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Horses behaving badly in new homes.

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  • Horses behaving badly in new homes.

    Using an alter to protect all parties involved.

    Have you ever sold a really good horse, only to find out that the horse is a total disaster to them?

    This happened to me. I sold a nice horse, she carried kids around a 2'6" course with no issues. Never a buck or a rear. Horse was picture perfect.

    Fast forward 3 months, and horse is not working out for new owners. She will be euthanized if I don't take her back. Bites, bucks, rears, leaps, just overall terrible for them. They have had a complete vet work up and horse is not showing any signs of pain.

    I have asked multiple questions. What type of bit? Are you using spurs? How much and what are you feeding her? No answer to any of them. Horse went from 20 hours of turnout a day to 6 hours a day. The poor girl is just misunderstood.

    Owners are done. They feel the horse is just bad. Here I look like a liar and sold them a bad horse. I can't wait until she gets home, and I am going to take lots more videos of her.

    Ugh. It's just frustrating. They are too far away for me to go over and help them. Think 15-16hr drive.

    How would you handle this situation? Would you try to sell the horse again and pay them? Or just take the horse and be done with it? They are offering her back for free.

  • #2
    Take her back and evaluate. The only thing you've been able to find out is that her turnout is less time? Nothing about equipment or herd dynamics or feed?
    She may be ruined or she may just work best in your program/program where YOU keep her.

    If they are offering her back for free I'd say you don't owe them anything, however if you are a pro it might be good for your business image to come up with something.
    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
    Incredible Invisible


    • #3
      So, they aren't responding to your questions about bit, spurs, or anything about her feed and training? And they're offering her back without asking for their money back? If you can, I'd take her back and try to sell her somewhere closer. It sounds like they just want her gone.
      Author Page
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      • #4
        Aww poor horse. My trainer acquired a horse that just didn't mesh with his owner. He was spooky and scared her to the point she didn't want to ride anymore. My trainer got him for a steal of a deal, as she was ready to cut her losses and find something more appropiate for her. The young lady that is currently riding him has not had any problems. Every show or clinic we have gone to he gets off the trailer and barely bats an eye.
        Some horses and peeps just dont get along, go get your horse and be happy to have him back he will be happy to be home.

        Patience and Consistency are Your Friends


        • #5
          I'd probably take the horse back and be done with it, although you might want to get permission to speak with the vet who did the workup to be sure there isn't something going on that you should know about.


          • #6
            Glad that you are taking her back, so you can help the horse and see for yourself what is going on.

            As for free, that is fine, but you can tell them you will see what you have and, after your costs are taken into account and a commission, you can see how much may be left?

            Or better not say anything and surprise them later, after you see what you have there.

            Was there a trainer involved?
            If not, that may be a big part of the problem here and that is not your trouble, they messed the horse up, she is not worth what they paid, take her back.

            Some times, you can't help what happens, do the best with what you get.


            • #7
              Get a bill of sale when you get her back
              the NOT!! Spoiled!! Arabian Protectavest poster pony lives on in my heart


              • #8
                What macmtn said. When I passed my mare on for free we still drew up a bill of sale. I am sorry you are in this situation. I would try to get the answers to your questions from them when you go and pick her up. Are they working with a trainer who is hopefully less emotionally involved that you could more easily converse with?
                "Choose to chance the rapids, and dare to dance the tides" - Garth Brooks
                "With your permission, dear, I'll take my fences one at a time" - Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey


                • #9
                  Wow that's scary. Hope you will update us on the behavior of the horse when it returns to you.


                  • #10
                    It may also be that the horse is just very unhappy/insecure at the new place. Some horses just don't handle big moves very, especially if the new place has drastically different horsekeeping practices.

                    Sorry this happened and I hope it's just a temporary issue with this mare. I would think about offering some kind of partial refund even if it's not in the sale contract - obviously keep your expenses, including return shipping if you are paying that. But I think that would help your reputation more than anything.


                    • #11
                      It could be they just want her gone for some other reason, such as the rider no longer wants to ride, or maybe they thought they could flip her for a lot more money and the deal fell through. Just take her back, with a bill of sale, and see what happens when she's home.
                      You can't fix stupid-Ron White


                      • #12
                        Take her back (with a bill of sale, obviously), assess the situation and go from there. Do not promise them any money. Do ask for permission to contact their vet and get something in writing that allows you access to their records.

                        Could it be something as simple as ulcers from the change of turn out and the move?

                        I sold a gelding many years back. I was upfront about his medical issues (minor ring bone) and about his personality; easy going but seemed to like to test his rider once or twice a year to be sure he still had to listen. Nothing big, just refusal to go, turn, or stop (not run away with you, just 'no I am walking over here and you can not stop me') for a few minutes one day out of nowhere. Just make him listen (which did not take much, maybe a kick or a small smack with the crop) and all was well for another six months.
                        Two weeks later I get a call about how untrained and unridable he is and how every time she tries to take him out for a trail ride he spins around and drags her back to the barn.


                        • #13
                          A professional trainer/breeder/stallion owner friend of mine who sells a decent number of horses...once told me he would rather take the horse back then leave him in a place where he wasn't wanted. He told me about one situation where the new owners couldn't ride the well trained horse he sold them. He just shook his head.... It's part of doing business sometimes.


                          • #14
                            Everybody has said what I was thinking, I just wanted to chime in with some jingles for the best possible outcome for everybody involved!


                            • Original Poster

                              I am definitely taking her back. Just have to find a reasonable shipper soon. I am not really in a position to pay for shipping since I just bought a big load of hay. I want my horses to be in homes where they are wanted. I hate the thought of such a good horse being put to sleep because they don't get along with the new owner. When the horse gets back I will probably give her some time to settle in, but I will update on her when I can.


                              • #16
                                Happened to my last horse I had in High School. Went from all day turnout to almost none, and used as a lesson horse (an immature 4 YO appy. Bad idea). I was unable to do anything about it (see above, I was in HS). They were certain he'd been misrepresented. They were wrong, good heavens, they were wrong- but the horse was the loser. I never did find him again after that. They sold him and he vanished.

                                J3Bars Gumbo was a good horse, and very colorful. Maybe his color helped him land better.

                                If you can take her back, I'd sure try.


                                • #17
                                  Take her back, she's free, just a two day drive away.


                                  • #18
                                    This sounds like a real nightmare, and an experience I am somewhat familiar with. When I was younger my mother and I sold one of our homebred trail horses to someone we thought would be a great match. Lots of kids needing a low-key yet energetic horse that was safe to be around and very personable. Hey, so was our horse Daisy! Super gentle, very quiet, so people-oriented that she would follow just about anyone around the pasture and try to steal anything not firmly attached (hats were her favorite prey). They took her home, everyone was happy for at least a month.

                                    About nine months later we get a call from some lady who wants to know about this mare Daisy because she is buying her from the people we sold her to, who were at last report very happy with her. She then asks if we ever had any issues with Daisy biting or kicking. Um, no. Never, actually. Apparently mare is kicking the stable help. This was so out of character for this horse that I wonder what the stable help were doing to her. The next question was about having problems keeping weight on Daisy. Again, we never had Daisy have problems with weight. She was a complete air fern, never got grain and still ballooned up. Apparently Daisy is almost 100lbs underweight . The only way that horse could have gotten that underweight was through bad hay or no hay! Seeing as the deal was just about sealed between these two and this lady still wanted to buy the mare after all the awful behavioral problems and weight issues we let it go, and now mare is very happy and back to her old self, being ridden in parades and being messed around with by kids.

                                    Sometimes people get something they don't want and instead of sacking up and saying "This is not what I wanted," they keep the horse and either make up behavior problems as an excuse and sell the horse down the road quickly, or try to keep working with the horse and actually get the horse behaving badly. I really hope it turns out well for you and the horse. These situations are awful and on the bright side they are actually offering the horse back instead of selling it to the first buyer. Sending good vibes your way!


                                    • Original Poster

                                      Owners want the mare out of there by this weekend. The shipper I spoke with can't do it for another 2 weeks. Because of work I cannot drive over there myself. My truck needs new tires and there is no way I can do new tires and pay for fuel and miss work. Any suggestions on a farm that can lay him over until I can get the shipper out there? He is SE NY/PA area.


                                      • #20
                                        I personally have had it happen. Sold a very steady schooling pony who is a SS specialist She is easy quiet forgiving etc. Her only caveat is that she is a bi annual hock injection has been for years.

                                        People took her boarded with a good trainer loved the pony won a bunch on her. Fast forward less then a year they left the trainer wanted to have more "fun" moved her twice to go knows where and finally landed at an associates barn who called me and asked if I wanted the pony back. She was "ruined,lam e, miserable , not safe , needed to be retired , made a broodmare etc" Did I mention shes only 13 I said yes because making sure she was safe was prio #1 then did some digging.
                                        You can guess what they never bothered to do. I guess the "trainer" at the 2nd or 3rd place they went said it was extreme and unnecessary to do joint injections. So the poor thing was sore and miserable and expressing it in the way that only little red headed mares can!

                                        I've had her back since June and she is happily packing my 7 year old around without putting so much as a hair out of place. Heard through the vine that prior owners are upset that shes' being ridden because "shes broken". I hope you get your mare back sometimes you just can't make a square peg round.
                                        "I would not beleive her if her tongue came notorized"