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Reading between the lines seller's make about their horses

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  • #21
    I will say that when I have said no to a buyer, not a good fit, they became so persistant! I remember thinking that it might be the best way to sell, just say no and they get super interested. I my case a horse had chronic lameness or the mare was not safe for a child to ride. Or the new mother who rode a neighbor's horse a few times in her youth who wanted to buy a green three year old. What is wrong with people?

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    • #22
      I particularly liked one recently: horse was being advertised as 'bomb proof', well broke and, smart....the only picture of the horse supplied? One of him in the pasture in the midst of a truly athletic buck....the lines weren't even in the same county in that ad!
      Now, had they advertised him as hot for his breed, athletic, but smart, I'd believe them.

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      • #23
        I once saw an ad that included the phrase "quick with her feet" without much other detail. I still don't know if the horse was good in technical footing out on trail, a nice jumper, maybe a great gaming horse.. or would kick the snot out of you.
        There is no joy equal to that found on the back of a horse.

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        • #24
          Originally posted by B and B View Post
          I particularly liked one recently: horse was being advertised as 'bomb proof', well broke and, smart....the only picture of the horse supplied? One of him in the pasture in the midst of a truly athletic buck....the lines weren't even in the same county in that ad!
          Now, had they advertised him as hot for his breed, athletic, but smart, I'd believe them.
          I mean, that's not the picture I would choose for that ad, but I've certainly seen some otherwise half-dead schoolies do pretty amazing acrobatics in the pasture at times.
          Flickr

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          • #25
            Originally posted by Rallycairn View Post
            ^ I just don't want to EVER see any more pictures of anyone standing on a horse's back, or videos of same.
            This x 1000

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            • #26
              "Lacks confidence" = we've only ridden him 3 times in the 2 years we've owned him, and any training he ever had is pretty much lost

              Actually that comment is so non-specific, the definition will be personal to the person who made it. It probably substitutes for a long paragraph of excuses for the horse's lack of training.

              "Great trail prospect" = unsound and untrained. Don't know why people think that a horse whose feet hurt should take up a career as a walk-trot trail horse. Trail horses need sturdy, sound feet, after all.

              Originally posted by PonyPenny View Post
              The new one is “Horse is for sale due to no fault of his own” I have seen countless ads with this phrase. I do not get the point of this. It is not like the horse has any choice in the matter. Can anyone enlightened me?
              Rescues use this a lot. To me it means that the prior owner, adopter or foster did not know enough about horses to handle this one. *But* the rescue doesn't want to embarrass the prior owner/adopter/foster with the details.

              Especially from a rescue, it can also mean that the prior adopter/foster home had a change of circumstances and can't keep the horse (relocation to high-cost area; lost a job; etc.); or the rescue inspection process found the home to be inadequate in some way, anything from not feeding the poor creature to fencing falling down and allowing the horse to wander. Whatever it is, the rescue won't share the details because they don't want to risk alienating current and future adopters/fosters who worry that someone will tell tales on them, whether merited or not.

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              • #27
                I have a horse that I could say lacks confidence or needs confidence from the rider. He's a good horse with good training but sometimes he will come across something and ask a question. The rider needs to be there to encourage him to move along. He thinks really fast, so a rider that stays calm, cool, collected and confident helps him from fretting.

                If he has a rider with no confidence he will take advantage and suddenly things are scary or he doesn't do his best work. He's smart so he knows if you're in it or not, and I'd you're not into it, he isn't either.

                The rider doesn't even need real confidence 100% of the time, but just enough. There are some riders that this horse would never be an issue for, but for others that are too timid, there'd definitely be some bumps in the road. So in that case I'd say he needs confidence from his rider and is not best suited to a timid rider. He doesn't do a thing terrible, but may get rushy, stop, turn around, or balk. If the rider is clear and confident it's short lived, he moves on, and doesn't make it an issue.

                But I do know or some ads where there has been something said about a horse lacking confidence and the horse is just a rattled mess and will take many months of retraining and borderline needs a pro ride. There are just some horses that ask "are you sure?" and you have to be there to say yes. Some others are ho hum yeah whatever types. So while a horse that gets confidence from the rider wouldn't scare me away, I'd have to closely evaluate.

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                • #28
                  'Stunning' often combined with a photo of a bucket headed, ill conformed horse. You can only conclude that it isn't the horse's looks that are 'stunning' but its ability to give its rider a concussion.

                  I also love the ones where the ad says something along the lines of 'here we have XXXX for sale, you all know him' with not much more information. Now this might work if XXXX was an international competition horse that competed at the Olympics, but he's actually a privately owned pony who's not famous in any way.

                  For Gypsy Cobs the best ads are the ones that have photos of a leg from a bad angle with maybe another showing that it has a head. No conformation shot though... maybe the horse only has a head and one leg(!)

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                  • #29
                    My biggest issue is that your photos and videos need to match up with what you state in the ad. Horse can jump nice 1.30 rounds? Horse has mastered Grand Prix movements? Horse can whatever... Show me! I don't want to read that the horse has done and can do x, y, and z but you have a headshot in the ad and a random picture of the horse standing still. I mean, maybe if I am extremely local I'd still take a look, but you're really not doing yourself or the horse any favors with crap advertising.

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                    • #30
                      Oh, I remembered more!

                      Event prospect = no lead change
                      Foxhunting prospect = no lead change and no bend
                      Some maintenance = prosthetic limbs were considered but rejected because of cost.

                      I hate the standing on the back photos almost as much as photos involving a blue plastic tarp. It's a early warning sign that the horse has been natural horsemanshiped.

                      I also hate the no confo photo. It's not that hard to stand the horse up and get a decent cell phone photo.
                      The plural of anecdote is not data.

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                      • #31
                        I really detest ads that require a forever home. I wish that could be the case for every horse, but I am a realist. Life happens and horses get resold. I'm also not impressed when a buyer says they will offer a forever home. It doesn't make me more willing to sell to them.

                        Back to the description about a horse needing a confident rider, I think it can be an honest assessment. So many riders seem to think that horses are like cars and they ride like passengers. There seems to be a lack of communication with the horse. I was taught as a chlld back in the dawn of time that if you were scared of a horse, you should not handle or ride that horse because the horse could sense your fear. It was a quick way to get hurt. Horses are sentient beings and some of them are more sensitive to their rider's emotions than others. Sometimes I think we don't appreciate how much horses know. I am not ascribing human emotions to horses, but I do think we sell them short on their part of the partnership.
                        Where Norwegian Fjords Rule
                        http://www.ironwood-farm.com

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                        • #32
                          My all time fave: Horse has been free jumped over 4 feet! = Can't keep the little shit in his paddock.

                          I am not looking for inevitably I see ads on my facebook feed for groups I'm a member of that also allow tack, boarding, etc. ads.

                          I hate the photos taken at weird angles in a pasture. Get off the fence, stand the horse up square, and take a photo.

                          And the horses of dubious breeding, especially "warmblood crosses." Calling your unregistered horse a "warmblood" does not automatically add a zero to the price.

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                          • #33
                            I bought a broodmare from a farm that was going out of business and dispersing all of their stock.

                            The owner must have mentioned the horse's weight being good at least five times in our brief conversation. I found it odd, particularly because I didn't ask anything about her weight or feeding nor was the mare's weight all that great at the time. She was maybe a BCS of 4, which is fine, but not really a conversation starter. I was buying the mare regardless, so while I thought the remarks were bizarre, I didn't overthink it.

                            Then I got the mare home to learn she is the hardest keeper in all of history. Seriously, if the horse had it her way, she would starve to death.

                            She's pretty chunky these days, but it took years of careful management and obscene amounts of food, most of which she wasted.

                            (**COTH CYA: Yes, I scoped and treated her for every type of ulcer under the sun, not to mention addressing all other tenants of good horse care)
                            Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

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                            • #34
                              So, what’s the best horse for a timid rider? I rode an ex- brood mare.
                              She was a very understanding patient horse, went right from a jumping class, which she looked excited (in a good way), to me, a rerider with no core strength.
                              One trot lap, and she took a deep sigh, “oh, we’ll be doing this”.
                              I wondered/guessed if it her understanding nature was from dealing with raising foals.

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                              • #35
                                I hate the ones that say.....”currently showing 2ft6, schooling 3ft but has the scope to go 1.20 or bigger”.....then why hasn’t it? It’s already 12 and you have a picture of it jumping an x rail (so not even 2ft6) and I can’t find ANY show records anywhere.......
                                Breast cancer survivor!

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                                • #36
                                  Oh, and the 15 year old green broke horses that are "prospects" for dressage or jumping.

                                  As far as the confidence thing, when I hear "horse needs a confident rider," this strikes me as language out of a coherent lesson or showing program. Of course the question then becomes, how confident? Depending on the context, this could just mean a child that can w t c and likes forward, or it could mean this is a true pro ride.

                                  A horse might need a confident rider for all kinds of reasons. The horse might be a crazy brave hothead that will try to jump anything, or might be a forward horse with a spook, or might be stoppy or balky or crow-hop, or might be anxious or herd bound or just sensitive and well trained.

                                  When I hear "the horse lacks confidence," however, this strikes me more as language out of natural horsemanship. All behavior problems can be blamed on "lack of confidence." He might be spooky, or herd bound, or he might bite and kick (because that shows fear of the handler, don't you know). Now the point of "horse lacks confidence" in NH is that you recognize when a horse is nervous and don't misinterpret it as naughty, but the big point is that you *then fix it* so the horse has confidence. When I hear someone who has had a horse several years describe it as "lacks confidence," then I think there has been a fail somewhere.

                                  I certainly know people who think their horse is nervous when he is merely getting hot and forward under saddle. I know someone (fairly experienced) who thought their gelding was "spooking" when he got all excited and ran laps in turnout when he saw my mare. So it is completely possible for owners to interpret behavior that I think of as a *sign* of confidence (forward under saddle, or being studly in turnout) as "lacks confidence."

                                  That's why I said back in a previous post that you can interpret "horse lacks confidence" to mean "owner lacks confidence."

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                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by CanteringCarrot View Post
                                    I have a horse that I could say lacks confidence or needs confidence from the rider. He's a good horse with good training but sometimes he will come across something and ask a question. The rider needs to be there to encourage him to move along. He thinks really fast, so a rider that stays calm, cool, collected and confident helps him from fretting.

                                    If he has a rider with no confidence he will take advantage and suddenly things are scary or he doesn't do his best work. He's smart so he knows if you're in it or not, and I'd you're not into it, he isn't either.

                                    The rider doesn't even need real confidence 100% of the time, but just enough. There are some riders that this horse would never be an issue for, but for others that are too timid, there'd definitely be some bumps in the road. So in that case I'd say he needs confidence from his rider and is not best suited to a timid rider. He doesn't do a thing terrible, but may get rushy, stop, turn around, or balk. If the rider is clear and confident it's short lived, he moves on, and doesn't make it an issue.
                                    I had one exactly like that. He needed a confident rider: one he could trust/have confidence in to take charge and look after him. Decisive and supportive. Too 'mushy' or indecisive and he'd start fretting. Get it just right and he'd go through fire for you - just don't ask him to do it 'alone'. I used him in lessons: he'd give a rider 20-30 minutes and if the rider did not step up to the plate in that time, the gelding would walk over to me, put his head against my chest, heave a sigh, and stand there. "I can't work with this!" If the rider got on with their part of the job he was a light and fairly forward ride and lots of fun. Just not confident in himself.

                                    No matter where you go, there you are

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                                    • #38
                                      I can say that for the most part, I pretty much ignore whatever the ad says in that regards. I want to watch the owner or trainer ride and then I want to sit on the horse and feel them myself. All of the "lacks confidence" etc and so on, is completely subjective. I sat on a horse the other day that was listed as "broke enough for my 10 year old kid to ride on trails"- I got on this horse and thought, well I suppose he's broke enough for a kid if you didn't particularly like that kid.
                                      Wouldst thou like the taste of butter and pretty dress? Wouldst thou like to live deliciously?

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                                      • Original Poster

                                        #39
                                        Well, I can't stress enough to vet the seller. The seller gave me the name of the girl recently working with the horse who needs more self-confidence. I spoke with her and learned he has bad buddy sour issues including taking off/bolting with the rider to get back to the herd/barn. To me, that is more than a self-confidence issue....

                                        Horse shopping continues!

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                                        • #40
                                          I’m so tired of the “looking for my unicorn” ads. You know it’s totally unrealistic to find a quiet, sound, non-OTTB 16.2h+ gelding under 10 years old who is a “confidence builder” and will pack you safely around a 3’ course within your $5,000 budget. Just because you admit that your expectations are totally unrealistic doesn’t mean they are suddenly going to be met.

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