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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Now boys and girls, come sit around the camp fire... *passes a plate of cookies to go around*. I am going to share a story with you that is a PERFECT example of what NOT to do for first time owners. Its a long story so I hope you are ready... here we go

Once upon a time...

My friend, we’ll call her Jane, she owns horses and has owned horses for well over 15 years. She currently owns 5 horses, two are ride-able and the others are retired. She's gained quite a bit of knowledge and experience over the years with owning her trouble makers ;). She knows what to look for in conformation and has a pretty good eye for determining good horse flesh. She deals with lameness issues left and right with her retired pasture puffs so she has a good eye for spotting lameness. She is I think a very good horse person, she has some pretty big alpha personality horses that respect her and she knows how to handle herself around horses good or bad, in or out of the saddle. So there is some background on my friend Jane.

So this summer, a mother and daughter approached her one day asking if it would be possible for the daughter (we’ll call her Amy) could come out and take lessons/help out with the horses. Jane agreed thinking this would be great way to help influence a young person in a positive light and have horses be involved.

So there were no issues for most of the summer. Amy came out and rode Jane’s very beginner safe horse starting with the basics, so basically just walking and working on developing a correct seat and hand position. Then moved up to a trot when she felt Amy was ready. Jane was teaching her as much as possible about care, handling, and safety basics. Amy was/is a total beginner, not quite a teen yet so Jane was taking it slow for her safety.

However, being young , Amy she ended up turning to other friends who had horses to ride…. Ones that were extremely dangerous- such as getting bucked off a KNOWN bucker/rearer-who broke its owners leg and the owner asked Amy to ride it for her… and Amy wasn’t wearing a helmet because she “hated” wearing one…. Never the less she still continued lessons at Jane’s. But Amy became rather obsessed with wanting her own horse, and wanting it sooner rather than later.

Then Amy became friends with this other girl whose family owned a stable. Amy then decided she had more fun over there, which again was not a big surprise since they let her run around on the horses as fast as she wanted and let her run barrels… (can you picture it?)

Now the horse this new family put her on was a QH mare, 15 years old, and was bought recently from an auction for only $500 and they already had her on craigslist for sale for a larger sum. Amy FELL IN LOVE with this mare… and so the owners then decided that the mare (originally priced at $1500) was suddenly worth $2500 and that they would sell the mare to Amy’s mom and they could then board the horse there too for reduced cost. They claimed that it was a real steal of a deal…

Amy and her mom then turn to Jane, and I for advice. Amy’s mom wasn’t ready (financially ready & their property was not ready either) to buy a horse. Their budget according to Amy was $1500 but that wouldn’t even be do-able until next spring. However, Amy was persistent that she loved this horse more than anything… and she HAD to have the horse NOW.

But both Jane and I saw so many red flags with this situation. The mare was not in best of shape conformation wise- she looked like the perfect picture of a backyard breeder’s broodmare and probably was..., she is 15 years old, and was sold at auction for $500 and now being sold for $2500. Oh and there was pressure added to the sale when the owners told them there was someone else interested in the horse and the sooner they make the decision the better… Not to mention these people have shady reputations already from simple background checks.

So our advice to them was TO KEEP LOOKING because we found TONs of better quality looking stock that were suitable for beginners on craigslist/equinow/dream horse/etc, that were more affordable for their budget.

But since Amy wasn’t having any of that we told them to first get a PPE done on the horse since we don’t know why the mare was sent to auction in the first place, then they should negotiate the price to at least $1500 or lower, so that way they would have money left for tack/feed/board etc, and ONLY if the horse passed the PPE. We recommended vets and told them that even if the PPE costs you $300, it will give to a peace of mind that you are making the right decision if you dont buy the horse. It can save you from making an expensive purchase and possible heartbreak down the road.

We really wanted the best for Amy and her mom and we hoped they would listen... but low and behold a couple days later we get word that they bought the horse… for the asking price… and without a vet exam. Oh bud the board there was free and they could borrow the seller's tack...

Well anyway few weeks go by and Jane goes to the stable to see Amy's horse. Amy runs the mare around the arena to show off her horse and how "fast" she is. Meanwhile, Amy’s mom asks Jane questions like “why is our mare’s back dipped more than others?” Basically all questions that should have been asked before they bought the horse but Jane answered all her questions and tried to be as kind as she can about talking about the horse’s poor confo. Also Amy’s mom asked after the mares FRESH girth sores… and Jane told them that it was from ill fitting tack causing the girth to ride/rub where it shouldn’t but the answer to that from Amy or Amy’s friend was that she riding her in a “fluffy” (fleece) girth now so its ok to ride…. (I personally shudder at the thought of that… its still gonna rub and irritate the sores no matter the girth ugh).

Anyway, Amy hops off the horse and when she leads her, Jane noticed that the mare looked off on her front left. She felt the leg and sure enough there was heat in the lower left front joint. It also looked a little swollen. She advised to not ride the horse for a couple days and give her a gram of bute to help with the inflammation and see how she does with a little rest… The stable owners daughter-Amy’s friend, pipes up with “Well the horse had a full vet exam.” As if that was going to explain the lameness but this was news to Amy’s mom. Jane asked if Amy’s mom had seen any vet report prior or even after buying the horse and obviously it was a no. Then Amy and her friend run to tell the BO , and her husband then comes out screaming and cussing at Jane for “ruining a child’s dream of owning a horse…” which Jane was not doing by any means… and getting in her face about it... obviously someone doesnt want their scam exposed...

Jane gets the guy to calm down- goes into lawyer mode and then leaves the property, pretty upset by the situation. She tells Amy's mom that if they need to get their horse out of there that she would be willing to help but she was not going back to that property again otherwise.

Well a month and a half go by, no word from Amy or her mom in the meantime. Then one day Amy calls asking Jane if she has any saddles or tack she wants to sell... Jane was a bit put off by the no contact and then hitting her up for her tack but obviously we knew something was up. couple days later Jane finally gets the call for help. Some drama occurred between Amy and her friend/friends family and they decided that it was time to get the hell outta dodge- like the stable owner grounding Amy from seeing/riding her own horse because of something the stable's owner's daughter accused Amy of.

So Jane sets a day and they go get the horse and bring her to back to Jane’s. They work out a boarding agreement, setting everything in stone and write up a contract. Jane kept the horse under quarantine and had the farrier out to trim her… And low and behold the mare has white line separation, probably from chronic laminitis was the farrier's thought- would explain why she acts very ouchie walking on pavement... Also he agreed that her left front leg had swelling and heat in the same joint Jane pointed out. Then after about two weeks being at Jane’s, Jane noticed that the mare was not chewing well. So they had the vet out to float her teeth- turns out she had a pretty sharp point digging into her tongue causing a nasty sore. The vet looked over her feet but didn’t think it was laminitis causing her lameness but thinks its probably Navicular. Also we learned later that the mare came home from auction with shoes AND pads… We really wish we had known this before hand because this is a major red flag but knowing she was shod with pads would explain she has had lameness issues for a while.

Jane and I had our gut feelings from the beginning that the story may end up like this and we do feel for Amy and her family… but it was a lesson that they decided to learn the hard way. So now they own a $2500, lame horse that will probably cost them tons of $$$ to keep her mostly sound, they don’t have the $$$ for tack as they were using the ill-fitting stuff at the other stable, and because they cant afford board either ($150 pasture/fullcare) they have to work to pay off board… It’s a mess they created on their own because they LEAPED into horse ownership without really thinking it through or following the sound advice from experienced horse people.

Come to find out also that the mare has some vices/training issues as well. To name a few.. shes very buddy/herd sour, wont stand for mounting, becomes extremely violent when being dewormed (rears and strikes- has to be twitched but shes getting smart about that too), and flies backwards outta trailers… Most of these can all be managed/corrected by experienced horse people but Amy is just a beginner. She doesn’t know how to properly control a horse that behaves like that and if unsupervised these vices are a danger to her and her family. Also the fact that now Amy’s mom is realizing just how expensive footing the horse ownership is because the mare is on joint supplements (which the joint is better being on them), bute, grain, needs a saddle/bridle/saddle pad etc,and needs a winter blanket, regular farrier work, and had to have her teeth floated, and its recommended by vet and farrier to have xrays done on her to figure out what’s going on and most likely she will need expensive shoes/pads for next year’s riding season. In other words…$$$.

But at least now she is in a place where with Jane’s and my help Amy, her mom, and their horse can learn and be well taken care of in a positive, drama free (Jane wont tolerate ANY drama whatsoever) environment, at least for the winter until Amy can get her property set up to house horses.

I will say this though the mare, while not ideal or perfect, has a sweet personality and her & Amy do seem to click well. She so far is fairly safe to ride, doesnt spook, not a bucker, and not a hot head. Amy and her family plan to "keep her forever". So hopefully they can do their best to keep her sound and healthy. BTW Amy's already talking about getting the next one… lol but shes planning on LISTENING to our advice next time… lol We’ll see.

I still shake my head thinking about this situation but I’m sure it happens more often than not. So PLEASE, those of you who are new to horses or are beginners; please do not jump the gun of horse ownership. It’s not all roses and rainbows and riding off into the sunset.

Please do lots of research on what to look for in the right horse for a first horse. Don’t overestimate your abilities. Be honest with yourself and make sure you are ready in all aspects to own a horse. Learn how to care for horses properly and budget out expenses, learn about correct conformation, find a reputable trainer to help teach you and help you when you go to look at horses, and take lots of riding lessons. Get as much hands on learning as possible. Don’t be afraid to ask questions! Listen to advice from reputable horse people, trainers, vets, farriers- DON’T just take sellers word for it when they tell you about the horse- not all sellers are honest. Also get a PPE done on any horse you are really considering buying. Make a budget and stick to it. Remember that the cheapest part of horse ownership is the horse’s purchase price. You don’t, as first time horse owners, want to make a wrong choice and be stuck with a crazy expensive, black hole disguised as a pasture puff that can’t be used or is too dangerous for you to handle. You want to be able to enjoy your first horse and have a positive learning experience and be safe doing it. Don’t learn lessons the hard way, be smart, make good choices.

The end.
 

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The stories I could add to yours!

Some of them my own, too.

You learn by doing, and I hope and wish Amy all the best with this mare. Pony fever. We've all experienced it, and paid for it financially and emotionally.

Fingers crossed that the lameness is resolved and Amy learns how to adapt her need for speed for this mare, and she also realises the costs involved in this and will listen to people who know.
 

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What a sad story. There are two simple lessons learned here that can be applied everywhere.

A) Listen to the people that know better

B) don't let your children make decisions for you, there's a reason they are called children.
 

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What a sad story. There are two simple lessons learned here that can be applied everywhere.

A) Listen to the people that know better

B) don't let your children make decisions for you, there's a reason they are called children.
This, this, this. While ignorance went a long way in buying an inappropriate horse, a big problem seems to be the mother's inability to say no to her daughter. Amy fell madly in love with the mare and asked Mom for it. Mom wasn't financially ready for a horse, but Amy insisted. Mom couldn't afford the asking price, but Amy still insisted that she needed THIS horse. She was advised to look elsewhere, but Amy wouldn't have any of that. Now she's struggling to pay the basic bills that any horse would rack up (I sure hope Amy is the one working off her board!!), but she's struggling to pay the expenses associated with a high maintenance horse, AND she's having to prep her property for horses when she knows very little about them in the first place. And she's letting Amy entertain thoughts about getting a second horse when she can't afford the care on this mare?

I can accept that Mom is a good lady that likes horses and wants to make her horse-crazy daughter happy, but drawing a line at any point during the situation could have prevented a whole mess of trouble! I've gotten where I am in horses because of my parents' generosity, but kids need to be told no sometimes. I'm not trying to sound judgmental or say that Mom or Amy are bad people, but way more often than not kids don't know what is best for them. That's why they're still living off their parents :lol:
 

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It's great that even though they got themselves into this situation, they are working with what they have and are trying to make the best of it. It sounds like this mare is lucky to have found a home that tries so hard to work with her. Also, this girl sounded like she needed a dose of grow the heck up, and working off board and learning to care for a lame horse will do her some good!

I bought my horse after 6 months of riding lessons, but I had my trainer come out with me to buy him, and had a PPE with xrays. Lots of thanks to horseforum for giving me the courage to do that! He's so great <3
 

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This story just makes me grateful that I had intelligent parents when I was growing up horse-crazy who thought things through and talked to my trainer before making any decisions. They never did get me a horse, they knew they could barely afford one, so found me lease situations instead.

When I first started taking lessons, my mom contacted a friend who she knew had horses to ask if I could come over and help with barn chores and grooming so I would learn more about daily care than I got in lessons. Turned out that they had a large pony that I could ride, their daughters old horse. That pony was worth her weight in gold. She was the most amazing kids horse and would try to do anything you asked of her.

A couple years later, the whole family moved down to Texas and offered her to my parents for free. The first thing my mom did was to call my trainer, talk the whole situation over with her and get her thoughts. In the end, they didn't take the mare - yes she was wonderful and still sound for light riding, but she was also 28 years old, had Cushings and couldn't jump which I had begun to do. It would only have been a few years before we would have had to retire her and then my parents wouldn't have been able to afford lessons or a new lease on top of paying for her care. It was sad, but the right decision for my parents to make. She ended up going to a retirement home where she got to hang out with goats and graze all day. I hope she lived to a very old age.

I'm very grateful for having parents who were wise in the horsie decisions they had to make for me. They knew how much I wanted a horse of my own and knew it wouldn't be a passing thing, but were smart enough to not just give in and get me whatever I wanted.
 

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Great story.

So have you heard the one about the lady who got a second loan on her house so she could buy her kid a $50K horse for competition? I understood her kid was a good rider but not that good.
 

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Great story.

So have you heard the one about the lady who got a second loan on her house so she could buy her kid a $50K horse for competition? I understood her kid was a good rider but not that good.
I don't think ANYONE has a kid who's that good of a rider! And there are some pretty good kid riders out there!
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Amy and her mom are so fortunate to have you and Jane. You two seem like wonderful, caring and patient people.

Those other "friends" who sold the mare to beginners--some piece of work.
 

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I was a horse crazy kid with non-horsey parents. You see where this is going? And unfortunately the horse people I hung out with clearly didn't have my best interests at heart.

Long story short. FREE. Sound, quiet, kids' horse, perfect for me turned into deaf, hitch in back leg, dangerous, and a man's horse. The horse slammed me into a round pen and ripped the lead line out of my hands hard enough to rip all of the skin off my one palm. All to get back to his field. He also decided he wanted me dead and backed up to me multiple times on purpose and kicked at me.

The friend who heard about him took me to meet him and the guy getting rid of him and the guy poured all of these happy little tidbits into my mind of owning my first horse. He WILLING gave a dangerous horse to a child who's parents didn't know any better. And when everything started happening he wouldn't take him back. And my "friend" wouldn't help me.

When the horse's original owner(before the guy I got him from and he'd had him since birth to 18) found out I had him he came out to the farm I boarded at and told me to not do anything other than ride around the farm because if I take him anywhere he WILL hurt me. Well I had already known that. He wouldn't take him either. I had no choice but to take him to an auction. I paid the price financially and emotionally.

After that whole situation I very fortunately fell into some soft arms. The people that had Phantom had been letting me ride him even though I had Heart(horse from above) they had seen how much we had "bonded" especially when I ran to Phantom after every bad day with Heart. And they taught me. They taught me how to properly care for a horse and everything that came with it. Then that year on my birthday they gifted him to me. It changed my life and my world for the better.

It's hard growing up in a non-horse family because then they usually listen to you (horse crazed child) or "friends" of horse crazed child. Especially when you were hanging out with "friends" who you thought had your best interests at heart. Because why would they lie to you right?

I learned very early on. And now I make it a point to try and educate others and steer them in the right direction so they don't have to go through what I did. And I've stopped quite a few people from making bad, impulse decisions.

My sister is very beginner and very horse crazed right now and wants her own horse but I taught her the importance of waiting for the right one and what to look for. She understands and is being very patient for when I feel she is ready to take on a horse of her own. haha she's pretty set on a breed; she wants a haflinger. But she said as long as I think the horse is safe and the right fit for her she'll take anything. But for now she rides my guys and helps me out with the farm chores. It's a lot of work and sometimes she gets frustrated but I tell her if she wants to own a horse she's going to learn the whole shebang, not just riding.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This, this, this. While ignorance went a long way in buying an inappropriate horse, a big problem seems to be the mother's inability to say no to her daughter. Amy fell madly in love with the mare and asked Mom for it. Mom wasn't financially ready for a horse, but Amy insisted. Mom couldn't afford the asking price, but Amy still insisted that she needed THIS horse. She was advised to look elsewhere, but Amy wouldn't have any of that. Now she's struggling to pay the basic bills that any horse would rack up (I sure hope Amy is the one working off her board!!), but she's struggling to pay the expenses associated with a high maintenance horse, AND she's having to prep her property for horses when she knows very little about them in the first place. And she's letting Amy entertain thoughts about getting a second horse when she can't afford the care on this mare?

I can accept that Mom is a good lady that likes horses and wants to make her horse-crazy daughter happy, but drawing a line at any point during the situation could have prevented a whole mess of trouble! I've gotten where I am in horses because of my parents' generosity, but kids need to be told no sometimes. I'm not trying to sound judgmental or say that Mom or Amy are bad people, but way more often than not kids don't know what is best for them. That's why they're still living off their parents :lol:
I COMPLETELY agree. Amy's mother let her daughter pretty much rail road her into buying the horse now with childish tantrums. Amy KNOWS how to manipulate her mother and others into geting what she wants- or so this is what Jane and I have discovered. Its still no excuse for Amy's mom to give in to Amy's whims and in fact its just detriemental to the situation and its not really helping Amy mature. That is why now we have made it clear to Amys mom to always take Amy's word with a grain of salt and to check with us first. For instance, we needed to order her horse a winter blanket and we looked over the options that were left online and we sent her home with a few print offs so her mom could decide what she could afford and we would order it for her. We didnt need to know right away since I wanted to try on a few of my blankets on her mare and measure her just to be sure of the size. Well later that night we get a text from Amy's mom saying as soon as Amy got home she pretty much demanded that her mom make a decision NOW since I needed to know NOW... lol Least mom has learned to ask us first. And Amy is learning that Jane and I dont tolerate that kind of behavior, or any drama.

However I will say in Amy's defense that she is a hard worker. She is doing all the work to pay off her horse's board. She is coming out multiple times a week to see/groom/work with her mare and also to do chores that Jane has for her to do. If she starts slacking Jane will let her know lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
It's hard growing up in a non-horse family because then they usually listen to you (horse crazed child) or "friends" of horse crazed child. Especially when you were hanging out with "friends" who you thought had your best interests at heart. Because why would they lie to you right?

I learned very early on. And now I make it a point to try and educate others and steer them in the right direction so they don't have to go through what I did. And I've stopped quite a few people from making bad, impulse decisions.
^^^ This is exactly what happens. Blindly trusting in the shady smooth talking salesman. I didnt grow up non horsey entirely- we had my pony but honestly my parents knew NOTHING about horses except that they eat hay,need a shelter, pasture, and water. I didnt have anybody to learn from. Then as i got older and when i wanted to "upgrade" i ended up with a mare that put me in the hospital more times than I can count. So i did learn the hard way in so many ways growing up so its just hard to watch when people who dont know anything about horses and make just plain ignorant decisions. Its especially hard to watch when the train wreck happens like in this situation...

The situation did sting a bit since Jane and I have both been totally honest with Amy and her mom from the beginning. We may not know EVERYTHING, but we have years of experience owning horses- both the good and the bad. So when they come to ask us for our opinions and advice, we give freely to the best of our ability- and i think the advice we gave about purchasing the mare would have come from any honest experienced horse person, and we genuinely wanted Amy and her family to find the BEST (or darn close) horse out there for them to start their horse ownership with, but they go and completely ignore EVERYTHING we told them and warned them about, listening to someone who clearly was out to take advantage of them, and then they kinda dropped off the radar especially after the incident at stable. It hurt but really, things all work out in the end. Some people have to learn the hard way, some times people have to have a wake up call to realize who their true friends are.


There are no hard feelings, we just want to be a help to Amy and her family, if not only for their sakes but for the horse's welfare as well. And maybe Amy and this mare were meant to be together, the mare obviously needs lots of TLC with her arthritis and whatever the lameness issue plagues her right now. Shes a very lucky mare because pretty sure she was bound for mexico when she was sold at auction.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Amy and her mom are so fortunate to have you and Jane. You two seem like wonderful, caring and patient people.

Those other "friends" who sold the mare to beginners--some piece of work.
:lol::lol::lol:

So true! One of the funniest things that the lady told Amy was- "You shouldnt ride in a leather saddle in winter cuz the leather will freeze and become stiff that it will slice/cut your horse..."

Amy asked me about this and i told her that that was complete Bull Poo. I told her to think about it. How on earth did anyone ride horses in the cold in the past and even now? How do Cowboys out on the range ride? Bareback? Well it would be warmer but not at all handy if you had to rope a calf/cow. I gave her a few more examples and she's like "you totally make more sense" lol

Plus when Amy and Jane removed Amys horse from the sellers property, the seller wasnt at home thank goodness to stir up any trouble and we didnt want them to do anything to her horse out of spite but Amy texted her after they left, telling her that they were moved their horse, but boy the seller sure lit off some colorful fireworks all over facebook, pitching an aweful fit, and sent some nasty texts. Bat poo crayyyyyzaaay... lol


Im also rather disappointed that the trainer I was hoping to send my filly Belle to start her next year ended up setting up shop at the Bat Poo Crazy Seller's barn... Im really hoping that the trainer comes to her senses about the sellers underhanded business and gets outta there because I am NOT going to send Belle there... And if the trainer doesnt then I guess I keep looking for another trainer, no skin off my back. lol

Another funny quote from the seller was... "I dont understand why everyone hates us. It must be because we have money and theyre just jealous that we are better off than them..."
:lol::lol::lol::lol: If only she knew... if only...
 

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There is one on facebook that was advertised as having navicular and sold for 3k. New owners are obviously having problems and want money back. They acknowledge that they knew about the navicular but didn't know what it was.
If they had taken someone knowledgable with them it was obvious from the video posted that it was short strides and tender on the front. It is irritating also because the old owner couldn't afford the care and asked 3k. It was an average horse that should have been free to a good home
 

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^^^^ Some people have more money than sense.
 
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