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Neighbour has a serious case of the crazies.

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  • Neighbour has a serious case of the crazies.

    The neighbour has only moved in about 6 weeks ago. She's a bit odd but seems nice enough. There's been a few eyebrow raising moments but nothing that sends up huge red flags. Things like when she first moved in, she asked if she could buy hay from us since we get it delivered and she only has a little car. No problem. Let her know the price and when the guy would be back next and we would throw a few bales over the fence. Did so the next day and while I was riding that afternoon (the arena is on the border of the properties and the blocks are long and skinny) she waved me down and said to take the hay back. She wanted grassy hay and we had barley hay. She won't feed anything except grassy hay. That's fine, took the hay back and suggested a few places that might have some rounds, but it was a big might as there hasn't been any rain and grassy hay was scarce. Then a few days later, I'm passing her on our road and she pulled up and said why didn't I let her know that no one had grassy hay at the moment. Erm, ok? I did warn you but that's fine. She was a bit huffy when I told her that unless she wanted to pay $29 for a bale of lucerne/alfalfa, then barley hay was all that's available at the moment. So, she took the hay bales back because she didn't want to pay the price for lucerne. Her mare is retired and quite old but to the neighbors' credit, she does look very good.

    Then it's little things like while I'm riding, she'll come up to the fence and make comments like "Oh his head is always down too much. You should let him lift his head up more, like when they're running around having fun." While I'm doing a stretchy trot, the horse has the nose to the ground on totally loose reins. Or when I'm riding my mare who's trained to Grand Prix. "Why don't you let her prance more? She has more fun doing that." My mare is on rehab at the moment and likes to passage and piaffe when she's feeling a bit full of herself. Again, nice explanations to what I'm doing and the neighbor seems happy about it. Mostly.

    While talking to her she'll cut you off mid sentence and completely change the topic to something else. And then come back to the previous topic partway through something else. It hurts my brain to talk to her some days because she is all over the place.

    So nothing sinister, just someone inexperienced and a little bit odd.

    Yesterday afternoon my husband's old horse went down with colic. He came down to the front of the property, found some shade and laid down. He wasn't rolling or thrashing so my husband left him be, went and called me and the vet. The vet couldn't make it for another hour or so because she was on another emergency. We always have banamine on hand so hubby said to get there when she could because the old boy didn't look too bad. As hubby was giving him the injection, the neighbor came to the fence and asked what was wrong.

    Hubby explained that the old boy was a bit colicky and he was just giving him some pain relief until the vet could get there. The neighbor started to make a fuss saying that no one should ever inject a horse except for a vet. Hubby at the point was a bit stressed didn't want to deal with her and told her to go away and mind her own business, but a little more forcefully. I had just arrived at this stage and she started telling me the same thing. I told her that we always have pain relief on hand and our vet trusts us 100% to do the injection. Then she started to get upset saying we needed to get the vet here right away. I explained again the vet was on the way and we just wanted to make the old boy comfortable until she got here. The neighbor finally dropped it but hung around doing stuff by her garden near the fence the entire time.

    The vet took an hour and a half to get here. In that time, the old boy was up but still a little uncomfortable. He had good gut sounds and everything looked ok, so he got drenched, more pain relief and a rectal. Everything looked okay and the vet was happy with everything. Neighbour was back at the fence being nosy but this time just asked if the horse was okay. Reassured her everything was fine and then she went back inside.

    The old boy took a turn for the worse a few hours later. He had gastric reflux coming out of his nose, very uncomfortable despite the extra dose of painkillers. He lost all gut sounds and went down and we couldn't get him back up. The vet came out as quickly as she could and he was euthanised. He went very quickly and peacefully. He was my husband's horse but we're both equally heartbroken to say goodbye. Even though you know the old ones have limited time left on this planet, it's still never, ever easy to make that call.

    This morning the excavator came to dig a hole for him. We have a little spot down the back where our horses have been laid to rest. It's never a nice sight having to take a dead body down the back and I really, really hate this part. But I was there the whole time until the grave was covered. Walking back while both me and my husband are still crying, the neighbor was at the arena fence. She asked what happened and halfway through explaining to her that the old boy took a turn for the worst, the neighbor starts ranting that this is why no one should ever inject their horse and we'd probably killed him by not waiting for the vet to give the injection. Both me and my husband were speechless. Before either of us could speak up, she demanded to know why we didn't send the horse for surgery. Because surgery fixes all colic.

    Holy crap, did my husband lose his temper then. While he was telling her not so politely to mind her own business and get her head out of the clouds, she started yelling back claiming she was calling animal welfare on us because we killed a horse for no reason. Then she was going to post on the local Facebook group that we were murderers and should be charged for it.

    So now she's gone from being a little bit odd to seriously 'what the hell is wrong with this person?'

    She went back inside. We had a quick chat with the local police station, just so something was on record in case she has the serious case of cray crays and does something stupid. It's been a few hours and I'm still waiting for that Facebook post and a phone call from the local animal welfare people. Even the other neighbors who we don't really like, but are amicable with them, came over to offer their condolences and to say they heard the crazy lady yelling and they were happy to back us up if anything further goes ahead. The electric fence on the laneway between the properties is turned back on.

    What the hell is wrong with people? It's stressing me out that she might be crazy enough to do something. But she could also just be full of hot air and hopefully just let us alone after all this. I won't miss her ring side commentary while I'm riding, that's for sure.
    Not my circus, not my monkeys!

  • #2
    It's hard enough to lose a horse without having to battle your nutty neighbor over it. Unfortunately, there's probably not much you can do except refuse to engage her. Smile and say hello, then keep moving. Hopefully, she'll grow tired of being ignored and find another cause.

    I'm sorry for your loss.
    Patience pays.


    • #3
      Sounds like a privacy fence and a call to your lawyer (not necessarily in that order) are a good idea. I would also put up Posted No Trespassing signs. You have a nut on your hands and she may yet show up inside your barn too.


      • #4
        My sympathies for your loss.

        Your neighbor sounds much like someone I boarded with, though I didn't have to deal with them after losing a horse - just a vet visit to look after an injury that required months to heal. They kept trying to insert themselves into the conversation between the vet and myself.

        Just interacting with them was exhausting because they didn't seem interested in a real conversation, but wanted a victim to assault with wild stories and claims. I still haven't figured out whether they thought I was stupid enough to believe everything they said, or if they truly lacked knowledge and believed their own spiel.

        I hope for your sake that your neighbor was sufficiently offended that she will "make you sorry" by never interacting with you again.


        • #5
          If she starts ranting again, just smile sweetly and ask if she still wants you to get her hay or is she going to get it herself now?
          It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.


          • #6
            Oh no! I am so sorry to hear about your loss. My sympathies to you and your husband. Colic sucks.

            I hope that the electric fence keeps this intrusive behavior from continuing because the casual and flagrant disregard that this person displays for decency and civility is breathtakingly astonishing. Some people are just like that. They Are The Experts In All Things (and must insert themselves in every conversation/topic/event ever, and how dare you not proceed to do things exactly the same way they would - regardless of whatever lack of context they have, lack of exposure to the situation, or background knowledge about the details). It sucks.

            On the other hand, it sounds like anything she might have to say comes off as ludicrous enough that even if she does decide to try to run with her narrative, anyone with half of a clue is probably going to smell some of the axe-grinding she's trying to do...and if someone has more than half a clue, it'll be pretty clear the calibre of person she is - which is an individual who behaves with extreme inappropriateness, believes their way is the One True Way, and anyone else are neophytes at best.

            I am so, so, so sorry. It is the last thing you need to worry about on the heels of the loss of your old guy. But at the end of the day, the truth speaks for itself.

            Sending good thoughts your way. Sorry to you and your husband for all of this.


            • #7
              I'm so sorry. What a nasty thing to say while someone is upset over losing their horse. I hope you can just ignore her comments. I suppose she will get the hint if you aren't responding and find someone else to bother. She sounds lonely and crazy, which is a bad mix.


              • #8
                She sounds horrible. I am so sorry for your loss. I can't imagine having to deal with someone like that after just having lost my horse.


                • #9
                  I am so sorry you had to deal with her while you were mourning the loss of your horse. How long is the fence line between you? Could you plant bushes or trees between you to limit her snooping?


                  • #10
                    "Neighbor, your actions when we had to put our horse down really made us uncomfortable. We would like for you to respect our privacy from now on, and we will respect yours. We feel it's best that you find your own hay source from now on. Here is a written note to this effect. Thank you." And walk away. (Or you can mail her the note. I wouldn't put it in her mailbox directly, as she could have a nutty about you opening her mailbox.) I would almost guarantee you that she has been told off before, so, don't feel badly.

                    Electric fence, privacy/no trespassing notices, and maybe a camera in your barn. (Sorry! But she has no boundaries.)

                    Thank you for the love and care you gave your husband's horse, and for easing his death when there was no other choice. Wishing you and your husband peace and many loving memories.


                    • #11
                      First, I a. So very sorry for your loss

                      Originally posted by RubyTuesday View Post
                      Sounds like a privacy fence and a call to your lawyer (not necessarily in that order) are a good idea. I would also put up Posted No Trespassing signs. You have a nut on your hands and she may yet show up inside your barn too.
                      Second - this^^^^ . Especially the lawyer and she might show up in your barn. Once upon a time there was a lady, down around the bend from me, who was caught hiding the neighbor's training barn waiting to see them abuse a horse so she could turn them in.

                      This won't happen with your husband but the female I reference was married (to a sick and dying man) and developed a very strong affection for another neighbor's husband and once surprised him by coming to his barn and cleaning his tack room for him. Their driveway is a mile long and the barn is no easy trek to get to, lol

                      So yes, beware. Your new neighbor sounds to have mild issues. I might go a step further and put up game cams at the very least, if a barn security system isn't in the budget


                      • #12
                        I would put up no trespassing signs and perhaps put tall hedges or trees between the properties.

                        I would also mail her a letter asking her to respect your privacy and find a new hay source. Polite, to the point, no nonsense. What a nutjob. I don't know how I would have responded having just lost my horse. Hugs OP. I can't imagine having to deal with this right after losing a horse.


                        • #13
                          I wouldn't actually send her a letter; it might just antagonize her and make things worse. If she calls AC on you, call your vet clinic with the AC officer there. They don't like dealing with crazy people - they have real work to do. My guess is they will probably caution the neighbor to butt out.


                          • #14
                            I am so sorry this happened, I can not imagine having to deal with this behaviour and the loss of an old friend at the same time.

                            I would no longer engage this woman in any way. No eye contact, no head nod, no wave, no words. Put her on total ignore. I think it a good thing that you have connected with local law enforcement, and would start documenting events that occur. Post your property and plant trees. Not sure what the laneway layout is, but I would fence/gate + lock access.

                            Act as a good neighbour. Make sure your dog is not wandering, manure is managed, machinery run during normal work hours etc. I suggest you review local bylaws, as I feel certain she will.


                            • #15
                              do as painterpony suggested and might be time to get that watch dog

                              We had a 1/4 wolf German Shepard that was huge, he was 140 pounds .... rarely if ever would he bark.... he would stare very intimidating

                              The world has gone to hell since the Ignore feature has go away


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Melissa.Van Doren View Post
                                It's hard enough to lose a horse without having to battle your nutty neighbor over it. Unfortunately, there's probably not much you can do except refuse to engage her. Smile and say hello, then keep moving. Hopefully, she'll grow tired of being ignored and find another cause.

                                I'm sorry for your loss.
                                I agree. Somehow these people find these interactions rewarding. Nuts, lonely, insecure, whatever.

                                Living alone in the country with only the little car and no truck or trailer; winter coming on, I wonder who she will contact when her old horse needs help...her new friends on FB?

                                Old horse colic is a sad fact of life and frankly is the end for some of our greatest champions. My deepest condolences for your loss, and for having to deal with this inconsiderate twerp.


                                • #17
                                  Condolences on the passing of your horse.

                                  In a few short weeks your new neighbor has established that she is not knowledgeable about horses and she won’t hesitate to involve law enforcement if she suspects something is wrong. She’s a whackdoodle. For myself, any future communications with her would be yes, no or I don’t know. I would not be able/willing to help her out knowing how she twist things.

                                  I think your husbands response was spot on for the circumstances.


                                  • #18
                                    Sadly there's not much you can do with a neighbor like this except walk away. And be a bit more conscious of what you do within her ear shot/eye sight. That rates an SUX but social media is quite real.

                                    If she posts ANYTHING publicly that is untrue then you and your lawyer can teach her a lesson on why she ought not to do that. Maybe she'll learn, likely she won't.

                                    Short of buying her out there's really not much else to be done.


                                    P.S. Just thought of one thing, a good privacy fence between you. Good fences do make for good neighbors.
                                    Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raa, Uma Paixo


                                    • #19
                                      So sorry for your loss.
                                      Sorry also that you had to deal with whackjob neighbor at the same time.

                                      I strongly agree with putting up some sort of barrier between properties, if at all possible for you.
                                      If she dares to question this, IIWM, I'd tell her straight out that her actions when you were dealing with the colic & euth had plainly showed her lack of knowledge and compassion and that no further interaction would be welcomed.
                                      IOW: Eff Off.
                                      *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


                                      • #20
                                        First, I'm sorry for you loss and that you had to deal with such an insensitive person at a time that is so difficult.

                                        I disagree with communicating with her any further. Without meeting her in person, I feel like her brand of crazy is the type that will eventually give up when there is nobody there to antagonize. You've already made your intentions known to her that she is to mind her own business. Your other neighbors sound like they already have her pegged too, so I'm sure they have your back if she decides to continue on with her crap. Going forward, just turn your back to her and go on with your life. A very tall privacy hedge sounds like a fantastic idea along with a few highly visible security cameras. If you have no power in that area, there are battery operated hunting cameras that take pictures when they sense motion. Make sure they are not pointed beyond your property line. Feel free to hand her a lawyer speak definition of slander/liable if she continues to threaten you. Otherwise just ignore.
                                        "Do what you can't do"