Time to Move on???
I have posted before about working with a spoiled horse...
and I have gradually been fixing certain issues.
The horse is now "catchable" and will stand still and allow me to come right up to her in the pasture and will extend her nose for the halter.
She will now lift three of her feet with absolutely no problem. The fourth foot she will press to the floor as though her life depends on it (so that's another issue...)
The owners had been using a tom-thumb and a twisted-wire snaffle on her - and not surprisingly she was resistant to the bridle. I switched to a nice thick snaffle - and she is much more willing to be bridled and beginning to become more responsive to a light touch.
The owners had been using a saddle that was too narrow - and she used to fuss when being saddled. I have switched to a much wider saddle....and now saddling her is much better.
We've been doing some ground work - and she is becoming much more respectful of my space.
These are all good things - all signs of progress - and I'm very proud of how its been going.
Now to the issue: bucking under saddle!
I admit flat-out that I do not have the proper riding skills to handle a horse that bucks under saddle. So far - I have managed to stay on and re-direct her...but we continue to have these incidents with every ride.
I have a few theories:
1) Pain. The horse's feet are not done anywhere near as often as they should be (it's been almost three months). I'm thinking hoof/leg pain is causing her some discomfort - and probably explains why she is only willing (or able) to lift 3 out of 4 feet.
2) A physical issue of some kind - the bucking tends to start after I've been riding for a bit. It could be fatigue/pain some kind of problem that bothers her and she will only endure it for so long...
3) Just a nasty, disrespectful horse - she's certainly has enough bad habits....could be this is just what she's learned.
And the biggest problem? This is a *leased* horse - so the owners do not want to get a vet out...or have the farrier come more frequently. They feel if I just get "tough" with her....she'll be fine.
Does this sound "fixable" to you? What do you think? Suggestions? Ideas?
Thank you in advance for your help!
IMO I would try and find another horse or pay for things like farrier visits. She need to get her feet done and I don't know why the owners are not doing it ? My horse is very tender footed and I have to keep him trimmed and fixing to get shoes on him to help , but he doesn't buck on me , but you can tell when he is in an area that cause him pain. Your riding her can be causing her pain .
I'm aggravated that I am paying a monthy fee that includes hoof care - but the owners don't want to get a farrier out every five or six weeks...and instead put it off...
Do you have some sort on contract with them? What I would do is have a farrier come out and then deduct it from the leasing fee, or have a talk with them..I just can't see what the point is to let a horses hooves go like that
One of the issues that I've had all along is that the owners seem to be in denial. They couldn't see that the saddle they were using was too narrow. They didn't see that the bit was too harsh. They didn't understand when the horse was being disrespectful.
It's difficult for me to tell whether this horse's issues are "fixable" and worth sticking around for...or if this is just a world of hurt waiting to happen.
First of all, they should be paying you for making their horse a better horse. you are essentially "training" it. They should be darn grateful to have a lessee like yourself. They don't come along every day. They could have their mare in such worse hands!
maybe talk to them that you want to take care of the shoeing yourself. renogotiate the fee to exclude hoof care, then you can do it on your own.
As for the bucking, if the horse won't lift one foot (the rear?) it could mean her pelvis/back area is out in some way, as lifting that last foot means bearing weight, perhaps, on the bad area. Maybe spring for a chiro visit.
I could not deal with a hrose that is bucking, just as most average riders cannot. They will have a hard time leasing her to anyone else if she is a bucker. I think you have grounds to renogotiate some of the fees.
I really don't have much advice on the bucking issure, sorry.
Thanks Tinyliny! I appreciate your kind words...
I would LOVE to get a vet's opinion on it...but I can't imagine the owners will approve a vet visit if there's no "injury".
I wonder if they would be willing to re-negotiate?
Well, heck - let's face it. If I were in a better position financially....I would go BUY a horse of my own and be done with all of the drama of leasing. Then I could treat MY horse the way *I* wanted. Proper farrier, vet, tack, training, etc....without worrying about somebody else's "ego" getting in the way of horse care.
For now - I have to keep dreaming...
I really feel your position. I have been leasing since forever, with differen horse/owner combos. In general , I have been really lucky with the owners that I've worked wih. I always tell people who are considering leasing to look at the owners. A good relationship with them will be as important as the relationship with the horse. I take very good care of the horses I lease and I am proud to be a contributor to their health and growth, as you are doing. you are not without a leg to stand on in neogotiations.
Offer to buy her?
Those kinds of owners aren't going to budge.. unless you flat out tell them you're paying the "farrier fees" toward and actual farrier instead of them but I think they'd break the lease then.
Worth a try though.
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