I'd rather a buyer flake BEFORE the sale than after, and then demand their money back. Besides, as a seller I'd rather my horse go to someone who really wants him/her.
I agree, while I don't understand why someone would verbally commit to something they were not 100% sure about and then change their mind, I would rather they do it before then after.
I am so not a mare person, so how come I have mares now? Because I have found that the right mare is worth her weight in gold. I have a mare who is English broke, who is going out to be re started Western, just because a horse rides well in one discipline, doesn't mean it can't do anything else.
If a horse being a mare was a big deciding factor, why would you look at mares? If you did look at a mare, and decided she was "worth her weight in gold", why would you change your mind as soon as a gelding came up?
Because unless you keep an open mind and try a lot of horses how do you know what will fit?
If you wanted an English horse that was already trained in English, why would you go look at horses that were only trained western? Its a different thing entirely if you don't mind retraining, but in this case it sounds like the OP was really wanting a gelding that was trained English/western, settled on the mare, then changed her mind as soon as the horse they were actually looking for came up. if you wanted a trail horse, would you go try some dressage horses that had never been out of the arena? if you wanted a dressage horse would you go try some competing in western pleasure? You try out horses that work for your goals. If English training was a deal breaker, OP should not have been looking at an exclusively western trained horse.
For those who say its like buying a car, first off, unlike car salesman, most of whom get an hourly wage and commission, the hours you take from a private seller are only paid for by the sale of the item. if you take up 8 hours of the sellers time in multiple visits, then decide you don't want the horse, you have just wasted 8 hours of some ones time. People rarely make multiple visits to car dealerships, to test drive the vehicle multiple times, for hours each visit. Additionally, I don't know anyone who walks into a dealership, says "I'll take the red Ford", then walks out, goes to another dealership and picks up a different car. Maybe I just don't know enough people?
I go horse shopping for a horse with qualities I need, find one I like that is sound, then I buy it. I did the same thing with my car.
So I guess to summarize, Yes, it is rude.