PDA

View Full Version : Opportunity to buy Holsteiner Mare in Foal



dps
Dec. 21, 2007, 05:16 PM
I have the opportunity to buy a 15 yr old Holsteiner in foal due this April. She is a preferred approved mare bred to a Holsteiner GP Jumper. What are your thoughts on the Holsteiner breed. Should they be left to the pros or can the average experienced rider bring the foal along. I would have professional help from my trainer through out the entire process. I would plan to use the foal for future dressage, unless they prefer to jump.

class
Dec. 21, 2007, 05:52 PM
get your trainer's help on deciding whether to purchase the mare or not then. nobody can tell you whether you can handle a horse or its offspring based on the BREED. maybe people would have more advice based on the lineage of the horses, but even that is so variable that it's nearly impossible to say. obviously, not every single holsteiner out there is owned by a professional and not every single holsteiner out there can be owned by an amateur. it seems like you are taking a shotgun approach to horse buying and you need to decide what you really want to do and then work with a trainer to find a horse that is suitable for your goals. also, it must cost at least $25K, so you may have to take out a loan. natch.

onetempies
Dec. 21, 2007, 06:15 PM
Ask your trainer & learn about the lines of this mare AND the expected foal. The breed itself does well in dressage (I competed through 3rd on my late mare by Rantares) and now own her 2003 son who is just finished his 2nd month of training. There's a good group of knowledgeable people in the sport horse breeding forum on this board that know the Holsteiner lines and what their traits tend to be.

dps
Dec. 21, 2007, 07:07 PM
The mares sire isLemgo. He had an exceptional canter. The sire of the foal is Lotus T, and is currently showing as an upper level jumper but is also an excellent mover

ShowjumpersUSA
Dec. 21, 2007, 07:11 PM
The mares sire isLemgo. He had an exceptional canter. The sire of the foal is Lotus T, and is currently showing as an upper level jumper but is also an excellent mover

Are you sure about the pedigree? The mare is by Lemgo? Lotus T is by Lemgo out of a TB mare.

merrygoround
Dec. 22, 2007, 10:34 PM
The bloodlines of the mare and foal are not as relevant, as your ability to deal with a foal that will in time progress to be a weanling, , yearling, etc. At all levels they will challenge you, unless you are capable of dealing with them. Horses are horses, are horses. :)














the breeding of the mare and the foal , are

slc2
Dec. 23, 2007, 07:56 AM
I do think the plan sucks.

I would not use a dressage trainer to advise me or guide me in the intricacies of breeding and raising a foal. I would work with a breeder. It's hardly a given that a trainer has ANY experience with mares and foals - or ENOUGH experience with mares and foals. Sure, I know a trainer or two who has done a little with mares, but my choice would be a breeder, not a trainer. One with many years of experience. And I'd also get myself a reproduction specialist vet - not just your local vet.

And after having our youngster tangle in the fence yesterday and watching our little slice of heaven disintegrate before our eyes, I'd suggest you take very seriously WHERE AND HOW you are going to keep this mare and her foal. Our 10,000 dollar fence is in ruin, the costly 'safety features' don't seem so safe any more, and we now have no turnout there, and we have an injured horse.

Mares and foals are not like other horses. Foals are, for all intents and purposes, wild animals. They are not born understanding that fences are barriers, they learn by running into them. They run into fences, they get hurt, and they need very, very special handling. mares have a whole different set or priorities than geldings and it is just NOT something ayone should just say 'oh, I think i'll do this, it sounds like fun'. Or - HA HA - a way to save money and 'get a nice horse cheap' - if you think that's going to happen, think again!

The LAST thing that's good for a foal is trying to keep it in a stall at a boarding barn, or on your own farm, unless you've got acres and acres of pasture that are good all year - and...appropriate fencing.

dps
Dec. 23, 2007, 09:38 AM
This is from the breeder that I'm thinking of buying from:

I am pleased you see the opportunity in this mare. I have for many years had mares I could breed back to my stallionmLemgo. Since she is a Lemgo daughter, I cannot do this, although line breeding is not an uncommon thing, especially in Europe. You are right. This mare is line bred, but again, this is a common practice in Europe, and they get pretty excellent results with their breeding programs, so I though I would breed to thisi proven son of Lemgo's. I hope you looked at the wiebsite him and Lemgo.
I will be happy to have you come look at this mare, and I can show you several other horses with similar breeding so you will have an idea of what my program produces.

~Freedom~
Dec. 23, 2007, 10:10 AM
I do think the plan sucks.

I would not use a dressage trainer to advise me or guide me in the intricacies of breeding and raising a foal. I would work with a breeder. It's hardly a given that a trainer has ANY experience with mares and foals - or ENOUGH experience with mares and foals. Sure, I know a trainer or two who has done a little with mares, but my choice would be a breeder, not a trainer. One with many years of experience. And I'd also get myself a reproduction specialist vet - not just your local vet.

Not all trainers are completely without knowledge about breeding. I train, and have been breeding for some time now.


[/quote]And after having our youngster tangle in the fence yesterday and watching our little slice of heaven disintegrate before our eyes, I'd suggest you take very seriously WHERE AND HOW you are going to keep this mare and her foal. Our 10,000 dollar fence is in ruin, the costly 'safety features' don't seem so safe any more, and we now have no turnout there, and we have an injured horse. [/quote]


This is news. Where did the "youngster" come from. Did you buy Young Filly's mare? Has the foal arrived already? Who is the father?


Mares and foals are not like other horses. Foals are, for all intents and purposes, wild animals. They are not born understanding that fences are barriers, they learn by running into them. They run into fences, they get hurt, and they need very, very special handling. mares have a whole different set or priorities than geldings and it is just NOT something anyone should just say 'oh, I think I'll do this, it sounds like fun'. Or - HA HA - a way to save money and 'get a nice horse cheap' - if you think that's going to happen, think again!

Very true live is not without risks. How boring life would be if we all wrapped ourselves in bubble wrap and stay home never venturing out, but I can only assume you know people like that SLC?


The LAST thing that's good for a foal is trying to keep it in a stall at a boarding barn, or on your own farm, unless you've got acres and acres of pasture that are good all year - and...appropriate fencing.

Partly true but the horse I have now was BORN in a boarding barn and is a very happy adjusted socialized horse so generalizations should never be made. I prefer to speak from PERSONAL experiences rather than from what I read in books.

slc2
Dec. 23, 2007, 01:55 PM
LOL. Even my friends with mature riding geldings, are constantly struggling to get them turned out enough at boarding barns - they're even struggling to do that at their OWN farms - for 2 yrs, the excess rain we've had in our area has wreaked havoc with a lot of people's farms - fence posts are floating loose, horses are knee deep in mud - providing turnout even on one's OWN land is not always easy.

I don't think most foals would develop in a healthy manner if they spent 23 1/2 hrs a day in a stall at a boarding barn, and their exercise consisted of standing in a small dirt paddock for 20 or 30 min once in a while. And yeah, I've worked at enough breeding farms to realize that it IS a general rule - that young animals need to be out as much as possible to develop physically and mentally.

I had to deal with foals that were raised on small farms without exercise or socialization with other horses - it don't work out too dang well. They aren't mentally or physically well developed. Young animals need to move around and be with other horses.

Someone who really wants to get a broodmare isn't necessarily going to provide poor facilities, but it'd be good if they were prepared and the foal got plenty of care. It's not a small thing to take on.

fiona
Dec. 23, 2007, 02:04 PM
Personally i would take expert advice before getting a fence. from a Fencer with experience of fencing at the highest levels. I would not use just any old person who came along with a pick up truck full of glossy brochures and a pile driver. No siree, not me. no way. I have many friends with horses injured though bad fencing decisions made by people of dubious experience. So don't get a mare and foal becuase to be sure after that you'll need a fence and you don't have the experience or ability to make that decision nor does your trainer which i can tell despite the undeniable fact that we have never met nor are we likely to and i know nothing about you except you should get neither foal nor fence or even a mare.lol.

dps
Dec. 23, 2007, 03:02 PM
What? I think we have gotten off topic?

~Freedom~
Dec. 23, 2007, 03:14 PM
What? I think we have gotten off topic?

I believe we did and how the assumption that a foal will be raised on a boarding barn was even brought into the conversation is a stretch of SLC's imagination that only SLC's brain could have thought of.

I personally see nothing wrong with your choice. Many people will buy full grown horses sight unseen from Europe so why not a mare in foal.

onetempies
Dec. 23, 2007, 04:08 PM
For one to make the assumption that a dressage trainer is not a good one to look for advice on a mare in foal is just ridiculous! I'm amazed time and time again at how people generalize. :rolleyes:

Granted, there ARE trainers out there who do NOT have experience with breeding and helping students make sound breeding decisions. I've been lucky to find a trainer who is both a Holsteiner breeder AND dressage trainer AND dressage instructor. She helped me make breeding decisions regarding my late mare which has given me Chevy. I'm quite pleased with the outcome (he's 4 now and going into his 3rd month of training with the same trainer that helped me with the cross). He's doing fabulous and my once obnoxious colt turned obnoxious gelding is now a VERY GOOD student who loves his new job.

I will say though, that the L lines can be tough to deal with. They can be quite stubborn, almost too much so for an ammy (granted not ALL L line colts/fillies are like this, some are quite easy going and easy to handle). There were times where I was intimitated by Chevy as he was growing up (Chevy is out of a Rantares daughter and by the late Holseiner stallion Lacoste). But I'm very glad that I stuck it out and I'm glad that my trainer was willing to help with raising him. I'm very lucky that my trainer also only lives a mile down the road from me so stopping over at my place was no problem for her.

If you have an opportunity to see other horses of similar lines to the foal that the mare is carrying, I'd highly suggest going to see them and handle them. Get a feel for how they're put together & how their dispositions are. :yes:

BC5098
Dec. 23, 2007, 05:00 PM
I have read this - and don't understand what it is you want out of this deal?

What are you going to do with the mare after she foals? She will be 16 - and the market for 16 yo brood mares is limited. (You did not say how she was bred on the bottom - or her mare scores) What has the mare done - what has she produced?

You want a dressage horse? But you are buying a line bred jumper foal in utero?

It sounds to me like someone is trying to unload a bred mare they do not want. IF I were you - and I wanted a foal - I would wait until spring and buy a foal that is already on the ground, healthy and can be evaluated for quality.

siegi b.
Dec. 23, 2007, 05:22 PM
I'm with BC5098 on this.... not quite sure what it is you're looking for. You would buy a mare in foal because of what? The mare will be on the older side and the foal, in addition to being very closely bred (and I'm being kind here), should be a jumper.

The mare will be too old to be a promising riding prospect unless you're only looking for a trail horse. The foal will take three years before you can even put a saddle on him... In the meantime you will be paying for board and training advice and get exactly what in return?

There is some truth to the fact that boarding stables are typically not the perfect environment for a growing foal. Even if you're not worried about sufficient turn-out, think of all the coming and going of horses and all those new "bugs" your youngsters will have to ward off to on an on-going basis. That's what would worry me more than what type of fencing your boarding place has.

And I also totally agree with BC5098's last paragraph...

"It sounds to me like someone is trying to unload a bred mare they do not want. IF I were you - and I wanted a foal - I would wait until spring and buy a foal that is already on the ground, healthy and can be evaluated for quality."

Tiki
Dec. 23, 2007, 05:54 PM
As a long time breeder, I, too, don't get it. Do you want to buy the mare to get a cheap dressage horse out of the foal? Trust me, it will NOT be cheap. Then what are you going to do with the mare? Is she just a carrier for the foal and then a leftover when the foal is weaned? Are you aware that foals are walking accidents looking for a place to happen? What exactly IS your goal??

onetempies
Dec. 23, 2007, 06:20 PM
Ditto the others.... are you looking at the mare or the foal to keep? Granted that jumper blood is good to build the engine on the dressage blood.... but I don't really see that any dressage blood is in the cross with this pair. So chances are pretty high that you'll get a jumper with the foal.

dps
Dec. 23, 2007, 06:36 PM
Well first let me clarify that I have my own horse farm and will not be boarding the foal. My husband and I redid all of our fencing this summer with post and board. We have 4 acres of pasture divided into three pastures and a paddock. We still have more to fence in but ran out of time. I have a nice 5 stall barn that I can easly combine two stalls into one for the mare and foal.
After reading the last few comments, you are right what am I going to do with a 16 year old mare and a foal with jumper blood. I was on Iron Spring Farm and Hilltop Farms websites both farms are very close to me and I can get a very nice foal from clients of these farms not the farms directly for affordable prices. I would also be getting a confirmed bloodline in dressage.
I am looking at getting a foal because it will be 3-4 years before I can ride seriously again while I raise my children. I have a 9 month old son and another one on the way so riding for the next few years will be very slim. I currently have a TB mare and a Perchx who I have trained to 3rd level dressage and Novice level eventing. Lucky for me my Perchx is very low key and easy to ride, which allows me to ride when I can without worrying what to expect. I have a 100' x 150' ring that we had installed last winter so a place to ride is no problem. I have experience breaking and riding TB's, Arab's and QHx's just have not done it for a few years and plan to have my trainer much more involved than in the past. I hope this helps you see where I am coming from?

~Freedom~
Dec. 23, 2007, 07:33 PM
I hope this helps you see where I am coming from?

Absolutely and the reason why I try not to prejudge.

That mare can be re bred to any number of good stallions in your area should you choose to do so.

I wish you every bit of good fortune with your endeavor.

LarissaL
Dec. 23, 2007, 11:22 PM
Forgive me if this if I have misread or misinterpreted anything - but your strategy of finding your next horse appears a little haphazard? I recall a previous thread regarding a young OTTB with rearing problems and an exceptionally plain, trotting STB gelding. The two were so different and such projects that I wondered what you were looking for, even as a low level dressage horse.

Is the mare in foal a separate type of prospect? Frankly, if you are looking for a low level prospect, and particularly in the price range NV horses sell for, a mare-in-foal situation is not ideal. I'm of the opinion that you should seriously, SERIOUSLY sit down and contemplate your goals, situation, availability of trainer/experienced helper friend and THEN start the search for a new partner.

Best of luck! I know all of the breeds you have been researching are special and can fulfill any aspirations you might have.

YankeeLawyer
Dec. 24, 2007, 01:55 AM
If you would like to have a baby with the idea that doing so will buy you time until you have more time to devote to riding -- which in theory, makes sense -- I would say (1) buy a foal already on the ground that has confirmed bloodlines for dressage and demonstrates natural aptitude and correctness of conformation for this discipline; and (2) do not underestimate the amount of time and attention a new foal requires. I know from firsthand experience as I have a very demanding job and raise youngsters at home.

Also, when you buy a foal as a future riding prospect for yourself, there is always the risk that even if everything goes well and the horse turns out to be fabulous, it may not suit you at all. You simply will have no idea what the horse will be like to ride. If you are capable and interested in riding a variety of types of horses, then I would say there is a greater chance that such a plan would work out. But if you are one that has to have one with a go button, or conversely a very quiet one that needs a lot of encouragement to get excited about doing anything resembling work, I think you would be better off waiting and buying a riding horse when you have time -- one that is already started. Be aware, also that a freshly started horse may very well take more time to bring along and keep going than one that is further along in its training, so think about whether, in 3 years, you really will have a lot more time available to you to devote to riding the youngster. It is a rare youngster that you can just ride on weekends, for example (though I am blessed to have one of those; i consider it a small miracle).

In addition, not to put a damper on things but do consider that even a good-natured foal can have its moments, and handling them on the ground can be quite dangerous at times even when you know what you are doing. Also, while people have different opinions on how to raise foals, I do not think that 1-acre paddocks are ideal for a baby.

Finally, careful linebreeding is one thing (and even that is controversial), but doubling up on lines this close up is not something I would do, no matter how nice the sire. To my knowledge, that kind of linebreeding is not that common in Europe, or anywhere else for that matter.

Since you have what sounds like a nice setup, have you considered maybe trying to find a boarder who would let you occasionally ride her horse, perhaps in exchange for a reduction in board?

Tiki
Dec. 24, 2007, 05:52 PM
I wonder if you also understand that raising a foal and breaking a 3-4 yo are as different as night and day. Generally, some one has put in the specialized time required for a foal long before you got them to break as 3-4 yo's - even IF the 3-4 yo's had problems they had still been handled and trailered and had their feet trimmed and seen the vet. The foal's never done any of that.

~Freedom~
Dec. 24, 2007, 07:07 PM
I have tried to just be supportive of this person's decision and not get so judgmental as many seem to want to be.

Gee guess what, I raised a foal and many after. The first one I never had a speck of experience or "special instructions" to guide me. If I felt I needed guidance I went to the local breeders in my area to get advice. If I listened to all the "advice" I got from the many nay sayers I never would have made it to GP, never would have bred for the horse I now have, in fact I should have simply hid in my house never to venture out for there are risks in everything we do and life is full of risks.

Believe it or not risk taking is the very nature of human learning and without it we would still be using stone knives and wearing bearskins. If the original poster is determined to do this I would expect she is intelligent enough to ASK someone in the know ( not message board experts who have no real knowledge of her circumstances as evidenced by the foal boarding scenario mentioned).

Why not give her suggestions that would be helpful and supportive in what she is endeavoring to do?

Tiki
Dec. 24, 2007, 08:33 PM
Sorry, but I don't see telling her what it will be like, giving cautions or asking questions as judgemental.

dps
Dec. 25, 2007, 08:03 AM
Freedom thank you so much, I was going post about why everyone is so negative about a foal? If I wait until the horse is going under saddle I can no longer afford them, because the price will double.
I have several local breeders and trainers who are excellant with raising and training the young horse and I'm not exactly inexperienced. I waited a long time to have my own farm and now that I have it I'm going to enjoy every aspect of it and I plan to learn how to get the foal registered and take it to breed shows and maybe even breed again? I have a very supportive husband who has been doing all the farm work allowing us to save thousands on upgrades and repairs.
I'm no longer looking at the Holsteiner mare I don't think that is the best decision for me but this time of year there are many people looking to sell there mares in foal or foals in utero with a guarantee for a good price. I now am looking at a Rampal baby the farm has a 1 yr old stallion for sale and the mare is in foal to a filly which I have more interest in.
Gee a little support with some friendly suggestions would be nice. I have several friends who have raised horses from their own mares and have said they would love to help me so I'm not going in this blindly.
I really wish people would stop judging everyone else. It just shows how negitive you really are, and how unhappy you are.

FriesianX
Dec. 25, 2007, 10:15 AM
For the $, you probably are better off finding a youngster already on the ground. You'll still have the satisfaction of raising baby, but not the uncertainty of an unborn foal, the stress and potential heartache of foaling out (not to be negative, but look at some of the threads on breeding, a lot of bad things do happen in the foaling out and first few days of baby life :cry:), and you won't be stuck with an older broodmare who may be near the end of her career. AND - you can pick a foal who appeals to you in conformation, movement, sex, color, etc. Kind of fun checking out all the kids that are available. I'll warn you - they are ALL cute when young ;)

Heck, you may need to buy two, so they can keep each other company, and if you have horse property, it is SO easy to do (speaking from experience, one becomes two, becomes six, becomes seventeen, bleah, it is an illness, just a warning, horses at home may be addicting).

YankeeLawyer
Dec. 25, 2007, 08:25 PM
I really wish people would stop judging everyone else. It just shows how negitive you really are, and how unhappy you are.


I seriously hope this was not directed at my post, which was only intended to be helpful. You asked about buying a foal in utero of seriously dubious breeding that is not bred for dressage as a dressage prospct. You stated that you have limited time available to you (quite understandably) right now. You also indicated that you have limited experience with foal raising, but plan to raise the baby at home. All I said was not to underestimate the amount of time a foal takes (because in my experience at my farm they can take a whole lot longer than one that knows the ropes) and the challenges they pose. A foal might take 3 times as long on a given day to get their feet trimmed, turnout, for a vet checkup, whatever -- because they are new to everything and you need to take time with them until they get the program. Trainer support is helpful, but ime your trainer is unlikely to be at your farm for the day-to-day handling of the foal.

In any event, I did not see anything snarky in the responses to your post, so I am really amazed that you turned so nasty (I am very happy, thank you, and am very supportive of others). If you cannot discern the difference between someone pointing out some facts based on their experience (which you stated you do not have) and being judgmental, I don't know what to say.

onetempies
Dec. 25, 2007, 08:43 PM
I didn't really see much negative about many of the replies. The posters above were just going off of what little information you provided in your posts. Some of the posters above are also breeders so they really could offer you more insight than many others on the amount of time it takes to raise a foal. The fact that you want something for a specific discipline may also be why many of them were trying to sway you from buying a pregnant mare. Many of the responses were also quite heartfelt for the mare once she foaled out. Too many horses these days are castaways once they've served their purpose. Posters just wanted to make sure that this was not going to happen to her.

When finances play a role and/or one wants to buy a horse that will be suitable for a specific discipline, it's always much better to buy something on the ground already.

BC5098
Dec. 25, 2007, 08:46 PM
I was not trying to be negative - only honest.

I fully understand the concept of buying a foal - and having the fun of raising it. Training it yourself - and ending up with a better horse than you could ever afford to buy. I have done this myself - and have bred many more.

You asked for advice. Most of what you got is good. Buy a foal - but select one that is bred for what you want to do. Both parents - and from a family that has a good temperament and is ridable by an amateur. And if you wait unitl it is already born - you can avoid the problems that come with new borns - and the enormous sums of money that it can cost to get them fixed. You can also select one from a breeer who does a good job with basic training - you want a weanling that can be lead, will stand for the farrier etc. A 6 month old warmblood that has never been handled - or not handled enough is dangerous.

Also, most here have tip toed around the questionable breeding of the HOL foal. Linebreeding to me is a horse with the same horse in the pedigree - breeding a mare to her 1/2 brother - that is pushing the limits. IF you do that - you really need to know what you are dealing with. Landgraf was a good stallion - but he had serious issues with leg conformation - line breeding Landgraf is marginal at best.

You are right - there are alot of horses out there for sale. You have the ability to pick and choose . Do so carefully and you will be happier in the loong run.

dps
Dec. 26, 2007, 07:20 AM
I can see everyone's point that buying a live foal is much safer and you get to see what you are paying for.
As for the time factor it takes to spend time with the foal. I'm currently a stay at home mom and get up early to ride and take care of the horses than again in the afternoon when I have a babysitter, do I need more that an hour or two a day to work with the foal? I know they will need to be handled as much as possible which I plan to do.
The negative comment was only meant tours a very small group that was just negitative about everything I think they were having a bad day. I do appreciate your comments and your experience which is why I posted. You helped me steer clear of the Holsteiner mare that would not have been a good move.
do you think spring is the best time to buy when the foals are on the ground? When are the breeders most motivated to sell?

slc2
Dec. 26, 2007, 09:38 AM
I wasn't having a bad day at all, and that's a pretty poor way to counter my response - by suggesting I'm 'unhappy', - the only thing I'm 'unhappy' about is the mess you're so determinedly heading yourself for - we've had an absolutely fantastic yer and there is no real end in sight - we aren't unhappy. The only thing I'm unhappy about is the mess you're headed for. I really wish you had a dressage riding friend who could sit down and talk with you in a friendly way and help you - someone who could be practical and sensible with you.

Your repeated posts that sound so familiar and sound so much like someone headed for a WHOLE heap of trouble. I've seen so many people do what you're talking about - it is not anywhere as easy as you think to retrain a horse into a sport you don't know, or raise a foal, whether it's on the ground or will be soon.

Based on the other prospects you've presented here, and now this one, I'd say you're heading yourself for a HEAP of trouble. :no:

Do yourself a favor. Buy an older, trained, reliable dressage horse, schooled to first level, if you really want to learn dressage. A quiet, older, serviceably sound horse, a Quarter Horse or QH cross, or similar horse that is appropriate and easy to ride, that's been there, done that, been shown at local small shows at training and first level, and is known for being kind and reliable and tolerant and is an agreeable teacher. Find a dressage riding instructor, and take lessons.

This is the best advice you will ever get. Sure, all the other things could work out so well, and I also have some ocean front property in Iowa to sell you.

dps
Dec. 26, 2007, 09:52 AM
Slc2 I very rarely see you post anyting postive about anything or anybody. I don't get on here very much but when I do I see you everywhere with something to say about everything. Now maybe you are an expert in every aspect of the horse world I don't know? I just wish you had a better way of explaining yourself and sharing your knowledge, you tend to be a bit harsh.
I'm not new to dressage as stated before I currently have a horse going 3rd level with many year end awards in eventing and dressage.
I'm simply putting ideas and suggestions out there to see what my options are. I won't be showing until my kids are older but I know I won't be able to afford a horse already going tr or 1st level the price will be too high. I have 20 yrs experience with horses would you like some references from the show barns I use to manage? You don't know the person behind the post so please don't judge me and assume I'm new to horses with no experience. I would never and have never been in a bad situation with my horses and don't plan to start now.

YankeeLawyer
Dec. 26, 2007, 10:12 AM
I can see everyone's point that buying a live foal is much safer and you get to see what you are paying for.
As for the time factor it takes to spend time with the foal. I'm currently a stay at home mom and get up early to ride and take care of the horses than again in the afternoon when I have a babysitter, do I need more that an hour or two a day to work with the foal? I know they will need to be handled as much as possible which I plan to do.
The negative comment was only meant tours a very small group that was just negitative about everything I think they were having a bad day. I do appreciate your comments and your experience which is why I posted. You helped me steer clear of the Holsteiner mare that would not have been a good move.
do you think spring is the best time to buy when the foals are on the ground? When are the breeders most motivated to sell?

Oh boy, I just typed out a long response and accidentally deleted it! The short version is that I think you would have time, based on the above, to devote to your foal. Please don't misunderstand; I do not personally spend 2 hours a day per foal in any kind of training sessions (for one thing babies have a really short attention span, so 10 to 15 minutes max in a session is about the most they can stand at that age). Some flexibility in your schedule, for those random days when they need you more, will probably be more important than anything, and it sounds like you would have that flexibility given that you have some assistance with your wee human one.

Re foal shopping, you can get a good one at a fair price almost any time of year. Many are born in May and June, so the full crop for the year would start beng available around then. Although that is when some breeders might be most optimistic about their sales prospects, that is also when a lot start appearing on the market that they have to compete with. Also, many will board a sold foal without charge until it is weaned, and offer payment terms during that time so you could pay in installments over a few months or so.

Fall and winter typically are very good times to buy as breeders are often motiated to move stock to make room for the following year's crop and are aware that it is harder to sell during the winter (not to mention even super foal often look more like baby yaks then) and that it can be even tougher to sell a yearling (awkward growth phase, not a super cute baby any more yet far from being ready to do any "real" work). You often see yearlings and even 2 year olds available at their foal price (I actually think these age groups are where you can most often get the best bang for the buck). Note that there is something to the adage 3 days, 3 months, 3 years, so if possible when looking at weanlings I like to see some pictures and video of them when they were a bit younger (itis not always possible, but helpful when it is).

If you don't have a lot of experience assessing/buying foals, I recommend that you bring along someone who does (eg breeder or trainer). Also, you might look at the WB websites for their auction listings; for example the Hanoverian and Oldenburg sites post online video footage of all the foals they offer at their elite auctions, which is an easy way to see a lot of foals ranging from nice to spectacular and may help you identify what you are looking for when you shop here. There is also a useful video by Hilda Gurney on shopping for a young horse; it does not focus on foals per se but does go over the key factors regarding what makes a good prospect, and these are true for foals as well.

Also, I sent you a pm.

~Freedom~
Dec. 26, 2007, 10:42 AM
Do yourself a favor. Buy an older, trained, reliable dressage horse, schooled to first level, if you really want to learn dressage. A quiet, older, serviceably sound horse, a Quarter Horse or QH cross, or similar horse that is appropriate and easy to ride, that's been there, done that, been shown at local small shows at training and first level, and is known for being kind and reliable and tolerant and is an agreeable teacher. Find a dressage riding instructor, and take lessons.

This is the best advice you will ever get. Sure, all the other things could work out so well, and I also have some ocean front property in Iowa to sell you.

The problem dps is that even the advise given above is not without risks.

Did you not do exactly this SLC. Did you not end up with something lame and couldn't do much riding because of it? Was it not this very same cross you mentioned? Not trying to make this a sore point SLC but all advise is shrouded with risk just as yours is and it is this, that I was referring to in my earlier post.

The best advise I can give dps is sit down and write the pros and cons of each proposal and input the advise here and locally then go with what your heart's desire, intelligence and what pocketbook can afford.

egontoast
Dec. 26, 2007, 12:33 PM
OP, take your advice from people with experience, not from the Judge Judys of the Bulletin Boards who actually have less experience than you have. It's not too difficult to figure out who is the real deal and who has feet of clay.:cool:

LarissaL
Dec. 26, 2007, 04:41 PM
I have tried to just be supportive of this person's decision and not get so judgmental as many seem to want to be.

Gee guess what, I raised a foal and many after. The first one I never had a speck of experience or "special instructions" to guide me. If I felt I needed guidance I went to the local breeders in my area to get advice. If I listened to all the "advice" I got from the many nay sayers I never would have made it to GP, never would have bred for the horse I now have, in fact I should have simply hid in my house never to venture out for there are risks in everything we do and life is full of risks.

Believe it or not risk taking is the very nature of human learning and without it we would still be using stone knives and wearing bearskins. If the original poster is determined to do this I would expect she is intelligent enough to ASK someone in the know ( not message board experts who have no real knowledge of her circumstances as evidenced by the foal boarding scenario mentioned).

Why not give her suggestions that would be helpful and supportive in what she is endeavoring to do?

I am all for being supportive of people responsibly buying/breeding/keeping new partners. In this case, however, I'm of the opinion that the OP may need more than just a pat on the back.

I recognize the user name off the bat due to multiple postings recently looking for help on a number of topics (see the last two months - using Petfinder/what is an SPCA, which truck to haul with, where to buy shavings, three to four separate "should I buy this horse?" listings) and happen to remember from another one of these prospect posting she posed the question
"I just have a thing about chestnuts they never seem to hold up?"
(with regard to a horse's coloring)

Her planning seems, at best, disjointed and disorganized. And her knowledge of all things equine seems fairly rudimentary. Not a horrible thing - everyone starts as a novice - but she seems to be rushing through the process of buying and bringing along a prospect/foal, without direct outside help and relying on internet users to be a stand-in for eyes on the ground.

Although, yes, sometimes these situations do turn out just fine and "we all start somewhere," isn't it best to try to guide people towards a less rocky road?

I would think so. I have a good friend who reminds me much of the OP. An accomplished rider (through Prelim eventing and 3'6 jumpers) and manager of multiple barns at varying professional levels. However, she lacks much basic knowledge. Not familiar with conformation and how to analyze for performance limitations, limited exposure to various injuries and their implications (suspensories, osselets) and a list of training methods which is not all that extensive. I love her to death and her heart is in the right place, but she often doesn't know what she's trying to get herself into. Having a good circle of horsemen/women around her helps mitigate risks to her and any potential purchase.

So I don't mean to disparage the OP's motives or possible abilities, just to suggest that a little guidance and planning is in order. Encouragement should follow a good plan of action :D
(not just be thrown in the direction of any OP who incurs the wrath of slc.. whose advice I DO bother reading as it's often timely and appropriate!)

STF
Dec. 26, 2007, 04:51 PM
DPS,
Buying a mare in foal is not a bad thing. Its risky and a very long process. Its how I started in this breeding madness. I bought a mare in foal to a horse I loved and well......... many yrs later, Im still breeding! :lol:
Watch out, its addictive.
Just as long as you realize its a high risk and long term project. Babies are the worst at trying to kill themselves, hurt themself, etc, etc.
I have a going on 5 yr old I bred (my first) who I love dearly. I was there the moment of his first breath, was the first to put a halter on him, the first to sit on him, etc. etc. Its a bond I cant explain.
Now that said, having to send a baby off for training and breaking is not cheap either. So if you cant do it yourself, then think of that costs.
It IS rewarding. I love my foals, I love mix and matching mares to stallions. I love my stallion too.
Im sure there are breeders in your area who would hold your hand too for the first time around. Educate yourself, prepare and enjoy the fun.
:)

PS - SLC2 has done it all, been there (twice) and wrote the books. Just ask her! :lol:

LarissaL
Dec. 26, 2007, 04:51 PM
Also wanted to throw out there that I see the mare package was priced at $7.5k and you can get a going Training/1st horse already broke for that price. Or perhaps you could spend higher since you'd only be buying one mouth to feed :) Food for thought!

egontoast
Dec. 26, 2007, 08:02 PM
But STF, because you are So Feelthy Stinkin Rich your advice means nada!;)

STF
Dec. 26, 2007, 08:08 PM
But STF, because you are So Feelthy Stinkin Rich your advice means nada!;)


Oh, yeah......... I keep forgetting that!
Whhhhhhhhhaaaaaateeeeeeeevaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!
:rolleyes::rolleyes::dead:

AnotherRound
Dec. 27, 2007, 12:06 PM
Wow, interesting character study, this thread!

OP, I do not have foaling experience, but I do have to say, if you wanted this mare and foal, it seems to me that you would do very well by them, with your set up and your consideration for your animals. I am sure it would be a great experience for you. Whether this mare and foal are right for you, as Freedom suggested, proabaly a "Yea or Nay" list would help you sort it out. Sounds like an interesting opportunity, but itmight be that the breeding of the horse isn't after all what you are really looking for.

Meanwhile, where most of the crusty, detailed and critical comments came from only the posters can elucidate (hopefully they won't, heard enough, already!). Hope you have fun and can find a good project for this time when you will be raising your own young-uns too.

LarissaL
Dec. 28, 2007, 10:07 AM
Wow, interesting character study, this thread!

Very interesting indeed.

Virtually every thread looking for under saddle help says "get a trainer!" But for whatever reason, responses here don't mention much with regard to professional help or forethought - just "I'm sure someone will help you! Yay I'm getting the warm and fuzzies!"

It seems to me it's much like if I said I wanted to learn to vault and everyone said "Oooh yes! It's awesome! Go get yourself a vaulting horse and if you have enough time in the day, surely you will just figure it out! I hear you have a round pen and that is the PERFECT setup for learning to vault. Don't worry about professional help finding the right vaulting horse, they are all INCREDIBLE! Be sure to forward pictures!"