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Getting rid of a basically useless horse.

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  • #41
    Too bad I'm so far away! I'd love to work with him to see what, if anything, can be done with him.
    Can't learn anything with a closed mind! with thanks to mug

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    • #42
      Originally posted by 4horses View Post
      Why not have someone try training him as a trail horse? It sounds like he doesn't like an indoor arena or jumping. This doesn't make him worthless. Obviously the horses owner sees something in this horse, as they are putting effort into making him into a nice horse. If he only has heaves in a stable, he may benefit from a different environment.
      That's what I did with my OTTB that I bought to event with. He started off promising and jumping small jumps willingly but for some reason one day he decided he didn't want to jump anymore and showed his displeasure by rearing(!). He is now my trail horse, which he likes much more than going around in circles. A lot of people would have dumped him but I love the big lug and he has a home with me as long as I can provide one.

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      • #43
        If he can't be a trail horse, send him to Joe Exotic. j/k. Sort of.

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        • Original Poster

          #44
          She is going to try riding more regularly now that she is unemployed and her education is on hold because of Covid-19...see if that helps. Kind of one last try. Otherwise, I think the best two options given here are offer him to the vet school, and offer him cheap to a trainer to work with/sell.

          His heaves are not currently evident. He is boarded outside, and fed off the ground (no round bales). Not on medication. It took about 18 months for it to resolve, but no issues unless we have lots of smoke. it was purely mismanagement and non-compliance at the old barn - and it wasn't a low end barn.

          I cannot image letting a "middle aged amateur" come try him. People over estimate their ability, and nobody would want the liability if things go sideways.

          Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

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          • #45
            Originally posted by Rosewatt View Post

            As far as slaughter goes, I do feel that is unfair to the horse just because no one within proximity is able to adequately work with the horse. Unless the horse has something neurologically wrong with him, It's the people who have made him this way and he doesn't understand that his behavior is dangerous to you and other handlers. Does that mean that he should suffer in slaughter?
            No. Conversely, is it fair for the horse to suffer the fate of so many horses that are 'too much' for most humans? Years of neglect, inadequate food, abuse from people who fear and misunderstand the horse? There just aren't nearly enough people capable of dealing with problem horses as there are problem horses in need of intervention. I live at basically ground zero of the English riding industry in the US. Where the vaguely familiar looking person in dirty riding clothes standing behind you in line at the grocery is apt to be an Olympic gold medalist. And even here there are only a handful of skilled folks in the business of dealing with really challenging horses.

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            • #46
              Originally posted by CHT View Post
              She is going to try riding more regularly now that she is unemployed and her education is on hold because of Covid-19...see if that helps. Kind of one last try. Otherwise, I think the best two options given here are offer him to the vet school, and offer him cheap to a trainer to work with/sell.

              His heaves are not currently evident. He is boarded outside, and fed off the ground (no round bales). Not on medication. It took about 18 months for it to resolve, but no issues unless we have lots of smoke. it was purely mismanagement and non-compliance at the old barn - and it wasn't a low end barn.

              I cannot image letting a "middle aged amateur" come try him. People over estimate their ability, and nobody would want the liability if things go sideways.
              Can you describe the bucking? Age?
              People like warmbloods so he has that on his side. If his heaves are under control then someone who wants a cheap project to do the low hunters or jumpers, or dessage would be interested.
              I would just market him as a project, warmblood, his age, and that he can have a buck. I know at least 3 people who would snatch him up out here on the east coast.

              Comment


              • #47
                Originally posted by Wanderosa View Post

                No. Conversely, is it fair for the horse to suffer the fate of so many horses that are 'too much' for most humans? Years of neglect, inadequate food, abuse from people who fear and misunderstand the horse? There just aren't nearly enough people capable of dealing with problem horses as there are problem horses in need of intervention. I live at basically ground zero of the English riding industry in the US. Where the vaguely familiar looking person in dirty riding clothes standing behind you in line at the grocery is apt to be an Olympic gold medalist. And even here there are only a handful of skilled folks in the business of dealing with really challenging horses.
                While I can see your point, I'd think that euthanasia is definitely a more ethical decision over slaughter if no one capable is able to take him on. I'm coming from the perspective of seeing some challenging horses make a big turn around with the right person and whilst I understand that this is not always a possible situation, I'd still hope for there to be an attempt before considering other solutions. I've known people to first euthanize perfectly healthy horses under the above assumption, but in preparing for a worse fate, they are also ceasing any chance that horse may have to end up in a good home. I've even witnessed a horse I knew end up in a very bad situation (starved and no farrier service) and a friend of mine who loved that horse ended up buying him and later finding him a great retirement home with an older lady, under the contract that she is able to visit him whenever and buy him back if things don't work out. I just think that if it really comes down to it, euthanasia would be the most ethical decision and slaughter the very least.

                We also don't really know what level of danger this horse poses. While I'm trusting OP's word for it, it could be much less or more than I'm assuming. It could be an easier fix than we are assuming too. Lots of horse's buck and lots of horses have bad ground manners for different reasons. I don't know how serious this horse's problem runs. Heck, the local pony club in my town has horribly behaved lesson horses, including bucking, biting and kicking out ( not my choice of lesson horses, but just as an example) because manners hadn't been enforced! I've seen a few of these horses go to different hands after and boy did they change. It wasn't just ponies getting "sour" from lessons, but rather ponies getting away with far too much. All it really took was re-establishing manners and none of those people were pros. Mabye all this horse needs is someone persistent and a good understanding of groundwork. All I'm saying is from an outsiders perspective, slaughter seems awfully harsh if there are other options.
                Last edited by Rosewatt; Mar. 28, 2020, 01:00 AM.

                Comment


                • #48
                  Originally posted by enjoytheride View Post

                  I have a useless pony and there are zero companion homes out there. Or a very low percentage. It's highly likely those people are looking for slaughter horses.
                  Not trying to hijack, but if you were in East TN and he had no issues I would take him in!! I have a definetivly useless pony, hoof grows dishes, frogs slanted, rolls fetlock when he walks, but is happy and just hangs out loving life. Then theres my friends senior that lives here, sway backed, old n grumpy but is loving the flat land and grass and a cushy stall at night to snooze in. They both get hay, grain, water, feet just trimmed every 8 weeks and wormed when theyre trimmed, shots n thats it. Basically the best of being a healthy horse with no being rode haha.


                  I was just thinking this morning that Ive tried to make my grass as green n lush as possible, but now I am worried about having to muzzle both of them for a few months because there is so much grass now lol. If you ever come down this way for anything hit me up, the senior probably has a yr or so left n then Id be looking for another friend for my pony anyways!!

                  OP a situation like mine if he has good ground n pasture manners would be ideal!

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    Originally posted by Rosewatt View Post

                    While I can see your point, I'd think that euthanasia is definitely a more ethical decision over slaughter if no one capable is able to take him on. I'm coming from the perspective of seeing some challenging horses make a big turn around with the right person and whilst I understand that this is not always a possible situation, I'd still hope for there to be an attempt before considering other solutions. I've known people to first euthanize perfectly healthy horses under the above assumption, but in preparing for a worse fate, they are also ceasing any chance that horse may have to end up in a good home. I've even witnessed a horse I knew end up in a very bad situation (starved and no farrier service) and a friend of mine who loved that horse ended up buying him and later finding him a great retirement home with an older lady, under the contract that she is able to visit him whenever and buy him back if things don't work out. I just think that if it really comes down to it, euthanasia would be the most ethical decision and slaughter the very least.

                    We also don't really know what level of danger this horse poses. While I'm trusting OP's word for it, it could be much less or more than I'm assuming. It could be an easier fix than we are assuming too. Lots of horse's buck and lots of horses have bad ground manners for different reasons. I don't know how serious this horse's problem runs. Heck, the local pony club in my town has horribly behaved lesson horses, including bucking, biting and kicking out ( not my choice of lesson horses, but just as an example) because manners hadn't been enforced! I've seen a few of these horses go to different hands after and boy did they change. It wasn't just ponies getting "sour" from lessons, but rather ponies getting away with far too much. All it really took was re-establishing manners and none of those people were pros. Mabye all this horse needs is someone persistent and a good understanding of groundwork. All I'm saying is from an outsiders perspective, slaughter seems awfully harsh if there are other options.
                    To clarify, I'm value neutral on slaughtering horses for food. I AM, however, against the slaughter pipeline as it stands now. So, I'm a proponent of euthanasia in this sort of case if the horse is too much to be safely worked on by the vast majority of available people. (I'm not saying the horse in OP's situation is or is not.) The odds are not good that such a horse will luck into a soft landing. I'm glad you've personally seen happy ending for such horses. My experience unfortunately differs. So many instances of horses that were a little much taken on by well-meaning folks that waaaaay overestimate their skill. And the horse gets worse and worse until the point that now it needs serious professional intervention that none of these folks can afford. The other thing? IMO, it's not enough for most horses to get 30, 60, 90 days on them from a pro and go home. Because the owner is incapable of the level of riding and handling required for a horse at this stage. And honestly, most horses benefit immensely from a pro getting on them once or twice a month for the duration of their lives.

                    Same with the aged and injured. There's a rescue here that makes me want to bang my head into a cinder block wall any time I read a Facebook post from them. The latest was 4-6 horses, all in their late 20s and afflicted with expensive and time-consuming health issues with an owner in the end stages of a terminal illness who has been struggling for a couple years to keep them out of the New Holland pipeline. The rescue went out and spent $2000+ on feed, hay, modifications to the barn in an attempt to make it easier for the owner to access. Nagged a sympathetic neighbor who had seen the horses' plight and been dropping their own round bales over the fence to promise to take had the horses. Based on the deliberately vague wording, it's apparent the vet sho saw the horses wasn't in agreement that this course of action was in the best interest of the horses.

                    About 2 seconds after the first wave of COVID-19 closures were announced the same %^(# rescue is having a meltdown on Facebook that this is IT, they have no money to go on. Well, what happens to these horses now? I'm betting the neighbor can't continue to feed and care for 6 extra special needs horses. They will end up getting sent to the fate the owner struggled so hard to avoid. It would've been better to have used the $2000+ to humanely euthanize the horses from the start. Especially as it seems the vet called out indicated that the horses' quality of life was poor even with the care they were currently being given.
                    Last edited by Wanderosa; Mar. 28, 2020, 02:08 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #50
                      Originally posted by Wanderosa View Post

                      To clarify, I'm value neutral on slaughtering horses for food. I AM, however, against the slaughter pipeline as it stands now. So, I'm a proponent of euthanasia in this sort of case if the horse is too much to be safely worked on by the vast majority of available people. (I'm not saying the horse in OP's situation is or is not.) The odds are not good that such a horse will luck into a soft landing. I'm glad you've personally seen happy ending for such horses. My experience unfortunately differs. So many instances of horses that were a little much taken on by well-meaning folks that waaaaay overestimate their skill. And the horse gets worse and worse until the point that now it needs serious professional intervention that none of these folks can afford. The other thing? IMO, it's not enough for most horses to get 30, 60, 90 days on them from a pro and go home. Because the owner is incapable of the level of riding and handling required for a horse at this stage. And honestly, most horses benefit immensely from a pro getting on them once or twice a month for the duration of their lives.

                      ............
                      Well said! A great synopsis of what is too often a typical fate for a horse that is too much horse for the network of humans around them.

                      There are happy endings from time to time. But these days that isn't to be expected. As said in posts above, there just aren't enough people who can handle a problem horse, and pasture homes are scarce as well.

                      The saddest thing is that these horses aren't "mean" or behaving abnormally. They are just behaving much more like a horse in its natural state, when it is confronted with anything that it doesn't understand. And so many people who own horses don't understand that, either.

                      Comment


                      • #51
                        I don't think this horse sounds that bad. Maybe we need more details?

                        My horse can have a nasty buck, but that's usually because his saddle needs to be touched up or he needs the chiropractor out. Even with his bucking, he's totally sound. Just because they aren't lame doesn't mean there isn't something else serious going on.

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          The underlying issue here is it’s not OPs horse, doubt she is equipped to rehab it’s training ( not so young and with a preexisting condition IIRC) and the owner has not been able to afford serious vet work or training. There’s a limit to what OP can agree to or arrange involving a horse she doesn’t own.

                          Difficult decision for the owner but one that needs to be faced. If anything OP has long suffered from trying to do too much for her clients and keep as pleasant a barn as possible and pretty sure she is upset she hasn’t been able to work anything out, especially with owner now unemployed. It’s tough when there really is little to do to help. Tougher still if the owner is not actively participating in finding a solution.
                          When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                          The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #53
                            How did this become a slaughter debate?!? I never mentioned that as an option.

                            Our farrier might be interested in trying him as a ranch horse.

                            It's not that his buck is bad, as much as he is just so filled with tension/fear with so many things (usually can walk/trot ok around an empty ring), and the control disappears. It is not a good feeling for anyone involved...likely even the horse.

                            Bottom line, she needs out from her board payments, but we do want to do right by the horse...not send him away to be in someone's hands that won't feel the same responsibility to be ethical. I need options so she doesn't feel guilty about looking after her own interests.
                            Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              Originally posted by CHT View Post
                              How did this become a slaughter debate?!? I never mentioned that as an option.
                              ...
                              People weren't familiar with what you meant by 'rendering', and read it as 'send to slaughter'.

                              And, for some of us, that may have seemed to be a plausible thing for some people to say, because we have known 'horse people' who think that 'sending to slaughter' is one of the viable options for a horse they would describes as 'useless'. Because those people see a horse as a utilitarian economic asset. They assumed you must think along those lines. Just a misreading of your intention.

                              Comment


                              • #55
                                I hope the horse gets another chance. It doesn't sound like a temperament issue. It sounds like people have let him down.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #56
                                  Originally posted by Moonlitoaks View Post
                                  I hope the horse gets another chance. It doesn't sound like a temperament issue. It sounds like people have let him down.
                                  Don't you think that is the cause of all equine issues? People letting the horse down with either poor training or missed pain? I can't think of a "temperament issue" that isn't traced back to the human element. Unfortunately this horse had issues years ago, and the trainer/BO who facilitated selling him to a teenager on a limited budget can't be held accountable, nor can his first owner who messed him up big time.

                                  It is very hard to balance compassion for the human and the horse, but when it was a teen, and now a young adult, I feel I need to be the one to step up and give the young adult permission to give up, and yes, that might mean the horse will be euthanized if we can't find a suitable LOCAL home (local, so if he doesn't work out, we can take him back).

                                  Her guilt ("maybe I didn't work him enough", "I should have moved barns sooner") etc, have held her back from moving on from this horse and it's a poor priority at her stage of life.

                                  I don't need the guilt thrown on me either. I don't need people second guessing my judgement on the horse. All I need is ideas on how to rehome him. This isn't easy for me either - the horse is sweet and low maintenance. What would be easy is to continue taking her board money and teaching her once a week. I am trying to help her make a difficult decision and was looking for help in that regard.

                                  Thank you.

                                  Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    Originally posted by enjoytheride View Post
                                    Dropping him off at a slaughter plant or auction is cruel and despicable.
                                    I don't see where the OP had this as an option? Rendered horses are euthanized first.

                                    Comment


                                    • #58
                                      OP, I do think the wrong people at the wrong time or the right people at the wrong time is the cause of many horse issues, but some horses have very difficult temperaments and are hard to place.

                                      I didn't think you owned this horse? Why would you feel guilty? It's nice of you to try to help the owner.

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #59
                                        Moonlitoaks because I actually like horses and it makes me sad to see what some of them are put through. Both hard to think of euthanasia and hard to think of him being out of our control/at risk.
                                        Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          Just remember, folks, that a free horse is rarely a free horse.

                                          Besides that, you lose all control of his future and he will likely end up on the downward slippery slope to enthanasia or owners who cannot afford to treat him right.
                                          There are enough wonderful horses out there who are worth their weight in gold.

                                          We are all horse lovers, but if the right opportnity came along that would be marvellous, of course, but there is the harsh reality as well.
                                          Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique

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