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Trainer drugged my horse... WWYD? Updated

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  • #41
    Knowing that a trainer uses Ace BEFORE the horse even misbehaves on the trailer, and for stall kicking at a show, would leave me wondering if this trainer is severely lacking in training skills--meaning she has few other tools in the toolkit. Even if you get her to stop drugging your horse, is she still a trainer worth training with?

    Comment


    • #42
      Conversation you heard:
      Trainer: Should I sedate your horse for a trip to an unrated show?
      You: He's normally quite good on long trips, I certainly don't think that's necessary!

      Conversation trainer "heard:"
      Trainer: I routinely sedate all horses, unless they are calm to the point of comatose, for all shows that don't drug test. I'm subtly implying this to you, without stating anything directly.
      You: *does not make categorical statement like 'don't drug my horse, and I'd rather he not go to the show if he can't travel without being Aced'*
      Trainer: Ha! I got my consent.

      Unless it's an emergency (horse is hurt, out of his wits with pain, needs to be in a trailer to hospital), utterly inexcusable. Even if the trainer thought she had consent to administer the drug, she should have called you first--at least texted you--that she was doing so. Did she seem upset or outraged when you pressed her further that you heard she had lied to you?

      Rather than engaging in open and honest dialogue with you, it sounds like this barn is taking advantage of the fact you can't be there 24/7 to monitor what's happening to your horse, as is often the case with people working 9-5. Your trainer isn't showing good horsemanship or respect for you as an owner.
      Check out the latest Fortune's Fool novel, Courage to the Sticking Place!

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      • #43
        Originally posted by Impractical Horsewoman View Post

        Unless it's an emergency (horse is hurt, out of his wits with pain, needs to be in a trailer to hospital), utterly inexcusable. Even if the trainer thought she had consent to administer the drug, she should have called you first--at least texted you--that she was doing so. Did she seem upset or outraged when you pressed her further that you heard she had lied to you?

        And even in that scenario, acepromazine would not likely be an appropriate choice of medication...
        "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

        ...just settin' on the Group W bench.

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        • #44
          In my many years I’ve only tranq’d one horse to ship. And only because she “scrambled sideways” on turns. BUT. she was travelling to Florida (34+) hours and not horse showing and it was Dorm not Ace (FYI Ace can take up to 21 days to clear some horses systems...Dorm 48 hours). So the solution was .4 dorm IM and put her on trailer last. After a couple long ass trips we used hobbles and no tranq but she was well broke to them...and in a larger “California box” or full box stall. That aside, no trainer should ever tranq a horse that is going to be showing at any level whether rated or not. This leads me to suspect Bute may also be used silly billy to get clients horses to show better as well! This is fully against anything I’d ever do to a client horse let alone mine...whether it be 5* or backyardagins show next door. Not cool
          Your village is calling. Apparently their idiot is missing!

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          • #45
            The trainer giving "ace'. after you had stated that you did not believe it was necessary, is unconscionable. Of course, the trainer gave it beforehand, giving acepromazine to an already upset horse doesn't work. If the horse had been presented to the trailer w/o medication, and refused to load, or thew a fit, the trainer simply calls you and advises that the horse is not going, so don't waste your time going to the show.

            I would have quiet conversation with the trainer, and with any luck, this will not happen again. Your other option is to leave.

            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.

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            • #46
              Originally posted by merrygoround View Post
              The trainer giving "ace'. after you had stated that you did not believe it was necessary, is unconscionable. Of course, the trainer gave it beforehand, giving acepromazine to an already upset horse doesn't work. If the horse had been presented to the trailer w/o medication, and refused to load, or thew a fit, the trainer simply calls you and advises that the horse is not going, so don't waste your time going to the show.

              I would have quiet conversation with the trainer, and with any luck, this will not happen again. Your other option is to leave.
              It's not just that the trainer gave the horse Ace before trying to load it that day. According to the OP, the trainer gave the horse Ace before EVER seeing the horse have any problem trailering. The trainer just ASSUMED the horse would have trouble trailering based on its general personality. That is what seems truly extraordinary about this.

              Comment


              • #47
                Originally posted by Ghazzu View Post

                And even in that scenario, acepromazine would not likely be an appropriate choice of medication...
                Oh, absolutely, I only meant that any drug given to a horse, for any reason, should be cleared with the owner first except in a genuinely life-or-death situation. And even then, presumably, any clearance for vet care would go through the owner.

                I'd be curious as to why the friend who saw and objected to the drugging enough to report it to the horse's owner is staying with this trainer.
                Check out the latest Fortune's Fool novel, Courage to the Sticking Place!

                Comment


                • #48
                  I didn't read that the witness was upset or objected, just that she told the OP essentially, "I saw Trainer give Dobbin Ace before getting on the trailer." And I don't think my question was answered that the witness is independent of the trainer or not. She may not be a client of the trainer, but stays because of the facilities, cost, care (barn staff, not trainer), etc.

                  OP, did you ever ask the trainer?
                  COTH's official mini-donk enabler

                  "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl

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                  • #49
                    I'd ask the trainer straight out if they gave the horse ace and if the answer is yet I'd be out of that barn so fast their head would spin. Haul and handle your own horse in the future.
                    Wouldst thou like the taste of butter and pretty dress? Wouldst thou like to live deliciously?

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                    • #50
                      Originally posted by Impractical Horsewoman View Post
                      I'd be curious as to why the friend who saw and objected to the drugging enough to report it to the horse's owner is staying with this trainer.
                      There was no friend present. Just a long time client who happened to tell the OP about the drug, probably as a "no big deal" conversation.
                      ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

                      Originally posted by LauraKY
                      I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
                      HORSING mobile training app

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                      • #51
                        I expect my trainer/B.O. to notify me if they are planning on administering anything to my horse. A quick text or call. Anyone handling my horse that doesn’t respect that, would no longer be handling my horse. Period.

                        If I was in your shoes, I would be having a serious discussion with your trainer. And, if didn’t get the answers I wanted, I would be finding a new trainer ASAP.

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          What makes your trainer think your horse is a worrier? Was this the first time trainer was shipping him? Does trainer have their own rig or use a commercial shipper for shows. While I don't condone use of drugs, if this was first time trainer was shipping and horse is a "worrier" trainer may have thought it best to take some edge off. If it was their rig, they might not want to risk your horse getting hurt or damaging the trailer. Whatever their reasoning might have been it should have all been part of the discussion beforehand. Not sure what the OP's situation is but I think if I had this sort of conversation with my trainer I would've told them I would be there to help load even if it meant a much longer day at the show.

                          I'd let the trainer know you heard that horse got some ace and want to know their reasoning for it. Based on what they have to say then you can make a decision.

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            I grew up in a time and discipline where a touch of ace was used much more frequently for situations in which the horse may tie himself up in knots, so I'm not that bugged about the "drugging" except that you guys haven't spoken about it. Trainer probably thinks that you simply said "I don't think he'll need it", and if it did indeed happen, then trainer's opinion (which you pay for) was that he did need it.

                            I'd simply have a conversation, as it sounds like a misunderstanding IMO. It's totally ok for you to want to not have meds administered, but you should just make that clear as at some barns, the trainer makes those calls.

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              i would address the situation with the trainer and nip this in the bud now.

                              Comment


                              • #55
                                Originally posted by Impractical Horsewoman View Post

                                Oh, absolutely, I only meant that any drug given to a horse, for any reason, should be cleared with the owner first except in a genuinely life-or-death situation. And even then, presumably, any clearance for vet care would go through the owner.

                                I'd be curious as to why the friend who saw and objected to the drugging enough to report it to the horse's owner is staying with this trainer.
                                This. I would be furious. I would NEVER allow someone to give ANYTHING to my horse unless explicitly instructed to do so and under a vet's instruction. Wow. Just wow. I wouldn't be able to stay with this "trainer" (I use the term loosely, it doesn't sound like she has good horsemanship). Obviously she has proven to you that her go to to is to medicate, instead of train, or say the horse is staying behind if there is a problem loading.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  If Ace is her go-to trick for anxious or misbehaving horses, I'd be high-tailing it out there faster than the rabbits being chased out of the yard by our dogs.

                                  Seriously. Why do people keep supporting trainers like this? We can't cry out for a clean sport and then support trainers who operate like this.

                                  There are *some* legitimate uses for Ace, and I have absolutely used it before for specific reasons and when there weren't other options.

                                  But giving a sedative to a horse getting on a trailer (where they need their balance and wits about them) is what I'd do as a last resort. Not as a preventative for an anxious horse who has a history of traveling *well*. And never without explicit permission from an owner.

                                  There's a LOT of things one can do for an anxious horse that don't involve a tranq...

                                  OP, the horse world is small. I'd also hate to hear rumor mills starting of "oh, her horse got ace before he showed" spread by a jealous barnmate who inserts *just* enough truth to make it believable and skips just enough details to make it seem nefarious. Even on the local circuit, drugging isn't looked upon fondly by most.
                                  Jennifer Baas
                                  It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. (Aristotle)

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    Step 1: Confront said trainer about the drugs. Don't even side step around the conversation. Come right out and ask it. No reason to indicate someone else told you what occurred. just ask it.
                                    Step 2: Exhibit said trainers response
                                    Step 3: If said trainer denies it; ask them why others who were present said the horse was injected
                                    Step 4: If said trainer admits to it; ask why they feel entitled to inject your horse with a drug without ever consulting the owner
                                    Step 5: Either make it 100% clear that your horse is never to be given anything with your consent or give your 2 weeks notice and get the hell out of there.

                                    Under NO circumstances should a trainer ever administer ANY drugs to a clients horse without consulting or phoning the owner. I don't care if the horse is turning itself inside out about getting on the trailer; the trainer is very much in the wrong here. Get answers. Straighten out the situation or get the heck out.

                                    Comment


                                    • #58
                                      Originally posted by snaffle1987 View Post
                                      Under NO circumstances should a trainer ever administer ANY drugs to a clients horse without consulting or phoning the owner. I don't care if the horse is turning itself inside out about getting on the trailer; the trainer is very much in the wrong here. Get answers. Straighten out the situation or get the heck out.
                                      I agree with this 100%. If I literally couldn't get the horse on the trailer without drugs or a big escalation in other measures, I'd leave the horse home rather than do something without incorporating the owner.

                                      I know of trainers who will make the argument "Well people who ride with me should trust my judgement" and that is true to an extent, but in my opinion there's also a line of what's appropriate to do without an owner's involvement. I'd much rather have the "You need to pay me for training to get the horse loading better - or do it yourself - and I'm sorry but he had to stay home from the show because I couldn't get him loaded safely" conversation than to drug the horse or escalate the situation and risk injury to myself or the horse.

                                      But what's worse in this situation is it seems the trainer gave the Ace more out of possible need rather than the horse being difficult to load. It's such a cavalier attitude towards medicating horses without consent.



                                      Jennifer Baas
                                      It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. (Aristotle)

                                      Comment


                                      • #59
                                        Originally posted by snaffle1987 View Post
                                        Step 1: Confront said trainer about the drugs. Don't even side step around the conversation. Come right out and ask it. No reason to indicate someone else told you what occurred. just ask it.
                                        Step 2: Exhibit said trainers response . h
                                        Step 3: If said trainer denies it; ask them why others who were present said the horse was injected Y
                                        Step 4: If said trainer admits to it; ask why they feel entitled to inject your horse with a drug without ever consulting the owner
                                        Step 5: Either make it 100% clear that your horse is never to be given anything with your consent or give your 2 weeks notice and get the hell out of there.

                                        Under NO circumstances should a trainer ever administer ANY drugs to a clients horse without consulting or phoning the owner. I don't care if the horse is turning itself inside out about getting on the trailer; the trainer is very much in the wrong here. Get answers. Straighten out the situation or get the heck out.
                                        First off. I don't, never have needed to drug my horse except when medically indicated. But some of you on here are jumping to conclusions. First how does the "resume" client know what was given to the horse - were they up front and center? Was there a giant syringe that said ACE on it? Was it injected or given orally? you can administer ACE either way. Many assume trainer gave IV vs IM. Some say trainer should never give meds - might change your mind if you have a bit of a colicky horse or a bad choke. Maybe trainer gave a tube of ulcerguard or something since trainer says horse is a worrier. Why does the trainer think the horse is a worrier? Others assume horse was giving ace to load.

                                        The best thing is for the OP to just have the conversation with trainer - let trainer know you were told your horse got ace, and you thought you were clear that by saying he didn't need it, means no. Next time make sure your schedule allows for you to be present at the barn to help wrap and load horse - that way you can see what's going on and pretty much take care of everything yourself.

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          She doesn’t actually know if the trainer really gave the ace because she’s relying on barnmate’s hearsay and probably getting worked up by all the additional fodder here.

                                          She needs to go up to the trainer and say “did you give my horse ace to get him on the trailer?” And then go from there. If the answer is yes, she needs to make sure trainer knows in no uncertain terms that that’s not ok. None of this “well, he shouldn’t need it” because that can be interpreted by the trainer as “he might not need it but it’s ok to give if I determine he needs it”. Don’t just rely on what another client told you though. God knows that’s how barn drama is born. Be an adult and have a conversation with the trainer.

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