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Got screwed by a former trainer, now what do I do?

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  • #21
    Originally posted by ponyrider212
    My complaint is not that he grew--it's that the trainer blatantly lied both to me and to the breeder. She told the breeder I wanted a tall horse, and the breeder--through my trainer--sold me what she was told I wanted. The trainer told me that the horse would finish around 16.1. I bought him as a long yearling.

    And FalseImpression, I did say that I was overreacting emotionally, did I not? I've done right by the horse for 4 years now, and only found out today about the deliberate deception. I am shocked by it, and really don't know what to do. Thanks, though, for making me feel like shi*t for asking for advice. Hope I can do the same for you one day!

    LOL, you were not on COTH then, right?
    I know we had covered the 'the seller is only talking to trainers' well long before then, and after....

    Truth be told, the trainer probably double dipped as well on the commissions...or pocketed a larger amount from the check you no doubt had to make out to her for the sale price....

    As much as I would like to nail somebody like that to the barn door, I don't think you have recourse after all those years!

    Besides, the trainer will probably say 'uh, did I, I can't remember'

    Learn to enjoy the horse.


    • #22

      So your trainer did you wrong and you have this perfect-except-too-tall horse by 4 inches. By your own opinion you're not going to afford another fine horse like this one is except that he's 4 inches too tall. He's not unsafe, you're just challenged to meet his athleticism. You learned, as many of us do, how much of your skill is the made horse and how much of your skill is your own. It's a humbling feeling, but think about how awesome your skills will be after you master this ride!

      So suck it up and learn to ride your horse.

      He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


      • #23
        Oh, for Pete's sake! I should have such problems (being 5'9" and on a 15.3hh horse, who I wish was bigger!).

        Don't hate the horse for growing, it's not his fault . I'm not sure how you'd expect your trainer to guess how big a young horse would grow. I you'd wanted a guarentee on size, you should have bought a mature horse.

        Anyway, look at it this way...you are sitting on a nice, 17hh + horse. Those are worth some money, everyone wants big horses these days. If you are really unhappy, sell him, you can likely get a very nice, smaller horse, for less money.

        Or, you can look at it as an opportunity to expand your skills and comfort level...just like I'm learning from riding the smaller horse, when I've mostly ridden 16.2hh + horses with big long necks, you can learn from this big horse. Riding this smaller, shorter necked, horse is doing wonders for my abs, as I really have to have better control over my long, tall, upper body than I needed on the big horses. I'm sure there's something you can benefit from by riding a horse outside of your comfort zone. If not, sell.


        • #24
          Perhaps you and Canaqua can switch.

          FWIW I thought my 16.2h hunter was going to be a *pony*.
          "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.


          • #25
            The breeder is the source of information that the trainer said you wanted a taller horse? I'd not take the breeders word on it either, because the breeder may be trying to protect herself from your anger. There is no way to know when both sources of information , breeder and trainer, have a reason to be not tell the truth, assuming they actually remember what was said.


            • #26
              I get that you're upset if what you heard is the truth. You have every right to be upset. That said, I can't imagine purchasing a horse without talking to the owner myself. After all, it's your $$. But there's not much you can do about it now, so I'd just let it go.

              In terms of height, I also get that you love the horse but he's bigger than you'd like and is greener than you want. I disagree that everyone wants a big horse (I would not choose to buy a 17.1 hh horse) and I disagree that you should "buck up" and ride a horse you are apprehensive about because lets face it - it's a recipe for you to lose your confidence as a rider at best, or get hurt at worse. And you may never reach his or your potential if you are mismatched. There's no reason for you to feel like you should keep him unless you *want* to.

              I suggest selling him and purchasing a horse that is more your size and with the experience level that is comfortable for you. There's likely someone out there who'd love to get your large greenbean - everyone is happy in the end.

              Just my thoughts...
              Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation


              • #27
                Perhaps I'm confused...how do you know it wasn't just a mistake on the trainer's part and not a deliberate attempt to deceive?


                • #28
                  Originally posted by ddashaq View Post
                  How old was the horse when you bought him? I don't know that anyone can guarantee that a horse will (or will not) reach a certain height so that was the first mistake made here.
                  It was a yearling.


                  • #29
                    Dare I ask the question, how tall was he when you bought him? Did you even ask how tall his parents are? If they are registered then that probably public record.

                    Breeding is a crap shoot. I once knew a 17.3 hand pure trahekner whose parents were both around 16 hands. No one expected him to get so big!
                    I love cats, I love every single cat....
                    So anyway I am a cat lover
                    And I love to run.


                    • #30
                      Originally posted by Beethoven View Post
                      Dare I ask the question, how tall was he when you bought him? Did you even ask how tall his parents are? If they are registered then that probably public record.

                      Breeding is a crap shoot. I once knew a 17.3 hand pure trahekner whose parents were both around 16 hands. No one expected him to get so big!
                      I know a breeder who sold a 2 year old to a woman who stands around 5'2"-ish. She thought the horse would top at 16 and she herself didn't want to keep a horse who might only get to 16hh. THe horse stopped growing at 7 and got to about 17.2 and filled out to be a BIG boy. Shocked EVERYONE. Moral of the story: sometimes, you just never know.
                      Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation


                      • #31
                        Originally posted by ponyrider212
                        Canaqua--You're not that far from me--want to trade :-)?

                        I certainly don't hate my horse--he's a lovebug, and I adore his personality.

                        A knowledgeable breeder can tell something about how tall a horse is expected to be, and the breeder did accurately predict how tall he would be, At the time of the sale, she told my trainer that he would be tall. My trainer told me he would be the size I wanted.
                        Well, I would love to, but I don't own this horse. I lease her. I won't buy horses anymore because of family financial obligations. I'm old (50) and my equitation days are 30 years behind me. I'm weird, but I still want to learn things in my old age. While shopping for a new lease horse, I came up with a 17hh OTTB and this little Trakh mare. Big OTTBs are my thing, totally in my comfort zone, all I've ever ridden and we see eye to eye. In my old age, I decided I needed a challenge . I've got to say this mare is very nice and definitely a challenge (I've always had geldings too ). Eeek! She's giving me a workout, that's for sure, and some humility!


                        • #32
                          I've got a 15.2 chestnut OTTB mare that I'll trade you...


                          • #33
                            If your trainer did lie to you, that would be wrong, but is it possible s/he did it in order to get you more comfortable on a larger horse? To expand your skills? (As I said, that would still be wrong, but I'm just wondering if maybe s/he thought it would be a good thing for you).
                            And yes, you need to get rid of this horse right away, I will come get him in the morning.
                            Seriously though buy a smaller horse if it's truly a problem. Everyone will be happier.

                            Oh added to ask - why would this trainer lie? Was there a lot of money in it for him/her? No ponies available? What?
                            United States Cat Dressage Federation


                            • #34
                              I agree about not predicting height, on a yearling. Yes the breeder can probably think, the horse would top out at 16"3, but many variants go into how the yearling would grow. Lots has to do with how the horse is fed over the next three years, and maybe that plays into the whole thing here..
                              There is no way either the trainer nor the breeder could specifically say the horse would go over 17 hands, you certainly cant predict exact measurement, and I think thats what you were looking for.
                              What i would be grateful for, is you have yourself the perfect ammy horse, with a height that lots of people want, and I believe he is probably a very sellable horse.
                              What i would be upset about, is if they had lied about temperment and trainability. Then you would have been in real trouble. Instead you got a pretty nice, ridable horse, that is too big for you. I would seriously think about moving him on to someone else, and purchasing a horse that was allready 5 or 6 at the correct height.
                              Good luck, he does sound like a nice horse.
                              My other home.


                              • #35
                                I second the offer to take this horrible horrible horse off your hands (see my signature?)

                                I'll tell you a story. A couple of summers ago I got to take dressage lessons with a BNT on a PSG schoolmaster. I, who had thrown leg over many an OTTB (when I was a teen in Trinidad my trainer -Patrice Stollmeyer -got all her horses at Bays and Greys off the track) and schoolhorse, couldn't ride this horse for love or money. He wasn't dangerous, but he was athletic and smart and sensitive and my aids were loud and my balance lousy. So I was at a crossroads -either quit or suffer weeks of not being able to get a trot, not being able to keep the trot, and not getting the canter on the correct lead (yeah; when horses are that finely balanced they can counter canter with no problem at all). I chose the latter and learned so much that summer. The trainer had the same problems when she came to dressage after breaking horses out west for years. She said she couldn't get canter on one side (I forget which side) and it was like she couldn't ride at all. Now she has all her medals.

                                See this as an opportunity.

                                Last edited by paulaedwina; Jan. 3, 2013, 10:57 PM. Reason: Misspelled Patrice's name
                                He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


                                • #36
                                  You're welcome. I remember feeling like the world was a blur when riding that Schoolmaster. I was doing alot of go/whoa with him until Christine helped with a visualization exercise. She reminded me that I drive a Chevy Tahoe and that big engine was essentially a series of controlled explosions. That did the trick. I mean I drive a big old Tahoe -V8 65/70 miles an hour rght? That night I had a most interesting dream about whipping around an arena on a trick bicycle, but I wasn't afraid.

                                  I don't know what she did, but it was like magic.

                                  He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


                                  • #37
                                    Unless it is your profession, I don't see why you need to keep a horse when you don't enjoy the majority of your rides. I don't know if I buy the whole trainer lied about the size thing since predicting height accurately is hard to do but if she did she probably did you a favor money wise. Sell him and move on.
                                    McDowell Racing Stables

                                    Home Away From Home


                                    • #38
                                      Just be glad you ended up with a nice horse out of the whole thing. The size issue is minor compared to what you could be dealing with. But. It's your horse. You do this to have fun. He sounds like he would potentially be worth some $$$. If he wants to be a hunter and you don't feel comfortable jumping him, send him for 90 days with a professional *you trust, and that has a good reputation, checked out through multiple sources* and sell him. Draw up a contract and make sure *you* have contact with the buyers and agree to the terms and price. The check is made out to *you*. Then go buy your 15-16h dream horse and have fun.
                                      *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*


                                      • #39
                                        I was going to suggest you put on your big girl panties and learn to ride him, but it sounds like he's just not the right horse for you. Thankfully he sounds nice so you should be able to sell him and get a nice, smaller horse to keep.

                                        As for the trainer, that sucks. Not sure you can do anything about it aside from venting and/or confronting your former trainer.

                                        I am also riding a 17.1hh athletic WB and I'm just a non-athletic adult novice. I wanted about 16.2 but she was tall and kept growing. She's as kind as they come and I love her to pieces, so I pulled on my big girl panties and learned to ride her more effectively. We made it work.

                                        I think that's possible here, but it doesn't sound as if that's what you want.
                                        Born under a rock and owned by beasts!


                                        • #40
                                          Originally posted by ponyrider212
                                          Thanks, Ako. What did you do to help make it work, can I ask?
                                          Well, first off, I'm pretty stubborn when I decide I'm going to do something. After my first incident - after the concussion wore off - I thought long and hard about whether it was a good fit. I talked to friends and trainers. And I thought about how I was riding and realized I had made so many mistakes that I could have avoided.

                                          I assessed her program with my trainer. She was in heat, so we gave Depo. I wanted to focus on flatwork and especially her canter. She has a HUGE canter and can get strong. Her working canter was super intimidating!!

                                          She's grown up a lot in the last year.

                                          My trainer and time in the saddle have taught me to sit deeper. She's less nervous that way.

                                          And we keep her in a consistent program, 6 days a week, weather permitting. My trainer periodically jumps her over some bigger jumps to keep her focused - not a lot.

                                          Now that she's been in such a consistent program, I can get on if she's had time off and expect her to behave. She can still be strong after time off, etc, but then I know she needs another day of work before cantering.

                                          I only jump her later in the week.

                                          I was shocked by how powerful she is. Unharnessed, it's scary. I'm just grateful that she tries to please.
                                          Born under a rock and owned by beasts!