Turning a beginner horse into a dangerous animal - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 29 Old 04-08-2017, 09:09 AM
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Many of those cheap and free horses started off as good quality, were ruined by a series of ignorant dreamers and then "sold down the river".

I always discourage my lesson parents from running out and buying a horse for the kid. I explain that as much as I wish every horse had a good home, the money, time and commitment that owning a horse entails is not to be taken lightly. The unfairness on the other siblings in the family-too much invested in one kid and the others are ignored. (I've watched the sibling thing destroy quite a few families) On top of the fact that their child will probably lose interest in their late teens (95%+ do and its a fact), which for some reason, none of them want to believe.

I've had many parents actually thank me later for the fact that they did not buy a horse once they see what it entails. Unfortunately, there are always a couple that are going to do it anyway. I've tested horses for them when they start shopping and given my best estimation of suitability, but many ignore my advice and end up with the wrong horse. They will buy horses that are barely trained or the wrong temperament just because the kid fell in love at first sight. And then, they find out that since keeping a horse is an expensive proposition, they can no longer afford training or lessons. Every parent seems to think that horse ownership is something their kid can do on their own, like owning a cat or a bunny. Then they find out that no matter how responsible their kid is, the parent has to be very involved in every aspect. It's not just about writing the checks! When it gets to be too much and the horse gets ruined, oh well we'll just sell him, The horse of course, is passed on to the next dreamer and ends up in the kill pen.

In our area we have a lot of people owning horses who can barely feed their families, let alone a horse and earn close to minimum wage. Some are even on welfare!! These horses are neglected not only due to lack of money, but ignorance. These people not only cannot afford professional help but are too stubborn and prideful to admit that they need help when offered.

I don't see a solution to the problem. A lot of people jump right into this without any knowledge or someone to guide them. Even those who are paying for advice from a professional decide to ignore it and there goes another horse dumped into the kill pen.
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post #12 of 29 Old 04-08-2017, 10:03 AM Thread Starter
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@secuono . Thank you for pasting the article!

@Chasin Ponies , very well said

There's been a lot of hits on this thread. Hopefully it has reached a few that need to read it and it has sunk in.
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post #13 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 02:50 AM
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Excellent article.

All to often a horse gets the reputation for being 'difficult' and the problem is purely poor handling from the owner.

It happens all the time and far more nowadays than forty years ago.

You can read here how 'I bought a horse that was meant to be beginner safe but now it won't go away from the barn' or, it bucked me off, won't let me saddle it, pulls away when I lead it and so on.

Of course it is the horse that is at fault and not the owner!

I think otherwise.
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post #14 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 03:09 AM
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While I'm sure there is a lot of truth to this, I kind of find the whole thing a bit snobbish and negative. Like the author is on on his or her "high horse."

A person has to start somewhere. And this attitude will just discourage people from getting into horses.

I wasn't born into wealth OR horses. But I love them dearly. I'm glad someone sold me my first horse and wasn't so negative. I kept that horse until he died too.

I'm sure I made mistakes. Nobody is perfect. But I think I did right by the horse and he did right by me.
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post #15 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 03:44 AM
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Trailhorserider.. I agree with you. I was 14 when I got my first horse. I babysat cleaned horse pens for the money to buy him, and to pay for his feed ,shots , farrier and board. I did most of this for a horse trainer. I was given some tips, but never any formal lessons. I learned at the school of hard knocks. I watched the trainer, watched his lessons .
I would ask questions . I applied what I learned. I am sure I made mistakes and my first couple of horses were fairly forgiving , but they stayed with me until they died.
When they got old, I rented a pasture . They still got hay and grain. I went to school, got jobs, and got more horses.
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post #16 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 07:24 AM
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Great article. My horse was rescued from a similar situation. Two horses, a TB and Arab were given for free to a family with property. They had not one clue about horse care, and both horses almost died. They were feeding one flake of hay per day to cover both horses! On a dirt lot. The TB was 16.2 hands! If you can imagine.

Although I want people to get involved with and enjoy horses, it must be done with a real perspective of what that entails, for the horse's sake. People often ask me about getting even a mini horse, and I tell them horses are great, and then I explain how often the hooves must be trimmed and how much it is for feed each month, and how much it costs to do their teeth each year. This has discouraged 99% of people I've talked to from getting a horse. If the facts discourage you, then you are not ready, and haven't done enough research on your own.

I knew a woman who "rescued" a horse when she already had three. She drove around her car with expired tags because she couldn't afford new ones, lived on food stamps and stole bales of hay from unwatched barns. That woman did not "rescue" the horse, she put it into a terrible situation. It can be tricky for me to manage the finances involved in two horses with a good income and I couldn't imagine trying to pay for four.

But anyone can be involved with horses, even if they can't own them! If you truly love horses you would not want to have one and be unable to provide the health care and good nutrition all horses need. You also wouldn't want the horse to be insecure or endangered from your lack of handling skills.
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post #17 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 08:18 AM
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Thats a really good article but, like you said, most people aren't going to see themselves in it.

If it wasn't for internet forums I would have totally ruined my horse. Like a typical idiot, I bought a FOAL as my first horse! AFTER I bought the 6-month-old, I started going on forums for advice. I said so many stupid things on forums that I have changed my name and do not want anybody to figure out who I was! However - things are going to be OK. There are some people who are committed enough to doing it right that they will research and research and spend every spare dime to make absolutely certain their horse turns out OK. For me that meant bringing my horse to live with a trainer for a couple of years while I got lessons, and buying a dead broke very very well trained trail horse to use in the mean time.

I did not know how to tell if a horse was getting good nutrition and bought my foal from a woman who wasn't feeding her horses well. I took training advice from the same woman, who does not ride, is actually afraid of horses and only breeds for colors and bloodlines that look good on paper. THANK GOD for internet forums!!! I had a lot of people on forums say things that really hurt my feelings, and thank God I listened.

I'm an RN and my husband is retired but working part time. I had to decide whether to give up horses or to give up almost everything else besides horses in order to be able to afford them. I chose to keep horses, gardening, and grandchildren and save my time and $ for only those things and it looks like it's going to work out well in the end. Learning new lessons every single day.

I love my mare and wouldn't give her up for anything, but I can't tell you how many people I've seen doing the same thing I did and seriously regretting it. They end up messing up on the horses and then selling them cheap to beginners. So beginners are starting out with young horses that were screwed up by other beginners, messing them up further, and passing them on further. And so it goes until the horse ends up as a pasture yet or, worse, as dog food.
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post #18 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by trailhorserider View Post
While I'm sure there is a lot of truth to this, I kind of find the whole thing a bit snobbish and negative. Like the author is on on his or her "high horse."

A person has to start somewhere. And this attitude will just discourage people from getting into horses.

I wasn't born into wealth OR horses. But I love them dearly. I'm glad someone sold me my first horse and wasn't so negative. I kept that horse until he died too.

I'm sure I made mistakes. Nobody is perfect. But I think I did right by the horse and he did right by me.

Anyone who has been around horses and says they haven't made mistakes has classed 'being around them' as looking at them across a field or is a liar.

I think the article was very well written and it does say that there are exceptions where it does work out.

I would discourage anyone who hasn't had several years riding and handling, from getting their own horse and keeping it somewhere that they are not going to have help to hand for both handling and riding.

I had a good example of this just before I retired, a woman who had owned two or three horses wanted to come as a DIY livery. People at the place she had been keeping her horse were sad she was leaving as she was the most experienced there.
Well, her horse was ignorant of manners, barged and shoved, she was frightened to ride him out as he had messed around with her. If she was the most experienced then I dread to think what the others were like.

There was nothing wrong with her horse other than he had got away with his ill manners. Once shown how to deal with him and to toughen up a lot, the owner was able to take a great deal of pleasure from the animal.

The horse was a danger to people and himself. He thought nothing of flattening people and once got away from the owner and galloped off down a busy twisty road. No fun for horse or owner. She had put up with it for three or four years before having the advice on how to stop it.
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post #19 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 10:56 AM
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I was fortunate enough as a youngster to work summers at a local riding stable. Invaluable experience! I didn't get paid, but got to ride all kinds of horses and learn from the ground up what care it takes. Lots of work, but a pleasure for me! Even so, when I saved up enough babysitting money to buy my first I was level headed enough to know that it would be a mistake to get the kind of horse I really wanted. Better instead to get the horse that was a perfect first horse for a young girl willing to learn. She was a retired movie horse that could and would do almost anything. She was very forgiving of my mistakes and I still miss her terribly. She opened doors for me that I wouldn't have found otherwise.

I too have never had a formal lesson but managed to place myself around good people that I could watch and learn from. On the flip side, I have been insulted and sneered at for asking a question that I, presumably, should have known the answer to. Yes, there are times when we learn the wrong things. I mean, if you don't know, you don't always know what to ask, right?

There are exceptions to every rule, but there are far too many people out there with animals that just shouldn't have them at all.
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post #20 of 29 Old 04-09-2017, 11:12 AM
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I've seen a few supposed experts ruin horses and I've seen beginners do right by their first horse as well as what the article talks about. I think that new owners who want to learn, not to proud to ask for advice, are willing to listen to that advise and aren't too fearful to use that advise can do ok.
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