Thoughts on this horse? - Page 11 - The Horse Forum
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post #101 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jaydee View Post
I've had horses and ponies that stayed (riding) fit and healthy till they were in their late 20's but if I was buying a horse for a young person I'd rather see it as more of a long term project, starting out with a well trained young horse that had the manners and attitude to be a safe ride but the potential to go on and do 'more' if asked. It might mean spending more to buy that horse but in the long run you can save money so IMO its well worth it
Right, but she already HAS that horse! His name is Harley! She rides him 2-3 times a week, but is afraid to canter him for more than a few strides. The other horse will be mostly for me, and maybe sometimes for her. I think I've said it before - Harley is spooky on trails so if we're going to trail ride together, we need a bombproof horse to calm down Harley. She may well ride the new horse on trails and practice her canter on him (she canters the lesson horses every week), but continue to do lessons on Harley, because ultimately, he is what she wanted: show quality, well-trained and able to jump. However, she's a little intimidated by him at the moment. Buying another horse that intimidates her is not the answer!
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post #102 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 01:17 PM
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I think I've said it before but I'm the tough love kind of person. My parents if it were them would make me look after the horse whether I loved doing it or not because the fact is I wanted the horse so it's my responsibility to look after him/her. It's not ideal but it kicked my butt into shape! I didn't get a horse until I was 18 but my parents were right they are a lot of work.

It's not the nicest thing but 2-3 days a week still is a fair amount. I exercise my TB 4 days a week so she still is doing a fair amount with him.
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post #103 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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I think I've said it before but I'm the tough love kind of person. My parents if it were them would make me look after the horse whether I loved doing it or not because the fact is I wanted the horse so it's my responsibility to look after him/her. It's not ideal but it kicked my butt into shape! I didn't get a horse until I was 18 but my parents were right they are a lot of work.

It's not the nicest thing but 2-3 days a week still is a fair amount. I exercise my TB 4 days a week so she still is doing a fair amount with him.
Threatening to take away the horse if she doesn't commit to looking after him would work if Harley was ONLY her horse. But we share him and I ride him as often or more often that her. I spend more time at the stable than her. But that's beside the point isn't it?

I am building a very expensive barn. I bought a horse that I share with my daughter. Initially, we thought he would be hers, but right now, I'm more into it than she is. Clearly, I am not doing all this just because of her. She's barely 11. I've wanted horses again for 20 years. Finally, I get to have my horses.

So I'm not in a position where I can threaten to sell Harley because she's not looking after him (not that you suggested this). I look after him and plan on continuing to do so. She can choose to get involved or not - but if not, I'm happy to ride him.

Whether my daughter continues to ride or not, we need a second horse as a companion for Harley. Otherwise, he'll be alone. It would not make any sense to get another Harley! A quiet, bombproof horse makes the most sense. That way, I can still have a horse I can ride on trails, put a friend on, let my daughter ride if she wants to. It might even be a good, calming influence on Harley. I'm certainly NOT going to keep buying expensive show jumpers in the hopes that she'll decide she likes one!

So hopefully that clarifies my thinking. I would absolutely NEVER encourage a parent to buy a horse for their child if they're not into horses themselves. That's a huge mistake. The reality is that children are fickle, get bored, move on. They are not innately responsible (there are, of course, exceptions to this rule). These will be MY horses. My daughter will have the privilege of riding them as long as she keeps up with her lessons and rider levels.
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post #104 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 03:08 PM
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A good younger horse doesn't need to be a challenging or intimidating horse, there's plenty of kids out there riding younger horses that are totally reliable
You're happy with Harley so why not settle for the fact that he's become your horse and find your daughter something she can handle and feel enthusiastic about instead of looking for another horse for you that she'll have to ride until she's able to manage Harley?
I can't help but wonder if a lot of her lack of interest and motivation is down to the fact that her 'dream' horse didn't turn out the way she thought he would
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post #105 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Acadianartist View Post
I would absolutely NEVER encourage a parent to buy a horse for their child if they're not into horses themselves. That's a huge mistake. The reality is that children are fickle, get bored, move on.
Yes, yes, yes. Agreed. As you know we are in the same situation. I bought Gatsby with my son in mind, but I love him and ride him just as much. Also, my son LOVES going the barn because of the social life. If no one is there, he's quickly "done" and really doesn't care if he rides. He likes to visit Gats & leave. I don't think he'd want to go ever if there wasn't the likelihood that other people would be there. He will stay hours and hours if there is a lot going on. In the evening when it's just us, he only rides for 15-20 minutes.

I think it will be so much more fun for her when Harley is home, and she can go out and fiddle around with him alone. And if not, I know for sure that YOU will be out there enjoying him like crazy!! And, if Harley is a disappointment to her and not her "dream horse", well, she can deal with what she's given and buy her own dream horse someday. Kids need to deal with the fact that they don't always get the best of the best or the perfect thing.

I'm not trying to be a know-it-all here, but I think AA's situation and mine are so similar. We both are born-again horse crazies with kids who ride, but aren't fully obsessed w/ horses in the way that we are. Both of our kids have MANY activities and interests. It makes navigating this whole kid-with-a-horse situation a bit different when the horse is just as much for us as it is for the kid.
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post #106 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 04:43 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jaydee View Post
A good younger horse doesn't need to be a challenging or intimidating horse, there's plenty of kids out there riding younger horses that are totally reliable
You're happy with Harley so why not settle for the fact that he's become your horse and find your daughter something she can handle and feel enthusiastic about instead of looking for another horse for you that she'll have to ride until she's able to manage Harley?
I can't help but wonder if a lot of her lack of interest and motivation is down to the fact that her 'dream' horse didn't turn out the way she thought he would
Jaydee, if you'd like to come to New Brunswick, Canada, and find me that perfect, young, kid-friendly horse, please do! I have been looking for over a year, found Harley, but nothing else has been even close to being suitable. Those horses are very rare around here, and are usually snatched up by lesson barns. I know at least three people who are actively looking for that exact horse - and they usually have to drive to Ontario (12 hours by car) or the US to find them. I don't have that option.

It is, however, entirely possible that you're right - she may be disappointed deep down that she's not created that bond with Harley. Maybe another horse would get her excited. Or maybe not. See my dilemma? How many Harleys am I willing to buy for her?

She is doing the horse-shopping with me, and if we do find that perfect horse and she falls in love with it, I'll be happy to buy it for her - assuming it's within my price range. I wouldn't scratch any horse off my list that is kid-safe at this point unless it has other things wrong with it. The horses I've posted on here are the only horses that have even come close to what I'm looking for. It's lot like I'm looking for duds or older horses! These are the best ones I can find in my area!
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post #107 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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I should also add that of all the horses at the lesson barn, my daughter likes the slowest one of all. Everyone starts on Penny because she is as kid-safe as they come. Her canter is slower than most horses' walk. Whenever they stop, she closes her eyes and dozes. Most kids get tired of riding her and want to move on to the other horses, but not my daughter - she loves Penny! Asks to ride her every time. If I could buy Penny, I would. But the lesson barn would never part with her because she is totally bombproof. Someone once offered the BO 8000$ for her and he turned it down. Yet she's not even a particularly pretty horse.

It is possible that my daughter just likes them slow and relaxed. Not every kid likes to ride a fast horse. So I'm not "punishing" her by trying to find her a quiet horse. I'm giving her what she wants. Whether that horse is young or old, it doesn't matter to me, but there are more older quiet horses than younger ones.
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post #108 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Jan1975 View Post
Yes, yes, yes. Agreed. As you know we are in the same situation. I bought Gatsby with my son in mind, but I love him and ride him just as much. Also, my son LOVES going the barn because of the social life. If no one is there, he's quickly "done" and really doesn't care if he rides. He likes to visit Gats & leave. I don't think he'd want to go ever if there wasn't the likelihood that other people would be there. He will stay hours and hours if there is a lot going on. In the evening when it's just us, he only rides for 15-20 minutes.

I think it will be so much more fun for her when Harley is home, and she can go out and fiddle around with him alone. And if not, I know for sure that YOU will be out there enjoying him like crazy!! And, if Harley is a disappointment to her and not her "dream horse", well, she can deal with what she's given and buy her own dream horse someday. Kids need to deal with the fact that they don't always get the best of the best or the perfect thing.

I'm not trying to be a know-it-all here, but I think AA's situation and mine are so similar. We both are born-again horse crazies with kids who ride, but aren't fully obsessed w/ horses in the way that we are. Both of our kids have MANY activities and interests. It makes navigating this whole kid-with-a-horse situation a bit different when the horse is just as much for us as it is for the kid.
I agree - I think Isabelle would have been much happier keeping Harley at a busy boarding stable. But if we did that, we couldn't afford a second horse because board x 2 is just too much. She may get tired of horses and move on, but I know I won't, so I wasn't prepared to make that sacrifice. Call me selfish, but I've been waiting over 20 years to have horses again. Boarding stables are fine for some, but it's really not my scene. Our compromise is that she takes lessons at the lesson barn once a week and gets to socialize, then has a lesson at home on Harley.
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post #109 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 06:00 PM
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It would be better to keep doing that until the 'right' horse falls into your lap than to buy in haste. If harley desperately needs company get him a little goat in the meantime
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post #110 of 303 Old 05-01-2016, 06:07 PM
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What are the import costs associated with bringing a horse into Canada from the U.S.? Maybe another Horse Forum horse buying field trip is in order ;)

Seriously though, over the last few months, I have seen a couple of really nice small horses/large ponies come through the therapy program where I volunteer. A horse doesn't make it to our barn on trial without just the kind of temperament you're looking for, but often the ones that don't stay end up needing a different job because they want to be a one family/one rider horse and just don't like being handled by so many different people.

In the Northeastern U.S. (I think I'm about 2 hours or so north of Jaydee) the kind of all-rounder family horse you're looking for is really common. I don't think you'd look long to find one here, and probably for ~$2-3k USD.

But again, not sure how complex and expensive it is to import to Canada...
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