It's very sad how "modern" riders depend so much on experts....whether on videos, TV shows or in clinics. So few riders have any sort of bedrock of horse experience, either through Pony Club or being a barn rat learning the ropes, they give up all control to the supposed expert. Seems like a lot of these experts really don't have much bredth or depth either...just attitude or snappy patter that impresses the natives.
This statement applies to more than just horses. Dog training, child daycare, school... You will run into folks who believe that because they are they hired expert, you need to shut up and follow along. Many clients are willing to do just that. Many others, who neither want nor need to share pet/horse ownership or parenting responsibilities, will find their boundaries crossed. Would you let someone else raise your kid because they thought you were doing it wrong? No. So why worry about their boundaries when they're disrepecting your care decisions for your horse?
Horse ownership comes with a set of obligations, first and foremost ensuring the proper welfare of the horse. If you lack the knowledge to do that, it may be best to seek out highly controlled barn in which someone else (BO, BM, or trainer) oversees the entire care of the horse. If you know but lack confidence to call the shots, it may still be best to seek out the highly controlled atmosphere. Some trainers nourish client growth and will back off as the client steps up. Some prefer to have completely dependent clients. Some trainers need a certain type of client as part of the business model, which isn't wrong but certainly wouldn't work if you don't share their objective. The bottom line is, if you're not happy and aren't able to have a respectful relationship (two-way street) with the BO/trainer that mutually benefits them as a business owner and you as a client, then you're in the wrong place. Giving up control of your horse - your obligation - to placate the ego or feelings of someone else whose decisions make you uncomfortable isn't the answer.
My mare was NQR the summer of 2011, nobody could really see it but I felt it. I know there were some rolling eyeballs about the over protective owner (me!) but I gave her a couple months off (canceled lessons, which cost BO/Instructor $) and when she hadn't improved called the vet. She ended up having surgery to remove a keratoma from her foot. If I had listened to the advice I was getting to "ride her thru it" I could have done permanent injury.
a keratoma...? I shouldn't read this stuff as it set off my hypochondria!!! now I'll spend the afternoon googling keratoma of the foot...
If you're paying a pro, you should respect her opinion. If a trainer recommended that I ride a horse that wasn't fully sound, I would immediately lose all respect for said trainer. I understand that many trainers expect full control over client's horses, but the owner should have final say. The owner is the one paying the bills. If a trainer and owner butt heads, then they need to have an honest and open conversation regarding each other's expectations. Maybe this barn isn't the best fit for you.
I will guess that there may be something more behind the trainer peeve, and that is her income. She may have been expecting she'd do the clip and the ride and be paid for both, and she may have put that ahead of your wishes and your horse's best interests.
A conversation would be the place to start to see if things can be smoothed out. In your shoes, if we came to an understanding and nothing more happened along those lines, I'd let it go, if I thought the trainer was very good for her role in MY life.
I'd be slightly concerned about what goes on when I'm not there, but if the object is to bill for things, I would find out that way.
As for trainers, farriers, etc. & so on who can't respect my limited schedule as it is constrained by work - I have a come-to-jesus talk to straighten them out. My work and my schedule are what pays their way in their chosen career. They will respect that - or get out of my horse life.
At one time I worked a more-than-full-time professional job AND another job so I could have a horse, train and compete - believe me that is a very, very dawn-to-midnight schedule every single day. Anyone making their living off those dollars earned by me needs to understand the considerable sacrifices I am making to make it possible for ALL of us.
It's not about the trainer. It's about me - the rider, the owner. That's what makes the competitive horse world go. Sometimes trainers need to be reminded.