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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2004
    Location
    Louisville, KY
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    4,023

    Talking "So I'm thinking about buying my wife a horse..." (Chronicles of the Horsey Clueless)

    I just have to laugh at this.

    My boss at work is a sweetheart. A really nice guy, but a...guy? Means well, but doesn't think things completely through and is kind of clueless. His wife is nice as well, but sort of ditzy.

    They relocated here seven years ago when he took this job. She didn't want to move. Apparently she's always liked horses and he used something like, "Hey, we're moving to Kentucky and everyone in Kentucky has horses and does, uh, horse stuff, so if we move to Kentucky you can totally get a horse" to get her to agree to move here.

    Well, it turns out that I'm the only person he knows that has a horse. And his wife knows nothing about horses. The sum of her horse experience includes having a friend (7+ years ago) that had a horse that she went out and brushed a few times. That's it. No riding, no lessons, no real grooming, no feeding, probably not even leading. Let alone actually taking care of one.

    So we've worked together for the last five years and two or three times a year (around her birthday, anniversary, and/or Christmas) he starts feeling guilty and we have the, "So, I'm thinking about buying my wife a horse..." chat.

    I have this down to a form of art.

    This was our conversation yesterday. Keep in mind that we've had this exact conversation >15 times and there is a likelyhood of ~0.01% that he would ever actually buy a horse.

    Boss: "So...wife's birthday is next week. I'm thinking about buying her a horse."

    Me: "Really."

    Boss: "Yeah. How much do horses cost?"

    Me: "A lot. But the real expense comes from the upkeep. You know, boarding, feeding, vet, and farrier. All that's very expensive." (Expensive = guarantee this will never happen.)

    Boss: "What's a farrier? And we have friends that have land. We could keep it there."

    Me: "A farrier does shoeing or trims the hooves. That's very expensive. And your wife needs to know how to take care of a horse before she actually gets one. Plus, horses are herd animals and it's not really fair to keep one by itself. So you'd need to get at least two, and that would be very, very expensive. Instead of buying her a horse, get her some lessons for her birthday so she can learn how to ride or take care of them. That would be much less expensive." (<---Keep in mind here that I used to board less than five minutes from their house and the BO was fantastic. She does lots of beginner lessons and he's known this for awhile. Like six or seven conversations ago).

    Boss: "Yeah, I don't think she actually wants to ride. Just, you know, have a horse and brush it and stuff."

    Me: "She wouldn't have to ride. They could teach her about feeding, brushing, and general horse management."

    Boss: "Huh. How much do saddles cost? Could I get her a saddle for less than $500?"

    Me: "Probably a used one. But I thought she didn't want to ride? She'd need lessons first, and that's expensive."

    Boss: "Yeah. How often do their feet need done? The furrier guy?"

    Me: "Every 6-8 weeks. Sometimes more than that. And it's expensive. Especially if they have to have shoes."

    Boss: "6-8 weeks!!! That's a lot. And really expensive. It couldn't be done once or twice a year? And do all horses need shoes?"

    Me: "Not all. But they would still need trims even if they didn't have shoes. Not as expensive, but still expensive."

    Boss: "Are the horseshoes like horseshoes from a horseshoe throwing game? Really big and heavy?"

    Me: ????...???...????..."No. Most horses have much smaller hooves than that. Unless they're draft horses."

    Boss: "What's a draft horse?"

    Me: "The really big ones. Like a Budweiser Clydesdale."

    Boss: "Are those expensive?"

    Me: "Yes. Very."

    Boss: "Oh."

    Me: "Yes. And don't forget about the feed and vet. They also need their teeth done, too. That's expensive."

    Boss: "Huh. Maybe I'll call that lesson place." (95% chance this will never happen).

    Me: "Good, good. Remember, horses are expensive."

    Boss: "Yeah. I think I'll just wait until we buy some land before I get her a horse. It'll be less expensive that way." (Also >95% chance this will never happen).

    Me: "Sure. They're still expensive."

    Caitlin
    *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
    http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug. 10, 2010
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    1,705

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    Don't let him look at Craigslist......



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2004
    Location
    Louisville, KY
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    4,023

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    Whoops, I thought I was in Off Course. Oh well.

    ETA: Thanks for moving, mods!
    Last edited by RedMare01; Jul. 19, 2012 at 03:26 PM.
    Caitlin
    *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
    http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 18, 2004
    Location
    Catonsville, MD
    Posts
    6,919

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    Love this. Have participated in similar conversations with similarly uninformed equine 'enthusiasts'.
    I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
    I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09




  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 26, 2006
    Posts
    394

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    Lol!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep. 24, 2010
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    1,117

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    I had a co-worker who thought the same thing. Wife always liked horses, but never actually touched one. He was going to buy a huge plot of land and keep horses for the wife. I had pretty much the same conversation every time he found a new property to look at. The best was when he said he could shoe the horses himself! I got him talked out of that pretty quickly, "Would you learn to do orthopedic surgery for your kid or let an experienced surgeon do it?" "Oh..."

    I pretty much figured if he actually did end up buying a few, I would either a.) be then working for him as his herd manager or b.) never have a life and be on call 24/7 with this guy.

    I have a new job and he doesn't have my phone #!



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun. 18, 2011
    Posts
    1,344

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    If you really want to nip this in the bud you need to explain to the wife how she'll have to clean her horse's sheath. In detail. All the glorious details.



  8. #8

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    Tell him any sad but true story about how a) you or a friend bought a horse and it went completely lame and you spend thousands on diagnosing the problem, ultimately having to make it a pasture pet for the next ten years; or b) the horror story of the colic and subsquent surgery c) how many sellers are often unscrupulous and people end up with horses that are completely unmanageable/lame/older than dirt, or d) how fun it is to show your horse, and it's only about $2K a weekend to get that wonderful ribbon, plus the trainer and all the show stuff you have to buy.

    That should do the trick.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 20, 2007
    Posts
    834

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    Quote Originally Posted by GaitedGloryRider View Post
    If you really want to nip this in the bud you need to explain to the wife how she'll have to clean her horse's sheath. In detail. All the glorious details.
    LOL!
    Unashamed Member of the Dressage Arab Clique
    CRAYOLA POSSE= Thistle



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2007
    Location
    Beside Myself ~ Western NY
    Posts
    7,370

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    Just take him to watch them work horses at one of the upscale places and see if he want's to contribute to the up keep

    But at the very least, take him to dinner at the Shelbyville show. He'll either get stars in his eyes or turn and run.
    Why is it that a woman will forgive homicidal behavior in a horse, yet be highly critical of a man for leaving the toilet seat up?
    ~ Dave Barry



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2009
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    1,287

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    I don't understand why we all want to discourage his wish to fulfill his wife's dream. Everyone has to start somewhere, and while WE know jumping into horse ownership could be a disaster, he doesn't quite get it yet (although, OP, you're doing quite well!). If you know of a place that would encourage adult beginners, suggest to him that he pre-purchase a set of riding lessons for his wife. As complete beginners, they might not realize how involved you can be with horses without even owning one.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec. 29, 1999
    Location
    Harrisburg, PA USA
    Posts
    6,546

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    Quote Originally Posted by GaitedGloryRider View Post
    If you really want to nip this in the bud you need to explain to the wife how she'll have to clean her horse's sheath. In detail. All the glorious details.
    Depending on the state of the marriage, maybe she'll WANT to handle one again.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov. 18, 2004
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    Catonsville, MD
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    I don't think that OP wants to discourage it, I think that she has observed that this weirdly speculative topic isn't going anywhere ever, and is amused.
    I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
    I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09




  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2004
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    4,023

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldpony66 View Post
    I don't understand why we all want to discourage his wish to fulfill his wife's dream. Everyone has to start somewhere, and while WE know jumping into horse ownership could be a disaster, he doesn't quite get it yet (although, OP, you're doing quite well!). If you know of a place that would encourage adult beginners, suggest to him that he pre-purchase a set of riding lessons for his wife. As complete beginners, they might not realize how involved you can be with horses without even owning one.
    That's exactly what I've tried to do. The barn close to their house is really good and has a great lesson program. I'm sure the BO would also teach her how to groom and general horse management stuff as well. I printed the info off the website and gave him the BO's name and number if he's really serious. They even sell gift certificates for lessons.

    The problem is, he just thinks that horses are like big dogs and that anyone can do anything with them (with no knowledge or experience at all). And it's gotten funny at this point.
    Caitlin
    *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
    http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2012
    Location
    DC Metro Area
    Posts
    110

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    HAHAHA, you used expensive 14 times by my count. Squeeze in 20 and he'll never ask again. lol
    "As one of those weirdos that always enjoyed the grooming tasks that most others didn't, Kirsten decided it was time to make the most of it and create Shear Convenience Grooming"



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec. 19, 2009
    Location
    Pennsylvania
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    Huh, maybe if she doesn't really want to ride she could volunteer at a therapeutic riding center where they might relish the extra help AND teach her to groom, tack, lead, and clean up after the horses.
    And that wouldn't be expensive at all.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    May. 12, 2000
    Location
    NE TN, USA
    Posts
    6,201

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    Tell him to buy a copy of "Horses For Dummies". It's pretty thorough, including sheath cleaning and euthanasia when the time comes.
    “There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.”
    John Adams



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul. 23, 2007
    Posts
    749

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    The problem is, he just thinks that horses are like big dogs and that anyone can do anything with them (with no knowledge or experience at all.

    That's EXACTLY what he thinks! Non horse people drive me insane!



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2011
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    2,164

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    Slightly off topic, but today my co-worker came into my office and says "Um, so I know you ride horses and stuff and my GF and I are going to Turkey this fall and want to go on a guided trail ride. But we've never ridden before...so...um...how do I do it?"


    Barn rat for life

    The Big Horse



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug. 6, 2002
    Location
    NJ, USA
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    2,331

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    Quote Originally Posted by wcporter View Post
    Slightly off topic, but today my co-worker came into my office and says "Um, so I know you ride horses and stuff and my GF and I are going to Turkey this fall and want to go on a guided trail ride. But we've never ridden before...so...um...how do I do it?"


    Actually thought I do have a good answer for that one - get yourself on a workout program a couple months before the vacation - you won't learn anything about how to ride a horse but at least you won't be QUITE as dead sore the day after you try it on the trip!

    Had a coworker thank me for that advice!



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