Oldest Horse In The Barn
So I have a quarter paint that is around 35 years old that I still ride/work at least 4 times a week and show on rare occasion. He is 100% sound and is in no way showing signs of deterioration. He is absolutely miserable when I don’t ride or work him so I figure I’ll keep going until he tells me that he can’t do it anymore. He’s always been the kind of horse that is happier and healthier with a job. A lot of people think it’s not right to ride after a certain age so what are your thoughts. What age did you retire a horse at and was there a reason other than age? This isn’t a debate over whether or not I should retire my horse because it’s not going to happen. I just want to know about you’re seniors and retirees. Pictures are also welcome.
The horse will tell you when it's time to retire. If he's happier in work than out, and is physically fit enough to handle it, then there's no reason to stop.
Just the same as people, horses age differently, some are happy to retire, and some are just happy to keep going. As long as you listen to your oldie they will tell you what they want to do.
Back in the UK I was given an oldster as a pasture companion for my lonely horse, he was around 25 and they were worried about him. He had a couple of weeks rest, then I started riding him quietly, after a few months he went back to his owner and back into work. He wasn't ready to retire, just needed a short break:lol:
There are a few at the local riding school around the age of 32 and loving their work. Cheeky things know all the tricks to play on beginners (like refusing to budge) but when someone who can ride hops on, they get all excited and turn back the clock. Age doesn't weary some horses!
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We have a trail rider (older lady who's been in organization forever, did lots of trail clearing, and overall is a known person around), and her horse is around 30+ (may be 35 by now?). She still trail rides him all the time (although mostly at the walk). So some horses just keep going (and I think it's great!).
There was a horse at the therapeutic ranch around here that was in his thirties. They kept trying to retire him but he would stop eating if he didn't have students. So they used him once a day until he got sick enough that he had to be put down. He loved his job!!
and honestly, maybe it's their love of their job that gives them the will to live? Not to mention, he may get all stiff and sore if he isn't exercised!
where I used to lease Annabelle the the oldest horse was 20 years old
a retired race horse
well i bought an '18' year old 17.2hh TB gelding which turned out to be a 40+ year old 17.2hh TB gelding i rode him before i found out about his age and he loved it he would walk me around the pasture and loved it he would wait till i got on and then wouldnt let me off eh would walk and walk and walk i had to slide off to get him to stop. i stopped ridding him in the winter after owning him for 3 months and he past january 1st. 5 months after owning him. i would ride a horse if they were capable and willing. some horses need a job.
I acquired my horse Bart, forever ago when he was 12. At first I didn't want him and tried to sell him, but nobody else wanted him either. That's how I started learning a little about training. It was more survival skills! Many, many years riding the mountains and trails all over the state and he would ride circles around horses half his age. When he was 29 he started having a little difficulty with downhills and rocks. Being stupid me I assumed it was time to retire him. That didn't go well at all, so got him back out and slowly worked him back into shape. He's now 30 years and I am particular about what trails I take him on but he can still ride circles around the youngsters.
If ya don't tell 'em how old they are, they don't know!
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