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Sticky leasing situation - advice wanted

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  • #41
    If M is going to be supervising the owner on her horse, then she'd better have liability insurance. It sounds like an injury is very likely in this situation, and even if the owner wouldn't sue her insurance probably will. I usually think this board goes a little nuts about the likelihood of lawsuits but this is a situation where I think it is very likely.

    Also I don't think the issues with this horse have anything to do with her breed. I work almost exclusively with Arabs and I think that "one person" stuff is crock. Some do better with very consistent handling and riding styles, which in many environments translates to doing best with just one person working them, but it's more to do with the fact that they tend to be rather sensitive horses than anything inherent to the breed. I've met plenty of TBs and WBs that are the same way.

    Personally I think M should just walk away. That's the nature of leasing--you don't own the horse and have no real say in its future unless the owner is willing to sell it to you. Frankly I think she was very foolish to get so invested in a horse she doesn't own and she should just let it go.

    Like another poster, I did get a bit of a "savior" vibe from the story--like M is really caught up in the idea that she saved this horse from wasting away in a pasture. It's hard to say if that's really the case since we're getting it filtered through another person, but if that's the case then the whole situation is even more ridiculous. Tell her to hit up a low end auction or something if she wants to save a horse. Around here she'll only need $50 or so to pick up a nice ex-racehorse with dressage potential.
    exploring the relationship between horse and human

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    • #42
      There must be more to this story or D would have removed her horse already.
      I'd be super pissed if I was her.

      M needs to invest in buying her own horse.
      Or she needs to accept that this 'super talented' horse belongs to D and that the agreement is that D ride it occasionally. This means that the horse has to be fed appropriately, not so finely schooled and M has to loose her 'mystical connection thingymebob (seriously? Are you 13? *rolls eyes*)
      This might mean that M's competition goals are unachievable or will take longer to achieve.
      Or M and D need to come to another mutually agreeable scenario.

      Whinging that D is not a good enough rider/ didn't feed optimally/ isn't capable of bringing out the talent in this horse is not an option.
      M trying to dictate to the owner is not an option

      At the moment, from the sidelines, it seems M is the incompetent one, no matter how good she thinks she is at staying aboard an artificially hot horse.

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      • #43
        I have a hard time believing that any of these posters ride in a show barn. OP I seriously doubt your friend ruined the horse. What she likely did was turn a lazy trail horse into a fit horse moving up the levels of dressage. This does not seem outside of the original terms of the lease agreement. Her work did change the horse so that its no longer a horsethat can or should be ridden by its owner. Any competent rider showing the horse in dreesage would likely have had the same problem . To expect someone paying to lease a horse to ride down to the level of the owner is nuts. If I lease a 3 foot jumper and someone told me that I need to dump the horse in front of the fence and consistently get bad distances so that it doesnt get mad at its crappy owner when she does it, i would be out of that lease so fast your head would spin.

        Leasing a horse is a business transaction, it's not a favor done by the owner of the horse.
        OP, your friend needs to end this lease ASAP because it's not going to end well. I know it's hard because she's put in all this time and has really seen the results of her hard work with the mare but the situation is only going to get worse. There is no good outcome here, particularly with an owner who bred the horse and is emotionally attached.

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        • #44
          Originally posted by Dreamwalker View Post
          M has to loose her 'mystical connection thingymebob (seriously? Are you 13? *rolls eyes*)
          This made me giggle.

          I agree that this lease needs to end before things get worse. If M can't buy the horse, she needs to suck it up and move on. The owner isn't going to magically change her mind just because M thinks she has some "mystical connection" with the horse.
          Yes, I smell like a horse. No, I don't consider that to be a problem.

          Originally posted by DottieHQ
          You're just jealous because you lack my extensive koalafications.

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          • Original Poster

            #45
            A lot of you have some really good points. I dont think that my friend ruined this horse by any means. I think that she put the horse into work, got it fit, and it is no longer the fluffy and fuzzy creature that it was when the lease was started. I don't think that my friend should have to dumb down her ride so that the owner can continue to plod along like she always has and then be expected to perform up the levels of dressage. Its like expecting a lesson horse to pack around a total beginner with horrible hands and unable to post the trot and then turn around and expect it to do PSG the next day. D did want her shown after all, that was half the reason the horse was leased out to begin with, D couldn't/wouldn't afford all the "stuff" that goes into showing. We all know that showing and getting ready to show is not cheap!

            Anyway, I have used a lot of things posted here and had a frank discussion with my friend about what I think her options are. I tried to stress that this was a great learning experience for her, she is a re-rider so this got her moving in the right direction. And on the bright side she now owns some lovely dressage equipment!!

            On a side note, I have leased twice before, first one ended horribly, other one just kind of trickled off. Both times I bought all of my own tack. Wasn't a huge stretch as I was between owning horses. When the leases were done I sold the saddles and bought whatever fit the next horse. I personally don't feel safe using somebody else's tack as accidents do happen!!
            Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
            The Blog

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            • #46
              It sounds as if the owner was not exactly clear on how fit her mare would become if she became a show horse for M. It's unlikely that she can have a pasture puff/trail horse and a show horse in the same mare.

              If part of the leason for the lease was to get the mare out there showing then she had to know that the mare would be in a program and that it would involve a new diet and exercise routine that could change the mare.

              That said, if the owner wants to ride mare, it sounds like the only way it could happen is if she gets out of the program she's in. Even then, there is no assurance that mare will become so dead quiet again after "finding herself" as a showhorse.

              OP, you are friendly with M. You see it from her eyes. Let's look at D's pov.

              (Linny assumes role of D)
              I leased out my sweet quiet mare to M who is a good rider. She took her to a good boarding/training barn for dressage. Mare is now getting a high energy feed and is so fit that I can literally no longer stay on her. It's so bad that the BO ask asked me not to ride MY OWN horse! I have fallen off my mare 3 of my last 4 rides and BO and I are fearing for my safety and that of others. I just want my sweet mare back. What can I do?
              F O.B
              Resident racing historian ~~~ Re-riders Clique
              Founder of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique

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              • #47
                Originally posted by Niennor View Post
                This made me giggle.

                I agree that this lease needs to end before things get worse. If M can't buy the horse, she needs to suck it up and move on. The owner isn't going to magically change her mind just because M thinks she has some "mystical connection" with the horse.
                Just to point out, it's the OP who said both that the horse is a "one person horse" (this person, presumably, being her dear friend M), and that M has this connection. OP didn't say M told her this/thinks this; it was just stated plainly by OP: M has ~~~mystical connection wooo~~~:

                The horse isn't so much unstable as she is a one person horse, something I have come to find from arabs and arab crosses. M and the mare have this mystical connection where she can get that horse to do anything and everything.
                As well, I own a sweet TB ex-lesson mare. When I was away for over 6 months and my trainer rode and jumped her she was way in shape, quick off the leg, strong canter, etc. She was too fit and sensitive to leg for me, really, as I was/am a beginner used to her being more ploddy and lazy.

                She did not, however, buck, bolt or rear and run down other horses.
                Proud Member Of The Lady Mafia

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                • Original Poster

                  #48
                  I think my use of the term "mystical connection" has been taken a little off kilter here. M has a strong bond with this mare. The horse will do anything and everything for her. From what I have understood she sounds like a one person horse, which there is such a thing as. I was thinking "mystical connection" because I was flashing back to an Arab/Saddlebred mare that I briefly owned when I was trying to think of a way to explain how M explains her bond to me. I got seriously injured, and was on crutches and waiting for a surgery date, this mare was very green to handle (basically untouched 3 year old), however she seemed to know that I was hurt. She would calm down when I was around. I could lead her while using my crutches all over the farm without incident. I would sit in the grass and hand graze her. For anybody else she was a nut, hard to catch, no ground manners, and so on. I ended up selling her because something told me that I would be down and out for a while and likely not able to handle an unbroke 3 year old after my surgery, and I was correct.
                  Maggie Bright, lovingly known as Skye and deeply missed (1994 - 2013)
                  The Blog

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                  • #49
                    Originally posted by Skyedragon View Post
                    I dont think that my friend ruined this horse by any means. I think that she put the horse into work, got it fit, and it is no longer the fluffy and fuzzy creature that it was when the lease was started. I don't think that my friend should have to dumb down her ride so that the owner can continue to plod along like she always has and then be expected to perform up the levels of dressage. Its like expecting a lesson horse to pack around a total beginner with horrible hands and unable to post the trot and then turn around and expect it to do PSG the next day. D did want her shown after all, that was half the reason the horse was leased out to begin with, D couldn't/wouldn't afford all the "stuff" that goes into showing.
                    I'll leave the "who's right and who's wrong to expect X or Y" in this scenario.

                    I don't think the mare's owner (D?) will dig it, but can M or M and you have a Summit Meeting with her about the mare and her future?

                    If the mare wasn't fit and wasn't fed (WTF, by the way) then of course she was the easier ride D expected! D owns the mare and can have her back.... as that. In 60 days, she can have her quiet, hungry little horse back, perhaps with a bit more education put into her.

                    But perhaps D does want to see what her homebred can do. I'm sure M's offer to buy her would be premature in this conversation. I think M really needs to back out of her role as trying to make the mare rideable for the owner while keeping her tuned up as a show horse. BTW, I don't think that's an ignoble goal to hold for a made horse, but most horses don't get to that place where they can turn their sensitivity on and off for different riders for a long, long time.


                    So, is there anything D wants that M can offer? Could M, for example, see the value in letting D ride and show the mare for one more season or some other fixed amount of time? Or, if they cannot come to an arrangement, would M be satisfied by giving up the lease but letting D know how the mare needs to be fed and ridden to do her best? At least M can cut her loses-- she won't put more time into a horse that she won't get to show long term but she will have done the right thing by the mare she likes so much.
                    The armchair saddler
                    Politically Pro-Cat

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                    • #50
                      Originally posted by Skyedragon View Post
                      I think my use of the term "mystical connection" has been taken a little off kilter here. M has a strong bond with this mare. The horse will do anything and everything for her. From what I have understood she sounds like a one person horse, which there is such a thing as.
                      Errr...ok, it sounds like Mystical Mare has had 2 main people riding her, D and M. She was perfectly fine for D under D's feeding/turnout/training (or lack thereof) regimen, and now she's perfectly fine for M under M's. Not sure where you're getting this "sounds like a one person horse" thing from that history. Put another competent rider on her for a few months and maybe she'll mystically turn into a one-person horse for them too.
                      Proud Member Of The Lady Mafia

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