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New barn issue or unsuitable mount ? Update- post 60

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  • #41
    Yes, that pic has come across my feed several times! It is an amazing capture!

    Comment


    • #42
      Just one thing to throw in - you say this horse takes care of you at shows. That nothing fazes him there. Here is my thought on this: At shows he is your babysitter and puts aside his "real" self. At home, the real him comes out and it is nervous and anxiety ridden. I think (IMHO) there might be some hope for this guy with a unchanging routine and surroundings and maybe some anti-anxiety meds/feed/whatever. Changing hands that many times would give me anxiety, too, frankly. You say he has all the potential in the world and I believe you. But it is getting him to stop figuratively wringing his hands and concentrate on the work.

      Having said all that, could he be a lease situation? Get someone who can handle him and seems to click and go from there? It would be a shame for him to keep getting handed on and on and on. Then you find a mount that is more suitable. I wouldn't want to come off that many times either thank you very much.

      Two examples of this type of horse: My last horse you could take to a show and bombs could be going off and he was unperturbed. At home - move a stick out of place near the arena and it was all over. Or the lovely Arab mare that when she left the property with her ignorant owner, would totally babysit him. Nothing would get to her. When he rode her at home, same thing. But put her back in her pasture and she was a pacing, cribbing, wild-eyed ball of nerves. You could literally watch her fall apart after he left. It was like caring for him was too much. Worst ulcers in a horse ever.
      "Cats aren't clean; they're covered with cat spit."
      - John S Nichols (1745-1846,writer/printer)

      Don't come for me - I didn't send for you.

      Comment


      • #43
        Originally posted by TWH Girl View Post

        ] horse is a lovely boy and he does have redeeming qualities. I guess I was hoping we'd gel together and he would learn to relax and trust me.

        I hope someone else going through a.similar situation now or in the future can refer to this thread and the wisdom of contains.
        to me this is the Mommy Factor that one can fix this and I must be that One since he depends upon me....

        There are just too many good, nice, reliable horses out there to retain one that has repeatedly demonstrate faults that will lead to serious injury .... five other owners of this horse have already passed judgement on this horse

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #44
          Originally posted by shiloh View Post
          Just one thing to throw in - you say this horse takes care of you at shows. That nothing fazes him there. Here is my thought on this: At shows he is your babysitter and puts aside his "real" self. At home, the real him comes out and it is nervous and anxiety ridden. I think (IMHO) there might be some hope for this guy with a unchanging routine and surroundings and maybe some anti-anxiety meds/feed/whatever. Changing hands that many times would give me anxiety, too, frankly. You say he has all the potential in the world and I believe you. But it is getting him to stop figuratively wringing his hands and concentrate on the work.

          Having said all that, could he be a lease situation? Get someone who can handle him and seems to click and go from there? It would be a shame for him to keep getting handed on and on and on. Then you find a mount that is more suitable. I wouldn't want to come off that many times either thank you very much.
          I know...I thought about the fact that he could be lease horse at the training barn he is going to. If they can find the right rider. I totally agree about changing his routine and that he needs consistency. I didn't want to move barns but my hand was forced after she raised board, fed only hay pellets, the barn flooded several times and she closed on Sundays- plus no outdoor to ride in summer. So I found this wonderful, cute, quiet barn about 3 miles away. They are great owners, super facility and cheaper. I moved him in March which is such a hard time to move in....transitioning into spring with the unpredictable weather and all. But my instructor gave lessons there too, so his feed and people were the same.

          He does get Smart Calm Ultra already. Vet is checking him out before he goes up north to trainers to confirm no hidden issues like ulcers or lameness. My instructor recommended doing a bute test too.

          Believe me, if this guy could work, that would be a dream come true. He's that horse I always wanted (in terms of what a great mover he is and his lovely canter) and he fell into my lap. Too bad I've fallen out of his so many times haha.
          Maybe at the trainers, if they work him 5-6 days a week and someone could lease him for a while, maybe...I guess I will just need to see how this goes and follow the path wherever it leads me.

          You guys have been just great. I don't post a lot but I really need to reach out on this one and the stories and sharing of perspective has been very valuable to me. Thank you again.

          Comment


          • #45
            Originally posted by ElementFarm View Post

            Not to derail the thread, but that picture is all over FB! (with the comment "eventing is an interesting sport" or something along those lines. It's hilarious, and quite the display of athleticism and sticking-talent!)
            Lol! I initially saw it on her FB page, where it had a few likes. I didn't realize until I clicked into the original post that it had 1000s of likes and comments. It's one for the ages! And i I thought a good example of a talented horse that's perfectly suited to one person and totally unsuitable for most others.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #46
              A young woman in my horse club, who is a good strong rider, wants a video of my little guy. She would be perfect for him. Will keep you all posted as this situation progresses....

              Comment


              • #47
                Good luck.
                It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.

                Comment


                • #48
                  Originally posted by shiloh View Post
                  Just one thing to throw in - you say this horse takes care of you at shows. That nothing fazes him there. Here is my thought on this: At shows he is your babysitter and puts aside his "real" self. At home, the real him comes out and it is nervous and anxiety ridden. I think (IMHO) there might be some hope for this guy with a unchanging routine and surroundings and maybe some anti-anxiety meds/feed/whatever. Changing hands that many times would give me anxiety, too, frankly. You say he has all the potential in the world and I believe you. But it is getting him to stop figuratively wringing his hands and concentrate on the work.

                  Having said all that, could he be a lease situation? Get someone who can handle him and seems to click and go from there? It would be a shame for him to keep getting handed on and on and on. Then you find a mount that is more suitable. I wouldn't want to come off that many times either thank you very much.

                  Two examples of this type of horse: My last horse you could take to a show and bombs could be going off and he was unperturbed. At home - move a stick out of place near the arena and it was all over. Or the lovely Arab mare that when she left the property with her ignorant owner, would totally babysit him. Nothing would get to her. When he rode her at home, same thing. But put her back in her pasture and she was a pacing, cribbing, wild-eyed ball of nerves. You could literally watch her fall apart after he left. It was like caring for him was too much. Worst ulcers in a horse ever.
                  I owned one that was hot and spooky at home. Not a lot of fun to ride but the only truly hot horse I've ever had, and I learned a lot from that experience. At the same time, this horse was "safe." Meaning you might go really really really fast in the blink of an eye, but it was going to be in a straight line without any airs above the ground. Taught me to ride that. The ones that spin and drop a shoulder or buck and twist etc. are a different story. But this horse LOVED TO HORSE SHOW. And so horse show we did. Not spooky at all at the shows, but the one corner of the arena at home where the monsters lived?

                  So, even if this horse has some redeeming qualities and could be good and relatively safe and steady at doing some job, it does not sound like that is the job you are providing the majority of the time.

                  If he is sound and will be suitable for a different program, then it probably is in your best interest to sell. You have fallen off far too many times.

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    The great thing about horses is that you can sell them and their next owner could be the best thing that ever happened to them. The biggest problem I see here is the long term effects on your confidence and therefore your effectiveness as a rider. So much of riding is a head game, and at your age (I'm nine years older than you) it can be too late to change your head. Move him along. Get something that you can relax on and really enjoy before every horse you ride feels your body ready for that spook.

                    Comment


                    • #50
                      Agreeing with most of the above. I will add the thought that while it is clear the two of you are not a good 'fit', it does not go just one way: this is not the horse for you, and you are not the rider for this horse at this time/stage in his development. It is not unusual for a greener, sensitive and reactive horse to be unsettled by a rider who has (as you admit) balance issues. A youngster like that needs a rider who can perform as a 'mentor' in the area of balance and confidence. That simply isn't part of your description as a rider. No 'fault' in either party; just a bad fit from both sides.
                      Last edited by Beck; Jun. 12, 2019, 11:45 AM. Reason: spelling
                      No matter where you go, there you are

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                      • #51
                        Spookiness is not always about being too hot and forward. It can also be a way of sucking back and resisting.

                        If a horse goes to a show and gets an adrenalin boost that makes him more forward, perhaps that overcomes the spooky resistant home behavior.

                        Such a horse might benefit from a confident rider that can keep horse forward and between hand and leg at all times. Move him along to this rider

                        I also think it scares horses when we fall off, and if he starts to associate scary things with you falling off then he might be even more anxious.

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          Originally posted by Scribbler View Post
                          Spookiness is not always about being too hot and forward. It can also be a way of sucking back and resisting.
                          Yes, so glad to read this. I'd only ever experienced the hot and forward kind, but now I have more of the suck back and resistance kind. It is ALL about providing a firm, yet giving, direction with my aids and being much more insistent about moving up, which requires an entirely different mindset that is new to me. And honestly I still struggle to keep that mindset at the canter! It's 50:50 whether I'll stay or switch to a different kind of ride in the future, and that's ok.

                          Which is​​​​​is just to echo that there is nothing wrong with you for making this decision. What works for any one rider isn't right for another, and what felt maybe doable before may be a dealbreaker now. And when you've tried as hard as you have, there's nothing to gain from beating up yourself for deciding to change direction! It's still growth to recognize that your circumstances aren't what you need to make progress. There's nothing wrong with you ♥️

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            You're right to let go of this one, I agree. Confidence is precious. I have a 19-yr old OTTB that I've had since he was 3. I tried and tried everything but he has the most powerful spook out from under you I've ever encountered. He got me off once and it was so fast that he was already a ¼ mile away by the time I righted myself and realized I could move. Cracked my helmet. The situation just never improved, no matter what I tried. I'm 62 now and I can sit his antics and haven't come off him since that one time, but I was afraid every ride. I decided that was it. Won't sell him because of that issue but also because he has advanced melanoma, so I will probably put him down this year. I still have fear that makes it hard to motivate myself to ride, but once I get on, I'm fine. I have 2 OTTBs who just came off the track a year ago. One is a bit of a hot mess, but he never has done anything to try and get me off and his attitude is phenomenal. He tries super hard and progresses quickly. He doesn't scare me—he delights me. The other guy is Mr. Chill and a good boy, just very different. Enjoy your older guy. Life's too short to support an expensive hobby and be afraid!

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              My pony as a kid had an athletic sideways spook when she was genuinely startled. My current horse rarely spooks and when she does I feel she tries to take me with her.

                              But I'm also riding an older mare who is a power house in the arena, but will get neurotic silly spooking on the trails. Honestly, I figured out it is worse if her feet are bothering her like after a trim. She starts anticipating the next ouch step and getting nervous. She spooks much much less in hoof boots! Anyhow, my first experience with true spook, drop, drop shoulder and spin but fortunately in slow motion. At speed would not be fun at all!

                              I also rode an older TB in lessons years ago that eventually had to be rehomed because he was becoming unrideable in the arena. I think he had very slight stifle or hock problems behind and this was his way of saying ouch.

                              Whereas if my Paint mare hurts, she just refuses to go forward.

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #55
                                Originally posted by Scribbler View Post
                                My pony as a kid had an athletic sideways spook when she was genuinely startled. My current horse rarely spooks and when she does I feel she tries to take me with her.

                                But I'm also riding an older mare who is a power house in the arena, but will get neurotic silly spooking on the trails. Honestly, I figured out it is worse if her feet are bothering her like after a trim. She starts anticipating the next ouch step and getting nervous. She spooks much much less in hoof boots! Anyhow, my first experience with true spook, drop, drop shoulder and spin but fortunately in slow motion. At speed would not be fun at all!

                                I also rode an older TB in lessons years ago that eventually had to be rehomed because he was becoming unrideable in the arena. I think he had very slight stifle or hock problems behind and this was his way of saying ouch.

                                Whereas if my Paint mare hurts, she just refuses to go forward.
                                Interesting you mention that, Scribbler....now yes, I have had issues with this horse from Day 1- some that have improved, but he has been falling out behind lately. Since he's going to the trainers and they are going to work him for me hard a few weeks to get a feel for him, I am having the vet out Monday. I am curious to see about his stifles. I had hocks and feet xrayed at his PPE and they were clean.

                                What gets me is how he has backslid since moving barns. We got him to the point of almost NO spooking and when he did, it was a slight jolt and no big deal. Then we moved, and the raccoons came, and it took him a while to settle in, etc. The last spook was Saturday- so not even a week ago- and appeared to be out of no where, but the BO's husband did start a fire which is near the outdoor and it was windy out. He's been ridden outside by me on super windy days before and there is no reaction. We saw a deer on that ride and no reaction. He has seen turkey and farm equipment and the BO's husband on a mower, no reaction. So this just seems really weird to me and I need to make sure I am not missing something physical before I send him off.

                                ToughShet your post was very sweet! Thank you for reminding me there is nothing 'wrong' with me.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  While I believe, based on your history with this horse, that you are better off selling him, if he has suddenly become very spooky after being moved, I would treat him for ulcers. My own horse gets extremely jumpy when having an ulcer flare.

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    Originally posted by TWH Girl View Post
                                    It almost feels like a relief to say "no, I'm not riding him" rather than worry and wonder all day how our ride that night will go. I felt like i almost needed a Xananx just to go to the barn to ride. I don't want to feel like that. I am a casual, fun rider and don't need to prove anything to anyone at this point in my life.
                                    This is the most telling to me. Riding is too expensive and time consuming for it not to be enjoyable, at the very least.
                                    "She is not fragile like a flower. She is fragile like a bomb."

                                    Comment


                                    • #58
                                      Originally posted by Beck View Post
                                      Agreeing with most of the above. I will add the thought that while it is clear the two of you are not a good 'fit', it does not go just one way: this is not the horse for you, and you are not the rider for this horse at this time/stage in his development. It is not unusual for a greener, sensitive and reactive horse to be unsettled by a rider who has (as you admit) balance issues. A youngster like that needs a rider who can perform as a 'mentor' in the area of balance and confidence. That simply isn't part of your description as a rider. No 'fault' in either party; just a bad fit from both sides.
                                      I've come to think of the horse/rider match as very similar to a romantic match. Just as there are many lovely people that would seem to suit each other on paper but don't work in real life, there are many lovely horse/rider combos that are not good for each other or just "ok". And just as we shouldn't allow fear of being single and lonely to keep us in a stagnant relationship, we shouldn't stay in the wrong horse partnership, either. The difference is that the horse must rely on us to make the necessary changes because he can't exactly put a sale ad on Dream Horse by himself.

                                      I've seen a lot of train wreck horse/rider matches that have ended with a very fearful rider and a horse soured from sitting in the field for so long that only a long, expensive stay with a professional would get that horse back to being safe for a decent amateur. You deserve the horse of your dreams and the horse deserves the human of his dreams!

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #59
                                        Originally posted by hank View Post
                                        While I believe, based on your history with this horse, that you are better off selling him, if he has suddenly become very spooky after being moved, I would treat him for ulcers. My own horse gets extremely jumpy when having an ulcer flare.
                                        Agreed. I certainly can try some ulcer guard.

                                        Comment

                                        • Original Poster

                                          #60
                                          Just a quick update- I took my horse off msm, he moved to the trainers barn and I’ve been riding him weekly. This horse is fine. Totally fine. He’s been ridden with machinery being used, and now to two shows without a hair out of place. I showed him and he was calm. Our last show was even had a car race going on near the arena and he was like . So while I’m not sure what the issue was or if is was more than one thing...he is back to being a good boy and I’m enjoying him.

                                          I am keeping him at trainers through at least next show season since it’s been very helpful for me to show with a barn vs on my own. I don’t know what the future holds for us but I know he’s in the right place for it no matter what it is.

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