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Selling a horse with a scar

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  • Selling a horse with a scar

    I have a horse who degloved her hind leg last year and it's doing great, healed nicely, except it is BIG on the front of the ankle where the vet used the viable skin as a bandage. She isn't off, has never been off.

    I just don't know if people would be completely turned off from buying a horse with a scar....any experience??

  • #2
    Depends on the buyer, the price and the intended use.


    • #3
      My last horse had over reached and nearly ripped one of his heal bulbs off. He had a very large scar/ lump. It was ugly looking, but vet check showed it was not an issue and I bought him. I have also sold him since. They did do x-rays there where maybe the wouldn't have otherwise but he sold just fine with it.
      Bought and sold him as both a hunter (bought him mainly for hunters) and jumpers for A-rated shows. He was not expensive A circuit wise but that was more so due to the fact that he was out of work and the rider was bored of riding him/lost interest. I sold him for cheap too as he had suspensory issues but nothing that resulted from his scar.


      • #4
        I looked at a horse with some scarring on her shoulder and down her leg from a pasture accident. Other things in the PPE caused me not to buy her, but the scars would not have been a dealbreaker.

        If you put a note in the ad, it will help screen out the ones for whom it is a total dealbreaker (not all, because people don't read, but some). If you provide vet records/xrays/etc to people who schedule a PPE, so their vet has a baseline, that may also help with buyers who are on the fence.


        • #5
          We bought a horse like what you describe about a year and a half ago. The injury was old & cold and it has never been a problem. Simkie hit the nail on the head. If everything else is right with the horse for the intended purpose and the ugly scar tissue was a deal breaker, maybe that's not the best home anyway?


          • #6
            As a potential buyer, I would want the seller to have x-rays of that joint. Scars over joints often equal damage to the joint, so I would be more likely to travel to look at such a horse if x-rays had already been done.
            Freeing worms from cans everywhere!


            • #7
              Having bought horses with interesting scars, I would say No!. However if I were planning on showing where looks counted, as in halter, I'd pass.

              I would advise people of it early on, before they make their first trip.
              Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.

              Remember the horse does all the work, we just sit there and look pretty.


              • #8
                I would probably pay extra attention to any joints in that area and do x-rays, but as long as everything came out ok it would not bother me.
                come what may

                Rest in peace great mare, 1987-2013


                • #9
                  I have one now that has a pretty significant scar on his hind leg. I was told about it when I inquired on his sale ad, they sent me photos, and had vet records showing it had been x-rayed and nothing bad showed up. Owner says he got caught in a wire fence as a baby, and it seems plausible. When I vetted him, we did films back there again (and everywhere else...spendy vetting). He is one of the rare horses that "passed" a vetting by our local sports medicine guru, with flying colors no less, so of course he has been one lameness after another since I bought him. But never the scarred leg!


                  • #10
                    My gelding has a big ugly scar on his Right hind, wraps all the way around at hock level.

                    This gelding had been in work consistently as a five year old, and the scar did not cause lameness, nor was it aggravated during early training or when I trial-ed him for two weeks.

                    My gelding was not sold as a Hunter breeding or any other type of in-hand/line horse, and this scar made him worthless for that type of performance. I show him in hand once in a while, judges always comment on how the scar looks. It doesn't affect his movement or jumping though, so as a performance horse, the scar didn't really impact his value. He competes in the Jumpers and I've done limited distance Endurance with him, he vets with excellent scores.

                    Scars definitely depend on the intended sale avenue. ANY rail-type showing (breed show, Hunter breeding, Hacks) scars definitely impact the value, and can be deal-breakers. For sport events, if the scar is strictly cosmetic, it can be a non-issue if the horse is otherwise marketable.

                    My other horse also has a scar, and it was poorly taken care of (she had it when I got her.) Similar place, wraps around her hind at hock level. It is proud-fleshy and you can feel the scar tissue all around the joint. This is a beautifully-marked Clydesdale mare, but the scar is one thing that kept her out of the show string (her height is the other thing.) I bought this mare as a very, very cheap project horse...and to be honest, that scar was the least of her issues. She's never been lame, and is 18 this year.
                    Lifestyle coordinator for Zora, Spooky, Wolfgang and Warrior


                    • #11
                      Depends on what the horse's intended use is, and whether the injury was cosmetic (skin sliced open) or actually affected the internal structures of wherever it is (joint capsule opened).

                      My mare has a long thin scar over the outside of her lf tendon and patchy scaring on her rh front cannon, but she passed her ppe with flying colors (and it included x-rays) so it didn't matter to me. Then again, I was either going to do little putz around hunters, or low level dressage or jumpers (and then she went and exceeded expectations as a jumper prospect).

                      She raced from 2-6 and nothing was noted in her records, so we figure she did something dumb as a baby (slid into some wire fencing, or sliced herself in the front and ended up with some bad fungus in the back or something before she even went to the track). The scars are very thin and clean, so someone obviously was careful and tried their best to get the wounds to heal properly.


                      • #12
                        As the saying goes "You can't ride pretty." If the horse fit my purposes and was sound, I could care less about a scar. {Scars just add character} However, a heads up would be nice to screen out those for whom it would be a deal breaker.


                        • Original Poster

                          Thank you all! I feel better now. She is 4 y.o shire/perch/qh cross. Cute and a good brain. I was going to market her as a low level Dressage or event horse. She has a good brain, not hot, so would be ammy friendly.

                          I just wasn't sure if there was even going to be a 'market'. So again, thanks..