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View Full Version : Welton Wisecrack needs retirement home



quiet girl
Jul. 21, 2011, 08:32 AM
Two months ago I was given a wonderful horse, Welton Wisecrack, to use as a school horse. Though he is pasture sound he will not be able to give lessons and it's not fair to ask him to. He is healthy and in good weight. In the mid 90's he won the ** at Essex with Abigail Lufkin and has done the *** at Rolex twice with Michael Godfrey. He is kind, gentle and easy to handle. Easy trail riding would be okay. He would make a great pasture mate or babysitter. Anyone know someone who would give this great old guy a forever home?

event1
Jul. 21, 2011, 08:43 AM
How about Abigail Lufkin or Michael Godfrey?

evntr5218
Jul. 21, 2011, 08:45 AM
what is the reason that you are not able to use as a school horse?

Jealoushe
Jul. 21, 2011, 09:26 AM
If he has a ride to Ontario I will!

asterix
Jul. 21, 2011, 09:29 AM
when you were given him did you not have a plan for this possibility? He is obviously older and you must have known he had a limited time left to be "useful" for you.:(

flyingchange
Jul. 21, 2011, 10:43 AM
How about Abigail Lufkin or Michael Godfrey?


when you were given him did you not have a plan for this possibility? He is obviously older and you must have known he had a limited time left to be "useful" for you.:(

Exactly.

Brandy76
Jul. 21, 2011, 10:52 AM
Exactly.

I completely agree,.

CiegoStar
Jul. 21, 2011, 11:10 AM
Come on, don't be too harsh. Perhaps the horse's abilities or temperament were misrepresented to her. Not everyone can afford to keep a non-useful lesson horse. She's trying to find him a home rather than just sending him to auction at least.

jenm
Jul. 21, 2011, 11:55 AM
How about Abigail Lufkin or Michael Godfrey?

This was my first thought also.

jherold
Jul. 21, 2011, 12:38 PM
Boy, you guys are harsh. I'd try posting on the give aways forum. The OP only had the horse a couple of months. I suspect they thought he was sound enough, but turns out he isn't. Most people can't afford to retire every horse that pass through their hands for such a brief time, especially if they are running a business. Good luck with finding him a new home.

vxf111
Jul. 21, 2011, 01:12 PM
I would contact all his old connections and try them first-- not only riders but owners, trainers, and grooms if you can figure that out. One of them might love to have him.

Who gave him to you? I'd contact that person next if all efforts to find his past connections fail.

If all of that is not an option, if he's been useful for you and your program-- it would be a very appropriate thing for you to do if you would retire him. He paid dues along the way to lots of people, and you might not be the primary once but you and your students ARE on that list.

Hopefully one of his past connections will step up to the plate.

nataliegallops
Jul. 21, 2011, 01:15 PM
I remember this horse! I'm sure someone would love to have him as a trail horse. I'd have him in my field and be all "Yeah this is Welton Wisecrack. He did Rolex. It's cool."

Better to network him everywhere, like Facebook, and to get Lufkin and Godfrey in on the game as they have plenty of contacts as well. Someone is looking for a horse just like this.

I placed an old broodmare through my vet last year; she was trail-sound and the vet knew the perfect person for her. I never would have expected it.

KateDB
Jul. 21, 2011, 03:05 PM
If he came with a trust fund, or someone wanted to sponsor him, I'd be happy to put him in my retired eventers pasture on field board!
I have a Welton Crackerjack offspring who has not yet earned his turn in that field!!!
:winkgrin:

bornfreenowexpensive
Jul. 21, 2011, 03:21 PM
Some are a bit harsh here....OP is trying to find him a good home. She didn't say he was at risk of an auction etc. Just not sound enough for a schoolie program.

I'd too contact his past connections...and hopefully you will get a contact or two by posting here. If my farm was built, I'd consider him as a babysitter or mom's trail horse. Good luck finding him a good home!

JER
Jul. 21, 2011, 03:36 PM
It looks to me like quiet girl is trying to cast an eventing-centric net to find this classy old guy a good situation.

Nothing wrong with that -- in fact, everything's right about it.

:)

jennifersw
Jul. 21, 2011, 03:41 PM
I' m going to be a real wild card here and ask why, when a situation like this presents and a horse cannot be useful anymore, and retiring them comfortably is not an option, why not do the responsible thing and just humanely put them down? We'd all love a trust fund and 100,000 acres of lush Kentucky Bluegrass to keep every unwanted or unable horse walking the earth until death do us part, but how is offering him up on to total strangers on a public forum any different than sending him to auction, really?

evntr5218
Jul. 21, 2011, 03:43 PM
It looks to me like quiet girl is trying to cast an eventing-centric net to find this classy old guy a good situation.

Nothing wrong with that -- in fact, everything's right about it.

:)


i agree. i dont think the OP deserves the harsh comments that she is getting. i dont get that she is looking for an easy out with this horse at all just simply a situation that he may be better suited for. i think she is doing a very good thing. shes probably safe to assume that many of us eventers would love to have this guy who has earned his retirement just merely grazing in our paddocks.
i am curious to know what the OP thinks this guys is suited for, if its light work or just simply a pasture pet.

AEM74
Jul. 21, 2011, 03:48 PM
It looks to me like quiet girl is trying to cast an eventing-centric net to find this classy old guy a good situation.

Nothing wrong with that -- in fact, everything's right about it.

:)

I agree. It sounds to me like the OP is taking a sympathetic approach to finding this guy a comfy retirement b/c let's face it, we don't all have buckets of money on which to retire our horses, though that might be our desire.

I can't help you OP, but chin up and good luck! You're doing the right thing! Surely someone would like to look out on this grand guy through their kitchen window.

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:09 PM
let's face it, we don't all have buckets and buckets of money on which to retire our horses, though that might be our desire.



Not a comment on the OP, but response to AEM's comment above: Responsible horse owner *do*, indeed, make provisions to retire their horses. It is not a matter of money... it is a matter of ethics. It amazes me how the money often dries up, once that horse is no longer rideable. There was plenty of money to lesson, show, etc. and then suddenly, when the horse needs to retire, poverty strikes.

Those of us that have done the right thing by our horses, without "buckets of money" have very little sympathy for those that don't. Many people on this board and elsewhere make sacrifices every day, in order to retire their horses appropriately.

OP: I agree with those that suggest approaching the horse's connections -- particularly those riders that had success with this horse in the past.

I would also suggest anyone with a "lesson horse program" make provisions for those horses, when they can no longer work. If you choose to make your living off of horses, you have a responsibility for them. Sometimes, you can address it directly with whomever you are getting the horse from (e.g. will you take this horse back when he needs to retire?).

There is nothing wrong with trying to find a home for these horses, but make sure you check them out thoroughly and don't assume you will be able to place your retirees in this manner. There aren't a plethora of people willing to take on what you are not.

quiet girl
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:14 PM
Thanks guys for the kind words. Over the two months he has been here he taught a total of 4 lessons. He somehow injured his peroneus tertius muscle while turned out one night. He has been resting for about 7 weeks and is much better. I am afraid of hurting him if I try to teach with him. I think he would benefit from quiet trail riding. In my experience the older guys do much better with light excercise. The woman I got him from had said he could come back but she bought another horse and now doesn't have room.

Watermark Farm
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:15 PM
I agree with others who suggest casting your net to include people who have known this horse in the past. Start a Facebook page for him. You will find him a good home. He certainly deserves a great retirement.

Our neighbor has a family member's retired *** horse in her backyard and quite by chance we met up. Now the horse is my daughter's Pony Club mount. It's a win-win for everyone. These older campaigners have so much to offer, even if just light trails or companionship.

Watermark Farm
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:17 PM
I agree with others who suggest casting your net to include people who have known this horse in the past. Start a Facebook page for him. You will find him a good home. He certainly deserves a great retirement.

Our neighbor has a family member's retired *** horse in her backyard and quite by chance we met up. Now the horse is my daughter's Pony Club mount. It's a win-win for everyone. These older campaigners have so much to offer, even if just light trails or companionship.

JER
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:18 PM
I' m going to be a real wild card here and ask why, when a situation like this presents and a horse cannot be useful anymore, and retiring them comfortably is not an option, why not do the responsible thing and just humanely put them down? We'd all love a trust fund and 100,000 acres of lush Kentucky Bluegrass to keep every unwanted or unable horse walking the earth until death do us part, but how is offering him up on to total strangers on a public forum any different than sending him to auction, really?

1. This horse has earned a good retirement. He's pasture sound and suitable for light trail riding. The 'responsible thing' -- at this moment in time -- is to find him a great home.

2. quiet girl is not offering this horse to 'total strangers.' She's offering him to our eventing BB community. This BB is a wonderful resource for matching up horses and humans.

Do you really think this is like sending him up the road to the public auction?

3. quiet girl is an experienced horseperson who owns and has owned some wonderful horses. I've never met her in person but we have corresponded a number of times over the past decade. I wouldn't consider her a 'total stranger' and I think she'd say the same of me.

:)

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:18 PM
The woman I got him from had said he could come back but she bought another horse and now doesn't have room.

Interesting.... and not in a good way! Did she give you a deadline to return him (e.g. I will take him back in 30 days, if he doesn't work out)? She isn't exactly dripping with good intentions if she "suddenly" didnt have room after a couple of months.

I agree that those that benefited most from his talents owe him retirement, if another appropriate home isn't found.

fordtraktor
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:18 PM
OP has had this horse for two MONTHS, not his career which has spanned two DECADES. There are people who owe the old fellow a retirement, but it's not her. I imagine she was probably mislead about his capabilities to be a lesson horse and is trying to find something else that will keep him comfortable.

Good for her for recognizing and acting on his limitations. Far better than forcing a grand old campaigner to limp around a walk-trot program in his old age. I hope some of the people who won so much on him use their connections to find him a situation.

vxf111
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:54 PM
Er, it sounded to me like he was sound when quiet girl got him and then he had an "oh sh*t" accident in the field, which could have happened anywhere, anytime (but did happen with her) and now he's not sound to teach lessons. So it's not like someone pawned him off lame on her-- it sounds like he was sound when she got him and he "broke" on her watch (NOT blaming her, sounds like a random pasture accident, but nonetheless that it happened at her place). When you have a lesson program, you've got to have a plan for oh sh*t accidents-- even if they happen to a horse you've had a short while.

That being said, I am in no way calling her a bad person of saying that she's threatening to send him to auction. She's doing the right thing, looking for a home. I would HOPE that one of his past connections who had him in his glory would step up to the plate for him. They benefited the most from him... but in the meantime, he's her responsibility and if it means she's gotta' pension him for a while until something else pans out, well, that's a cost and a risk of having a lesson program. I hope he can go back to someone who had him in his prime, that would be the best of all possible worlds-- but if not, I don't agree that she owes him nothing because he only taught 4 lessons and was there for 2 months. Anytime you buy a horse, it's your responsibility until you can find the next proper home. Hopefully she'll be able to do that by looking up his past connections...

AEM74
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:55 PM
Not a comment on the OP, but response to AEM's comment above: Responsible horse owner *do*, indeed, make provisions to retire their horses. It is not a matter of money... it is a matter of ethics. It amazes me how the money often dries up, once that horse is no longer rideable. There was plenty of money to lesson, show, etc. and then suddenly, when the horse needs to retire, poverty strikes.

Those of us that have done the right thing by our horses, without "buckets of money" have very little sympathy for those that don't. Many people on this board and elsewhere make sacrifices every day, in order to retire their horses appropriately.

You don't know me and I don't know you, but let me just say that I am an ethical person (with retirement plans in place for my current horse) and though I don't know the OP, I'm guessing that she is ethical as well. That said, ethics don't increase the funds in one's pocketbook; if someone chooses to continue to ride, ethics don't allow for a person to keep +1 horse when they can only afford one horse or two horses or whatever the case may be. I know many people who have been in the OP's shoes...all of them are ethical people who loved their horses and wanted to do right by them, but they simply couldn't afford to retire their horse and maintain an additional riding horse.

I have no clue what the OP's financial situation is and it's none of my business. I stated what I did in my previous post in order to encourage the OP. It appears that she's being responsible and trying to do the right thing by this guy since she's no longer set up to keep him. She's not sending him to auction or advertising him on Craig's List, rather she's seeking a home in which he can continue to be useful within his current capabilities, or just retire and live out the rest of his years.

vxf111
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:56 PM
Thanks guys for the kind words. Over the two months he has been here he taught a total of 4 lessons. He somehow injured his peroneus tertius muscle while turned out one night. He has been resting for about 7 weeks and is much better. I am afraid of hurting him if I try to teach with him. I think he would benefit from quiet trail riding. In my experience the older guys do much better with light excercise. The woman I got him from had said he could come back but she bought another horse and now doesn't have room.

This is the basis of my prior post (bolding mine). Maybe I misread but I interpret this to say that the horse came to her sound, taught 4 lessons (so was sound for a week) and then had a pasture accident AT HER PLACE. She's been resting him the remaining part of the 2 months he's been with her. Now she wants to rehome him because, post-accident, he doesn't seem sound to teach lessons. It appears he WAS sound for the lesson program pre-accident.

event1
Jul. 21, 2011, 04:57 PM
The two people I suggested do owe the horse a retirement..and that is why I suggested that to her. I owned Waj Mirage for two years in his teens and because we travel all the time for my husbands job and I could not take hime with me, I wanted to find him a home with light riding. After trying to reach and secure him a home with his previous connections (2 different riders) that he carted around Rolex 3 separate years....I did not even get a phone call or email back! To say that I was disappointed was an understatement and made me feel very angry for the horse. I really thought that the two ULR's absolutely owed him a lifetime home, but sadly I guess they did not. I listed him on the giveaway section and found this very nice family in Virginia that took him to trail ride for their daughter. I drove him halfway there-met them, and the rest is history. So, there are people out there who will give a horse a good home based on who they are and their resume'. Unfortunately, it is not always the ones who should.:no:

CookiePony
Jul. 21, 2011, 05:11 PM
The OP told me over email that she'd tried to contact Abigail through her website with no luck. Does anyone have a direct email that she could try?

If I had a farm I'd take him on in a heartbeat... wish I did...

Xctrygirl
Jul. 21, 2011, 05:23 PM
Ok so it took me a total of 4 mins to track down her office number and confirm with the receptionist that she wasn't in today.

OP, I will Pm you the number.

I used to know Ab through a friend, but in no way am I close enough to her to make a cold call asking her to spend $$$$.

Really folks. A little Googling and some tenacity and you can always find a horse person.

~Emily

fordtraktor
Jul. 21, 2011, 05:25 PM
Maybe, vxf111. But the whole "I'll take him back any time, oh wait I don't have space" act from the previous owner makes me doubt the horse was sound to start with. Who knows. I'm always skeptical when a "sound" horse goes lame after a week of use. Just enough time for the drugs to wear off, my equally skeptical vet friend is fond of saying.

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 05:46 PM
but they simply couldn't afford to retire their horse and maintain an additional riding horse.



AEM, you are right that I don't know you. I am only responding to your posts (and I appreciate that you have retirement plans for your horse) but your post above proves the point I originally made: Why do some feel entitled to a riding horse at all times? When you buy a horse, it's a bit of "for better or worse". YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THAT HORSE, regardless of whether or not you can ride it.

It is sad to have a horse need to retire when you can only afford one and yes, sometimes the first horse can be sold (e.g. he/she can be sound at a lower level or different discipline) or re-homed to an appropriate place, if possible. But, if not, you are responsible for that horse. Period.

There are plenty of people that understand that... people that would love to have the funds for an additional horse to achieve their goals, but choose to do what is right by their first horse instead.

I can think of one frequent poster here who had an Advanced/FEI horse that injured himself at the peak of his career and can no longer compete. She can not afford another horse... and yet, still appreciates all that horse did for her and is continuing to provide a home for him, while putting her goals on indefinite hold. It is unfortunate that those in our sport with the highest ethics often don't get the opportunities they deserve.

It is unfair that we don't all have unlimited funds -- but that is just a fact of life. What we do with life's "lack of fairness" often defines someone's character. When I hear someone try to justify their lack of responsibility towards a horse that needs to be retired by stating "they can't afford it" because they "need" a horse they can ride, it tells me a lot about their character.

Sorry to OP for this hijack.

subk
Jul. 21, 2011, 06:19 PM
There are plenty of people that understand that... people that would love to have the funds for an additional horse to achieve their goals, but choose to do what is right by their first horse instead.
Sorry, you aren't the arbitrator of what it ethically right.

My horse(s) is not my child, not my pet and not a member of my family. When any of them can no longer be an asset (financially or emotionally) to either me or someone else they'll have the dignity of being put down. In the mean time those horses in my care will have the best of care.

I find it offensive that someone would think I'm unethical because I'm unwilling to take in and retire any horse I ever owned (12+) and that somehow I should plan my riding, life and finances for some unexpected possibility like that.

Do people around here even live in the real world?

I think what the OP is doing is great, and that is much better to place a horse with someone who will find him an asset in their lives than someone who finds him some sort of moral obligation.

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 06:45 PM
Yup... I live in the real world. The real world has consisted of me retiring three horses on a working person's salary. I have my opinion and you can have yours. If that offends you... that's too bad.

I never said that anyone had to "take in and retire any horse they ever owned". I do think that a rider who owned a horse for a substantial amount of time AND had career defining success (CCI***, Rolex, etc.) should consider offering that horse a retirement home, if no other suitable arrangements can be made. I think most people can see the difference.

What I did say (and I stand behind 100%) was that when you become a horse owner, you are responsible for him/her and responsible behavior includes looking at all of the possibilities. If your horse is unable to go to another home for whatever reason, YOU ARE STILL RESPONSIBLE FOR IT.

I did not say that a horse has to be your child, your pet or anything else... but you are still responsible "for better or for worse" and you should plan for the possibility that the horse will become unrideable and unable to be re-homed. If your solution in that instance is euthanasia (as you stated is your choice when a horse is no longer a "financial or emotional asset" to you), that is your choice that I am not going to argue.

My posts regarding this subject have been more of a general response to AEM's comments that used the "some can't afford a second horse to ride" argument to justify shirking retirement responsibility. My posts were not in regard to the OP's situation -- I have carefully said that in each response.

If the OP (or anyone in her situation) can find a horse a suitable home... by all means... do so. But, not all horses can be found suitable arrangements and there are not nearly as many openings for "companion horses" or "pasture pets" as people would like to believe.

AEM74
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:05 PM
My posts regarding this have been in response to AEM's comments and not the OP -- I have carefully said that in each response. If she (or anyone in her situation) can find a horse a suitable home... by all means... do so. But, not all horses can be found suitable arrangements and there are not nearly as many openings for "companion horses" or "pasture pets" as people would like to believe.

Respectfully, SevenDogs, what situation am I in? I'm not in a situation. This isn't my thread. I simply commented on it, as you have. If you were referring to the OP above, then my apologies for misunderstanding. That said, since the OP's situation will in fact present itself to me eventually, I'll tell you that once my guy is ready for retirement he will get one. With me. If he's uncomfortable for any reason or I can no longer afford to do right by him, I will put him down. I hold no grand delusions about the horse world's need, want or space for companion horses. The last hand that my gelding will know will be a kind, loving and appreciative one...mine. Normally I wouldn't feel compelled to outline my guy's retirement plan on a public BB but since my ethics are seemingly being called into question somehow, I felt I should communicate it.

ETA: All this said though, this is my plan for my horse and I'm not arrogant enough to think that this plan should be adhered to by everyone. There are many roads to Rome, as they say. Apart from less responsible options like running a horse through an auction or dumping them on CL, there are many compassionate options for retiring a horse; i.e. therapy horse, moving horse onto lower-key career, pasture puff, donating them to a veterinary school so they can contribute to the advancement of equine medicine, humane euthanasia, etc. What will work best for an individual varies greatly depending upon their personal and financial situations.

In any event, like subk, I don't think it's fair or realistic to label someone as unethical b/c they're unable, for financial reasons or otherwise, to send a horse out on retirement on their dime. If they can, that's super, but not all people can. So, in the OP's case, she's seeking a favorable alternative. Good on her! Also, I don't think it's fair to label someone as unethical b/c they want to ride and enjoy the horse/s for which they're paying as long as they are diligent in assuring horse #1's positive transition into its next phase in life, whether that be as a trail horse, a pasture puff for someone, etc.

I agree that the folks who gleaned many ribbons, accolades and life enrichment from this horse should consider taking him back in, but that's not for to me to decide and I'm certainly not in a position to judge them for not doing so as I haven't walked a mile in their shoes.

Good grief, not sure how this thread got derailed but again, I wish the OP the best of luck in finding this guy the perfect new home...with one of his previous owners or otherwise.

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:10 PM
Respectfully, SevenDogs, what situation am I in? I'm not in a situation. This isn't my thread.



The "she" was referring to the OP, not you AEM. I realized it was unclear and corrected it. Sorry for any confusion.

If you read my posts, I have not said that re-homing to an appropriate home is unethical at all. But what happens once a horse reaches a place where they can't be re-homed, for whatever reason? In my opinion, responsible owners plan for this possibility and aren't suddenly "unable" to support the horse when they can't be ridden.

My comments on this thread have mainly been in direct response to your post that some people can't be held responsible, because they can't afford to retire horse #1 and still buy/support a second "replacement" horse to ride. Indeed, I think they should be held responsible. Horse ownership responsibility does not end when a horse can no longer be ridden or appropriately re-homed.

I understand from your later posts that this was a "hypothetical" situation and not necessarily your own.

subk
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:29 PM
I have my opinion and you can have yours. If that offends you... that's too bad.
I'm not offended that you have a different opinion at all. You do things they way you feel lead to do them. What offends me is that you have made it pretty clear that people who don't share your opinion are somehow unethical or immoral.

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:32 PM
I'm not offended that you have a different opinion at all, just that you have made it pretty clear that people who don't share your opinion are somehow unethical or immoral.

Ethics *are* largely rooted in opinion.

subk
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:39 PM
Ethics *are* largely rooted in opinion.
Then perhaps you need to learn curtesy?

vxf111
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:55 PM
Maybe, vxf111. But the whole "I'll take him back any time, oh wait I don't have space" act from the previous owner makes me doubt the horse was sound to start with. Who knows. I'm always skeptical when a "sound" horse goes lame after a week of use. Just enough time for the drugs to wear off, my equally skeptical vet friend is fond of saying.

I'm just going by OP's own post. She seems to think the horse was sound/useable and taught lessons on him and then he had a pasture accident. I haven't seen anything about the horse being drugged.

It doesn't seem to odd that once the prior owner re-homed him, she got another horse. When she said "he can come back" I would guess she was thinking "years down the line when he's really ready to retire" and/or she said that meaning well but when push came to shove and she had the opportunity to own a riding horse-- she did that.

I don't think the OP is a bad person AT ALL. But it seems like the horse got hurt while she had him and now she owes it to him to get him a safe landing. Seems like she's trying to do that, and kudos to her. But until that happens (and it may require some creativity/searching) this is her horse and she owes him to care for him even if he doesn't fit into the lesson program.

SevenDogs
Jul. 21, 2011, 07:59 PM
Then perhaps you need to learn curtesy?

I don't find expressing one's opinion discourteous.

2tempe
Jul. 21, 2011, 08:10 PM
Not sure I should venture into this, but it seems many are assuming a lot in their comments. No where did the OP state that she couldn't afford the horse; no where did she say he's at risk of auction if someone doesn't step up now; no where did she say there aren't other parts of a plan. This is only an ask for one possible alternative that she thinks would be right for the horse.

Gry2Yng
Jul. 21, 2011, 08:16 PM
Oy!

fordtraktor
Jul. 21, 2011, 09:24 PM
But it seems like the horse got hurt while she had him and now she owes it to him to get him a safe landing. Seems like she's trying to do that, and kudos to her. But until that happens (and it may require some creativity/searching) this is her horse and she owes him to care for him even if he doesn't fit into the lesson program.

I agree but don't see anything indicating OP doesn't plan to do exactly that. The fact that she's looking for a place for him and spreading the word on COTH is not at all inconsistent with that duty. It's a pretty likely crowd to want to take on a Rolex horse just to say they've got one, if looking for a companion anyway.

vxf111
Jul. 21, 2011, 09:27 PM
I agree but don't see anything indicating OP doesn't plan to do exactly that. The fact that she's looking for a place for him and spreading the word on COTH is not at all inconsistent with that duty.

I don't disagree! I hope she finds a good place.

I think there might be better ways of tracking down than COTH, but it's a step!

Brandy76
Jul. 21, 2011, 09:51 PM
The OP told me over email that she'd tried to contact Abigail through her website with no luck. Does anyone have a direct email that she could try?

If I had a farm I'd take him on in a heartbeat... wish I did...

I don't know Abigail personally, but I am SURE her/her family have the resources to retire or cover this horses's retirement costs.

LAZ
Jul. 21, 2011, 11:28 PM
I would have no issue with contacting the people who had previously ridden this horse at the upper levels (especially if he had helped define their careers/successes) to see if they have interest in giving him a retirement home. That said, they sold him prior to this point in time for a reason...didn't fit their program, etc.

When I buy a horse I owe that horse the best I can during the time I own it. If I have sold it on I no longer feel I am responsible for it, though I may have soft feelings for it and take it back (such as I have for my Bugsy mare and recently offered to take on the nursing care for an older gelding that I feel deserves it. I foster for a OTTB organization as a way of giving back.

That said, I have no problem with finding a home for, or putting down a horse that can not be rehomed if I feel that is an apppropriate thing to do. Horses are expensive animals and a luxury in all our lives (though we may live and breathe them). I would not keep one I had no baggage with just because...and if it came down to feeding my other, healthy horses over my retired mare, the retired mare would be put down.

I don't blame the OP for trying to rehome this horse, nor would I think poorly of her if the horse were put down after looking for a suitable, but non-existent, retirement home.

Jealoushe
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:37 AM
Let's not fight....I already said I would take the horse :)

Maybe we can band together and find him a ride up to Ontario?

He could retire on a 20 acre pasture with a 30 foot run in that looks into the barn, and a big stall for those chilly nights. We already have an ex mini grand prix horse retired at our place.

dkcbr
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:57 AM
I think what the OP is doing is great, and that is much better to place a horse with someone who will find him an asset in their lives than someone who finds him some sort of moral obligation.

Well said!

seeuatx
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:03 AM
Let's not fight....I already said I would take the horse :)

Maybe we can band together and find him a ride up to Ontario?

He could retire on a 20 acre pasture with a 30 foot run in that looks into the barn, and a big stall for those chilly nights. We already have an ex mini grand prix horse retired at our place.

I think this is the critical point... and it was made once on page one.

Now, instead of using our Coth powers to fight over whether or not Abigail can/ should take the horse, maybe we should see if we can't get this guy up over the border.

JenJ
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:08 AM
Thanks guys for the kind words. Over the two months he has been here he taught a total of 4 lessons. He somehow injured his peroneus tertius muscle while turned out one night. He has been resting for about 7 weeks and is much better. I am afraid of hurting him if I try to teach with him. I think he would benefit from quiet trail riding. In my experience the older guys do much better with light excercise. The woman I got him from had said he could come back but she bought another horse and now doesn't have room.

My mare ruptured the peronius tertius tendon in the paddock. It can be a catastrophic injury. I was told she would need a year off before her future could be determined. She never competed again and in fact never came completely sound. Light hacking was all she was capable of, then 3 years later re-injured the tendon - again in the paddock. She is now a very happy money draining pasture ornament but I owe her that. The board money I spend is financially very difficult, but after 10 years eventing up to the T3D level, for me there is no other option.
My point is just that depending on the severity of the injury, this may not be something the horse will recover from to any "useful" level of rideability.

AEM74
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:12 AM
Horse ownership responsibility does not end when a horse can no longer be ridden or appropriately re-homed.

I agree 100%, so it appears that perhaps we're on the same page after all. ;)

scubed
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:14 AM
OK guys. How do we get him to Ontario from Florida?

flyingchange
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:42 AM
I'm just tired of hearing about horses in this sport who end up getting "dumped" off when they have an injury. I've known of and personally known too many at this point. Once they are no longer sound, it is amazing how quickly they get dumped. And by riders/owners who have the means to retire or euthanize them.

And I guess I am very different from you, subk, in that the horses I own ARE a part of my family.

I am one of those suckers who took in a former upper level horse who needed a retirement home and who had been ridden at the ULs by a big name. I got an email from one of the previous riders - after I tracked her down - saying "he wouldn't stay sound for me, but I hope he does for you." She had back-to-backed him at Intermediate two weekends in a row when he was 17, and so he stopped on the second weekend. And so after that she sent him down the road and I found him in a stall with manure up to his knees and one shoe on - new owner said she was "letting him go barefoot and waiting for the remaining shoe to fall off."

I know of another former three star horse who was dumped when a suspensory blew - after three Advanced HTs three weekends in a row and then a go at Jersey Fresh after just two weekends between the last HT and the ***. Then he fell out of the scene as his suspensory was completely blown. Got a new rider - an "up and coming" YR who couldn't find her way around a Prelim course. She got tired of taking care of him and dumped him in a field board situation - just stopped paying his bills. Fortunately for him the BM has a big heart and has taken him in under her wing. This guy's former connections wanted nothing to do with him.

There are many more cases like this out there. This sport is such an ego-trip for so many - riders and owners alike. There are those who actually care about their horses and look after them long-term, which in my opinion is the right thing to do with a horse goes out and busts his rear for you over and over and over again, saving you, taking care of you. And that's what a good eventer does because as we all know, you aren't going to to find the perfect distance every time, etc. So after a horse has given you it's all, over and over again, on XC and in eventing as a whole - to not take care of it for the long haul - well, it's an indication of the kind of person you are. That doesn't mean you can't sell it or find it a new home/retirement home, funding for euthansia if that is the best course of action, etc, but it is your obligation and duty to be there for that horse for the long haul.

Otherwise, what in the &*cK is this sport about? Just the riders and their big goals? It seems to me that that is what it is all about nowadays, and I for one am completely turned off.

While yes there are those owners and riders who see to it that their horses are OK for the long term - there are too many who don't. It's disgusting.

BigRuss1996
Jul. 22, 2011, 11:57 AM
I have written the OP via PM and told her I would be happy to give him a permanent home here with my two retired UL event horses. so far I have not heard back from her at all...
I also emailed Michael as I know both him and Ab personally and he had no idea the horse wasn't retired on the farm where he was origionally sent. He would love to know where he is and have the OP's contact info so if anyone knows the OP please have her get in touch with me...thanks.

asterix
Jul. 22, 2011, 02:51 PM
Thank you, BigRuss, that is a wonderful set of things you've done and a generous offer to boot.

I guess I just assume when you take on a horse who must already be aged that you have a plan for the inevitable moment at which he needs to be retired, and that you know this could happen sooner rather than later if the horse is 20+.

BestHorses
Jul. 22, 2011, 03:40 PM
I'm amazed at some of the judgmental attitudes being thrown around on here today. Perhaps people are cranky from the heat? :)

I've heard of far worse things happening to older horses than being a trail horse or pasture ornament and have heard of plenty of folks who would drug up a lame horse, lie and pass it off to the next person to make a buck. Cothers should save their venom for those kinds of people IMHO.

OP, I think you are doing just fine by this horse you barely know. It sounds like you have some pretty good leads on getting in touch with the people who owe this horse a lot more than you do.

GingerJumper
Jul. 22, 2011, 03:58 PM
Alrighty people, let's now refocus all this energy we're using for bickering to get this horse to Ontario, or to BigRuss :)

BigRuss1996
Jul. 22, 2011, 04:12 PM
Ok...everyone can relax... I spoke with the OP today and as far as I know the gand old man is going to be coming to live out his final years with me and hang out with my retirees and my prego mare.
I knew this old man in his glory days and have had a few celebrities of my own that have since crossed the bridge so in their memories I feel it is the right thing to do. What's one more and the grand old guys make great babysitters.

bornfreenowexpensive
Jul. 22, 2011, 04:17 PM
Ok...everyone can relax... I spoke with the OP today and as far as I know the gand old man is going to be coming to live out his final years with me and hang out with my retirees and my prego mare.
I knew this old man in his glory days and have had a few celebrities of my own that have since crossed the bridge so in their memories I feel it is the right thing to do. What's one more and the grand old guys make great babysitters.


Very cool!

smokygirl
Jul. 22, 2011, 04:34 PM
YAY. Congrats BigRuss!!!!

deltawave
Jul. 22, 2011, 04:55 PM
Responsible horse owner *do*, indeed, make provisions to retire their horses. It is not a matter of money... it is a matter of ethics.

It's fine to be all high and mighty and to loftily talk about "ethics" when one has never experienced a sudden change in circumstances that makes the basic necessities of life fall into the "no longer taken for granted" category. :no:

JWB
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:05 PM
Ok...everyone can relax... I spoke with the OP today and as far as I know the gand old man is going to be coming to live out his final years with me and hang out with my retirees and my prego mare.
I knew this old man in his glory days and have had a few celebrities of my own that have since crossed the bridge so in their memories I feel it is the right thing to do. What's one more and the grand old guys make great babysitters.

I wish COTH had a like button. This will have to do.
:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D

SevenDogs
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:38 PM
It's fine to be all high and mighty and to loftily talk about "ethics" when one has never experienced a sudden change in circumstances that makes the basic necessities of life fall into the "no longer taken for granted" category. :no:

First off Delta, your assumption above is DEAD wrong. The old saying about making assumptions is very applicable here.

Second (and for the LAST time), if you actually read my posts they were in response to the argument that was posted stating someone should be able to shirk retirement responsibilities so that they were able to go out and get another horse to ride. It was not about someone who "had a sudden change in circumstances" and needed help. It was about someone feeling entitled to get another horse and ignoring the horse that they already owned who needed to retire.

I did not condemn the OP, state that it was inappropriate to re-home horses that can be re-homed, or even euthanize if that is what an owner decides to do. I simply reiterated ownership responsibilities for horses that can not be ridden or re-homed.

I don't know how to be any clearer and I stand behind my posts 100%. The people most offended by my posts seem to be in such a hurry to condemn me that they don't seem to actually be reading them to see that the situations they are describing have nothing to do with my posts.

BigRuss: Thank you for your generosity to this horse.

deltawave
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:42 PM
There are no assumptions.

If I am guilty of missing the entire breadth and depth of one poster's assertions in a long thread, I apologize.

But my statement stands. Ethics are messy and difficult and very rarely black vs. white. "Doing the right thing" is admirable, but not always possible in all circumstances. Doesn't make people who cannot afford to do so (when the "right thing" is a financial undertaking) unethical.

And given the choice between giving space in my barn to a young, healthy, useful horse and a retiree, I would have to say that I would choose the former. I don't agree that we are responsible for a horse through the entire sweep of its life just because we owned it at one point in time or bred it. I would certainly do so if I had the opportunity, but I don't feel like it's an obligation we can saddle other people with, nor judge them for if they don't share our perspective.


:)

CookiePony
Jul. 22, 2011, 05:59 PM
Hooray for Wisecrack and BugRuss!!

BestHorses
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:06 PM
Good on you BigRuss! :yes:

kcmel
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:09 PM
Yay! I love happy endings:):).

SevenDogs
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:17 PM
There are no assumptions.

If I am guilty of missing the entire breadth and depth of one poster's assertions in a long thread, I apologize.

But my statement stands. Ethics are messy and difficult and very rarely black vs. white. "Doing the right thing" is admirable, but not always possible in all circumstances. Doesn't make people who cannot afford to do so (when the "right thing" is a financial undertaking) unethical.



:)

Ethics aren't always messy. They are, however, subject to individual opinion.

Scenario 1 (as you described): Owner #1 experiences "a sudden change in circumstances that makes the basic necessities of life fall into the "no longer taken for granted" category" which makes Owner #1 unable to care for their horse; vs

Scenario 2 (which was the proposed scenario I responded to) Owner#2 suddenly decides they can not afford the horse when it can no can no longer be ridden, but feel entitled to go out and purchase/support a second horse to ride.

In my opinion, Owner #2 is behaving unethically. This is not a question of being able to afford -- it is a question of wanting to afford. When the horse was rideable, they could afford to support the horse, pay for lessons and showing, until the horse could not be ridden and then, suddenly, poverty strikes.

My belief is that ethical owners take responsibility for the horse that they own that can not be ridden or re-homed. For some (like me), that means supported retirement. For others (like Subk) that might mean euthanasia. But, there is planning, consideration, and follow through for what happens when the riding is done. If there is catastrophic issues that derail such consideration, that is a different matter entirely.

I stand behind that belief 100% and have yet to see any real argument to the contrary.

fooler
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:29 PM
BigRuss - You Rock!

INoMrEd
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:34 PM
BigRuss - You Rock!

Ditto!

deltawave
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:49 PM
I stand behind that belief 100% and have yet to see any real argument to the contrary.

Well, arguing with beliefs is sort of pointless anyway. :) And I happen to agree for the most part with what you say, but wouldn't consider someone else's beliefs that did not go quite so far "wrong".

SonnysMom
Jul. 22, 2011, 06:54 PM
Yay for BigRuss!!!!!!:yes::cool::yes::cool::yes::cool::yes ::cool:

Kryswyn
Jul. 22, 2011, 07:11 PM
I have written the OP via PM and told her I would be happy to give him a permanent home here with my two retired UL event horses. so far I have not heard back from her at all...
I also emailed Michael as I know both him and Ab personally and he had no idea the horse wasn't retired on the farm where he was origionally sent. He would love to know where he is and have the OP's contact info so if anyone knows the OP please have her get in touch with me...thanks.

See this is the part that always gets me. The horse was retired to a farm...and then LEFT that farm. I don't think he ran away, which means some human being who was entrusted with his care sold, traded, placed him, most likely for some personal profit. That person needs to be found and face the consequences of disposing of this horse. Who at least is on his 2d owner since leaving his retirement farm.

This pisses me off. :mad:

Gry2Yng
Jul. 22, 2011, 08:33 PM
Congrats to Welton Wisecrack!

quietann
Jul. 22, 2011, 09:02 PM
Thank you BigRuss!

deltawave
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:01 PM
That person needs to be found and face the consequences of disposing of this horse.

What consequences? The righteous indignation of someone ready to judge without knowing any of the facts?

vxf111
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:20 PM
Conrats Big Russ, hope you enjoy him!!! Good on you!!!

KateDB
Jul. 23, 2011, 12:32 PM
Big Russ,
Congratulations to you and Wisecrack! If he isn't coming to West By God Virginia to my retirement field, then I'm glad he's ending in yours!!!

babecakes
Jul. 23, 2011, 01:13 PM
Wow Deltawave at 28,211 posts you've got time on your hands and something to say about everything. And slapping a smilie on it makes it all better.

And you do use marks for emphasis - not just quotes.

I think that I will just use the ignor button and save the internet space as someone suggested. And then I'll get to read what is said in reference to the original post and not get bogged down with the syntax arguments. ;) that should soften the message, you said that works for you. And I don't need a defensive reply thank you. Learn to let it go. I am, over it and out.

Pointless to suppose and argue the the circumstances. Cudos to BigRuss, lucky horse. Nice to hear that a grand horse will live a happy ending.

CarrieK
Jul. 24, 2011, 10:02 AM
Not that she needs me to speak for her, but I will, anyway, because she's a poster I respect. She's been a forum member since 2002; her post-count reflects that of an average long-time member, not someone without a life.

mswillie
Jul. 24, 2011, 11:25 AM
Ok...everyone can relax... I spoke with the OP today and as far as I know the gand old man is going to be coming to live out his final years with me and hang out with my retirees and my prego mare.
I knew this old man in his glory days and have had a few celebrities of my own that have since crossed the bridge so in their memories I feel it is the right thing to do. What's one more and the grand old guys make great babysitters.

Kudos to BigRuss for offering what sounds like a cushy retirement home.

Kudos also to the OP who could have easily sent the horse down the road with no one really being the wiser, but chose instead to look for an appropriate placement for him. I never got the feeling that the horse was in any danger, just that she was looking to put him in a more suitable home.

So good on both of you and most importantly good on Welton Wisecrack who can live the life of leisure he's earned.

retreadeventer
Jul. 24, 2011, 03:25 PM
This is really big. As in super generous. Thanks, Big Russ.

staceyk
Jul. 25, 2011, 06:43 AM
For all the hits this poor OP took, it looks like posting to COTH was exactly the right thing to do. Not everyone is net-savvy and look how everyone pulled together to get contact info, make arrangements, etc.

Win-win! Happy ending.

quiet girl
Jul. 25, 2011, 09:04 AM
A big thank you to BigRuss. Welton Wisecrack will be leaving here sometime late this week or early next for her farm. To reassure some of you, he was never in any danger here. I would never have put him down or dumped him somewhere he wouldn't have excellent care. If he had stayed with me he would have had to be in a small paddock by himself most of the time. I thought he would be happier out where he could move around and have company. To those of you who didn't question my ethics or empathy, thank you.

Kryswyn
Jul. 25, 2011, 11:59 AM
What consequences? The righteous indignation of someone ready to judge without knowing any of the facts?

I understand better than you know the consequences of things changing and getting in the way of ethics as you mention in one of your posts.

But the point is Someone placed that horse in a retirement home. They expected Wisecrack to remain there. No we don't know whether he was boarded, taken in for free, was on the farm of a friend. But that someone was entitled to notification that circumstances had changed and Wisecrack had to move. If he was sold then someone profited and I don't think that should go unnoticed. If Wisecrack was to be given away then the last owner should STILL have been notified and given the option of rehoming him or taking him back themself.

That's my point. But really it's moot thanks to BigRuss.

deltawave
Jul. 25, 2011, 12:01 PM
If Wisecrack was to be given away then the last owner should STILL have been notified and given the option of rehoming him or taking him back themself.



I agree. But there really are no "consequences" for someone who didn't apparently do this. It's not illegal, just undesirable. :)

KPF
Jul. 25, 2011, 02:14 PM
Aw, BigRuss, you done good! :D

As an aside, I've had 2 horses with PT ruptures. One is my retired guy, he was already pasture sound only but he pulled 3 months of stall rest and seemed fine on that leg about six months later. The other was my late TB who I took in from a lesson program after he tore his PT. He had done the 3 months stall rest and I let him hang out for a few months and gradually put him back into light work. He was serviceably sound enough to w/t/c a couple of days a week and he was 26ish and had been used hard as a school horse and IHSA horse his whole life. So there can be hope with this injury.:)

Duckz
Jul. 25, 2011, 05:31 PM
Glad to hear of a happy ending! Thanks BigRuss! I'd love to see pics of the old man happy in retirement sometime :)

Jealoushe
Jul. 26, 2011, 04:55 PM
Great!

If there are any more in need feel free to send me a PM at time or urgency :)

blackwly
Jul. 26, 2011, 06:10 PM
But the point is Someone placed that horse in a retirement home. They expected Wisecrack to remain there. No we don't know whether he was boarded, taken in for free, was on the farm of a friend. But that someone was entitled to notification that circumstances had changed and Wisecrack had to move. If he was sold then someone profited and I don't think that should go unnoticed. If Wisecrack was to be given away then the last owner should STILL have been notified and given the option of rehoming him or taking him back themself.


This breaks my heart. When my mother died she owned 45 horses, and I was able to sell most. 10 were no longer usable and I retired them myself on my farm. 5 were still usable but not worth a ton for one reason or another (older, intermittent soundness issues, etc.) I gave those away to carefully researched homes with the instructions that they could ALWAYS come back, no questions asked.

One of those giveaways was a 16 year old imported hannoverian gelding my mother had trained to Intermediare II. He had some respiratory issues and had not been an upper level competitor for a few years, but he was happy and sound. I gave him to a friend of a friend who wanted a schoolmaster to play on and kept him in the local $1000/month super fancy boarding farm with the best of care. I told her I would take him back when he was no longer usable to her.

1 year later he was SOLD on... which I found out after he was already at his new home across the country. I still just don't understand where people get the nerve to do that sort of thing, and it is tragic for the horses.

PonyGal08
Jul. 26, 2011, 08:26 PM
BigRuss1996, we salute you!!!! I hope you post some pictures when the man is all settled. :)