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Curious how many horses you have and if you board?

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  • Curious how many horses you have and if you board?

    I am curious about people's horsey experiences and backgrounds. How many horses do you have? What breeds? How long have you had them? Do you board or keep at home? What type of riding (if any) do you do?

    Since I recently lost my 31yo arab to cancer last month, my husband and I now have four horses.
    QH - age 18, owned 17 years.
    Paint - age 18, owned 17 years.
    Percheron/arab - age 16, owned 15 years.
    Percheron/QH - age 10, owned almost 7 years.

    In the first year, we boarded at multiple places, until we realized that I would not be happy with them at any boarding facility, so we found a place to bring them home and they've been with us ever since.

    My husband, born in England, grew up competing in jumping but left sport as a teenager. I first discovered the joy of having horses when I met him in my late 20s. I studied parelli (graduated original program 2005), took dressage and h/j lessons, and participated in many activities from rounding up bison to foxhunting to completing LD races. About 10 years ago, I realized I'm happiest just trail riding (with english endurance tack), occasionally camping backcountry with them, and mostly enjoying them as big backyard pets aka valued members of our family.

  • #2
    I have four horses and I board them.

    ~18 year old Dutch Harness Horse gelding (owned for 2 years)
    ~26 year old Belgian gelding (owned for 20 months)
    ~15 year old Standardbred gelding (owned for 20 months)
    ~30ish year old mini-Mule mare (owned for 8 months)

    All four are rescues. I mostly do trail riding now, of the DHH and Belgian geldings. The Standardbred has EPM and a restricted airway and cannot be ridden, and the mule is older than dirt and is small so she is just a loved pasture ornament.
    "People ask me 'will I remember them if I make it'. I ask them 'will you remember me if I don't?'"

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    • #3
      I have one horse that is boarded.

      17 y.o. 1/2 Andalusian 1/2 appendix QH (my profile pic). I have owned her since she was coming 2. Currently just playing around between trail riding and dressage. I have had a multitude of physical issues and surgeries in the last 6-7 years that has resulted in a very light workload for her. I have been back to riding for about 2 months...it feels goood . I need to get myself in better shape but am surprised the muscle memory is there.

      Susan

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      • #4
        I own three. One is boarded.

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        • #5
          I have 2 horses currently a

          15 year old Appaloosa I have owned 14 + years.
          17 year old Appaloosa cross we have had 9 years.

          I boarded happily at 1 barn 28 years ago (for 13 years) but once I married we have always had my horses at home.

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          • #6
            I currently have 4
            - 25 year old Morgan mare (retired)
            -16 year old Morgan mare (just coming off a layup)
            -9 year old Rocky Mtn mare (my main endurance horse)
            -7 year old Kentucky Mtn gelding (just got him last week )

            I do self care board so that I can have them some where that I can easily get to good conditioning trails. I could have the ones not in work at home but I pay for my field so it's easier just to have them all in one place
            Wouldst thou like the taste of butter and pretty dress? Wouldst thou like to live deliciously?

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            • #7
              I have 3:

              7 year old Paint gelding that's boarded at my trainer's barn.
              11 year old and 13 year old Paint geldings at home.

              I leave one with the trainer through the winter so I have a place to ride in her lovely indoor arena. The others have the winter off, and come spring they'll take turns with trainer so will be ready for show and trail riding seasons.

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              • Original Poster

                #8
                I'm pleased I started this thread, as I love reading the responses so far. It's neat to see the variety of people on the forum. Thanks!

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                • #9
                  I have three at home: one almost-elderly QH with the mind of a Mafia don, one sweet, ginoromous TBX who always seems to be in the shop for repairs, and one daemonic mini to rule them all.

                  Three has always been a great number for me.

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                  • #10
                    I have three, all at home.
                    - Music is a 33 yo TB x QH. She is fully retired, and has Cushings (being treated), and is still pretty sound. I have had her since she was a long yearling.
                    - Belle is a 23yo Connemara x TB, and is still nominally in full work. She is high energy, and a great jumper, but doesn't like dressage. I have had her since she was 5
                    - Tiara is another 8 yo Connemara x TB. I have had her since she was a 2 yo. Once I get my energy back, she will be in full work too.

                    The last time I boarded was 1990 - Music, and another TB I was leasing.
                    Janet

                    chief feeder and mucker for Music, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now). Spy is gone. April 15, 1982 to Jan 10, 2019.

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                    • #11
                      While raising my kids, we bought a farmette so we could have the horses at home. We had anywhere from 1 to 6 horses at a time, depending on how the kids were progressing in their riding (outgrowing one horse, moving on to the next before we sold the first one, etc.) Later, I had a couple rescues and we also boarded neighbor horses for a period of time, which essentially paid the feed bill for ours.

                      I only boarded for a year before we hit on that solution. Boarding was way too expensive for me to contemplate, knowing how likely it was that we'd be moving horses in and out.

                      We paid extra for that house because of the land, but the land stays, so when you sell, you get extra out of it. Thus, the land cost of boarding is zero -- expenses are feed, vet, shoeing, tack, but not land.

                      Now I ride at a boarding barn, and don't own any horses at all. I kind of miss it -- the work kept me trim. But I kind of don't miss it at all -- I can go away for two weeks at a time and not worry one bit about the horse.

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                      • #12
                        I have 4. My husband’s two cutting horses and my old Arab mare live at home. My German Riding pony is boarded because I actually ride more in the winter and need an indoor. We have a flag at home to work the cutters and some cows about a mile away, also for the cutters to practice on.

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                        • #13
                          Two. I board because if one wants to ride regularly in the winter an indoor arena is a must in this climate. I decided that it made more sense to board two (three at one point) than keep them at home as long as I wanted to ride regularly. Having a horse property would require so much extra time that I know I'd lose riding time. Aside from the winter riding limitations.

                          Both of my current horses have been mine since they were days old. I did all the training on both.

                          I have been a trail guide (at a pay $20 for a hour nose to tail trail ride "ranch"), shown dressage, hunters, dressage again, evented, done hunter paces, gone on trail riding vacations with my horse, and discovered endurance riding in the last couple of years.

                          I still love dressage, but am more interested in training than showing and I'm keen to get out and do more endurance rides. Like my older horse I really enjoy seeing where that trail goes. I discovered this year just how much my mental health relies on those trail rides to connect with nature's changing seasons.

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                          • #14
                            I've had at least one horse since I was 5. We used to keep 8-10 (young/trail/show/retired/spares) at home. We've always made our own hay and do everything we can ourselves, so it doesn't cost all that much to keep a few more horses than we're actually using.

                            We're late 60's now and don't want to outlive the horses we have, so as the old ones have died off we haven't replaced them. So, we're down to 4 saddle horses and a mini now. I have a 15 year old Trakehner who has lots of energy so he does almost all of the ring work, DH and I trail ride on Sundays so we each have a trail horse or mule, and granddaughter rides our old Halflinger. If she continues to ride I may get one more so that the Halfinger can retire.

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                            • #15
                              I have ridden - Huntseat, Hunters, Dressage, Eventing & Driving - over the span of some 40+yrs.
                              Lessons starting at 8, stopped at 15 for Life & took it up again in my early 30s.
                              Lesson horses,then shareboarded, then boarded my own until 15yrs ago when I bought my farm.

                              Before that, DH joined me.
                              Total Cityguy, learned to ride at 56yo, showed Hunters & Evented with me until I lost him at 70.
                              Steppin'Out in my signature was his horse - TWH turned Eventer.
                              Farmette is 5ac of fields with a decent house.
                              RE Bubble burst just after I sold my 2-flat in the Big City, leaving me enough to pay cash for the farm & build a barn w/attached indoor.

                              The names in my signature are those I've loved & lost.

                              Current Herd of 3:

                              19yo Hackney Pony - had him 9yrs.
                              He was a freebie from my shoer, gotten to keep my WB (Sam) company.
                              Trained to drive, but crashed w/shoer. I can ground-drive him, but too old (me) to try restarting in harness.
                              So he is amusing & decorative & minion to horse below:

                              TWH - somewhere around 16ish - gifted to me by a friend when I lost Sam.
                              She had him 6yrs & used him exclusively for horsecamping & trails.
                              In the 4yrs I've had him, he has learned to trot, canter still a work in progress & he will become my non-competitive (because I am not) Dressage mount. Won his first ever Intro test 2yrs ago.

                              Mini I got as a 2yo unbroke. He went to Amish Camp & learned to drive.
                              Now, at 5, he is my Little Engine That Could.
                              A 12mi drive is nothing to him & he has shown me that CDE is in our future.
                              *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                              Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                              Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                              Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I have 2 geldings and board at a full self-care facility (oh my gosh, you have no idea how happy this makes me).

                                Remy - 17-year-old Lippitt Morgan (had for 16 years)
                                Aries - 12-year-old Morgan (had for 11 years).

                                They are both all-around horses, western, English, Remy drives (working up the nerve to hook Aries one of these days). I typically do one or two Morgan shows a year.

                                And have a Lippitt Morgan baby coming from a breeder next year, so starting to look for my own place.

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                                • #17
                                  Started lessons when I was six, first horse at seven (a 3 yo Arab with 30 days ). I did 4H, Pony Club, breed shows, open shows, endurance rides, and fox hunting. Moved to the south and continued 4H and switched to western pleasure. Boarded and kept at home as a kid. As an adult, managed a 60+ horse facility and gave lessons, so had a small string of co-owned lesson horses, still had my first horse, bought another Arab, then another, then back and forth with a few other breeds, rode some TWHs. Moved to the PNW and brought two Arabs and an Anglo-Arab with me, bought a small farm and boarded horses. Divorce happened, sold one horse and the farm, went back to boarding, then lost my first horse to Cushings after 19 years. Traded the AA for a pony, then got an ISH. Boarded until two years ago, bought and built my farm, so now at home I have:

                                  -My 10 yo ISH gelding
                                  -My Dad's retired Morgan (25 ish)
                                  -My two mini donkeys (10 and 17)
                                  -And just got a 5 yo pony mare, no idea on breed at all

                                  I contemplate from time to time boarding a couple, I have the room and will have an arena next year, but then I look outside at all the rain and know I have to feed in 5 minutes so I can get ready for work (night shift) and think "nahhhh."
                                  Last edited by TheJenners; Oct. 21, 2019, 08:28 PM. Reason: Engrish ;)
                                  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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                                  • #18
                                    I currently have a 13 yo Arab/Hano mare, owned for 10 years. I board her now. At one point I had 3 horses- daughter's Pony Club eventing percheron cross mare, my retired TB/DWB chestnut mare and my current horse all boarded at different barns. For a time they were at home for the summer then boarded in winter as I could not manage water and hay storage in my home set up when it was -20 C. Daughter's horse was sold, retired mare died, we moved and life is much simpler! My mare is boarded 10 minutes away in a "hybrid board" situation with excellent facilities and great hacking available.
                                    (Hybrid board is a new option around here- horses are out 24/7 with shelter but a stall is available in really foul weather, illness or showing. Best of both worlds.)

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                                    • #19
                                      I had two horses for 24 yrs, Arab and a TB, boarded them. They were geldings BFFs had a bromance.

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                                      • #20
                                        We have 6 right now and keep them at home.

                                        26 yr old Morgan - owned for about 18-20 years. Mostly retired, used for light riding.
                                        29 yr old QH - owned for about 15 yrs. Completely retired.
                                        12 yr old Arab/Paint - owned for 2.5 years- Bought her when it was time to give my Morgan some time off.
                                        10 yr old Arab/QH - owned for 2.5 years - husband's horse.
                                        11 yr old Paint - owned 1.5 years - bought to flip but ended up keeping.
                                        5 month old Arab/QH

                                        Right now we mostly do trails and back country stuff. We will get back into the swing of more disciplined riding when life settles down. I'd like to try working equitation with my ArabX.

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