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I did ok choosing my husband...

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  • #21
    Originally posted by FlashGordon View Post
    ...but have been hopeless at choosing horses.

    The one pervasive theme I see throughout my adulthood is that I like projects and end up taking on horses that are not currently doing what I want them to do. So I gamble. And while I can honestly say I learned something from each, they were all bettered by being in my care... I'm still left without a riding partner at the end of the day.

    I am now retiring an 8 year old TB mare who has been intermittently lame since the day I got her last year. My husband and my mom and I had dinner last night and they both said said NO MORE PROJECT HORSES. (My mom flat out said no more horses but I don't have to heed her advice, lol. The joys of being a grown-up.)

    However, I do need to make better choices. The horse I had growing up was a QH stepping down from the A circuit. He wasn't fancy, he wasn't expensive, but he was a good, sound horse who did his job. How do you find one of those? I don't see them floating around like you used to, or maybe I am not networking in the right places.

    I am hoping to find adequate retirement for my mare and then go back to lessoning or doing a partial lease for a long, long time.

    Anyway just wondered if anyone else suffers the same plight as I. This is my manifesto, but feel free to chime in. I take full responsibility for my poor decisions.... hopefully now that I am 31 and not 21 I will start to be a bit smarter about what critters I bring home...
    I am definitely suffering the same plight. I can afford a horse, but the time it would take to get back and forth from the barn, the gas to drive 65 miles round trip, not being able to take care of it if the horse needed extensive veterinary care, etc...

    the problem I am having with lessons is twofold:

    really hard to find a barn that has school horses that are the right combination of challenging and still safe, for someone who has been riding a long time;

    and getting the ownership experience of getting to love on a horse and buy it things and pull its mane and all those little things. I just really don't enjoy going to the barn and riding a different horse all the time, and finding part leases of decent horses is super hard.

    I'm considering buying and half leasing it out so at least it won't be so expensive.
    Originally posted by PeanutButterPony
    you can shackle your pony to a lawn chair at the show...so long as its in a conservative color.

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    • #22
      FG I am so sorry that is awful!? Like everyone else I was so hoping you'd come on here with a different ending. None of.this is your fault, horses are a crapshoot. But I do agree no more projects... you deserve the perfect one after all this!

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      • #23
        Hell, a lot of trainers don't even really have any schoolies. No one wants to carry that expense.
        I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
        I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09

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        • Original Poster

          #24
          Originally posted by Lori B View Post
          Hell, a lot of trainers don't even really have any schoolies. No one wants to carry that expense.
          Lori you are totally right about that! One reason I keep getting sucked back into horseownership... hard to find good trainers with school horses.

          Luckily the barn where I board now has a fabulous trainer AND great schoolies so I am just going to go back to do the lesson thing.

          This morning I am feeling rather bitter and sad though so just wallowing in my coffee a bit! Thinking I might sell my saddle and buy a bike, lol.

          Anyway thanks all for the support and commiseration. My heart goes out to all of you who are in a similar plight.
          We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.

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          • #25
            FG, I hope you don't give up on horses. It really becomes a part of who we are as people and how we identify ourselves. I lucked out with the Big Spotted Mare. She's not fancy or athletic by any sense but she's sane and safe and sound now that we got her foot issues sorted. It makes me sad to think about her aging as she's 20 this year and what the future will bring but I have to keep reminding myself to live in the moment and enjoy the time we have.

            I agree with everyone who says no more projects. Life is too short to gamble. It might cost more upfront but for everything you've spent trying to make the imperfect horse work for you, you'll probably save a ton in the end. My plans for my next horse is to budget well and be prepared to spend $5,000-7,500. I want older, trained and safe. I think I should be able to find something nice for that much. Even $2,500 for a retiree that vets well would be a vast improvement over a $500 heartache. I also have to be willing to wait for this perfect horse to show up. I think after I lose the Flake, I'm probably going to go the lease route and then just wait for the right horse to show up. This will be an exercise in patience for me - which will drive me insane!

            Oh, and speaking of gambling, I promise when I win the lottery, we'll do a girls shopping trip to Europe - my treat. ;-) We'll go find our dream horses. But I wouldn't bet the farm on that. LOL!

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            • #26
              I prefer projects despite being an ammy rider with insufficient time and only moderate riding skills. I've more often than not gotten very lucky with mine. I also don't mind selling them (or rehoming them if they don't work for me for whatever reason): Last several

              OTTB two weeks off, super horse - a little hot, but I got along with him well. We evented through training. When he was injured, I had Dean Richardson do the surgery on his ankles, rehabbed him for six months and leased him to some lower level eventers with the caveat that I would take him back at any time. He has been happily with them since

              Spotted menace - evented him through training. He needed to rebuild strength after an illness, so I sent him to a trainer. While he was there, I fell in love with an OTTB. I still own the menace. He was leased to DeltaWave for 3 years and is now with a student of FlightCheck's.

              That OTTB is for sale. He loves to jump in the arena, has classic style and perfect changes, he's a good enough mover to do well at local dressage shows and you can trail ride him anywhere on the buckle, but he hates jumping xc and I'm an eventer.

              The Trak cross I bought after him is a dressage horse now, because he hates jumping altogether.

              The little TB(?) evented through training with my trainer's assistant because after I bought him and evented him through novice, I fell in love with another very recently OTTB. We sold the little TB(?) and bought great jumping WBx for assistant who is riding him still (and loves him)

              Meanwhile, that OTTB - second heart horse of my adult life. We are eventing together and having a blast.

              (Time period for all of this from November 2004-September 2011)
              OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!

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              • Original Poster

                #27
                Originally posted by scubed View Post

                That OTTB is for sale. He loves to jump in the arena, has classic style and perfect changes, he's a good enough mover to do well at local dressage shows and you can trail ride him anywhere on the buckle, but he hates jumping xc and I'm an eventer.
                Hey send me that one.... Want a lame but sweet grey TB in exchange?!
                We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.

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