Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You're responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it--details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums' policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it's understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users' profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses -- Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it's related to a horse for sale, regardless of who's selling it, it doesn't belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions -- Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services -- Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products -- While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements -- Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be "bumped" excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues -- Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators' discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the �alert� button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your �Ignore� list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you'd rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user's membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Talk to me about the older event horse

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Talk to me about the older event horse

    I was recently given the amazing opportunity to own a former advanced level eventer. My goals consist of staying mounted while doing beginner novice so even though he is older and has had an injury it's a perfect match. I adore him and he's given me back my confidence and enjoyment with riding (I could write an entire post about that but I digress ...)

    I was chatting with my trainer tonight about him in general and she mentioned keeping him in light consistent work to keep him sound and happy, especially with winter coming. Thankfully he's in my backyard and I have a little riding ring with lights so I should be able to keep him going.

    It did get me thinking that I've never managed an older horse in work. My 20 year old OTTB has been totally retire for close to a decade (back injury) and my other horses are younger.

    I plan on starting Adaquan , but what else do I need to know about keeping my fine wine eventer happy and healthy for years to come ?
    http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn
    Original Poster

    #2
    This is us by the way, I don't like to play favorites , but I adore him !
    Attached Files
    http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

    Comment


      #3
      Lots of hacking - do you have any trails or fields that will be available for winter hacks? Or is he road safe? Even if your ring footing freezes (sorry not sure where you are but you say "winter" so I'm assuming it gets cold ) you can usually safely walk them. I find it keeps them fit and limber, and also mentally refreshed.

      If you're doing ring work, a good walk warmup (at least 10 minutes) will help him loosen up cold muscles and get his joints moving more fluidly. I found with mine that poles also helped - he's got mild hock arthritis, and articulating the joints more over poles seemed to help him get loose faster in the winter.

      You might want to consider a Back on Track sheet too - it seems to help them from getting stiff muscles.

      p.s. he's very cute!
      I've spent most of my life riding horses. The rest I've just wasted.

      Comment


        #4
        Good nutrition is key. You may want to do Legend as well as Adaquan but I would discuss that with your vet. I also like KER's supplement Contribute. http://kppusa.com/product/contribute/

        He might like a Back on Track blanket. I use the mesh sheet and then use it as a bottom layer when I put on more blankets. And get a good quarter sheet.

        Lots of walking and stretching work. Give him lots of time to warm up.

        Good luck with him! Will be great to see you out eventing again!
        ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

        Comment

          Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by SolarFlare View Post
          Lots of hacking - do you have any trails or fields that will be available for winter hacks? Or is he road safe? Even if your ring footing freezes (sorry not sure where you are but you say "winter" so I'm assuming it gets cold ) you can usually safely walk them. I find it keeps them fit and limber, and also mentally refreshed.

          !
          Im in Maryland so it will definitely freeze for a while. I do have 65 acres around me I can hack and I'm about 5 miles (trailer) to Fair Hill. My neighbor also had an indoor I can use. He's a bit silly with somethings , gets those warmblood bug eyes, but I think he'll be ok to hack. I also have an old appy I can have someone ride along with me.
          http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

          Comment


            #6
            I have an older horse 25 almost 26. I evented him until he was 24 and it was more for me that I stopped jumping him. The best thing is to keep him moving. I try not to give him more than a couple of days off a week. I also vary the intensity of work. So hard day then an easy day.
            Jacobson's Saddlery, LLC
            www.thesaddlefits.com
            Society of Master Saddlers Qualified Fitter

            Comment


              #7
              I have 2 "fine wine" eventers. The older one is a retired 3* horse. He is 27 this year. The younger is 25 now and was an UL dressage horse before turning his hoof to eventing. Here are a few things I can tell you about what's worked best for my guys...

              1. He knows much more than you. When you're schooling or taking a lesson, keep this in mind. The practice you're doing is for you, not for him. Keep repetitions to a minimum and don't worry about always ending on a good note. End on some small success if you need to. This will help keep down wear and tear.

              2. Let him live out as much as possible. Mine are out 24/7 and it makes a big difference in their mobility and general comfort.

              3. He's probably a bit quirky and that's ok. My oldest is a grouch and NOT a let the pony kind of dude. He's happiest if you leave him be unless it's necessary. Learn to love the quirks and don't tey to change him.

              4. Thank him every day for the gift of teaching you something. Even if it is to keep your heels down and eyes up or he will deposit you gracefully at the base of a fence.

              5. Be proactive with your maintenance. Don't let him get uncomfortable before you address even something small.

              6. Learn all you can from him because those old dudes are priceless.

              Enjoy the ride, it's a very special thing to sit on a horse with an education like that.

              Comment

                Original Poster

                #8
                Yes!

                I transitioned him to living out 24/7 with a stall he can go in when he chooses. He is a weaver and they were treating him for ulcers but he doesn't seem girthy anymore now that he's out and doesn't weave. I thankfully have a mini donkey so she is his companion because he doesn't like being alone, she never leaves the field so he's happy as a clam!

                He is VERY quirky, god forbid I ask him to walk over a ground pole... but he'll jump anything It's funny because I'm a pretty timid rider and I was worried his spookiness might bother me but he never actually spooks, just gives things bug eyes.

                It's been a huge change for me riding wise. I've been struggling for 3 years with a lovely OTTB that was just honestly too much for me, especially over fences. The flat work wasn't enjoyable and I was just discouraged every ride. Even when we evented or went x country it was more like "I survived!" rather than "I had fun". With Music I can sit back (and sit up) and just work on myself and ENJOY what I'm doing. I look forward to riding.

                Originally posted by Action42 View Post
                I have 2 "fine wine" eventers. The older one is a retired 3* horse. He is 27 this year. The younger is 25 now and was an UL dressage horse before turning his hoof to eventing. Here are a few things I can tell you about what's worked best for my guys...

                1. He knows much more than you. When you're schooling or taking a lesson, keep this in mind. The practice you're doing is for you, not for him. Keep repetitions to a minimum and don't worry about always ending on a good note. End on some small success if you need to. This will help keep down wear and tear.

                2. Let him live out as much as possible. Mine are out 24/7 and it makes a big difference in their mobility and general comfort.

                3. He's probably a bit quirky and that's ok. My oldest is a grouch and NOT a let the pony kind of dude. He's happiest if you leave him be unless it's necessary. Learn to love the quirks and don't tey to change him.

                4. Thank him every day for the gift of teaching you something. Even if it is to keep your heels down and eyes up or he will deposit you gracefully at the base of a fence.

                5. Be proactive with your maintenance. Don't let him get uncomfortable before you address even something small.

                6. Learn all you can from him because those old dudes are priceless.

                Enjoy the ride, it's a very special thing to sit on a horse with an education like that.
                http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

                Comment


                  #9
                  Mine ended a long Show Jumping career to event with me from ages 20-24. She was on 24/7 turnout, pentosan, massages and MSM. I took conditioning very seriously at the Novice level because you want those older horses to be 100% prepared fitness wise for what you're asking. She did 2 Novice 3 days (age 22 and 23) and after her 10 min vitals check she was released both times with no additional re-checks.

                  She really did best on what I termed an ebb and flow. I would give 2 weeks off after Pony Club champs and 2 weeks off when I was gone for Christmas, then otherwise keep her working though often quite lightly. After the Christmas break she'd be in light flatwork with no jumping for another month before I got remotely serious. I think long breaks are harder on the old ones to return from. After every event she'd get 2 days off. No jump schooling the week of an event. Once a week jumping, This all kept her sound that whole time then a hoof problem caught up to her in the same leg with some ringbone and she had to retire.

                  Enjoy him! Mine was a SJ genius with no clue how to dressage (and no desire) or go XC, but she was endlessly game and so easy to take places. I miss that immensely now that I have a 7 year old bone head.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I would make sure to do a few things.
                    -24/7 turnout, or if you can't do that, do night turnout
                    -looking into equioxx
                    -do not give him long periods of time off, but do give him a break over winter (I would think less than 6 weeks, at least that's what I do with my 20 yo)
                    -keep his BCS on the low end of average. This may go against every bone in your body that wants to see so meat on his ribs, but you will do more damage keeping him heavy than keeping him trim
                    -I do twice yearly lameness work ups to make sure I can identify issues before they blow up
                    -embrace the quirks

                    Good luck. How luck you are to have the opportunity to ride a horse that can show you the ropes!!
                    ************************
                    "I can't help but wonder,what would Jimmy Buffett do?"

                    https://falllinefarmblog.wordpress.com/

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I'm also riding a former prelim horse and just dinking around the lower levels. He's a 19 year old quarter horse and, unfortunately, where I board 24/7 turnout is not an option. He's on daily equioxx and getting PEMF treatments when possible. I plan to set him up for a chiro appointment in the next couple of weeks. He doesn't really have many quirks other than being a klutz over some bounce cavallettis ha ha. He's definitely making me a stronger rider because he is not a point and shoot kind of guy. You have to ride every fence and keep leg on. Hopefully I can keep him going for another year or two and should barring anything unforeseen happening.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Congratulations, he sounds lovely! I have a 20 year old who (knock on wood) feels and looks great with minimum maintenance. Doing lower level (BN/N) eventing. Everyone has given you great advice. Keeping them moving is very important, especially in the cold. Mine is (again, knock on wood) in overall good health and seems to benefit most from steady work, regular chiropractic, and regular massages. Pricey but he's worth it. Though I would like a massage myself sometime. . .

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Just had to retire my former eventer who's in his early twenties, and I agree with so much of the advice here! For me, one of the most important things that probably took me longer to learn than it should have was that more frequent but shorter rides are the way to go, especially with older horses. I would also recommend walking at least twenty minutes before doing work in the winter. I went from my older horse to a horse in his early teens that can start out cold-backed and is on the tense side for dressage, and walking makes such a big difference. I usually do 10-15 minutes of hacking then 5-10 minutes of "work" (leg yields, serpentines, free walk, shorter walk, spiral in, etc.) at the walk before trotting.

                          I'd also second the advice of keeping him fit and being mindful of time off. I really had to stay on top of fitness with my old horse even when we were just doing BN/N. Before he retired, he also had to get a month off for a minor injury, and he never came back the same. If you have to give time off, be patient and go slow when getting back into work, as well.

                          Enjoy him! I only had four years with my horse before I had to retire him since I got him at twenty, but he took me from barely knowing how to jump a course to showing novice and schooling training xc and stadium questions and 2nd level dressage.

                          The one regret I have with him is not scaling back his work sooner. Now he is loving his retirement as a trail horse, but he was happily schooling training cross country five months before he retired. Sometimes their heart is still in it when their body isn't, which is a really hard thing to recognize. Definitely be careful of even small issues and don't be afraid to overthink it since it's best to take care of things early on!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            This is totally my type of post! You've got a lot of great advice here, but I'll chime in with my personal experience.

                            My guy is 24 - he's a former CCI3* eventer (old classification system) and 1.30 jumper. I've had him for ~15 years and his needs have changed dramatically. In his older years, these three things that have kept him the most healthy & comfortable are: (1) consistent work; (2) good nutrition; and (3) joint supplements/injections.

                            My guy never gets a "true" day off. He's out of his stall every single day moving around. I let him set the pace. If he's feeling good, maybe we pop over a few jumps or do some lateral work. If not, maybe we do a short hack and a trail ride. If your horse is in your yard and has more space to walk around, that's even better. Also when we were competing, I was pretty conservative with how often I ran him, which I think helped him in the later years. People think it's silly that my (very well behaved and well trained) 24 year old horse is in full training, but honestly, since there aren't any good pasture board options in my area, it's my best way to ensure he's getting at least a good hour of moving his body correctly each day.

                            My horse started losing muscle pretty fast in his early 20s and nutrition was the key to shaping his body up again. Really good quality hay and supplements helped a lot. His muscle tone was better, topline improved, and he had more energy and enthusiasm when being ridden. IMO he needed more protein than he used to. Adding a probiotic to his feed also helped with some digestive issues he started to develop in the last year. I also had to get my saddles refitted (and had to buy a new dressage saddle) because his back had changed so much. It's something to be cognizant of - you want to give them every chance to be their best self.

                            Lastly, my horse gets yearly hock injections and monthly Legend. He also gets daily Equioxx and Platinum Performance CJ. This maintenance is expensive, but it makes a huge difference. The day my horse starts to feel uncomfortable in his body despite all this maintenance, I'll know it's time for him to phase down. But as long as he seems happy to work, I'll try my best to support him. As you are well aware, the old guys have a lot to give and teach us

                            Regular chiropractic work also helps, but results can vary. I've had some chiros I thought were miracle workers, and others who I didn't think did a damn thing. Back on Track products are also great. I've got the mesh blanket and it's perfect for the wintertime.

                            Hope this is helpful!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I retired my older horse from eventing at age 17/18 (Preliminary level), but I continued to ride him daily, lots of trail riding, hunter-jumper shows (but not dressage - he hated it! LOL). He was still doing 3'6"- 4' classes at 20, and could have continued, but I thought for his sake, that was enough and gave him to a friend as a trail horse. He lived to be almost 28. He could easily have continued doing low level eventing well into his 20s. Myf friend took him to schooling shows for fun when he was around 24-25. He found the low fences boring, but won his classes! Keeping them active is paramount. I was fortunate with this horse - as was my friend - that his hocks fused early and he never needed injections. He did get regular chiro, but his needs were otherwise minimal. Great horse. An Appy.

                              Comment


                                #16
                                My old intermediate horse is 23, he completely retired last September despite being completely sound because I was essentially gone for 3 months and had no one to keep him in work. I accepted that before I went away that he was officially retired. Use it or loose it really applies to the older guys when it comes to their condition and muscle. During his semi retirement my sister was competing him at BN/N. They maybe did 20 minutes of dressage in a lesson once a week, and jumped very occasionally. Other than that they hacked and hacked and hacked. Once you start to figure out the dressage and jumping buttons, as someone else above said, the practice being done is for you. They know all the stuff. My sister said her biggest problem xc schooling or competing was reminding him that the log on the ground was their jump, not the big tables . Mine was and still is very quirky, to handle and ride. He used to get mad if someone insisted he go the BN/N speed. He liked to set off at a very brisk canter/slow gallop and you'd better not tell him otherwise. My sister became the master of big sweeping turns.

                                Lots of turnout, good diet, not getting fat, being proactive with maintenance. Back on Tack products are wonderful. If you ask my guy he's also say treats are key to longevity.

                                Comment

                                  Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Thanks for the advice everyone!

                                  I think he's very happy right now. He's out 24/7 with his army of minions (a mini donkey, mini horse and shetland pony). The biggest issue is getting him the good hay while they get the grass. I bought a corner hay bag like you use in a trailer and I'm going to put it high in his stall so they can't reach. He's good about going in the stall in bad weather but god forbid I close the door...

                                  I feel like I'm not riding him enough but weather has been super bad. It's going to be hard this winter with just an outdoor but I'm dedicated.

                                  We went to our first show this past weekend and won 1st place! I was SO nervous to jump as my previous horse would make a huge deal about any decorations or fillers. After the 3rd jump I realized he did not care and was packing my terrified butt around and was so happy! I can't wait to keep working hard to give him better rides

                                  This is a long way from where he was.. but he seems happy
                                  22 Likes, 0 Comments - Meredith Clark (@merec85) on Instagram: So thankful for this guy packing me around at our first show together. My goal is to be slightly
                                  http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    Congratulations, what a great start at your first show together! Isn't it nice to ride a horse that gives you such confidence? Enjoy him.
                                    Last edited by BAC; Nov. 27, 2018, 04:26 PM. Reason: spelling

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      Meredith Clark As someone who lives in Maryland with no indoor, I am also concerned about keeping my old guy going. This year has been so wet, and I am worried this winter will be tougher than last winter. I brought a long winter coat designed for riding, and I am going to try and get my but out there doing something at least 3 days a week.

                                      Looking at the video, I see your guy has a long back, and it is so hard to regain topline in a n older horse, nevermind adding a long back to the mix. So as North Dakota said, you gotta use it, or he's going to lose it. Hill work and transitions on the flat are very helpful. Last winter I did lots of "candy ribbon serpentines" to get my horse supple in both directions, while working through his back and steering off my seat and leg, rather than my hand. Despite being 20 y/o, in the winter he gets super spicy and likes to run away with me, so the constant change of direction made him use his brain and slow his feet. With the big, long warmbloods it can be tough to keep their whole body connected and I find that using the shape of the figure that you are riding is much more effective at keeping their bodies together than trying to nag the horse into using his whole body.

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Can we please have photos of him and the minions?
                                        He can do a lot for you but you are doing a lot for him. I think these older guys do so much better and are so much happier keeping a job than just going out on pasture.
                                        As far as the hay net, check out COTH thread on the evil burrito and his bag shenanigans.

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X