Still can't make a decision! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 02:43 AM Thread Starter
Green Broke
Join Date: Nov 2012
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Still can't make a decision!

To make a long story short, my young mare went lame, probably due to an injury she had as a 2 yr old. I also have an older mare that is retired due to age related lameness.

I have a few options:

1) I can re-home my young mare to a friend who is looking for a walk-trot horse for light riding. She keeps her horses for life and has about 6 pasture pets in their 20's who are all rescues.

2) Get one more vet out to get a definitive diagnosis on the young mare (we are pretty certain at this point that she tore her stifle/meniscus when she hit the fence), and possible breed her if it is not genetic. If it is genetic I obviously wouldn't breed. This would be a one time breeding, just because I want a baby just like mare (without the injury).

I love this mare, she has good conformation, is registered, has a great mind. I had started training her to drive in addition to being ridden and she has done well. She was going to be my forever partner if not for her injury. This way I could pick any stallion, of any breed, and hopefully breed something really nice that I would never be able to afford to buy (probably a WB).

I have been debating for several months about going with option 1- the issue is I cannot seem to make myself give my young mare up. I've been looking at other horses for sale, and just haven't really clicked with any of them. I know part of this is an attachment issue on my part. The other issue is horse prices are absurdly high in my area (3-5 grand). Lately they are selling foals to 2 yr olds for about $2000 with no training.

A lot of horses don't have good conformation, are small, don't look suited for what I want, or something just doesn't feel right. I don't want to trade my mare in for something that is going to have issues as well. I got bucked off the horse I was free leasing. He is only 6 and has stifle issues, and is very unreliable. I definitely don't want to end up with a horse like him! His owner had him vet checked too before she bought him...

Maybe I should just keep my mare for the time being, and continue to look and hope I find something that I click with. I could buy another unbroke 2 yr old, but there are so many unknowns with that as well.

What I am looking for: I want something I can jump, trail ride, and take up driving on. So must absolutely be sane over anything else! Training isn't an issue, I can train just about anything. Preferably under 8 yrs old so we have plenty of time together before retirement.

This mare here is one of the best one's I've seen lately, but she looks rump high... I think she may be worth looking at.
Sheza Wild Image ~ 2010 ApHC Filly for sale in Gilchrist, Florida, United States of America :: HorseClicks

I also like this mare but I don't think she is registered. Plus I don't like grey paints that much.
Stunning mare with eye catching color for sale in Suwannee, Florida, United States of America :: HorseClicks
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 02:54 AM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Southeastern PA
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I had a horse on a trial period who had something up, and we didn't know what. The owner of the horse had a barn fire, and we agreed that he would pay part my board until he could take the horse back. In that time, I knew the horse was going back, but I grew attached, very attached. She had something going on, but I wasn't sure what.

I think it was $1400 in total to get a mobile scanner out, and to scan the stifle. It turned out the horse would never be sound, and I returned her.

To me, it was a lot of money to spend on a horse that wasn't mine, but I liked her a lot. And I would have kept her if it had turned out differently.

My advise is to spend the money finding out what's wrong with the horse you like. It was a lot of money for me to drop, but I don't regret it, I would regret more giving up a horse that was just awesome.

If I were you, I'd find out what you are really dealing with and then look at your options.
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post #3 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 08:49 AM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Pennsylvania
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Don't breed the horse. If she throws something you don't like, youre now stuck with a lame horse you can't ride and now another horse you don't like, and people are giving horses away now for free because they can't afford or don't want them anymore.

I've heard if too many stories where the owner breeds the mare for sentimental reasons and that is not a good reason to breed, ever. You can find another horse with a great temperament who needs a home for cheap enough.

If you can't use her, sell or give her away. If you can't afford to vet her to see what's wrong, give her to someone you know who can. It's hard enough selling a horse with a known injury, and its irresponsible selling a horse with an unknown lameness.

Just find a home for her where she will be cared for, and buy another good tempered horse.
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 08:53 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Northwest Florida
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..........wrong place

I am Second
Born Once, Die Twice. Born Twice, Die Once.
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post #5 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 09:03 AM
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: OK
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The only thing I'm going to comment on is the 2 year old filly in the ad you posted the link for. Yes, she is butt high. She's only TWO, she's still growing and I'd worry if she wasn't butt high.

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post #6 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 02:15 PM Thread Starter
Green Broke
Join Date: Nov 2012
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Alex- What kind of scanner was it? infrared? The last vet I spoke with wanted to do an ultrasound next to see how bad the damage is, which is fine with me (we've already X rayed and injected which didn't help) . The problem is even if she did injure a ligament in her stifle or tear something, it is unlikely she would come back from that. She has been on rest for about the last year. Laproscopic surgery would be best, but I could spend thousands on that and it may still not be fixable. The vet quoted me about 6 grand (that is what she spent on her horse's stifle). Now she is comfortable walk-trot. Only her canter is really affected at this point.

The gate she hit her stifle on is solid metal- like this

Technically I can get a second opinion, but it is obvious at this point that the prognosis isn't good since she hasn't improved with rest. So the only real reason to get a second opinion would be to confirm that it isn't genetic and decide whether we want to breed her.

Everyone talks about the free/unwanted horse- The first rescue horse I saved (starvation case) developed navicular issues and always had soundness issues. She will live out her days with me. The one after that cost me thousands of dollars in vet bills and bronco bucked like mad. I finally got her going nicely and she ended up being put down due to health issues last year. It was heart breaking. That ended my dreams of wanting to rescue or take in any more free horses. There is a reason horses are free!

Re-homing my mare shouldn't be a problem. I did pay a good deal of money for her. Either her breeder will take her back if I want to ship her there or my mom's friend will take her. That is not the issue here. Even with lameness issues, my girl will always have a good loving home.

The question is, if you know you have a good horse who's career is cut short by an injury, would you breed her just once? I don't breed anything on my farm- never have. This would be the exception. Thus why I am having such a hard time deciding what to do.

I would probably wait til next year to breed (if I did decide to do so). That gives me the next year to shop around and see if I can't find something that suits me. The thing is once you find your dream horse, how does any other horse measure up to that? Sometimes there is something so unique that it is irreplaceable. Sure you can find another horse to compete with at the same level, but it isn't the same.

I could keep her and may end up doing so, but it still doesn't give me a horse to ride... I've been free leasing people's problem horses, but I'm tired of dealing with behavior issues and basically training them for free. Might as well spend that time training my own horse.
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post #7 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 02:57 PM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Southeastern PA
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Honestly I forget the exact scan it was, it was a few years ago now. Sorry.
Give your vet a call and chat it through with him/her. I bet they can give you some options and costs.
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post #8 of 8 Old 05-20-2013, 04:57 PM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Pennsylvania
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I wouldn't breed her. Not just once. Find another horse that has some good potential. There are a ton out there needing a home.

Getting a foal out of your dream horse will not make the foal a dream horse. You'll just be making another horse who has a chance of needing a home in the future. You don't know what the future holds so when people say "I'll keep the foal forever!"... Well, I never believe them. It's just an excuse to justify breeding for sentimental reasons.

You won't even be able to get the same horse even if you cloned. They all have different spirits. There is no guarantee that the foal even have the same build as its mother. Breeding for another dream horse because the first one broke is a little pointless. Plus, you'd have to wait 11 months to get the foal, and another 3-4 years to get a riding animal.

It's a shame this happened to your horse but there are a ton of other beautiful animals already on the ground and ready for you.
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