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post #31 of 59 Old 03-02-2018, 11:53 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
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I know I said, in general, geldings are much more inclined to be pocket ponies than are mares. That doesn't mean there aren't mares out there than just want to be your everything. They are out there, and I've owned several. BUT... in general ...

That said, and knowing what you've said in your journal, you want a horse that you can just hug sometimes, or brush for hours, or just be in the field and have a companion to hang out with. I've had dozens of each, and while I've had some amazing mares, most didn't have the patience to just hang out or be hugged. When I needed to cry, it was always one of the geldings that I'd go to. He'd let me hug on him, stand over me to protect me. He wasn't a horse I'd put a beginner on, though. He was a freight-train with a full head of steam and loved to go!

My mares were always fun to ride, and like others have said, treat 'em right and they'll give you everything. But take off the saddle and they'd rather do their own thing. Geldings just seem to like to interact more.

That's just my opinion and experience.
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post #32 of 59 Old 03-02-2018, 11:54 PM
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Is there perhaps a therapeutic riding barn or a mounted police unit in your area? Occasionally they retire horses due to age or injury and they are usually only suitable for companion animals or for light riding, and they are generally very safe animals. They also usually accept volunteers to help care for the horses and it would be a good way for you to learn more about the horses and perhaps find one that you really click with. In the case of the therapeutic riding school, they may also be a source for you to contact and then they could direct you to a place where you may find a horse suitable for your needs.

Reputable rescues are a good place to volunteer, but many of the horses generally come with behavioral or health problems that are not suitable for beginners, even the companion only horses. A beginner friendly rescue horse is hard to come by in many rescues, and a lot of rescues will not adopt out to first time horse owners. However, fostering a horse may be an option for you. This would not only help the horse and the rescue, but it would allow you the opportunity to learn more about horses and keeping a horse at home without the burden of actually owning the horse until you are ready. And, if you find you are not ready to have a horse at home and/or the horse you are currently fostering is not working out for you, you can always send it back or switch it out with the rescue group. The same idea can be applied to leasing a horse from a private owner or barn. However, if you choose to go this route you definitely want to be careful about what rescue group you look at (there are many, many unscrupulous "rescue" organizations) and pay close attention to any lease terms if you choose to lease a horse from someone else.
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post #33 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 01:04 AM Thread Starter
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The idea of working with a horse rescue seems a bit ironic to me, as I feel as if I myself am the one in need of rescuing haha!!

We live in Huntsville, Texas, which has the biggest prison system in the entire United States. They have some 3,200 + horses in a breeding program that they use for the correctional officer to ride while guarding inmates. They sometimes "retire" older or injured horses to the local auctions, feedlots, and kill pens. They are supposed to be broke broke broke, but I'm intimidated by getting into ownership with lots of high medical bills right off the bat for known reasons. Then again everything is a gamble these days.

I'd love to volunteer somewhere, but I'm not sure I would do ok in a situation like that. Horses are great, but unless I knew exactly how many people were there and who they were and where they were, it all gets very complicated. My social anxiety is on a massive scale.

Definitely some good ideas have been suggested here though, I will talk to DH, and maybe the therapist and perhaps see what all we can come up with for getting me more hands on. Who knows, maybe I'd even develope a gender preference!!

They're are horses here where I live, about 30 or so, but I never feed or pet them. They are not mine to do so with and I do not have permission. They are all sure so lovely though!! I hope everyone is having a lovely evening, and thank you for all of your help. Sincerely.

finding happy
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post #34 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 09:11 AM
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I'm surprised at the number. Even in recent past the herd was kept between 1200 and 1800 because of the cost to operate. When I was at A&M of that number, the mare herd was 100+. That number supported the 75 - 100 mounted patrol and the men that rode the ranch with a fair number sold off each year. There was a big stink way back about them going for slaughter and there was a stop put to that practice. I've been out of that loop for several years but would be surprised to see that number rise that much. I'd have thought they would have dropped in number to save the tax payers dollars.
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post #35 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 10:06 AM
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There can be marish mares, and studdy geldings. All depends on the horse. Also keep in mind that not all horses show ‘love’ in the form of allowing hugs and kisses from humans. Some horses, like people, need their space, but will show ‘love’ in other ways.

So, if you need a horse to physically hug and kiss make sure before you buy any horse, make sure that particular horse allows that kind of contact.

My Arab gelding is the first to the gate, comes when called (until the new spring grass is coming up), easy to deal with on the ground, nickers and mumbles when I enter the barn or pasture, and respects your space and wants humans to respect his.....so do not try to hug or kiss him. Despite that, he is one of the most ‘loving’ horses I have had the pleasure of owning.
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post #36 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahfromsc View Post
There can be marish mares, and studdy geldings. All depends on the horse. Also keep in mind that not all horses show ‘love’ in the form of allowing hugs and kisses from humans. Some horses, like people, need their space, but will show ‘love’ in other ways.

So, if you need a horse to physically hug and kiss make sure before you buy any horse, make sure that particular horse allows that kind of contact.

My Arab gelding is the first to the gate, comes when called (until the new spring grass is coming up), easy to deal with on the ground, nickers and mumbles when I enter the barn or pasture, and respects your space and wants humans to respect his.....so do not try to hug or kiss him. Despite that, he is one of the most ‘loving’ horses I have had the pleasure of owning.
I think any horse can be taught to let 'their' human hug, kiss and basically invade their space and do it willingly. I start with my babies, they have to allow kisses on their little noses, in the soft fur behind their ears and pets, hugs and touching anywhere I want. At first they remind me of Lucy in the Peanuts cartoons, "AAAUUUUGH Human Germs! Where's the peroxide?" but real soon they associate all that nonsense with scritches in their favorite places and treats.

Older horses may take longer and may never be real willing to allow all that familiarity. Patti loves to have the soft fur behind her ears stroked and kissed, I wouldn't even think of doing it with Boo (for one thing, I can't reach that high), she hasn't come along enough in the "I crave attention" spectrum for either one of us to be comfortable with that. But she does allow and even, dare I say, enjoys it when I put sunscreen on her muzzle. She may not LOVE it, but she has made the connection between sunscreen and not getting blistered and uncomfortable. When I first got her, that was a serious "No Trespassing" area.

For a beginner, especially a beginner with anxiety, I would recommend a horse who will allow you to snuggle up, kiss and touch and just generally be a close proximity pain in their tail.
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post #37 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 12:06 PM
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Sweeping generalizations serve their purpose, and it's typically to keep people safe: "green plus green equals black and blue", for example.

Mares definitely have a stigma that they can be a more opinionated than their gelding counterparts. That said, I don't think I've ever heard that mares, as a whole, are unsuitable for beginners. Furthermore, I've never seen any studies or empirical evidence to suggest that geldings are or "less responsive". I think people tend to take their own experience, no matter how vast or how narrow, and apply it to the population of horses at large.

There are great mares, and there are great geldings. There are definitely plenty of each that are beginner safe, and plenty of those that aren't. My first horse was a filly, and she was unsuitable to a beginner not because she was a female, but because of her age.

I personally prefer geldings, but that's simply because I prefer male animals as a whole. I've had better experiences with them, and confirmation bias would suggest that I will continue to do so, but I think it would be short sighted and silly of me to say (empirically speaking) mares are any less or more than.

The sensitivity of the internet baffles me.
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post #38 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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So much good information, and such thoughtful replies! Thank you for taking the time to respond and to help answer all of my questions!!
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finding happy
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post #39 of 59 Old 03-03-2018, 09:36 PM
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I can kiss his nose but it took time and a trust I suppose, and he loves his ear scratches, chest scratches but he doesn’t like being hugged around the neck. Which I can appreciate and understand as I am not a touch freely person and do not like people invading my space and hugging me without permission.

Besides, he is pee trained.....if I need to tinkle on the trail, I can hold his front leg and squat and lean back and he doesn’t twitch a muscle.

Now that is love.......lolol

He shows me in his way. And I show mine in my way. We fit well together.
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post #40 of 59 Old 03-04-2018, 02:36 AM
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Join Date: May 2015
Location: Sunset, TX
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I like Mares fine. They tend to be more serious than Geldings and I tend to get along with them. A "moody horse" that shows up to work and does their job is just fine with me.

Geldings can be the whole spectrum. They can be great and reliable horses, sweet and fun, or they can be for serious disciplinarians only who don't mind a biter that needs to be constantly checked.
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