04-09-2012, 07:59 PM
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When I was putting on and sponsoring CTR rides. I had a 86 year old man that brought his 28 year old horse to a ride every other weekend. They would compete in the Open Division, Which is 50 miles over the two day event.
They would compete in 12-14 of these rides each summer and I know they had to do some conditioning rides at home in between.
You may get 8 years out of that horse and have it die or you may get 2 years of riding and have a pasture ornament for the next 12 years taking care of a geriatric horse. You need to think about what you will do with the horse when its age catches up with it. If the horse becomes un-rideable next year, What will you do with it? Will you be attached to it and feel you need to provide a comfortable retirement? Will you treat it like livestock and sell it to the meat buyers? The older the horse is the sooner you have to address this question.