Went to look at 2 horses tonight - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 20 Old 07-23-2010, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Virginia, USA
Posts: 1,612
• Horses: 2
I appreciate all the replies. I would absolutely love to board horses at our lesson barn but even with a free "off-farm" lease, it would cost us $700 a month to field board two horses there. (We definitely want two horses so we can ride together)
We will just continue to take lessons and hope that some horses become available for lease there. We have a really good relationship with the trainer/barn manager and even know the owner so I am hoping we can work something out soon. It's funny...I had no interest in horses until recently and now I can't seem to get enough. I want to ride all the time and when we aren't riding, we go to the barn just to groom or pet the lesson horses. I wish we hadn't gotten such a late start. But better late than never.
corgi is offline  
post #12 of 20 Old 07-23-2010, 12:40 PM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Solway MN
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That is right- better late than never!!!

Please consider calling the Humane society/spca or sheriff- I can't imagine the pain that poor animal is in with that halter stuck in it's face. I bought a mini donkey at the sale barn one year that had one, and she had to have surgery to remove it because the noseband had grown across the halter. She was in agony and it took a long time to heal up.

Spent a whole hour today laying in a pasture, waiting for a sparkling vampire to show up. Alas, I woke up and looked over, only to find a mound of horse crap. Sigh.
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post #13 of 20 Old 07-24-2010, 04:00 PM
Join Date: Jun 2010
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I'm in the same wagon as draftrider. Please call the humane society/ spca. It takes awhile for a halter to become "stuck" to the horse. If that is the condition, people could face some animal cruelty charges. Good luck on finding a lease horse.
haleylvsshammy is offline  
post #14 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 10:12 AM
Join Date: May 2010
Location: northeast ohio
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I also think that this is a "call the humane society" issue. Poor things.
The last 2 years of my TBs life I did have a LOT of trouble keeping weight on him, despite trying everything under the sun (including working closely with my vet on the issue). So he was looking pretty thin towards the end, but I wasn't riding him at that point and certainly not looking to lease him to someone else.
I also concur about horse demeanor changing once they get healthy. A friend of mine recently took on a free horse that needed TLC. Her mom was looking for a gentle, slow trail horse. They were assured that his guy fit the bill perfectly. When they tried him out, he was exactly that. Then they took him home, had his messed up teeth fixed, he put on 150 pounds, fixed his feet up etc. Gentle, slow trail horse is gone. In it's place is a beautiful, healthy, 17 year old horse that bucks, rears, spooks and mainly wants to run. My friend actually enjoys working with a horse that is a "challenge", bu this one is no fun even for her. Her mom is certainly never going to be able to ride it again.
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post #15 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 10:28 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Texas
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It doesn't sound like the right situation for you for a few reasons:

1.) The BO sounds desperate to get the horses leased out, great deal for her because she has money coming in each month and don't have to do anything differently. Given the horses current state (i.e. underweight and not cared for) I would be very reluctant to lease any horse at such a farm as there is no reason to believe they will be treated any differently once you begin a lease agreement. Also, the stories given by the BO in regards to the current state of the horses (i.e. headstall being outgrown and horse 'pining' for her and refusing to eat) are utter hogswash, don't believe it at all. It is neglect, pure and simple and you don't want to be involved in a barn like that at all.

2.) Thoroughbreds are not usually the best choice for two beginner riders, there are the odd few out there that are quiet and reliable enough, but generally they are a breed more suited to stronger and more experienced riders. Breeds such as QH, paints and QH crosses make great beginner horses! Again there are exceptions to every rule but generally they are less 'hot'.

3.) Horses that are underweight and malnourished are often well behaved and easier to ride as they don't have the energy to act up. Unfortunately this usually changes when they put weight back on as they have more energy, doesn't mean they will be 'naughty' but it does mean that you may find yourself with a different horse once they are feeling better!

I think you should keep looking. Try to find horses in good health as nursing a horse back to full health takes some time and knowledge, not necessarily a task for someone new to horses. There are plenty of good horses going to waste in paddocks all over the place and I am sure there are owners out there that would like nothing more than their paddock ornament to be ridden and looked after by a couple of horse lovers like you and your husband!

Oh and welcome to the horse world!

All horses deserve, at least once in their lives, to be loved by a little girl.
sarahver is offline  
post #16 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 10:58 AM
Join Date: Jul 2009
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Good horsemen take off halters when the horse is turned out so they don't "catch" on something and the horse breaks it's neck. Your gut was correct - this didn't happen overnight and the fact no one did anything to work the issue shows that if you leased a horse from them and the horse ended up lame they would tell you either to keep riding it or the problem would fix itself...neither would be correct and you would end up paying a leasng fee for a horse which could not or should not be ridden.

An underfed horse did not happen if the owner was away for a few weeks. Skinny horses also tend to be lethargic as they are starving and don't want to expend energy to do much more than try to find food.

Run away from this farm. The $200/month is a good rate but you're just starting to see the edges of a diaster in the making.

When you do find horses to lease make certain you have a signed contract that states who pays what (food farrier, vet bills, dentist, stall), what happens if the horse becomes lame during the lease, and have something in there like either side must provide 30 days written notice if that specific horse (don't go for "suitable replacement horses) becomes unavailable or is deemed no longer suitable by the rider or the leasee is deemed no longer suitable by the owner/leaser.

I forgot to say - on COTH (Chronicle of the Horse) there is a horseless rider/riderless horse thread where peopl have horses they'd like to have ridden - maybe note on there you're looking for well behaved beginner friendly trail horses in your area? I currently have a gal riding my older mare in exchange for chores - keeps horse in shape and gal gets a riding lesson/riding time for free. I know I'm not the only person out there that does this.....just a thought.

Dressage is for Trainers!

Last edited by Valentina; 07-27-2010 at 11:03 AM.
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post #17 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 11:11 AM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Midlands UK
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You are so right to stay away from there. It would be a recipe for heartbreak, chances are, that the more you got to know the place and the horses, the more concerns you would have. If you and your husband are new to horse care, then having a mentor who is an inspiration is doubly important, rather than relying on your humanity and gut instincts to question the practices you see in a badly run barn.
Everyone who spends long enough around horses sees things that trouble them, and there is nothing worse than finding that your horse time is marred by worrying about the things you can't change without a battle or, beating yourself up while turning a blind eye.

Agree with the others, this woman needs reporting, sometimes, just a visit from a welfare organisation can be enough to get improvements made.
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post #18 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 11:26 AM
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Location: Western Mass
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Originally Posted by equiniphile View Post
A lot of times, when a horse starts putting on weight, their original calm demeanor fades away and they turn out to be aggressive, high-energy, mind-of-their-own renegades once at a healthy weight. You see it a lot with rescue horses....people buy because of the sweet temperament, but they turn out to be nutcases when they've got some nutrition to their name.

When I bought my horse, he was just slightly underweight and a little malnourished, he was a bombproof, calm, saint.

About 2 months after owning him, with full turn out in a pasture in which he was free to graze, regular hay and grain feedings he turned into an incredibly spooky, bomb. Seriously, he would bolt and buck at EVERYTHING.

We have worked through most of this stuff now but if you guys are beginners you don't want an unpredictable explosive horse.
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post #19 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 12:17 PM
Join Date: May 2010
Location: northeast ohio
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Heck, when my daughters horse came home from a 30 day tune up at the trainer, I didn't realize that he was starting to come down with a MILD sinus infection. He was an absolute DREAM (he's a good horse to start with, but he can alternate between super lazy and pretty spunky). I thought "Wow, that was the most amazing 30 days of training I've ever seen!" lol. I'd never seen him so totally cooperative and perfect. That night his nose started running and he was coughing a little. 5 day on antibiotics and he was right back to his regular personality.
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post #20 of 20 Old 07-27-2010, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Virginia, USA
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I feel so much better about my decision to run away from this place and never look back. Thanks for the info...
And yes, I called the County Animal Control. Not sure anything will be done...they just took the info I gave them but at least it is something. All of the other horses on the property that I could see, looked to be at a healthy weight and I checked the halters on the ones in the same field as the two we rode and the others all seemed to fit loose, which I understand can be a problem as well if they get caught on a fence or tree. All of the horses had halters on. I guess for easy catching? The horses we ride at our lesson barn are not turned out with halters and they come right to us when we call them.
Yep, definitely the right decision to stay where we are and take more lessons until two horses come available for lease at that barn.
corgi is offline  

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