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Too soon?

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    Too soon?

    Some of you have probably seen my other posts about my young gelding being diagnosed with Wobblers, among other issues. After consulting with two major clinics and other vets, the decision has been made to euthanize. It is so heartbreaking because he's so sweet, so intelligent, a worker bee and a pretty guy to top it off.

    Even sadder was me having to put my NQR young horse down 2 years (ish) ago. He had trigeminal nerve pain that we couldn't get control of. He was also sweet, fun and handsome too.

    15 years ago I had a 10 year old shatter his coffin bone in the pasture.

    Not all my horse's have been euthanized. I have actually had some healthy horses and good luck here and there. But I've been through my share of pain and grief. No doubt.

    Now as I look forward, I know there is no sense of thinking I will get out of horses. This is my passion and I will pick myself up and keep going.

    At my family's urging, I'm already looking at what's next. But I feel a mix of optimism and guilt. No horse can replace each other. They are all so special in their own ways and I loved them all so much.

    Am going too soon? I know everyone grieves differently. I just feel like horse shopping is dreadful and difficult anyways, add grief in there and it is bound to take awhile. So I figure I might as well window shop and dream about what if...

    It's also possible that I will feel VERY differently in a few weeks. Or months. Grief is weird and unpredictable.

    No. You only live ONCE. So sorry about this crappy run of luck you have had.. do not let your guilt deprive you of one of your major passions in life.


      Original Poster

      beowulf that how I feel. This passion isn't going anywhere- and I really don't want to wallow. I have before (which is fine!!) But man I just don't want to stay there. I feel like I've been there too much.

      Honestly when I got my last horse, I truly felt it was a huge step in healing from the pain from my trigeminal nerve horse. He truly helped me feel better. It was slow at first but just bonding and getting to know him was a beautiful thing. Truly transformative.

      This situation is hard no matter what and I will grieve no matter what. But I hope to find moments of peace too.


        Originally posted by beowulf View Post
        No. You only live ONCE. So sorry about this crappy run of luck you have had.. do not let your guilt deprive you of one of your major passions in life.
        That is the truth. I think waiting makes your grief reappear. The distraction of looking, meeting new possible horse friends is helpful. I am of similar thinking with dogs. I try to get a new puppy before the old dog goes or right after, to help soften, distract me from the loss. Each animal is different, not actually a replacement, but a new friend.


          Start looking when YOU are ready, and please don't feel any guilt about when that is.

          Your outlook is so healthy - that you aren't looking to replace your horse, you're looking for another horse.

          if window shopping helps you feel better, do it. If it turns out to be too painful, stop. You'll know when you're ready to seriously shop.


            Original Poster

            I had to talk to a family member a few months ago about not comparing or talking ill of my previous horse. It just didn't sit right with me. They all have their strengths and flaws.

            I had another family member ask me which horse I loved the most. I told them I really couldn't answer that. Each relationship is so different but I pick horses that I connect with. So I personally can't compare.


              Start looking, but in your own mind, keep it light–don't call it shopping.

              All of us who live with and love animals have been through what you are experiencing. We hear you.

              You don't have to commit to "I'm going to buy another horse!" but you should keep your options open and go meet different horses or even just scan ads. When you meet the right one, you will know. I have found that when things and circumstances "magically fall into place", that I am doing the right thing.

              “It’s up to you the voters to decide the future of our democracy. So get out and vote. ... As Abraham Lincoln said, the best way to predict the future is to choose it.” Professor Allan Lichtman


                Originally posted by Sparrowette View Post
                Start looking, but in your own mind, keep it light–don't call it shopping.

                All of us who live with and love animals have been through what you are experiencing. We hear you.

                You don't have to commit to "I'm going to buy another horse!" but you should keep your options open and go meet different horses or even just scan ads. When you meet the right one, you will know. I have found that when things and circumstances "magically fall into place", that I am doing the right thing.
                I quite like this advice. My heart horse passed away one June and by July I had another one purchased. It felt very fast, but the distraction was really the only way I could deal with my grief. It took me quite a while to feel like we were "bonded" and I'm not sure if that was from a quick purchase or just the nature of our relationship, but we are years down the road and I can't imagine life without her.


                  We're all wired differently. The "experts" told me, as a new widow: don't make any major decisions during the first year after your husband's death. Welp... that's not me. He passed in March 2015, I started farmette looking in May 2015, moved in September 2015.

                  Looking for a new horse never dishonors the previous horses you've had & love.... in fact, it shows great depth of character, that you'd be willing to open up your heart & stall for a new horse who needs you.

                  May the right horse come along at the right time. xxoo
                  <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.


                    My belief has always been that you honor one life by saving another. No matter how you "find" your new love, never feel guilty about opening your heart to a new horse.

                    Be blessed
                    "Some people will never like you because your spirit irritates their demons"


                      You are right that grief is both universal & individual. I definitely empathize -- I have a young horse who has been particularly hard to own the past half-year; there's not really anything wrong with him, he just has terrible luck & has had a string of problems, most recently a coffin bone fracture he's currently on small pen rest for. I keep giving him chances because he is lovely, talented, extremely smart, & has the most wonderful brain & personality of a type that is not that common. But even I have had to acknowledge that I am reaching the end of my financial rope & if he can't get his act together, I will have to draw a line.

                      I firmly believe that luck is just that -- luck. I know someone who once had 4 riding horses -- and ALL FOUR were on stall rest at one time with unrelated issues. I had to retire my last one from sport at 11 because of rare, unlucky random pasture injury, so yeah, I'm feeling pretty persecuted by the horse deities these days. But my scientist brain knows that, despite what my emotions pout about, no, we don't have curses on us (ok, because I am a scientist...I'm 99.9% certain we don't have curses, LOL). And experience has taught me that each horse has lessons to teach & gifts to give, even though the road ALWAYS has rocks. So if you are emotionally & financially able, don't feel guilty about carrying the gifts of your past horses forward to the next one. I will certainly hope that some good luck finds you as well!!!
                      Life doesn't have perfect footing.

                      Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
                      We Are Flying Solo


                        I figure I have done enough grieving for more than one lifetime. Rachel time I have lost riding time.

                        I said no more. Last time I bought Stars before putting Bobby down.
                        It is better to ride 5 minutes a day than it is to ride 35 minutes on a Sunday.


                          I don't think it's too soon. I'm older and have lost my share of horses and I never wanted to wait to get another. Sometimes the new horse showed up quickly and other times not, but I was always looking. Do what feels right for you. And I am sorry about your guy. I think I mentioned in another thread that a friend of mine went through something almost indentical and with the same outcome. Hang in there.


                            I think this is a very personal decision. When I lost my first heart horse, I did shop too soon, and I just sort of resented the new horse. When I lost my Izzy mare I fortunately had another project on the go, and waited a longer (about 6 months?) before I started looking. I think you will know if it is too soon when you start looking though: if you find yourself looking for some non-objective trait because it reminds you of your lost horse, then it is likely too soon. If you find you get excited thinking about the new horse, it is the right time.
                            Freeing worms from cans everywhere!


                              I’m right there with ChocoMare. I lost my husband, changed careers, and moved across the country all in one year. There is no one right way to deal with grief. You just have to be kind to yourself and do what feels right to you.
                              If you don’t want to look yet that’s fine. If you just want to window shop it’s fine. If you window shop and “accidentally” fall in love and buy a new horse in two weeks that’s ok too!
                              Don’t feel like finding another horse will lessen the love you had for this horse or the impact he had on your life. Love doesn’t end and there isn’t a finite amount of it you can have/share.


                                I already had the next horse when I euthanized each of my horses. That helped me deal with the loss.

                                Look if you feel like looking. Go and meet the horse if you feel like it. Proceed with each step if you are ready for it. It's only too early if you're forcing yourself to do it.

                                My sympathies for your situation.


                                  I feel ya. I ended up with a rescue who ended up being NQR, dangerous, and NH for HYPP.

                                  He was PTS, I went to the track and ended up with a new horse 3 days later. It just felt right and I needed it. Recently (2 years ago) my heart horse of 10+ years was also PTS after a few bad colic episodes. I had gotten another 3 year old right before that happened. Also felt right.


                                    Keep on keepin' on.

                                    If looking at horses is what you are doing, then you are doing the right thing. There is no set timeline for grief, and you don't diminish your love for the horse you are losing by looking forward.

                                    As an intelligent and caring horse owner, your ability to love and care well for your horses will benefit whichever horse you find, and that's a good thing.

                                    Move forward, and hang in there.


                                      Lunabear1988 nothing to add except my heart is with you. I've lost a few way too young the last few years. I have far too much experience with Wobblers in dogs and it is absolutely heartbreaking. Hugs


                                        Original Poster

                                        You guys are so awesome and sweet. This makes me feel less guilty about window shopping. I don't know when real horse shopping will start but I have to keep looking a little to the future, for me that does help.