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Today I went to try a horse...

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  • Today I went to try a horse...

    ...that was listed as being 16hh. When I got there I was suprised to be staring at a little mare that was maybe 15.1 on a good day. Why do people do that? It drives me bonkers! Rounding up to 16 on a 15.3 horse, especially if it is fuller-bodied to try and get more people to come out isn't bad...but a horse that is 15.1-15.2?!

    I feel like you need to look at horse ads the way you look at guys profiles on online dating sites...if the guy says he is 5'9-6', subract 2" to get his real height...anything over 6'1 is probably his real height.

    with horses- listed as 15.2-16hh, subract 2", 16.1-16.3 maybe really height, anything over 17hh is probably its real height!

    OH the joys of horse shopping!
    Last edited by AllyandPete; Dec. 23, 2009, 10:30 PM. Reason: fixing spelling
    I WAS a proud member of the *I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday* clique..but now I am 30!!!!!!!!!!!
    My new blog about my Finger Lakes Finest:
    She Ain't No Small Potato!

  • #2
    That's why I make my height range on advanced searches for sale websites a good two or three inches above and below what I'm actually looking for. You never know unfortunately. Sort of like the pony I went to try a few months ago- it was listed as a top of the line large but was actually barely a medium. Hmmm...


    • #3
      because they dont know, dont care, or really think you are that stupid...remember what p.t. barnum said.....
      "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"


      • #4
        I am convinced all horse dealers saw one inch off the bottom of the stick.

        I have never carried one home and got the same measurement with my stick.

        Carry your own with you when you go.



        • #5
          My brother defines horses in 3 categories: "ponies"- under 15 h., "about 16 h"- 15.1-16.3, and "really big" - 17h +. I've gotten two "about 16 h." from him sight unseen. One was 15.1 and grew to 16, the other was about 16.3.

          Of course his opinion of size is colored by 2 things: he's not involved in the show hunter world, and he had a lot of success racing a 15.1 horse over big timber.

          Merry Christmas, all.
          * What you release is what you teach * Don't be distracted by unwanted behavior* Whoever waits the longest is the teacher. Van Hargis


          • #6
            15.1 is the new 16


            • #7
              As a seller this is annoying too. I actually measure my horses and people don't believe me until they come to see the horse. The first words out of one woman's mouth was "Wow, she really is 16.1". I have a mare now advertised at 15.3 and very few inquiries. She could be 15.3 1/2, but my flooring is old barn wood and not super level so who knows (she's definitely no smaller). I advertised her at 15.3 to be safe but apparently should have said 16. Liars are annoying for both sides of the situation. Grrr. LOL
              '10 Dolce Latte G - Thoroughbred Mare


              • #8
                Originally posted by turningpointequine View Post
                As a seller this is annoying too. I actually measure my horses and people don't believe me until they come to see the horse. The first words out of one woman's mouth was "Wow, she really is 16.1". I have a mare now advertised at 15.3 and very few inquiries. She could be 15.3 1/2, but my flooring is old barn wood and not super level so who knows (she's definitely no smaller). I advertised her at 15.3 to be safe but apparently should have said 16. Liars are annoying for both sides of the situation. Grrr. LOL
                I agree Turningpointequine, not only do I measure mine on a concrete floor but have a metal measuring stick.
                I had a lovely 4yr old who was 16.+ and when he went to be vetted the stipulation (besides deing sound) was he be 16H minimum...so the buyer had the vet measure him on a slanted rubber matter floor. w/ a wooden older stick. The vet said 15.3 3/4 quarters. Buyer pulls plug on vetting, really...

                2 weeks later horse goes of to be tried and vetted somewhere else a diffrent vet diffrent barn. So after x-rays etc were done buyers asks if we can stick him No reason she was very petite. Vet whips out a lovely metal stick and Holy Batman horse was 16.1.
                Every thing I sell I measure from both sides and have the stick hanging in wash rack for any buyer to use should they question.
                Seriously some people have no idea and just eyeball the horse, or try to use a tape measure or hope since its young it will keep growing.
                Not all sellers work from this premise and it has nothing to do w/ the price range you are shopping in.


                • #9
                  I generally keep an open mind. I looked at a horse advertised to be 16'. When I got there and walked up to the horse he looked to be maybe 15.2. I tried the horse anyway. He was an awesome little horse with a huge stride so of course I bought him .

                  I did not have the vet measure him during the PPE and did not measure him until I had him home. When I did measure him (with a regulation stick on a flat surface), yup he was a hair over 15.2. He was 4 at the time and grew up to be around 15.3.

                  While sellers should not lie or make guesses and state them as fact, I think a lot of buyers are so hung up on size that sellers are afraid no one will look at anything unless they say it is big. But, they are horses, not men so unless you are 6 feet tall, size doesn't matter as much as people think.
                  Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                  Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.


                  • #10
                    Size should not really matter if the horse has a show record. I am exactly 15 hands tall, so when I stand next to a 16 hand horse, the withers should be 4" above my head and I should not be able to see over the horse's back. I am my own measuring stick!

                    I just sold a 3' hunter that was about 16 h. Never bothered to stick her, since she walked the lines and had a fabulous jump, and went on to earn the show record to prove it. I advertised her at 16 h, and only one prospective buyer questioned her height. No one bothered to stick her since it was all about matching up horse and rider, both physically and ability wise.
                    Man plans. God laughs.


                    • #11
                      I advertised a horse for sale who was 16.1 hands. The potential buyer came out, looked at the horse, watched him ridden etc.

                      "So, this horse must be about 15.2 I think" he says. "Nope, he's 16.1, I just measured him last week" I have a good stick with a level on it. I may be out half an inch or so due to footing/lack of suitable measuring spot, but I'm not out by 3 inches. If a buyer can't tell 15.2 from 16.1, he's just disqualified himself as a suitable owner for the horse. The fact that the buyer did not want to ride the horse because he was afraid of the english tack didn't come into it, I swear.

                      It works both ways.


                      • #12
                        I'm 5'4" and that is 16h-yet I routinely look over the back of horses touted as 16.2.

                        Basic axiom of horse shopping is it is 2 inches shorter and 2 years older then advertised. Except Ponies advertised as 12.1, 13.1 or 14.1. Those are 2 inches TALLER.
                        When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                        The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


                        • #13
                          I always measure and if I need to round anything off I round down to be safe. I try hard to be truthful about my horses to the point I state every lameness ever and anything I know that has happened to them and how they have been feed all their life. I feel where I brought them into the world I have a responsibility to place them where they fit and will have a usefullness to their owners. I do not ever want a horse of mine coping with a dismal end because of a mismatch. Honesty is th ebest policy and it does filter who contacts you. It is sad that people make th eassumption that all ads are false.


                          • #14
                            I'm one of those riders for whom size DOES matter. I'm 5'8" and when I was looking for a new horse five years ago, I wouldn't look at anything listed at 16 hands or less. (I also didn't want anything 17 hands or more). Yeah, small window, I know.

                            I had no experiences of horses being significantly misrepresented in height. Maybe I was just lucky. The horse I bought was listed as 16.1 in her papers and, as I recall, 16.3 in the ad. She was 16.2. Perfect for me! :-) But I didn't stick her until I got her home. I was looking for something the right size for me (which she was) not a exact, specific height . . .


                            • #15
                              I'm with HollyHorse. I'm 5'10 1/2" so I need a big horse.

                              I talked to a lady not too long ago and she said to me "He's REALLY 17 Hands so that won't bother you will it? I mean, he's huge. He's 17 hands. I'm 5'8" standing next to him in that picture." Smart on her part. Because the horses withers were almost even with her head.


                              • #16
                                Before I went to see "Blue", the seller told me that he was 'around' 15 hands. I was coming from a 17-hand Thoroughbred, looking for a Morgan. His height, or lack thereof, didn't sell me on him; it was his movement, training, and personality.

                                When I DID measure him (after I got him), he was 15.0 1/2". When you get on his back, his head comes up, his neck arches, and he is transformed from a dumpy looking little gelding into Something Special. You would SWEAR you were riding a 16-hand horse! He's 'old-fashioned', so he takes up leg anyway, and he's powerful, so I never feel/felt like I was too much for him (weight-wise).

                                I REALLY like this horse.
                                "Oh, sure, you may be able to take down one smurf, but mark my words: You bonk one smurf, you better be ready for a blue wave."---Bucky Katt


                                • #17
                                  I am just shy of 6' tall so size does matter to m/

                                  Some horses take up more leg than others. I had a 16.2" mare who was narrow; I always felt too big on her. My current TB is maybe 16.1 but he rides big and takes up my leg. When I first picked him up he was underweight and scrawny. I took him in as a foster dismissed him out of hand as being too small. Some groceries and work helped him to fill out considerably. In fact the first time I actually sat on him I was really surprised by how much bigger he felt.

                                  That said, I am mightily PO'd when I show up at a barn and find a horse is 15.2" on a good day.

                                  Before going to see a horse I always stress to the owner that I am TALL and that I need a horse that is suited to my height.
                                  Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                                  EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.


                                  • #18
                                    Yeah... I drove 8 hours each way to see an allegedly 16.1h who was 15 even...

                                    ...And now I'm kinda stuck w/ Tony the Pony, who OK *could* still grow (he's 3.5 y/o, late-developing breed) but has been "stuck" on 15.1 for long enough that I'm giving up hope. I'm 5'10" so this is NOT a winning situation, certainly not for the show ring anyway. Oh well: bought him to cross-train into carriage driving anyway... sigh...
                                    "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief


                                    • #19
                                      Well you know the old joke don't you.

                                      Why can't women reverse cars and parallel park.

                                      Because men keep telling them 4inches is 6 inches


                                      • #20
                                        I bought a coming 4yo TB mare this spring who was advertised as 15.3 - which was fairly accurate, by my eye. I'm a hair shy of 5'8", but I was hoping she wasn't done growing considering her age (and lack of nutrition at the time).

                                        Nine months later, she's a chubby 16.1 and I think (hope) not done. But she's also fairly wide barreled, and takes up my leg. I'm hoping for another inch or two, but you just never know. She looks MUCH bigger than my 16.3h TB did with a rider, and it took him until 7-8 to reach that height (16h when I bought him at 5).

                                        I find that there is a special group of folks that are the backyard-y type that end up with a TB somehow, and advertise them as 17.2-18h because they're so used to the 14.3h backyard nag in the other pasture. Said TB is usually about 16h, and the ad says REALLY, he's 18h! He's REALLY REALLY BIG!