off). And I got him to lunge consistly. My boss was AMAZED on how good I did with him. I've also ridden a couple of her horses. And so the other day my boss told me how a friend she knows, can no longer afford it. It is a 11 year old saddlebred, gelding. It is a sorrel. She said it is very spoiled and rides english. Well I want a horse that can ride western and english, but my boss said she will get her friend who is a western trainer to help me train him to be able to ride western as well. She said it would be a fantasic beginner horse. And my boss convinced her friend to give it to me for free. Well me and my boss are going to look at it tomorrow and check it all out. I am going to ride it and see how it is and see if it's what I want.
But my question is based on what you just read - do you think I'm ready? I personally do, and I always have my uncle, cousins, friend, trainer and boss for help. But in your opinion?
Also - my friend is kind of a know it all, and her mom is worse. I told them about this horse and they are trying to distract me, saying I should get some horse in another state that is 5 grand. I don't have that kind of money to spend on the horse itself. And if this horse is a good horse, and if it's what I'm looking for, I'm gonna take it. But now my friend is all "don't trust your boss, she doesn't know what she's doing, I'll come with you to look at the horse, etc etc" and she thinks the free horse is a bad idea because it's free. But it's only free becuase of my boss being good friends with the owner.
And even though that my friend is experienced, they spend money like its nothing, and they are annoying. If I want this horse, I'm gonna get it.I am gonna pay 75 a month for pasture boarding. (thanks to my boss, the fee was orginially 125. (until we build our barn and pasture at my house, we have 8 acres) I get discounted hay and feed, which I will be paying for. ( I make about 500 a month) and my mom said she will pay for medical expenses.
So what do you think? And also any advice? Sorry for it being so long.
I would not listen to your friend or her mom
you will know when you are ready
and if you are not ready and have a bad time you won't be happy
You sound like you've done your homework. :) Go with your trainer's advice, not your friend's.
I would suggest that you ride the horse. Saddlebreds are a very sensitive breed who need calm hands. However, they are also the biggest love bugs you will find in the horse world. Mine is known as the dork fish.
Training an English horse Western is not hard, so that shoudl not put you off. I would say that you need to ride the horse BEFORE you say yes. If you can get on the horse and calmly walk about and most importantly relax - bring him home.
Just my two cents - I always think that people should own a horse, but it does need to be the right horse. Make sure you can handle him under saddle and not just on the ground.
I'd go for it. Get the horse vet checked before you take him on. Ask about trying a month lease or at least a few rides before you say yes.
I hope you don't take offense at what I"m going to say, as I truly do mean it in the most helpful/supportive way. Keep in mind that I have four kids of my own who all ride and am a 4-h leader so I've seen and heard a LOT. I think you are ready for a horse. I do not think that a horse being free is a reason not to get it. But to me it sounds like after your bad accident, you got back on and have gotten cocky. If this horse is not the right horse for you (and one test ride will not really tell you that), even one MINOR accident will set you right back to where you were after the first accident, maybe even farther. I think that you would be better off to take your time finding the best fit for you, knowing what you want before you begin to look, rather than just looking because the horse is in your price range. Another setback or two and you may never ride again. Take the time to do it right.
i think it's already a good thing that you will have a trainer to help you out in whatever decision you make. That way if you do end up getting the horse you have someone with experience to help you through any problems you may face.
But i have to admit the fact that they say the horse is "spoiled" concerns me a little haha. It could quite possibly be very pushy and dangerous. Even though you have spent a lot of time building up your confidence, if you end up owning a horse that someone else ruined it could very well set you back. Maybe that's not what they meant by spoiled, who knows. Just the first thing I think of when I see that word.
I agree with the above poster. Take your trainer and go ride the horse and spend time with it. More than one session if possible.. and try to be there for everything they do, grooming, tack up, walking on a lead line, whatever. I would probably not bring that friend along, because it sounds like they could end up frustrating you or distracting you while you are testing out the horse.
I think you might be ready ;-) Just because a horse is free doesn't make it a bad horse that just means the owner didn't have what it takes to own that horse. I'd ask for a week from the person who owns the horse to see if your a good fit. Go spend time with the horse see if you have what it takes. I got a free horse because the owner just wasn't interested anymore and the horse kept getting out and my husband and I would go get him and put him back for about a year so the owner said you want him, you can have him. He is a great horse but was starved for attention and could have used more food. Money can't make a good horse only attention and time spent on the horse can make it good.
I'll just say this...
A free horse isn't necessarily a bad horse! My stallion was free (though at the time we thought he was a gelding) and he's a great horse! Free can sometimes be a bad thing, and sometimes it can be a good thing.
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