advice on keeping a horse - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 11-02-2011, 09:41 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Virginia
Posts: 59
• Horses: 1
advice on keeping a horse

First off, I am new here so hello everybody! I stumbled across this site while looking up information about moving a horse across the country. This is my boy, Champ:

He is a 6 year old American Appendix gelding. I have had him since he was 6 months old. :)

Anyway, here goes the real question. My husband is in the US Coast Guard. His first base wound up being only an hour and a half from my parent's house. Champ stayed with them when we moved and became my dad's horse. Since they are so close, I have been able to go out and ride and even stay with my parents while my husband went underway. Come march, we will be moving and my parents reminded me that I am welcome to take Champ with me.

So here is the deal. Do you think it is fair for me to take Champ along with us even though we will be moving roughly every four years? We might even go to Alaska soon. I probably would not bring Champ in that case, though I suppose it is a possibility. I am just torn on this situation. I have had him for so long in my life that he really does feel like a part of me and I do not want to leave him behind. But I feel that since I married into the military life, I kind of signed up for that.

Another great stressor is worrying about where we will be next and a struggle to find the right barn before we move. That will probably not be as big of a deal as I have come to think it, but it only adds to everything else. I just do not know what to do at the moment. I seem to think about it constantly. :(
skycon is offline  
post #2 of 6 Old 11-02-2011, 09:53 AM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Just south of sanity
Posts: 16,508
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First off, welcome.

Champ looks like a darling, so I can see why you want him with you.

As far as moving every four years, as long as Champ has one constant in his life, you, he should be fine. My heart horse was moved around a lot during his life, but as long as he had me, he was happy.

I do think you should send him back to your parents if you wind up in Alaska, since it's not really horse-friendly country and boarding barns are pretty non-existent.

If you know at what base your husband will be stationed, start scouting boarding barns in the area. I don't know what your financial situation is or if you want full, partial, or self care boarding, but you should be able to find something to your liking.

Good luck.

You want the truth? You can't HANDLE the truth!
Speed Racer is offline  
post #3 of 6 Old 11-02-2011, 10:03 AM
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: nj
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its up to you to figure it out :) sorry no help.
this is how my mind would work: if he was my stress reliever for everything and i saw him everyday yes i would take him. if he is more so a family animal and brings joy to other members while i see him a couple of times then i would leave him with my family. if i had that option.
if it helps i know afew military wives who took there horses overseas because they couldn't deal with the transition otherwise. it was just so common for them and it did add the whole barn search stress but they thought it was worth it. two even brought theres to alaska :) they always joked about lots of blankets. :) sorry no help i have seen both sides of the situation and it is a very hard descision to make.

p.s gorgeous horse and welcome :)

Last edited by kait18; 11-02-2011 at 10:06 AM.
kait18 is offline  
post #4 of 6 Old 11-02-2011, 10:08 AM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Waxhaw, NC
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I agree with SR. My train of thought would be, if you love horses, why give that up simply because your moving? Where would you get that "love" from? Take lessons, guided trail rides,etc? You already own a horse, that is part of your family. Take him with you. It will give you a constant with all the moving as well.
With any move comes stressors. Finding a place to live, doctors, barns.. the list goes on. It's a small price to pay to keep your beloved friend with you. Just my 2 cents.
LetAGrlShowU is offline  
post #5 of 6 Old 11-02-2011, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Virginia
Posts: 59
• Horses: 1
Thank you all. It really does help to hear about other military families with horses.
(sorry this is so long)

His Dam was bred to produce milk and foster race horse foals. Supposedly, his sire was a thoroughbred race horse but I do not know for sure. I have met the mare though and she is defiantly a QH. My trainer was given a few mares and two foals after the racing farm closed and I took Champ. He hadn't been handled much before we got him and was a pain in the butt. Though I think all the hard work made us closer. He actually kicked me in the face and reared me into the wall when he was younger. But we both are pretty stubborn and kept at it. Here is his little ratty self when we first got him:

His old quote used to be "when in doubt, buck it out" but regular riding keeps that disaster away. lol. Which is another reason I want to take him so bad. My parents are a bit out of shape and do not ride at the moment. Even when he is not ridden for a few months, he picks up his training really well. Though he is a lot better with a more experienced rider I feel.

Anyway, I am a beginner freelance graphic/web designer so I do not make an awful lot of money at the moment. I was hoping to find a barn where I could work off his board and buy his feed and whatnot on my own. I have experience working at training and boarding stables so I have references, but I am not sure how easy that situation will be to find. If I had to, I would defiantly take on another job to pay for him. It is just stressful when everything is in the air like this.

Thank you all again. It is great to hear some non-related advice. My husband is somewhat negative about this idea, but I may be able to talk him into it. I just really can't imagine leaving Champ behind. It puts me in tears every time.
skycon is offline  
post #6 of 6 Old 11-02-2011, 11:18 AM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Germany- but not German =D
Posts: 5,155
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My dad was in the military and we moved ever two years if we were lucky! If he's happy in a trailer, and he doesn't stress and lose weight, why not! Ours have come with us, it would be like changing yards... a few hundred miles away.

Just do your research, find a yard that will suit you both. If you don't try, you never know. And if he doesn't cope, will there still be room for him at your parents?
DuffyDuck is offline  

across country , horse , military , moving

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