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- so far, the one ding on his prospect is he has "mild ringbone", which I am a bit leery about. But, the farrier has worked on him a long time and never noticed any issues. I gather his owner's daughter rides him but wants to do hunters but that'd be hard on him. I've talked to several people who say for what I do - enjoying trails a few hours a few days a week, an occasional longer adventure or the St Patrick's parade, he'd be fine for many years yet.
he is very handsome but the “mild ringbone” would be deal breaker for me.

How old is he? If you said, I missed it and I apologize. I sense he is younger as several people have told you “he’d be fine for many years yet”. I have dealt with high ringbone in the past, and currently low ringbone in my metabolic horse that foundered in 2012.

Neither horse developed ringbone until they were in their 20’s, I lost the first fella when he was 27, in the mid-80’s.

It was discovered on my current horse this past Spring on the top of the P3 and inside the hoof near the coronet band. He is 25. He is metabolic, Cushings and has some other issues.

Maybe ringbone is common in bigger draft-type horses at an early age, but I will say handsome and no matter how perfect the horse is otherwise, the progression of ringbone can never be predicted.

It was a painful thing to watch my horse of the 80’s struggle to get up from a good roll due to the pain the ringbone caused him. Back then there wasn’t a lot that could be done and it had progressed quickly so I made the horrid decision to lay him to rest.

My current horse doesn‘t have near the pain level he had six months ago and that is because I spend a LOT of $$$ on things to keep him comfortable.

He has to wear shoes and pads for the residual founder issues. The farrier recently switched him to the Versa shoes which are a pliable plastic material and they have done wonders to help.

I also have this horse on a couple of supplements for arthritis that are not cheap. Now that the nights are colder, I wrap his legs with quilts when he comes in at night to keep his circulation up - something the lameness vet had told me to years ag, when he foundered.

***

If you go look at that beautiful horse, please realize “mild ringbone “ will not stay in it’s current mild state forever. It gradually worsens, the same as Cushings does but that progression can vary with each horse AND the level of care they receive. By level of care, I mean how much money are you willing to spend on a horse that may end up not rideable sooner than later?

After all that ^^^^ if you still like the horse, find a disinterested vet clinic (one that has never seen the horse) that can x-ray those hooves (all four of them), and get the opinion of that vet (hopefully a lameness vet) based on the work level you expect from the horse.

In this case, I don‘t care about the opinions of any of the people offering them up to you. They aren’t the ones who will have to foot the bills or watch the horse in discomfort and none of them are lameness vets:):)

Please don’t be mad, I’m just trying to save you some heartache. They are selling the horse due to the ringbone. They are telling you about it because they know it will show up in x-rays and that makes them more on the honest side than the dishonest:)
 

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Discussion Starter #62
Not at all! That long term is what worries me - will he just have some sore days, or will he be crippled in short order? He is sixteen, I am told, so neither very young nor very old. I am to understand that high ringbone has a better prognosis than low, but I don't want to be immediately on the hook for an unrideable horse. I don't know if it's a recent development or not. The farrier's judgement I trust because he's been at this a while (40+ years) and also has no particular reason to sell me on a specific horse or not. Beyond that, everyone is suspect.
 

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From my two experiences, he is on the young side to develop ringbone.

There are things for treatment today that weren’t available in the 80’s when I first dealt with ringbone.

Another consideration is what happens when the horse does reach the point where he can’t be ridden? You might still be boarding, therefore not financially in a position to put him to pasture and still buy another horse. Selling him would likely mean a cruel death sentence, so he would have to be PTS’d.

Its a tough decision, as to whether or not to even go look at him. He is a looker. If he goes as good as he looks and is as gentle natured as he is handsome, then you really have to think hard about a future with him and be prepared to put the money into him to keep him comfortable for light riding.

Also, being in the 16 age range, his stocky built self is also prime to develop metabolic issues, so something else to consider:)
 
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Discussion Starter #64
True. I can't in good conscience keep a lawn ornament at this time, but in 5 or 10 years that situation will probably change. (I mean. I hope. My income is stable, and I make more than many people and in a year when I'm done university I'll have more energy to devote to additional work.) My understanding is that he's at a fancy h/j lesson barn right now, and his owners teenage daughter has been riding him at that level. I would not be riding him at that level, but what is "light"? w/t/c trails a hand of times a week? A walk, once a week?

In an ideal world, of course, I buy Jasper and he lives forever. That, or I finally find that horse I sort of hallucinated one time which may not even exist. (I am not ordinarily that much of a believer in supernatural things, but ... Well.)

He is rather a chonk in that photo. He looks a bit lighter in other photos but wider than Jasper for sure.
 

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Being a hard core-go-where-no-man-has-ever-gone-before-trail rider, light riding to me means groomed trails such as a metro park. Walking, some trotting, very little cantering. At this stage he could probably handle 4-6 hours once or twice a week, or a couple of walk trot hours daily.

Fury was 27 when I laid him to rest. He was 25 when he rode his last 20 mile organized ride through some fairly rough trails and across a river. He was not showing any symptoms of ringbone and he was never lame after that ride. With him it seemed to blow up during his last two years.

Swimming would be good if the horse didn’t have to slide down a riverbank and dig up the other side - as long as he knows how to swim.

I don’t think my beloved Duke (RIP) could swim. He would cross anything up to his knees but deeper than that and he was having none of it. He was my only horse that did not like big and deep water and I never forced the issue.

Yes, the way to solve this dilemma would be writing a check for Jasper:)
 

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Discussion Starter #66
Our trails are not wildly hardcore, but not nice groomed bridle paths. Think regular state park hiking trails.

I suspect that if I were a young woman with a fine behind I'd have better luck buying Jasper... Alas I am not. Granted, I haven't asked, either. The storm is petering out here, so I'm aiming to head over and go for a short ride. Perhaps I will see the barn owner.

I don't know if Jasper swims, per se. There is a creek we cross that is sometimes up to his belly, but he's so tall.
 

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That is a really good looking horse! I was wondering, you say his owner had been doing h/j with him. I may have missed it, but do you know if he even LIKES being on trails? My Teddy loves being in the arena but he just loses it out on trails, especially if he's on his own. I'm sure he's not the only horse like that.
 
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Discussion Starter #68
That is a really good looking horse! I was wondering, you say his owner had been doing h/j with him. I may have missed it, but do you know if he even LIKES being on trails? My Teddy loves being in the arena but he just loses it out on trails, especially if he's on his own. I'm sure he's not the only horse like that.
I believe so, yes. As in, I asked the woman selling him. But, it's been a truly horrendous couple of weeks and I don't remember exactly. However, our farrier probably would not have passed along the info if he wasn't trail-worthy, either.

Too snowy/cold at the barn to ask any questions today of the barn owner (lots of clearing work, ice breaking, etc). But, I did have a really nice little bareback ride with Jasper - just on the property itself, walking around the parking area and up to the barn owner's house. Was nervous getting up, but felt really good otherwise, seated and centered. It was very beautiful in the snow, too.
 

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Discussion Starter #69
So I went to go see the horse. He is a nice horse. But I just don't feel like he's "mine". He could make someone very happy, I just don't think it's me. I also felt sort of pushed by the seller, and wasn't exactly pleased with the way she disparaged Western tack/saddles (like, I don't have a choice in the kind of tack I use, excuse me for riding in what's available to me). He's also never been off property with them (they take their other horses on hunts), and they bought him a year ago after he sat for 10 years. (he is 16). But honestly I think it just comes down to: this is a nice horse, but he isn't "mine". We've had enough dogs at home that I know what that feeling is and it's just not there. But I chatted with a friend, and I will chat it out with my instructor just to be sure.

I was thinking, off-handedly, if I offered my barn's owner this arrangement: I buy Jasper, for [x], but let him use Jasper for trail rides on my work days (which, being a paramedic, are basically two days/week), and his other leaser (who rides him maybe once a month or so) can use him as long as she calls me in advance. That way, he doesn't entirely lose a trail horse, and I don't take him away from his other leaser, either. I don't know if that would seem reasonable.
 

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Seems reasonable to me. And, if the BO knows you went to look at a horse for sale, s/he knows you're shopping so it's the perfect time to bring up why Jasper IS the right horse. That's sort of how it worked for me when I bought my first horse- I test rode a bunch of other horses, knowing I had the option to buy Isabel, who I was leasing at the time. All the other horses I test rode just reinforced how Izzy was the right horse for me at that time. I ended up over-paying for her, but I considered it in some ways a donation to the barn (it was a therapeutic riding program that also housed a few boarders), and a price that was worth it to me for the feeling of comfort and confidence I got in her as my first horse.

Good luck if you decide to start the conversation!
 

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Discussion Starter #71
The topic of me buying a horse has come up before, but I'm not sure how actively aware of it the BO is. :lol: Obviously he knows I'm leasing and sees us go out on the regular - heck, he saw us bareback in the snow the other day. I think the big sticking point would be that Jasper is a trail horse and a big horse able to comfortably carry larger, taller people - by far the biggest on the line. He has gotten few new line horses, but they're average size grade horses. (One turned out to have super bad front legs, but one of the boarders fell in love with her and bought her anyhow). (But I am in love with Jasper. Why can't I be someone who falls in love with a line horse and buys them? Is it because I'm not young and nubile? ...maybe. It's been a long few weeks, excuse the flippantry.)

I'll run the idea past my instructor. I'm going to the barn tomorrow anyhow.
 

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Discussion Starter #72
After talking with my instructor, and thinking about it, I think I'm just going to stop looking to buy for a while. Nothing is coming up anyhow, and I can still lease Jasper. It's just not our time for animals - I can't find a horse, dad can't find us a dog... Probably better to just enjoy what I've got.
 

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Mom always told my anxious self that “a watchpot never boils” :)

A dog will find your dad at the most unexpected moment, and you have the cash money ready to pounce on Jasper’s owner when you catch him in a weak moment:) We all hope it is meant to be that Jasper becomes yours🏇
 

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I am a little discouraged by our lack of animals. We have no one to scarf dad's food crumbs from his chair or counter-surf.

He keeps applying for (rescue) dogs (due to allergies, we have breed restrictions and have been looking for another standard poodle), but they keep going to other families... My riding instructor suspects they see an application from a 75 year old single man (albeit I live with him) and figure he's apt to up and die and leave the dog. That is probably true, unfortunately.

I actually have fairly significant financial assets, I just don't want to spend all of them on a buying horse from the get go. Could I give him $6k for Jasper? Probably. That wouldn't necessarily leave me a lot of leeway for vet costs and board. I'll just keep leasing him and try to find a time machine.
 

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Well, I sure didn’t have 6K in mind, lollol. BUT it does sound as if you can get your hands on cash pretty quick, so be ready.

The short story of our buying the another 9 acres of this old farm, to give us 24+ acres of the original farm, happened that way, lollol. A real estate friend talked the owner (another real estate person) into selling us the nine acres of unperkable pasture, saying it would be easier to sell the old house on one acre. We were financially ready to jump, not giving the seller time to think too hard. That was 11 years ago and I am still happy as a clam over that swingin’ deal:cool::cool:
 
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Discussion Starter #76
Some of that cash is going into a secret (from her) gofundme to help my riding instructor with her horse's vet bills. Antibiotics and steroids are expensive. :( (he has EPM)

The slightly odd woman who leases Lavinia offered $6K for her, but she's quite a bit younger, and also I think her first owner (not the barn owner) has some sort of final right of decision on her. I forget where you are, but here (Massachusetts), $3k - $7 seems typical for a sound, trained horse with no vices. (The lady offering the percheron cross had him at $1500, and will put him up for $2500, but he also has ringbone, is herdbound (!!), never been on trails, AND he's only been being worked for a year - they got him from a woman who basically had him as a lawn ornament for 10 years). I can find horses cheaper, further away, but at the moment there's a problem of going to see them, and in the long run the effort and expense of hauling them back. My aunt lives down in MD near a farm that, going off their ads, seems to specialize in draft crosses - if not for COVID, I'd be taking a field trip to see family and detour for horses. A pal from medic school just moved to NJ, where I hear there is a not insignificant horse scene, so maybe when I'm looking for houses for her (it's a fun pasttime and if I find a house they buy, she's promised me a new goalie mask with a paint job) I'll accidentally find a horse. :lol:

I was going to ride him today, but just found out the boss booked a trail ride in that slot, so, here I am, still feeling rather glum about everything.
 

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Discussion Starter #77
Alright: I went out to the barn to give my riding instructor her Christmas present, and rode Jasper bareback around the yard. I feel better about life now. (Especially because my instructor saw me being Very Confident and not tipping or tilting or panicking.)
 

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Discussion Starter #78
We had a pleasant, utterly uneventful ride yesterday. Made up for the terrible day at work Tuesday/Wednesday. It was funny, though, I realized once I mounted up that the last two times I've been on him were both bareback. The saddle felt rather different. :lol: But it was nice. I rode a little bareback after, around the yard.

The supervisor at work bought a new tub of soft mints - the ones that are basically compressed powdered sugar with mint flavor. I gave Jasper one (just one!) and he was utterly beside himself. Weather will be tough tomorrow, and it might be an ice rink by Saturday, so I don't know quite when I can ride again.
 

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Discussion Starter #79
I noticed something funny: after riding bareback a few times and becoming more comfortable with it, the way I sit in the saddle changed. That is, in the saddle, my body settles more like how I would bareback.

It being winter, with less daily work, Jasper has more energy than he knows what to do with. So, we've had to go in the Spin Cycle a few times recently. He's not being a jerk, just... Energetic. If the weather holds we'll go on a longer ride or two.

Up and out of the blue, someone replied to a CL post I made more than a month ago. She's selling a 16h, 16yo grey draft cross, purportedly sound and trailworthy. He is not far, so I'll go see him this week. I am enjoying Jasper-time, though, so if this guy doesn't spark, it is what it is.
 

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Ohhhhh! Can't wait to hear about the new possibility! Yeah the ponies get a little excited when not being ridden as much and it being colder... it's been a little bit since I've ridden my old guy, can't wait to get on him... lol
 
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