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Hello!

So I have been caught in a sticky situation. My mare I bought is clearly too green for me, I can't afford the trainers around here, and I'm not a good trainer myself. I'm stuck with 2 options-


1.) Keep her. Study on training, try to train her and see if it all works out.


2.) Trade her for a bombproof pony gelding, and send her to a place where an actual trainer would be her owner.

What do you think is best?

Thanks!
 

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That will depend on whether you want the quick and easy or the long and tough There's nothing easy about training a horse although some are easier than others. Even if you had a trainer who gave you guidance it's still a lot of work.
It's a choice only you can make since only you can say if you're willing to put in the time and effort required or not.
I would never say don't do it, because I might be depriving you of an experience that might be meaningful to you.
I would never say do it, because it might not be something you're ready or able to deal with which at best would be waste of time/effort and result in you being even more unhappy about the situation (which could end up worse than it is) with your horse.
 

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Depending on the issues that you're having with her, I would generally suggest to sell the horse. I know you can't afford to send her to a trainer, but would you be able to take a lesson or have an experienced friend come out and assess? It's hard to give you a solid answer from the internet, unfortunately. :?

Do you have a trade option already, or is #2 just prospective? If it's an option that has already been offered and there aren't any underlying issues with the gelding (eg ongoing vet care, intermittent lameness etc.) I would say go for that since you'd likely have a hard time finding someone willing to trade a broke horse with no issues for a green one.
 

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Green on green = black and blue. At least you know that she is too green instead of trying to work it out and getting one of your hurt. Can you just sell her outright and take some lessons until you are more experienced?
 

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If you don't have anyone to help you it is generally safer and smarter to sell or trade for something more experienced. It doesn't necessarily have to be a trainer, but an experienced horse person at the very least will make it far easier and safer than doing it on your own.
 

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One of you needs to know what your doing!! You need a trained horse that knows a lot more than you.

I know all of the Clinicians say they can teach you how to train a horse with DVDs. The truth of the matter is that you need feedback from someone watching and working with both of you. 99% of the novice people that try to train green horses without 'live' help end up with badly spoiled horses. You don't have to read very many of the questions asked right here to understand that most of these horses have problems because a green rider did not catch things when they should have or did not have the feel and timing to get the correct response from their horse when they were trying to teach it.

You definitely need a horse that is older and well trained. I would go further and would say that I would not buy one privately from someone if they were not willing to work a few times with you to help you learn how to 'push the right buttons' and get along with the horse.
 

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I agree with Cherie, I would have never considered my one guy if the person who owned him, who also trained horses, wasn't helping me out since I'm green and so is my boy.
 

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Realizing and admitting your own inexperience is a remarkably courageous insight and may mean that you're just the kind of person who could actually become good at this. So much of building ability with horses requires being self-aware and having the flexibility to adjust what you're doing. Between your choices, I think that both could be good or bad depending on what you do with them. I can tell you that it is possible to train your own horse being self-taught and eventually get good results because that's what I've done. There are a few things I could say about it, and I hope that these help you in your decisions. :)

1. It is true what they say, green on green make black and blue. There's a saying I've heard attributed to the French, to the effect of "it takes seven falls to make a rider". You will fall. I've had a bunch of wrecks myself. The question becomes, how good are you at getting back up?

2. This horse isn't likely to ever reach as high a level as she may have if you'd had her as a baby and were already a master horseman doing (most) everything right. This is because you're going to make all your mistakes with her and teach her things that you'll later have to fix. She probably won't become a champion - though stranger things have happened. More likely she'll eventually become like those old lesson horses who have learned to just overlook their riders' mistakes and aren't super-refined but hopefully, are forgiving and will get along with you anyway.

3. Throw away the clock and the calendar. If you can do that from the beginning you'll be better off. You'll never be finished with her and the training of a horse lasts the entire lifetime of a horse.

4. Develop a love for the process of learning about horses and study as many different teachers as you can. Avoid the trap of believing that any one teacher or method has the answer if it goes against your intuition about YOUR horse. Learning from good teachers is extremely valuable but remember that you're the one paying the bills and your judgment is what's going to effect the animal long after the clinic is over and the DVD has finished playing.

5. When you find teachers that you like, make an effort to go and see them in person. There are a lot of things that happen in working with horses that aren't always shown on the finished product of a DVD.

6. Make an effort to get yourself on video. You won't believe the things that video shows.

7. When (not if) you feel frustrated or at a loss there are two things that have really helped me. One, realize that even when you become a great master you will encounter situations that will stump you again and again. That never ends and is central to why horsemanship is a lifetime pursuit. And finally, when you reach an impasse just realize where the responsibility lies. It is with you, not with your horse. Make yourself better and you'll improve every horse you come into contact with. Be the rising tide that raises all the ships. Or as Chris Cox put it, horse trainers train horses but a horseman trains himself.

Or alternately, you could just get the more experienced horse and maybe enjoy riding more from the start. That could be the wiser choice and if I had everything to do over again I'd probably go that way. But I do have a soft spot for those brave folks who become determined to do this on their own. :mrgreen:
 

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Lessons also teach you what to expect from a properly trained horse. School horses that won't stand still or bite or kick or bolt or buck=lawsuits, so most lesson programs sell them or don't buy them for students to ride in the first place. Falls happen, but they are the same kind of fall you get from falling off of a ladder. Being bucked off isn't the same and only a fool or a great cowboy/girl gets right back on after getting bucked off. The rest of us school the snot out of same horse before thinking about getting on and getting bucked off AGAIN.
Most of us take lessons at a boarding stable, and then you can network and find a suitable horse that a boarder is selling. CHERIE is absolutely right that you will not learn what you are doing without an experienced trainer helping you. I don't want to take any business away from any good trainers, so know that a good trainer can turn many horses around. I always told my students that you will never be happy with your horse if you don't learn how to train him. Still, the vast majority of horses for sale have discipline problems, get bought my newbies, get sold at a loss and then somebody might make one into a pasture ornament and a money drain, that is, if you can get the beast into a trailer.
I don't know about anyone else here, but my horses each must justify the $ and time and attention I spend on them. Horse are not special snowflakes and the lucky ones have been properly trained and found a good owner or series of good owners.
 

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you will not learn what you are doing without an experienced trainer helping you.
Those who say a thing cannot be done should stay out of the way of the ones actually doing it! You may be right in most cases but if I believed that this was inevitable I probably would've given up by now.
 

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Ian, if you didn't have any experience with horses and bought a green and/or horse with baggage then you've had dumb luck to not get hurt. I'm lucky that all I broke over the years was my right humerus. I had not prepared this new horse who had fear issues with CW Reenactment battles and this gelding finally exploded standing next to a cannon. The owner bought him back and turned him into her son's favorite trail riding horse--he was non-registered gaited (probably a TWH cross.) It destroyed my confidence and I couldn't ride any other horses except the aging geldings that I had trained and owned for decades. Time and CHERIE's advice brought it back.
I rented horses to ride every weekend for years as a pre teen and took 3 years of Hunt Seat/Jumper lessons, did some school showing and spent a lot of time with experts. I knew how to sit a horse and I knew what behaviors were red flags. MY problems came when I had to replace my aging herd and against my better judgement listened to my DH who thought I could just turn around any cheap horse on the market without my 10-12 lessons/week riding academy. With just me riding and training I bought and sold some stinkers. The ONLY reason that I wasn't seriously hurt by one "Alpo" was bc I tried him out without stirrups, so it was easy to fall off after the beast started to buck...when I squeezed for a trot from a walk. I am sure that he would have dragged me and I would have been in the hospital. I Do NOT choose to waste my time looking at horses like this, and I hope that new prospective horse owners here will learn from our mistakes and not repeat them. =/
Please do NOT underplay that there are many horses on the market that are accidents waiting to happen, and the newbies that buy them think that this is normal. You don't buy a horse like you buy a car. There is NO INSURANCE that will fix every broken body and no insurance besides intelligent advice and knowledgable help buying the horse that will bring you pleasure and not fight you like a spoiled child.
 

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Ian, if you didn't have any experience with horses and bought a green and/or horse with baggage then you've had dumb luck to not get hurt. I'm lucky that all I broke over the years was my right humerus. I had not prepared this new horse who had fear issues with CW Reenactment battles and this gelding finally exploded standing next to a cannon. The owner bought him back and turned him into her son's favorite trail riding horse--he was non-registered gaited (probably a TWH cross.) It destroyed my confidence and I couldn't ride any other horses except the aging geldings that I had trained and owned for decades. Time and CHERIE's advice brought it back.
I rented horses to ride every weekend for years as a pre teen and took 3 years of Hunt Seat/Jumper lessons, did some school showing and spent a lot of time with experts. I knew how to sit a horse and I knew what behaviors were red flags. MY problems came when I had to replace my aging herd and against my better judgement listened to my DH who thought I could just turn around any cheap horse on the market without my 10-12 lessons/week riding academy. With just me riding and training I bought and sold some stinkers. The ONLY reason that I wasn't seriously hurt by one "Alpo" was bc I tried him out without stirrups, so it was easy to fall off after the beast started to buck...when I squeezed for a trot from a walk. I am sure that he would have dragged me and I would have been in the hospital. I Do NOT choose to waste my time looking at horses like this, and I hope that new prospective horse owners here will learn from our mistakes and not repeat them. =/
Please do NOT underplay that there are many horses on the market that are accidents waiting to happen, and the newbies that buy them think that this is normal. You don't buy a horse like you buy a car. There is NO INSURANCE that will fix every broken body and no insurance besides intelligent advice and knowledgable help buying the horse that will bring you pleasure and not fight you like a spoiled child.
Oh I have been hurt! Made tons of mistakes too. But I'm still here! Also because of my experience I know now what's possible to accomplish. It's more than most people think! If there is a catch it's just that a person has to be really committed. But these horses have to live somewhere, be fed by someone and understood by someone. If not the owner then who? Besides, I did talk about learning from people more experienced than yourself. Just that not everyone has the option for personal instruction.

I'm just pulling your tail a bit anyway. I'm experimenting with being slightly less agreeable and defending my beliefs more than usual just for the heck of it. :wink: But you and CHERIE are wise to steer the majority of people away from my path. It's certainly not for everyone!
 

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Just imagine what you will know a year from now if you stick with it..... Are you willing to fall off and get back on? I find many times someone will bring a horse by for help, and more so than they can't do it, is the fact that they won't do it. Most people are so scared of horses and what could happen, they aren't willing to try.

When I started back to riding after 15yrs I bought a mare who was worse than green, she was bat **** crazy, and black hearted. I was really scared of her, but I'm not smart, so every time she tossed me, I crawled across the arena and got back on, It took me months to get that mare right, but I did it. Now several years later the lessons that mare taught me have put several horses under saddle, and have helped me to take horses that others would have given up on and make them useful trail horses.

Its not for every body, but training your own horse is the most rewarding part of ownership, truthfully the more you experience together the more you will trust each other and a PARTNERSHIP will start to form. The limits of your horses accomplishments are only set by how much you are willing to learn with her.....

Green on Green= Black and Blue is fact, But I've broken bones when bomb proof horses spooked too....

Jim
 

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Green on Green= Black and Blue is fact, But I've broken bones when bomb proof horses spooked too....

Jim
I was never thrown by any of my older herd that I bought young and bomb proofed.
Take lessons and get a good seat and NEVER just remount a horse that has bucked you off.
 

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I was never thrown by any of my older herd that I bought young and bomb proofed.
Take lessons and get a good seat and NEVER just remount a horse that has bucked you off.
To each his own. I learned how to ride/train horses the same way I learned how to ride a bike, you fall off you get back on. Take your lumps and learn from them. I have also never been thrown by the horses we raised, there is a level of trust there. But I have been thrown by a bunch of horses.

I have never had lessons other than those taught by the horse, and I have a good seat. And, barring broken bones, or major injury I have never NOT gotten back on one that bucked me off. Every one does things their own way.

Jim
 

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Unless you are trying to become a bronc rider, it is foolish to get back on a horse that has bucked you off.

Now, if you fall off? Sure, get right back on. Be more away and work on your balance. Work on being able to 'handle' your horse and work on a more secure seat.

If a horse actually bucked you off, there is a huge hole in the horse's training that needs to fixed first. After all, one of the definitions of insanity is to repeat the same thing over and over and expect different results.
 

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Unless you are trying to become a bronc rider, it is foolish to get back on a horse that has bucked you off.

Now, if you fall off? Sure, get right back on. Be more away and work on your balance. Work on being able to 'handle' your horse and work on a more secure seat.

If a horse actually bucked you off, there is a huge hole in the horse's training that needs to fixed first. After all, one of the definitions of insanity is to repeat the same thing over and over and expect different results.
Like I said to each his own..... and I usuallyget the results I'm after.

Jim
 

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I will say many years ago got one that was too green for me. I kept her ride many miles and admit she made me a better rider. It was a long hard road but worth it. There is nothing wring with finding her a home and getting a horse more suites to you
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