Buying a senior for my first horse - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 19 Old 12-14-2015, 08:57 PM
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Pennsylvania
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If the owner has already tried retiring this horse why not ask about a free lease? The OP could pay for the horses upkeep and at whatever point that serious decisions need to be made, they would not be entirely on her shoulders. That could work very well for both parties and the horse
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post #12 of 19 Old 12-14-2015, 09:34 PM
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Eastern TN
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I agree what the others have said, the horse I've been lessoning on is 28 years old and still doing lessons :) He does light trail riding due to his arthritis, so he can't go all day like he used to, but he's definitely still has a lot of heart left.

If you two have clicked, his health records are clean, and he's priced right, I'd say go for it! Having that bond already is priceless.
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post #13 of 19 Old 12-16-2015, 12:26 AM
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Michigan
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I just bought my first horse. She is 20. I was leasing her part time and asked the same questions. I was so excited when people at the barn would say shes a great horse and still sound. I wish I wouldve had your experience and wisdom because little did I or anyone else know she has DJD and its not looking good for her. Ive owned her for a month and a half and its already breaking my heart to think of whats coming. I hope I didnt come off as a Debbie downer. This was my experience but only from lack of knowledge on my end and too much trust. Ive seen horses well into their 20's doing great. ?
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post #14 of 19 Old 12-16-2015, 12:31 AM
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If the price is right and you can budget some extra for more specialized "senior" care and issues that may come up I'd say it sounds like a good match.

My first (and so far only) horse was 19 when I got him. He's 22 now and starting to slow down a little bit. However a close friend of mine has a 40 year old that is still being ridden. You just never know!
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post #15 of 19 Old 12-16-2015, 12:29 PM
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Cambridge, MN
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I love that you might buy a 20+ year old gelding as your first horse. I think that is exactly the right move for most people. The mistake so many people make is to think they need a 6-10 year old horse so they can have more time together, but the reality is those early years are often so rocky that their first horse ends up being their last horse and the good times never happen at all.
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post #16 of 19 Old 12-17-2015, 01:09 PM
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Northern New York
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I rode for years without having my own horse. I was given a 2 year old and then purchased a 22 year old to ride/compete with until I could send the 2 year old away for training. I don't regret it a bit. She is 26 years old now and is still going strong. We took almost a complete summer off to get her health in tip top shape. As long as you work closely with a vet/farrier/equine dentist to do what best that is all you can do. It is important to pay attention to them because things can change fast with seniors. They do require a little extra attention if you want them to look and feel their best, but if you have a good minded senior they'll never stop teaching you.
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post #17 of 19 Old 12-18-2015, 05:02 PM
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Switzerland
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If you know the horse, and are convinced that it has some pep left, then it's certainly an interesting prospect. If you can get it for a good price, and have it properly vetted (as always) in advance, I see no reason not to go for it. And as others have said, and older horse knows the world well, and will be a valuable partner. There is no substitute for experience.

We live in a society of planned obsolescence, and are more and more conditioned to believe that something "older" is weak, frail, and valueless. I purchased my first horse recently, at 15, and I remember asking the vet if he'd have enough pep and energy for the forseeable future. Boy, do I feel like an a**. I think the horse heard me, because the first time I opened him up, across the spine of a doubts are thoroughly resolved.

Now 15 isn't 20, but the point stands. 20 has experience, and plenty of fire left in most cases to give you years of, well, the best thing ever.
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post #18 of 19 Old 12-18-2015, 08:55 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
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Something that would be very nice about having an older horse as your first horse...if you're like me, and you want to keep a horse forever, then this horse will help you figure out what you want from a horse.
Sometimes you have to ride a horse for awhile to realize that you'd really like a horse to be a bit bigger or smaller to fit you perfectly, or you'd like one that enjoyed riding out alone, or maybe you're more of a mare or gelding person. These things can take some time to become concrete desires for you, so committing to a horse for just a few years instead of 20 plus years means you will have a better chance of getting your absolute ideal for your second horse.
When I bought my first horse I didn't have any preference to size, gender, training level or breed. Now that I've owned horses for awhile I have serious opinions about all of these things.
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post #19 of 19 Old 12-21-2015, 12:17 PM
Join Date: May 2014
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Well, looking at how my 20-year old lesson horse went wheeeeeee yesterday, I'd say 20 is too young :)
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first horse , senior horse

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