It was really just a vent and I hoped that it would all clear up since I had very tactfully and maturely brought up all my differences in opinion and horse care choices to my BO and he had agreed to care for my horse the way I wanted. I had already made up my mind to leave last week since I came down on day to find that they had turned him out near a mare and he was again showing studdish behavior, etc. He then proceeded to tell me:
A) that he thought I didn't know what I was doing
B) my very accoplished and reputable trainer didn't have a clue
C) my horses behavior (calling, pacing, and dropping) were all normal behavior for a gelding
D) laughed at the idea of getting my horses hormones tested because his behavior was normal for a gelding.
Well here is an update from today and why I'm putting up a new venting thread:
I was going to wait to move my horse until next week, since I had already set up an appointment with the vet to come out and pull blood for a hormone test. I had let them know on no uncertain terms that I did not want my horse near any mares, AT ALL! Saturday I went out to the barn and left my 30 day notice and checked on Keasby, who was in his own pasture and relatively happy. I say relatively because he still was not his normal calm self. Instead he was reactive and anxious since he was by himself, even with a gelding across the fence line.
I wasn't able to get out for a couple of days because of work and life but figured that worse for worse he is still in his pasture by himself a little worried but not going to kill himself either. So I go out today about 1/2 hr before the vet arrived. I pull in and what do I see?
MY F'ING HORSE TURNED OUT WITH THE *&%*& MARE!!
are you serious. ARE YOU #@^& SERIOUS!
So, there he is nervous and high strung, trotting around the mare every time she moves. Also, he was getting beat up by her because she didn't approve of his friendly advances and trying to get between her and her old gelding companion. I watched them and they would calmly eat for a little while then the squeeling would start, then stop and they would go back to eating. So I sit in disbelief for a minute and the BO's wife comes up and starts talking to me and it's the same damn rhetoric that the BO had been spouting off to me.
"We've been doing this 35 yrs... How old is your trainer?....We think he is fine... Take my advice and don't use too many gizmos on him... blah blah blah....."
I wanted to STRANGLE her on the spot.
I eventually went and collected my *cough* gelding and brought him in since the vet had just shown up. Once inside he immediately started calling, jigging, nipping, etc. I stepped away a couple of feet to grab some wonder dust since he had fresh cuts from his girlfriend and he broke his cross-ties. I put him in his stall after putting the wonder dust on and he went bananas. And the BO's wife saw the whole thing, she witnessed his behavior.
So the vet had to have her vet tech nearly put Keasby in a headlock just to draw blood. He was nipping, half rearing, pawing and kicking. She drew blood and we let him in his stall to pace, call and crow hop. I talked to the vet and we planned on waiting to see what the blood test result were before we do anything more. I ended up turning him back out because I knew if I didn't he would probably get himself into a state and colic. In retrospect, I should have asked the vet to ace him and leave him inside for the rest of the day, but I didn't I was just so upset I wasn't thinking.
We are outside talking to the vet and the BO's wife starts talking about how she thinks he does fine out with the mare and how calm of a horse he is ... blah blah blah......
The vet and I just looked at each other with a "WTF" expression.
I've been trying to get a hold of my new BO to see if she can come pick him up tomorrow. She is kind of hard to get a hold of sometimes unfortunately.
I really just couldn't believe that she could be in the barn and witness his awful behavior and still think that "he is fine out with the mare" and that he really just needs more sweet feed to plump him up. She also went into how concerned her and her husband are that I would be feeding him cold wet beet pulp in the middle of winter and how it will make his stomach cold.
Her:"Put yourself in his shoes, that would be like eating cold oatmeal when it's cold outside".....
I have recently escaped from a simlar situation so I applaud your decision to GO. You will not believe how much happier you both are. My thoroughbred went from attacking other horses, not keeping weight on, and being a huge slug to ride to being out with 2 other horses, fat as a tick, and today wanted to trot so fast it made my eyes water! He is a different horse, a happy one. He had been a stressed, angry, tightly wound, very unhappy horse.
I wish both of you the peace we have just found. It is worth it!!! I am sorry you have had to go through this, and hope you can get out tomorrow. If I was close enough I would pick you up myself!
I also had to move my horse because the BO would not listen to a word I said. My big issue was DO NOT TURN MY MARE OUT BY HERSELF--EVER. And they did last Sept and she went bonkers, and they continued to turn her out by herself because "it's not convienent for the farm help and she will be fine by herself" , and she went even more bonkers. She got so anxious, she was barely rideable, blew up at everything, and was on a major downhill slide. I moved her on Feb 1st, she's never by herself anymore and 8 months later--I have a fantastic horse that is very even tempered and so relaxed that her lower lip hangs half the time.
The first barn I boarded at during the summer couldn't clean her stall to save her life, then STOPPED feeding her hay whenever I wasn't around because they wanted to save themselves a penny and figured that turning them out on the weedy, chewed up pasture was good enough... then when my easy easy keeper horse dropped 70 pounds, he accused ME of being the cause: "well I've never seen a horse keep on just three pounds of grain a day, you really should increase that Gro N' Win stuff you feed her to six or seven pounds!" Also, I found out that the "turnout" she was getting? Yes, some days all it involved was "crossties" and not actual "turnout" at all.
Second summer barn was no better.... they apparently felt threatened by my show success, according to the other boarders, and verbally abused me, threatened me, ridiculed me, and ultimately kicked me out of their barn for reasons nobody ever found out, myself included. They told me I had to switch to their grain "because we feed three kinds and that's what works for us," and "it's too hard to feed your grain," and I said, WTF guys I'M buying the grain! I'm saving YOU money! Right....
I hope you are out of there quick, for both your sanity and the horses safety.
It is so hard to find a good place to board anymore, and the ones that are good usually have a waiting list. It seems sometimes like every person with 5 acres and a barn thinks they are qualified to board horses.
I still remember helping a friend look for a place to put his two TB's. Both of them were a little high strung and required daily turnout. One place we looked the guy proudly states, "They go out 6 days a week, but they stay in on Sunday because they need to learn to stay in 1 day a week......"
We looked at each other, left, and he said, "Well, we won't be going to Happy Acres!"
How bout this one? Expensive young warmblood brought over from being boarded at a local lesson barn. I know the farrier they use and he's scary.
Our farrier comes out to trim yesterday and we get ol' Bign'Fancy out and take a good look at his feet the first time. Left is CLUBBY as you can get. About six inches tall. Right is flat as a pancake. We're talking DRASTICALLY different angles, amazing the horse isn't dead lame drastically.
We call the owner to ask if we can do some corrective shoeing and start to get him SOMEWHAT normal and more comfortable. Her response?
"Oh, my old farrier told me that all horses have different angles, its just how they're made."
I hope all goes well in your new situation. How could it not improve.
I am interested in hearing what the blood work says
I personally would also suggest taking him back to a very basic diet, hay only and gradually add back concentrates and suppliments. I have heard of horses having these types of "energy" issues on soy and excess vitamin suppliment. perhaps something is amiss with the program he is coming out of.
-- * > hoopoe
Cookie Dough is the Sushi of Desserts
Introverted Since 1957
Lemme tell you. WHen you are in a happy place, the difference is ...amazing. At my barn, I am sleek, in good weight, playful, happy, relaxed, chilled (but still feeling good enough to have TB moments!).
I loff my barn. I loff my trainer. I loff how happy my mom is at my barn.
You did the right thing. Your horse is telling you there is something wrong. Get him to a better place. He'll be grateful. Take it from the horse's mouth.
but I will tell you a story about my maternal grand father. as mom [who died last year at age 97] tells it, her dad kept his horse and carriage at the stable of a funeral parlor down on the next block. he was highly pissed to see his horse going by one day in harness pulling the hearse.
Good affordable boarding barns are getting had to find.
Oh I feel you pain....
I just moved my horse on Oct 5th. The barn he was at gave great care when we moved him there two years ago The last six months things started to slip. The final 6 weeks were unacceptable.
-Horse stared losing weight.
-My horse was left out 24/7 locked out of the run.
-My horse got a 2x3" deep wound between his ears and I was NEVER notified. They say he reared up in the run in. According to witnesses they did it. Either way it needed vet care and they never told me about it nor cared for. I found it two days later when I got out to the barn. My husband was hospitalized due to his Lyme disease and I couldn't make it to the barn.
-The neighbors let me know that they saw the BO and her mother beat my horse about the head with a halter.
-The last hay delivery was moldy hay which they still fed to the horses "Oh they will pick through it"
-Boarder horses where thrown into the dirt lot while her horses were out on grass. (Our horses where supposed to be out on grass.) The horses fought so bad my gelding was marked up bloody and so sore that he buckled from pain when you tried to brush him.
I could go on and on and on.... I updated my Coggins and blew out there ASAP. (As son as I got a verbal back.) I did it on short notice. The day I found out that they beat the snot out of him I found a new barn. I paid prorated board for the days he was there past the first. There was no boarding contract with them so they didn't get notice until my horse was on the trailer. I was honestly very scared for my horses safety. I was out there twice a day making sure he got fed. (I bought my own hay and grain and toted it back and fort with me.) He wasn't allowed on the hay they were throwing and he would get run off his grain.
He is sooooo much happier. I have MY horse back I should have listened to my gut when there were suttle changes in my horse's behavior. IE being scared of being caught.. not coming when called... he was getting neuortic and flighty I will never doubt my gut feeling again.
First let me say I know I am a wussie, I know that Cloudy was and still is a wussie and my now deceased mare Callie was a wussie.
But I knew my horses better than any BO could, and I have always patiently explained the issues and my concerns.
Callie had been a race horse and broodmare so she got along well in herds, altho she was not an alpha so always had to pair up with a protective gelding to get from getting beat up.
Amazingly Cloudy who had not been out with anyone besides Callie, turned out to be very savvy, and always kept himself out of the fights that geldings had, but occasionally forgot that the mares would bite him. He only has gotten a few scrapes and bruises, including at one barn where the BO's horses beat up the old and meek and weak, and even each other.
Now we are at a barn where the horses are too nice, and Cloudy has bossed some around. Fortunately he has a mare who orders him around, but I don't want him picking on the filly there. If a horse puts back his/her ears, Cloudy backs down, but the little yearling filly is afraid of a big funny looking grey wb.
Boarding is a crap shoot. You'll find BOs who believe in throwing 25 horses out and letting them sort things out, and you'll find BOs who separate and protect.
Hope you find a barn like the one we are at now where the horses are separated into groups that get along well. I realize that things cannot be perfect and horses need to socialize, but when there are definite issues, such as your horse being so studdy, you must have a BO who will recognize and admit what is going on. My friend's mare was mounted and chewed up by a new "proud cut" gelding at her barn, and the BO moved the gelding out with a dominate gelding, and he's doing fine and the mare is now fine in her herd.
That's what a responsible BO does.
Added after visit to the barn: Well yearling filly was flirting with Cloudy over the fence so maybe she isn't so scared of the big grey boy anymore?
Last edited by cloudyandcallie; Oct. 16, 2008 at 04:13 PM.
I'd like to know the results of the blood test too.
UGH, my friend just moved because she discovered her horse was being used as a LESSON horse!! Things could be worse....
My BOs often ridicule my attempts at riding or schooling. They laugh at me behind my back, but I'm no dummy and can tell. They are often rude, walking away from me as I speak to them.
I remain cheerful, let it go and instead try to take the tact of "I'm happy to take any advice you offer" which sometimes brings good results. On rainy days like today, I know I can't use the indoor because it's full of hay wagons.
To me, those are small inconveniences to put up with. Being rude only hurts themselves, not me. Not being able to ride inside is balanced by the fact they grow their own hay and it's gorgeous. I love how they handle the horses, work to find pasture combinations that work and keep a clean facility.
It's tough finding a place you like and often you have to put up with some weirdness. Rude people are easier to take than people who keep your horse badly.
Now I remember why I couldn't wait to get my horses home. I boarded for 20 years and in many cases it sucked. I am taking my mare away for the winter and hopefully I have done my homework and this place will be fine. The saving grace is if it doesn't work out, I can always take her home.
I was boarding my fancy Trakehner and getting ready for a pretty good competition...my $500 entry/stall fees were all sent and the check cashed. I'd told the BO I didn't want my horse in with this P.O.S. psyco gelding under penalty of death...they agreed not to.
So, the day before the show, I go out to the barn to start getting him washed and braided and everyone is waiting for me at the barn. My horse is in his stall...not good.
They turned him out with psyco horse ("but his fieldmate was away and he was unhappy" they mewed)...he tore up my Trakehner's back so badly I couldn't put a saddle on him for 3 weeks. I went absolutely OFF!
I told the BO she was paying the entry fee and the vet bill for my horse and that I wasn't paying any board until my horse was rideable either. I left fairly soon after that...#$%@$% idiots and garbage horse owners.
I'm reading this, nodding, remembering the times when I was in your shoes...scrambling for a spot for my horses and getting them out in 2 hours.....me in my dress and heels...getting assaulted, yada yada....
And just after the nodding and remembering I am chanting: I am so blessed. I am so blessed. I am so blessed!!!!!
Now my horses are in a place where I don't worry for one second of any given day. It is such sweet relief.
A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.
If you need support I am here!! I have a gelding who was tested and turns out IS a CHRYPTORCHID, after everyone INCLUDING the vet told me - oh it's just behavoir! He is on Depo now and turned alone and VERY happy and way better, until he can get the surgery. People are annoying and seem to always think they know your horse better than you...
Thank goodness mine are at home where I am in charge of EVERY aspect of their care. I will never, ever, ever board again. I would prefer NOT to have horses than to board. The boarding experiences I did have were not pleasant.
I boarded my mare in a backyard situation (horses within 100 yards of house) which worked fairly well until there was a change of ownership. New BO didn't want to feed hay (except when she knew I was coming out, then my mare had a lot of hay) and never picked out the stall or paddock. My easy keeper mare was all of a sudden skinny. My friend's blind gelding (being free leased for the BO's son) was getting turned loose in the front yard to graze and would wander into the road (according to neighbors).
BO was a rather scary person (her husband was in jail for murder) and my friend and I were afraid of her. We loaded up our horses at 6am one day and kept them in a country living coworkers backyard for a month until we could find a better situation. BO didn't notice horses (or trailer) were gone for over 48 hours!
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