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Can we have a good post about old lame unwanted horses

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  • #21
    I will try and keep all my critters to the end. After putting down Hope- we adopted another horse. We have another mare with soundness issues and she's only 7. Finally there's the old pony- she's a lifer. So I have just as many with *issues* as I have without


    • #22
      I love you guys

      I would give any amount of $$ to be able to say "Willem can't be ridden after his founder, but he's loving life and happy to be a pet."

      Bless you all for what you are doing. You guys rock.


      • #23
        My BuddyRoo has passed now...about 3 years ago. (this is long. I don't know how else to do it. My apologies in advance)

        I rode him from about the time I was 3 years old. Had many adventures together. He was my grandfather's horse originally and I only rode him in the summers at our cabin in Wyoming. When Grandpa could no longer ride...about the time I was 11, my BuddyRoo came to live with us full time in Iowa.

        He gave me nearly 25 years of service...he was the mane I cried into and the neck I hugged when things were bad at home. He was the one I could gallop bareback across the fields on. He was the one that nickered every time I approached. He was the 3rd-date-boyfriend-test in HS and college (they didn't all pass). He was the steady eddy we put the wee ones on.

        He was 28 when I moved him from IA to TX. Shortly after moving there, he choked for the first time. After that, no more hay or grass...only senior feed and hay cubes soaked.

        Only a few months later, when trying to diagnose his tripping, we found pretty severe arthritis in his shoulder from an old injury. Started treatment. Awfully stoic critter...when all I felt was a little trip here or there--but we were still working cattle, taking long rides, and having a blast. I've still got the rads in my office. Terrible arthritis.

        Still rode him regularly which helped.

        Then I moved to MI. Again, hauled him with me (and my other two)...board was a lot more expensive in MI (think 150/mo total to 900/mo) and I had to provide his feed--which was only available by doing a 60 mile round trip once a week. Then his arthritis got worse....so monthly Adequan, steroid injections, daily bute..and eventually, no more riding. I still ponied him off of my other mare and took him for walks.

        I remember more than a few people telling me I ought to just put him down. He wasn't "useful" anymore. He wasn't doing a "job" anymore. And it was costing money.

        How could I not give him the retirement he deserved after all those years of service? As long as he was comfortable? Why not? As long as I could, why not?

        Besides...letting him go meant letting go of a huge chunk of ME. All the secrets whispered into furry ears...all the hugs...all the quiet rides--meditation on horseback...the last thing I had that my grandfather had once touched. Shoot, my whole childhood. Every summer I have in memory was spent on the back of that horse. Nah, he deserved the best I could give.

        I had vowed that I would let him go before the bad days outnumbered the good and before the sparkle in his eye was gone.

        But in the meantime, he was going to get the best. My BO at the time liked to turn him loose in the yard while she gardened--we called that "playing dog" IE: "Yeah, Baldy (his real name) got to play dog for awhile today."

        And he did. He'd follow her around, hang out...and when he was ready for a drink or wanted to rejoin "his girls" (my other two) he'd walk back to the pasture gate and wait. LOL What a ham.

        I paid extra for a wonderful farrier who took so much time and care to make sure we could continue trimming--knowing that if we couldn't keep him trimmed, the end would be near.

        I think when I finally heard a story reported by one of the other boarders-- about how she'd seen my BuddyRoo leaning against my mare for support while standing out in the pasture--that I knew it was getting close to the end.

        He always came to the gate for me. And again, he was stoic. But when I saw it with my own two eyes and started counting days....50/50 approached and I knew that the balance was soon going to be tipped...more bad than good.

        So in February of 2005...4 years after he could no longer eat hay but still in great weight...4 years after the initial arthritis diagnosis....only 1 year after being truly retired...I found myself sitting on the ground on a rainy day with his head in my lap saying goodbye.

        At the age of 32...after giving me so much...I gave him my final gift. I still don't think we're even.

        But that horse taught me about commitment, loyalty, and trust...and I felt I owed those things to him. He also taught me how to let go.

        I would not fault a person for choosing to let go because they cannot afford to keep a horse comfortable. Or because they cannot afford to have more than one horse and do not wish to give up their riding to offer retirement.

        But those who serve us and earn their retirement should be able to find their end amongst familiar faces, familiar surroundings and peace. Not being shuffled about.

        IMHO of course. I was blessed that I could afford to do it at the time. Give him that last 4 years. I really think that when he could no longer be "useful" he knew it...and he declined quite rapidly. But at least I was there with him....and I know how he spent all his last days--happy, comfortable and spoiled to heck.

        (and now I'm in tears. sigh)
        A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

        Might be a reason, never an excuse...


        • #24
          I could not ride any of the 3 Horses I had/have at home. Cloudy (who passed away about a month ago) was 28 years old. I was not able to ride him for the last 4 years. When we purchased him he was only 11 and I was able to ride and compete with him. During the last 5 years of his life he was not rideable (due to Cushings, and arthritis) but we had him here at home and he had a very good life.
          The Slug (my husbands Quarterhorse) was a barrel racing horse, he has very severe arthritis in his knees and 10 years ago the vet said she would not trust riding him. Again we love him and he is part of the family. Even though he cannot ever even be ridden at the walk he will live with us and be happy till it is time for him to go.
          Bugsy( Quarter Horse) was purchased as a Pasture mate for when either one of the horses passed they would not be lonely. Bugsy is just a nut job and we were told that when we purchased him. He is 21 years old and just cannot be ridden unless he has much big time retraining.
          So there you go 3 horses that we have/had that were nonrideable but we kept them anyhow and still provide for them. However, with all this said I think that is because they are here at home that this is feasible to do. I do not know if I had to board them all, I could afford to keep all of them, especially with all the medication they were/are on.
          Good Stories I love to hear about the people who keep their animals even after they have outlived their "purpose" for the owner.
          Ownership of a horse to me (as long as I can afford it) is a life time commitment through the good and the bad.


          • #25
            Originally posted by BuddyRoo View Post

            IMHO of course. I was blessed that I could afford to do it at the time. Give him that last 4 years. I really think that when he could no longer be "useful" he knew it...and he declined quite rapidly. But at least I was there with him....and I know how he spent all his last days--happy, comfortable and spoiled to heck.

            (and now I'm in tears. sigh)
            Your not the only one


            • #26
              In January of this year, I went shopping for my first horse in a very long time. I went (stupid, I know) to a horse dealer that had a young paint mare, and a young thoroughbred for sale. When I had called, she asked if I would be interested in an older mare she had who was beginner safe (hahhahaha ) I said that sure, she could bring her out and I would look at her.

              When I got there, I saw the saddest horse I have ever seen. The dealers place is so bad it was once featured on Fugly Horse of the Day, if that tells you anything. She was skinny, though not yet horribly so, and I sort of reluctantly agreed to try her first and half-heartedly rode her for five minutes, knowing she'd be going home with me. Her feet were in awful shape, her heels were so low and starting to slipper. Her hocks were creaky and arthritic. You could tell no one paid any attention to her. Her eyes just begged for a home, you know? She's had untold numbers of babies because of her color, and her belly will never tighten up, and her udder sags so low but I feel her pain with four kids of my own.

              So knowing I could only afford one horse, I bought her and brought her home, knowing she needed to be with me, even if I could never ride her. I won't share the horrible shape they brought her to me in

              Some supplements, good food, and turn-out were all she needed, and she gives pony rides to my kids, and on good days, ambles me down the trails where she is happiest. She has a home with us for life, no matter what, and somehow the money has worked out to where we bought our second horse, my new 5 yo Appendix. She'll always be with us, even if I have to work 3 jobs to keep her. I think she deserves it.
              Cameron Grace M5H " Cammie" 2006 Haflinger
              Dandy Lil Dunn Jet "Penny" 1998 AQHA
              RIP Roans Lucky Socks "Chevy" 13 May 2003 - 1 December 2012 my sweet buddy, until we meet again.


              • #27
                I put down one of my horses last fall and needed a buddy for my other horse, an ottb at 15 yrs old. I really didn't want to go buy another horse as I wasn't riding anymore but wanted a nice companion for my ottb. While I knew Fingerlakes Racetrack had a lot of younger horses for sale reasonably an older horse was certainly preferable as a companion to a youngster. A friend knew this and offered her one horse, Shadow (26 yrs old), that had gone to another friends in the same capacity - companion. In the meantime, the other friend had gotten another horse so she didn't need Shadow anymore.

                I'd known Shadow for a number of yrs and always liked him but knew he had heaves, Cushings, and was anything but sound. The horse I had put down had also had heaves and for the last 3 yrs of his life, I had diligently soaked hay, not only for him but for my ottb, because they were pastured together 95% of the time. Generally in the winter, as much as 8-12 haynets. I really didn't want to spend another winter soaking hay. Also, the last time I'd seen Shadow, he was looking pretty poorly. But, sucker me, said I'd come and look at him. I'd really planned on taking another friend's horse.

                So, I go look at Shadow and he's looking a lot better than he did the last time I'd seen him. He was still bright-eyed and, while not sound, kept up with the other horses and could really gallop a short distance anyway.

                The owner was offering to pay his vet bills. While I really wanted her to also pay for trims and any supplements, I agreed to take him cause he really was a great horse in his day. Yep, big letters SUCKER on my forehead for sure.

                So, I sucked it up, brought him home. I knew I needed to know what his selenium levels were as we are in a low selenium area and I knew I needed4 times the recommended amount of the selenium supplement I was using to get my horses levels where they should be. So (dumb me) called the vet to do the blood test on Shadow - at my expense because it really wasn't (quite) routine vet work. Obviously, if his levels were OK at a lower level - great. Well they weren't. So I upped him to where my horse was, and had another blood test run. I think each test ran $45 and the farm call of course...

                Well, Shadow also had a very loose stool most of the time and cow plops the rest of the time. While he never was dehydrated, it always concerned me. So I tried papaya puree (Stomach Soother) to firm up his manure and it worked. Ok, buying 2 cases of it at a time, it still ran me an extra $44/month to keep his bowels working well. But I adored the old coot by this time. Actually his nickname was Old Fart.

                Then, knowing his owner was not about to buy Pergolide for his Cushing's, I had to be pretty careful with his diet and turnout. But I was doing OK but his stall was so wet and my ottb was getting pretty soggy as well so I asked the vet for a prescription for Pergolide. He's been on it for a short time so I don't know if it's working or not yet.

                In the meantime, the vet that had treated him when he first came to this area was out do some work on him and my other horse. She's seen him pretty regularly and also is attached to him. The first time she was out she gave me a gold star for the way he looked. If nothing else, that made me feel better.

                So long story short, he's not the first companion I've taken in and probably not the last. Just label me sucker. But hey, someone has too.

                I'm not saying let's go kill all the stupid people...I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.


                • #28

                  I have 3 horses and, if the economy doesn't do me in financially, they will have lifetime homes on my little farm. Just wish I could afford to add a fourth. I take one of the homeless TB's (as far as they know they are sound) rescued from a situation where they were starving and now looking for new homes. (hint,hint)


                  Alas, I'm smart enough to know that I just can't afford proper care for any more than I already have.
                  Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Goethe


                  • #29
                    I took a very lame horse in a few years ago. An ottb that was boarded at my farm. I was on my way to work when I passed his owner heading to the farm with a trailer. I called my hubby and told him that if he was sending that lame horse to the feedlot to tell him I will just take him for what he owes me in board-which was about 3 months board on 3 horses. This particular owner/trainer is known for sending horses to the killers. So now this big 17H gelding is mine. Great. He was lame on all 4 legs so he didn't limp at all. I found him a home where he was for about 2 weeks, then the girl showed up at 7am one morning to return him. It was coming winter and I just did not have the room for him. So he comes back even thinner, with a gash on his hind leg. The vet came out the next day, cleaned up his cut and gave me antibiotics. By the end of the week I found him another great home, the woman was thrilled with him. I explained the cut he came back with and the vet already looked it over, and that I had only had him 1 week and he desperately needed lots of weight. She still has the horse and he looks wonderful now. The only bad thing is that after I gave her the horse she came on here and flamed me, and said I tried to scam her. This gelding made over $200,000 for his race owner and when he was done with him he was just throwing him away. I am glad he got a second chance and is doing good.
                    Derby Lyn Farms Website

                    Derby Lyn Farms on Facebook!


                    • #30
                      This is Lucky Mistake, aka Missy. Top picture is just from this morning.



                      Missy was born unwanted. A mustang - yes, it was a mustang, not just a generic roamer - jumped a fence and got in with her mother. The pregnancy was unwanted. The mare died of foaling complications a couple of weeks after delivery. The owner hadn't wanted this poor little filly anyway and had had plans for the mare. Missy was given hay, water, and curses and left to fend for herself. Amazingly, she did.

                      I saw her at a couple of months old, scrawny, skinny, terrified, hated by the world and knew it. But there was something in the eyes that grabbed me - not just the appeal for help. This horse and I were - and are - connected more closely mentally than any other horse I've ever known in my life. I recognized the future in her eyes.

                      She was not a free horse. Actually, I had to pay $500 for her, which was overpriced for a scrawny orphan with unknown heritage, but I just wanted to get her out of there.

                      She was incredibly slow to trust. It took over a year, even just to handle her and move around her on the ground without suspicion. Once she trusted, though, she trusted to a degree that is humbling. To this day, she is wary, suspicious of strangers, and on guard, but I can do anything with her. Once I had her trust, I let her grow, then worked on groundwork, then on to riding. Winning her confidence was hard, but the training was easy. She was the first horse I ever broke in myself.

                      And then we hit her issues, which are partly conformational (she is a WB body on pony legs) and partly I think due to the nutritional deficits early in her fillyhood that I never was able to totally counteract. She ran through a whole list of leg injuries, from soft tissue up to a minor fracture, but the bottom line is, she will not stay sound under any kind of work or weight demands. We stopped, let her heal, started again, and in 2-3 weeks, she had another leg issue and would be lame. Same cycle, over and over. For her sake, I retired her.

                      So for 10 years (she is now 15), she has been in the pasture, her main job being sentinel against the possibility of a wolf or cougar someday. You can see her mustang heritage in her behavior. But we are so close, mentally. She is always the first to greet me any time I return to the farm after being gone. She is near telepathic and is the most intelligent - and the most sensitive - horse I've ever known.

                      She is not part of my broodmare band because I realized that with her questionable heritage and her problems, whether conformational or nutritionally caused, she was not a candidate for salable foals, and I am getting a business going here and didn't want to populate the world with horses who would be hard to place, for their own sakes as well as my business. But eventually I had to try, just once, with all sorts of caveats in place including being prepared to keep the foal myself for life however fugly it may be. I've always wanted to try endurance; I picked an Arab stallion specifically for his proven track record over a decade of stamping all his get, hoping that this combination would give me an endurance toy and also that the stallion would counteract at least some of Missy's question marks.

                      The result was the now silver yearling, and he is everything I possibly could have wanted. Her mind in his sire's body and with his sire's sociability. I can't wait for the future with him. I have actually had interest in him, but he is a keeper, just because he is hers. Although he could be sold if I ever absolutely had to. There would be a place for horses like him.





                      Missy will never be sold. She is so slow to trust and so bonded to me, besides not being sound. If the time ever comes that I cannot keep horses - and she would be the last one remaining - I will have her put down. I promised her when I got her that she would never again be unwanted. And she isn't.


                      • #31
                        My family has a total of ten rescue horses, but since you specifically asked about "old lame unwanted" horses I'll limit the post to the two that fit that bill: JJ and Shamall.

                        JJ is a 25 (or so) year old palimino QH that barrel raced for years. My great-aunt (nearing 70 years old herself) still barrel races, and heard of him on the circuit. He'd been turned out to pasture and neglected. He's the horse that you can put 4 year olds on his back and he just walks around with them, giving them a good ride. Rides in a hack (hates bits or anything in his mouth). In pasture he'd lost hundreds of pounds and was a walking skeleton. My mother got him for $200 to give him a decent retirement home. He's coliced, nearly died when we gave him a good dewormer (vet figures he had intramuscular parasites), has Cushings, could barely eat because his teeth were so bad, etc. He finally started putting weight on after the deworming incident and is at a good strong weight right now. He goes out on the occasional trail ride but for the most part is just the grumpy old man in the paddock keeping the mares in line.

                        Shamall is another story - 28 year old Egyptian Arab who was very much loved and wanted. His owner, an older (about 80 I believe?) had him for 20 years. My mom knows the owner's son. The owner has Parkinson's disease, and about a year ago the son contacted my mom about maybe taking Shamall in as the owner was getting to a point where he couldn't care for Shamall anymore. Mom went down to meet them and basically got interrogated on if she was good enough for Shamall. It took another eight months or so for the owner to get to the point he could part with him (accepting limitations is hard, but he knew Shamall needed better care and he couldn't give it) and now Shamall is a fixture in the paddock as well. He is not being ridden and just being another grumpy old man in the paddock.
                        If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.
                        ~ Maya Angelou


                        • #32
                          I have two retired Paint geldings. The 18 year old was my show horse, the 25 year old is my daughter's. My horse has terrible arthritis in his left hock, and stringhalt. He's hanging in there, and will have a home here with me until he breathes his last breath. The 25 year old is in better shape, but he's definitely slowed down and is not able to do the kind of trail riding I like to do, so he's settled into a well-deserved retirement, in a "forever home".

                          I moved to horse property two years ago to be able to have them in my back yard. I had boarded them for years, but as they needed to retire I couldn't imagine keeping them in stalls all day and night with limited turnout. So I bit the bullet, sold the house, bought the little horse property, and have loved bringing them home.

                          No one would want these horses. But they make every day a joy. It's the least I can do to repay them.


                          • #33
                            Until a month ago I had two retirees. One, I got as a 17 year old dressage schoolmaster. He was a morgan. I loved him but he wasn't my once-in-a-lifetime horse. I boarded him at my trainer's for two years and then brought him home. As soon as I got home I had to retire him due to worsening stringhalt and contracted tendons. He lived another two years with me. The fall of the last year of his life I was all ready to put him down, the vet and backhoe were at the farm and I asked the vet "are you sure he can't make it through another winter?" She looked at him and said the odds were against it but that I clearly wasn't ready to let him go. I committed to feeding him three times a day, getting a very thick very expensive blanket for him, and carrying the water to him when he wasn't very mobile. He made it through the winter, and was euthanized at the end of august this year.

                            My second retiree was the love of my life. He was a school horse at my trainer's barn. The first time I rode him I lost my balance over a fence and he moved his body up under me to catch me. That's the only reason I didn't fall off. I'd never had a horse do that with me, so I had a soft spot for him. His stall was next to my horse's (the one above) and every time I gave my horse a carrot I gave Trevor one. When Trevor tore both suspensory ligaments and was on stall rest I made a point of spending time with him, grooming him and feeding him treats. When he was well enough to be outside my trainer retired him to my barn. She paid shoeing and vet bills and I took care of everything else. That horse was with me two years. Even though I never rode him at home he was like a person in horse clothing and I loved him more than anything. He coliced and died a month ago and I"m still not really over it.

                            Everyone has their own soft spot. Mine is for old school horses who have given so much, and put up with some pretty bad riding and thoughtless people (along with the good ones of course!). I think of any category of horse those guys just deserve a wonderful, happy retirement. It is in the back of my mind to take another one, when the right one crosses my path.
                            Follow us on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/peonyvodka/


                            • #34
                              My not-so-old, lame, unrideable gelding decided to run away the other day. I'm sitting in the house, and two cars come pulling up the driveway. They asked whether I was missing a horse. My response was "No, don't think so" but I start doing a head count. Two up top, two down below, and one by the pond. There were two by the pond a half hour ago. Damn! So, Mr. Lame-O JUMPED the fence (5') and was walking up the shoulder of the road. Walking. Leisurely strolling past hay fields, walking past the dairy farm next door, just going for a hike. Don't know why. He didn't seem to be doing anything except enjoying the scenery. One of the cars that pulled up gave me a ride down to go get him and I called to him and was like "Excuse me, just where do you think you're going?!" He turned around and walked toward me and didn't protest about walking back home. He was over a half mile down the road, and it was when he hit our 800' driveway that he realized his feet HURT. He froze in place and kept shifting his weight. I felt bad, but there wasn't much I could do at that point. It wasn't like I could carry him the rest of the way to his stall so he could lie down.

                              So, dumba$$ pony is scheduled for a neurectomy in the upcoming weeks. Let's hope his new found pain free existance doesn't increase his antics.


                              • #35
                                I bought my girl off of the track back in 1990, she came with a knee chip but an otherwise clean bill of health. The vet said the knee chip would not prevent her from lower level sport but that I would have to take things slowly and have my own vet monitoring her as we went. He also said that it was probably going to rear it ugly head in her future as some (maybe) serious arthritis and that it could/would shorten her career. I bought her anyway, she was honest, sweet, athletic and had a heart as big as Texas. Two months after I had brough her home, another horse who was a master at getting doors open, got his stall open first, then hers and chased her out of her stall, on her depart, she scraped her hip on the concrete side of her doorway and broke her hip. I was not there, neither was the barn owner when it happened. I arrived later to feed dinner and found her out in the pasture, in shock. I rehabed her from that slowly and took extra special care to take things slowly and carefully for her as she made it clear that being a pasture pet at the age of 4/5 was not to her liking, she always liked to work. She was my hunter, jumping 3' at shows but up to 4' at home (she LOVED to jump), and my dressage horse doing 1st level and work on sone 2nd level stuff when she was retired at 15. At 16 she had Frodo but she has been officially retired now for 7 years and will always be in my care. She enjoys daily grooming and her job is to eat and poop, that's it. Frodo will be taken care of in that way too.
                                ~Amy~ TrakehNERD clique
                                *Bugs 5/86-3/10 OTTB Mare* RIP lovely Lady, I miss you
                                *Frodo '03 Anglo Trakehner Gelding*
                                My Facebook


                                • #36
                                  I have my first horse. He's 24 now, and not very ridable, but comfortable, and he has a home until he dies. He did so much for me, it's the least I can do for him!
                                  Proud Closet Canterer!


                                  • #37
                                    I took in a 24 year old retired show jumper in May. She has arthritis, and has had an abcess that popped out the top for a month. She needs expensive joint supplements, and now needs shoes. I took her in for my son to ride, but she hasn't been sound enough for this in 2 months. Love her to death, would never part with her. I have a 16 year old OTTB, arthritis getting worse year by year. She can't jump any more, but is the best darn trail horse in the world. Water, trains, stupid kids on dirt bikes, no problem. She came to us with a 6 month old Coggins, 4 owners ago. She had a nasty reputation, and won't let anyone but me ride her, but she will never have to worry about another home. My 13 year old QH I got as a weanling. She was turned out alone when she was weaned, and ran through the high tensil fence. She cut herself up so bad, no one wanted her. She is a granddaughter of Peponita, so I bought her as a broodmare prospect. I have foxhunted her, taken her to the State Fair horse show, she will do anything you ask. You can put anyone on her. All were unwanted, all in their last homes.


                                    • #38
                                      I've had a few retirees over the years, two who have since passed away and two currently here for life.
                                      Currently, I have a 30-year old foundation QH with a heart murmur, and a 13 year-old OTTB who has so many issues (mostly behavioural) that placing him was not an option.
                                      He's sound, happy, and has learned to be a horse again over the past few years. We get along fine, he respects me and has settled down tremendously.
                                      Not an easy keeper, but as far as I am concerned, he more than earned his keep.
                                      I knew an owner at the racetrack year ago who retired a decent mare he had. He placed her on a full board farm, and the BM once told me that she had been there for 12 years and he was never even so much as a day late with her board. That's devotion.
                                      When the time comes for my current retirees, they will get as painless an end as can be had. That's the best I can do for them.


                                      • #39
                                        All of mine were unwanted, but not old.

                                        #1 14 yr old morgan gelding. Rescue, got him when he broke a rib and his owner tried to ride him....horse took off under saddle. He's had a year off, healed, and cleared to try to get back into work.

                                        #2 ottb mare, 8. She's my soul- such a deep connection. However, at 8, she's lame, and am thinking about putting down. In desperation, i talked to an AC this summer who suggested I put her up for sale because even though she's lame, the mare is looking for her next person. Our paths have forked, and euthanisation is not the answer. WHAT?! How could I do that? No way. I'd put her down before expecting someone to take her on. But now I have an extra layer of guilt to overcome because of that AC conversation. I never cried so much in my life. I'm still trying to get over that one.

                                        #3 8 yr old appy mare, Cassie. She was featured on Fugly this summer. I've had her for 3 years. Athletic and gorgeous- a slaughter throwaway. I had the best riding day of my life (see best day ever link below). It took a long time to win her trust, and start her under saddle. And it was so easy, once she allowed me into her world. Its been an awesome experience- she's taught me more than I ever thought I needed to be taught.

                                        After that beach day she had a 6 week long abscess. She healed, we moved on...except she was a different horse after that. Nothing bad happened to her. She just sorta lost confidence. She's not been the same since. She still trusts me- but less. And has a hard time with any other person but me.

                                        At one point I was considering rehoming her, then not, and now i dont think i ever could because while she's not done anything bad, I dont trust that she's safe to rehome. Trouble is brewing, I think. Right now I wouldnt consider her safe and ready to ride. I dont know if she'll ever be again. Maybe I am holding her back, but one of these days she's going to blow- i can see it. It'd have to be a very very special person to allow me to consider it. But who wants to take that chance?

                                        I DO have financial difficulties right now. I'm at the point where I'm picking up job #2 and #3 to support these horses. I'm ok with that. But if ever I can't support them, i have to make some tough decisions. I have thought about putting down both mares down as they are joined at the hip as it is.
                                        But they will never, ever find themselves facing the dire end from which they were originally saved.
                                        My blog: Change of Pace - Retraining a standardbred via dressage


                                        • #40
                                          We took in a severely foundered gelding a few years ago. He belonged to a family member, but he definately wasn't being provided for and they were fixing to just dump him at a sale. He was in so much pain and could barely walk when we got him. He's recovering nicely, several vet bills later, but he definately was worth everything we put into him. Just recently we took in another horse. He definately isn't lame or unwanted, but his owner just wanted to find him a good home where he would be taken care of. So now we have the 2 of them. They are FOREVER additions. I never intend to get rid of these 2 and they will always remain together. I'm sure our founder gelding will recover and probably become sound enough to ride, but it doesn't concern me. He just stole our hearts when we got him. He is so kind and so gentle. All that concerns me is that these horses have a wonderful life. We could never part with either of these horses. I enjoyed rehabbing our gelding so much, that I would love to take in older/senior horses who just need a good home in the future.