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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone...
I would really appreciate some input regarding the situation I currently have with one of my horses. I own a 17 year old 15.3 hh Thoroughbred gelding. He was my very first horse that I have had now for 8 years.

We've had a difficult journey together thus far and looking back I can say with confidence that he was probably not the right "first horse" for a youngster... (I was 14 when I got him). He is pushy on the ground and doesn't have a good sense of what is your space and what is his. He is hot and has always had a good buck, rear, etc. in him always ready.

We had a significant accident together a couple years back that ended up with me in the hospital for 5 days. I was leading him and he kicked me, hitting me on the right side of my torso. This wasn't a malicious act... It was just a situational, wrong place/wrong time sort of thing and he really isn't to blame for what happened. But never-the-less, the event has always left me a bit shaken. On top of that, I have lost count of the number of times that he has catapulted me off of him while riding.

About 5 years ago, my parents and I made the conscious decision that my horse and my's relationship just wasn't working out and I was no longer enjoying riding. The horse made me nervous and he was always unpredictable. I tried to sell him (with little luck) and ended up buying another horse to work with (a warmblood mare), who I ended up taking to college with me.

At the time we made the best decision with what resources we had to put my gelding out to pasture. While I have been in college the past 4 years, my gelding has been in a combination of either simply being a pasture puff, or he was leased for some time too (but the woman leasing him ultimately got a bit shaken by him too).

Now that I am back from college, I am at a loss with what to do with my horse. I care deeply about him and want him to have what is best for him. I considered getting him back to work myself and then possibly leasing/selling him, but I just don't think me working with him is the best option. He makes me nervous...and I'm sure he can sense that. I know that option isn't good for either of us.

I would really appreciate any thoughts/suggestions on what to do with this type of horse. He hasn't been ridden in approx. 2 years or so now. We used to do eventing together. Thanks in advance
 

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Riding is supposed to be fun. It doesn't sound like he is very much fun to ride. There is no use getting injured over him. You could leave him out in the pasture to retire, or you could give him away to someone that would enjoy retraining him.
 

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I know that money isn't always the easiest thing to come by. But is there anyway that you could bring a professional or a trainer out to assess what is going on with him?
 

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Here are the options I see:

- Send him to training and arrange for lessons for the both of you during and after

- sell him as a project with full disclosure

If you try to sell him as a pasture ornament, he WILL be ridden eventually. If you sell him, do so with the realization that he will be out of your life forever and you will have no say or control over what happens.

You were definitely overhorsed.
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Discussion Starter #5
Hi Celeste,
Thank you for your reply. Yes, I completely agree... Riding is supposed to be fun and my gelding and I have lost that along the road. In regards to giving him away, how would you suggest I go about finding someone who might be interested?
Thank you!
 

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For where I am at right now currently... Putting a significant amount of money into him for training/assessment isn't very feasible.
 

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Hi Celeste,
Thank you for your reply. Yes, I completely agree... Riding is supposed to be fun and my gelding and I have lost that along the road. In regards to giving him away, how would you suggest I go about finding someone who might be interested?
Thank you!
If he were mine, I would mention him to my farrier. He knows all the local horse people. You could try talking about him to your farrier or your veterinarian.

Like DancingArabian said, if you rehome him, you will no longer have control over him. You will have to make up your mind to distance yourself emotionally from him.
 

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I was leading him and he kicked me, hitting me on the right side of my torso. This wasn't a malicious act... It was just a situational, wrong place/wrong time sort of thing and he really isn't to blame for what happened. But never-the-less, the event has always left me a bit shaken. On top of that, I have lost count of the number of times that he has catapulted me off of him while riding.

I am curious how you could be leading a horse and an accident happened like this. He obviously intended to kick you and not sure what you did to dismiss this as a situational sort of thing. Quit making excuses for him.
 

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I would not sell or give this horse away. Most people buy "projects" in the hope of finding a diamond in the rough. However, at 17, he is nearing the end of his riding career, so chances are slim that he will go out and do great things.
I can really only see people being interested in him that are unsuitable.
You tried to sell him without interest, you tried to lease him out and the lady backed out cause she got scared. Why would you think that if you sell him now, things are going to be any better?
I understand the dilemma - you have a horse that you can't use and you are ready to move on with your life. But with horses like that, the risk that they will either end up in incompetent or abusive homes is very high. You are not ready and willing to put any more money in this horse, so why should a complete stranger? Chances are he will end up hurting someone else or end on a meat truck.
So if you truly care about him as much as you say, I would leave him where he is, retire him to pasture, and keep riding the mare. If for some reason that is not feasible (usually finances), I would think hard whether you are doing him a favor by trying to give hom away to the first person interested...
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First off, this horse has no respect for you. That is where you need to start. I'm not going to walk you through what you need to do. That would end up in too long of a post. You can search on here for other threads about respect, look on YouTube for vids of it, or best yet would be to get someone in person to help you. He will need to be started over from scratch.

Your accident was partly his fault but also yours for not getting and having his respect. He most likely has been telling you off with his actions but you weren't listening or correcting him.

His riding career isn't over. He likely won't be a successful eventing horse but he still can be rode for pleasure. We have a 20 year old that we ride. Many can be rode lightly to moderately until their late 20's. 17 isn't that old for a horse.

If you decide to find him a new home, place an ad on Craigslist or your local paper. Put up fliers at the vet or your local tack shops.
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where are you located at, id love to work with him possibly, im no professional trainer or anything but I can handle tough horses, I broke my mustang mare who sounds to me was the same, she had a massive adittude, bucked all the time and rearing too, now im focusing on getting her in the show ring at local shows when I have the time. I know my 4h leader who trains professional reining/cow horses and just plain out trail horses would be more than willing to help you, if it wasn't for me I wouldn't have gotten this far with my horse....
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I was leading him and he kicked me, hitting me on the right side of my torso. This wasn't a malicious act... It was just a situational, wrong place/wrong time sort of thing and he really isn't to blame for what happened. But never-the-less, the event has always left me a bit shaken. On top of that, I have lost count of the number of times that he has catapulted me off of him while riding.

I am curious how you could be leading a horse and an accident happened like this. He obviously intended to kick you and not sure what you did to dismiss this as a situational sort of thing. Quit making excuses for him.
I gave very limited information regarding the event so I'm not sure how you can immediately know that he "intended to kick me". My barn at the time was holding its annual show that was solely for the people boarding at the barn or enrolled in the lesson program. We had entered a game-type class...part of this involved trotting the horse in hand (which is when I got kicked). The excitement of the game and my horse naturally being more high-strung just created a bad combination. Should I have probably known that he was not going to be a good contender for that type of class? Yes. But, like I said, it was an accident.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
where are you located at, id love to work with him possibly, im no professional trainer or anything but I can handle tough horses, I broke my mustang mare who sounds to me was the same, she had a massive adittude, bucked all the time and rearing too, now im focusing on getting her in the show ring at local shows when I have the time. I know my 4h leader who trains professional reining/cow horses and just plain out trail horses would be more than willing to help you, if it wasn't for me I wouldn't have gotten this far with my horse....
I'm located in Malibu, CA. I agree with you and as others have stated, that I don't have respect from him. And unfortunately with where I am at in my life right now, I don't have the resources to rework him myself. We've had a tough past together and it is difficult for me to let that go when I am around/working with him. And I know that in order for any training to be successful with him, he needs someone who is confident and assertive...and I just don't think that can be me. I don't need a quick or easy solution to all of this... I will absolutely take all the time that is necessary to find him the right person/place/etc. that will work for him. I was just unsure of what my options even were and that is why I sought some opinions.
 

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Its possible that if you are totally honest about him you could rehome him either for riding or as a companion - but he isn't young and at that age not the sort of horse that people typically select as a retraining project - because there are so many younger ones out there that will jump ahead of him in that queue.
I would be more inclined to lease him to someone - if you sell him or give him away for the low price that he's worth he stands a good chance of ending up on his way to a slaughter yard - the sort of people that buy horses like this just to sell them on for meat will tell you anything you want hear so if that bothers you think and act carefully before parting with him
 

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I'm located in Malibu, CA. I agree with you and as others have stated, that I don't have respect from him. And unfortunately with where I am at in my life right now, I don't have the resources to rework him myself. We've had a tough past together and it is difficult for me to let that go when I am around/working with him. And I know that in order for any training to be successful with him, he needs someone who is confident and assertive...and I just don't think that can be me. I don't need a quick or easy solution to all of this... I will absolutely take all the time that is necessary to find him the right person/place/etc. that will work for him. I was just unsure of what my options even were and that is why I sought some opinions.


well thats nufortunate... i live in Mayville, MI. thats kinda a far hike... if i was closer or vise vursa i would deffinatly work with him... and to be honest, i wouldnt part with him. keep him as a pasture pet and everything, best bet is if anyone buys him he will end up at slaughter one way or another...
 

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I would retire him.

The fact that he sent you to the hospital makes him a liability to lease out. If someone falls off and gets hurt, they can sue you.

The same with selling him. You would need to offer a full disclosure on his misbehavior in the past.

I don't think very many people would want a horse like that. It is too easy to end up seriously hurt.

It does sound like a malicious act (as far as the kick). I've hand jogged my horse plenty of times, and she wouldn't dream about kicking out. The one time I did get kicked was when I got in between my boss mare and my other horse. I just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. And my boss horse did get a good lunging and put back in her place, as soon as I was able to hobble out there.

You probably should have sold him cheap or given him away 5 years ago. At 12, he was a much better prospect than a 17 yr old.

I have a 10 yr old lame horse, and I think she would find a better home than him! Why you might ask? The main reason I keep her, and why she is valuable to me is because she is a "safe" horse. She won't be doing any cross country, but I can hop on and ride off without worrying about getting tossed. I can ride by myself, with a group, or once every 6 months and still have a safe ride. Not that she is perfectly safe, but her go to reaction when scared is to stop and plant her feet.

I fear the only people who would be interested in a horse like that would not have good intentions! The longer I ride horses (and the more serious injuries I see), the less interest I have in a horse who acts nuts. Back when I was a teen, I would not have any issue in taking on a horse like that.

I think the TB temperament does a large role. My old TB mare's reaction when scared was to spin and bolt. I used to get thrown a lot! If following other horses she was fine, but she was never trustworthy riding by herself.

IF you try to sell, I would send him to the trainer for 30-60 days.

I think what you are dealing with is an unpredictable temperament and that is probably not something that will improve with training/miles.

At one point I rode a horse similar- he would buck, rear, bolt, spin, etc out of the blue... He would get a look in his eye and be up in the air. I sent him back to his previous owner, as no matter how many rides I put on him, he never stopped pulling pranks. He reared up on my trainer at a horse show. I think he had mental problems, as even riding 7 days a week, he never improved.
 
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