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Opinions, please - whether to sell a really good horse

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  • Opinions, please - whether to sell a really good horse

    Let me preface by saying I'm an adult re-rider.

    My first horse was an older TB mare. She's retired now due to arthritis. I purchased my Oldenburg gelding when he was 3 - he's now 6. My intention was to event. He's a fairly quiet guy, and has good manners. My problem is that, even though he's done nothing wrong, I just can't get comfortable riding him. He's tall and lean, with a big stride, and I never feel balanced. I always feel like I'm going to come off. This hasn't changed in the two years I've been riding him. I have zero confidence on this horse. I think his age and size may just be too intimidating for me. But he's a really good horse!!! I'm not a particularly skilled or ambitious rider. I just want to have fun, and do lower level events. I think I may do better with a short, fat quarter horse packer type.

    I'm having a really difficult time deciding what to do. Part of me says there's no point in keeping a horse you aren't enjoying. Part of me says it's insane to sell a great horse b/c of some mental block I can't seem to get past. Everyone who knows this horse will think I'm an idiot to sell. And it would be heartbreaking for me, but I can't afford to get another horse without selling this one.

    Opinions? Advice? Help, please?

  • #2
    Sell. He will find a better match and so will you but the longer you try to force it the worse it will be. He will get older, potentially lose confidence... Pass him on to a good home while he is marketable.

    Comment


    • #3
      If you'd had the horse a month, I'd encourage you to take more lessons and try to get along with the horse.

      However, at two years, it's time to move on. You've put in the time and effort to try to make it work- and it doesn't. Accept that- it's really fine. Not every rider gets along with every horse - and as an amateur, you have no reason to ride a horse you don't enjoy.

      Sell the horse, and start riding anything and everything you can find. Try a large pony, try a stockier horse like a halflinger, try a QH, try a heinz 57, anything you can find. Once you have a sense of what you want, and what makes you comfortable and happy, go shopping again.

      Comment


      • #4
        I think the smart thing and best for all would be to get the horse that suits you and that is not the one, obviously.

        I got a wonderful colt, that is showing to be very, very talented.
        I am not keeping him, he will be sold to someone that probably will end high up on him at the Futurity and will have many good years ahead at the top of the game he was bred for.
        That is the best for him and definitely he is too much horse for old, half crippled me, that needs a much slower type horse to plod around the lower levels with, not a high octane Ferrari type horse.

        With colts, you just never know what you have until they mature some, that is a chance you take, that they may just not fit once they are along in their training and we may be somewhat less the rider we were, or hoped to be for them.
        Then, some have the opposite problem, their horse is not going to be good enough for the level they are working on, so they have to move on to more horse for those goals.

        For most of my life, I was the one training horses so they were suitable for others to ride once trained.
        Now I am looking for those horses others trained and are now suitable for my diminishing capabilities as an older, somewhat handicapped rider.

        The best horse for anyone is the one that fits for who they are and what they are doing with horses.

        Comment


        • #5
          Agree with the other two responses. Life is short. Get yourself a packer and have fun!
          Ride like you mean it.

          Comment


          • #6
            Bluey is right! I got my western horse because my big dressage horse, who was supposed to be my carriage horse if he had worked out for that, is too much horse for me. He has a couple of *problems* so I won't sell him but I felt in danger on him. I got one that I'm completely comfortable with.
            Ride like you mean it.

            Comment


            • #7
              It may not be a mental block. His body type may not fit how you are built and that's why you feel off balance! I need a 55 gallon drum to feel comfy. Anything slab sided and I can't get my lower leg back on...

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Thanks everyone. I'm just so embarrassed and disappointed in myself for not being able to make this work. I really expected him to be a forever horse. Justing posting this makes me tear up.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Remington410 View Post
                  Thanks everyone. I'm just so embarrassed and disappointed in myself for not being able to make this work. I really expected him to be a forever horse. Justing posting this makes me tear up.
                  That is part of life.
                  We make all those plans and have so much hanging on the horse we buy.
                  When it doesn't work out, it is disheartening, but life goes on.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Sell. I bred my mare intending to keep the baby forever. Things changed, and I felt it was in both of our best interests to sell. She's in a great home with an experienced owner who can do more with her than I ever could. No regrets.

                    Don't be disappointed or embarrassed or feel like you failed. It isn't like you bought a pair of shoes that aren't quite right. It's a living, breathing animal. There are a ton of factors that affect the "fit". Sell and try again.
                    Against My Better Judgement: A blog about my new FLF OTTB
                    Do not buy a Volkswagen. I did and I regret it.
                    VW sucks.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I struggled with a giant flashy horse for over three years before I finally faced reality, sold him to a much more capable 11-year-old girl, and bought a small, plain-jane packer. There's no shame in it! The most liberating thing I ever did was admit my limitations.

                      I'm a mediocre rider, and I'm proud!
                      Dreadful Acres: the chronicle of my extraordinary unsuitability to country life

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        If he just feels unbalanced, can you send him for 60 days with a pro and see if they can help with that? Either way it will make him more marketable and may help fix the issue.
                        Somewhere in the world, Jason Miraz is Goodling himself and wondering why "the chronicle of the horse" is a top hit. CaitlinAndTheBay

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Could it also be your saddle?
                          Boss Mare Eventing Blog
                          https://www.youtube.com/user/jealoushe

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Remington410 View Post
                            Let me preface by saying I'm an adult re-rider.

                            My first horse was an older TB mare. She's retired now due to arthritis. I purchased my Oldenburg gelding when he was 3 - he's now 6. My intention was to event. He's a fairly quiet guy, and has good manners. My problem is that, even though he's done nothing wrong, I just can't get comfortable riding him. He's tall and lean, with a big stride, and I never feel balanced. I always feel like I'm going to come off. This hasn't changed in the two years I've been riding him. I have zero confidence on this horse. I think his age and size may just be too intimidating for me. But he's a really good horse!!! I'm not a particularly skilled or ambitious rider. I just want to have fun, and do lower level events. I think I may do better with a short, fat quarter horse packer type.

                            I'm having a really difficult time deciding what to do. Part of me says there's no point in keeping a horse you aren't enjoying. Part of me says it's insane to sell a great horse b/c of some mental block I can't seem to get past. Everyone who knows this horse will think I'm an idiot to sell. And it would be heartbreaking for me, but I can't afford to get another horse without selling this one.

                            Opinions? Advice? Help, please?
                            The bolded part kind of jumped out at me. Have you tried different saddles on him. It might be a problem with the saddle throwing you out of balance. The stirrup placement might be a little off or the front to back blance might not be right for you. I have had that happen occasionally and with a different saddle that fit me and was balanced correctly the ride suddenly got a lot easier.

                            Christa

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Why spend time and money trying to do something you're not comfortable with? Get a new baby

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Originally posted by Christa P View Post
                                The bolded part kind of jumped out at me. Have you tried different saddles on him. It might be a problem with the saddle throwing you out of balance. The stirrup placement might be a little off or the front to back blance might not be right for you. I have had that happen occasionally and with a different saddle that fit me and was balanced correctly the ride suddenly got a lot easier.

                                Christa
                                I did wonder about this and I was going to bring it up with my trainer when we meet to discuss a plan of action this weekend. He has a fitted Schleese, but it's pretty old (could only afford used!) and not very comfortable any more.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  do you look forward to your rides?
                                  do you have a smile on your face when you dismount?

                                  is riding joyous?

                                  these are the questions I would ask.
                                  A man must love a thing very much if he not only practices it without any hope of fame or money, but even practices it without any hope of doing it well.--G. K. Chesterton

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Remington410 View Post
                                    Thanks everyone. I'm just so embarrassed and disappointed in myself for not being able to make this work. I really expected him to be a forever horse. Justing posting this makes me tear up.

                                    It always amazes me how attached we get to the horses we are not suited for!! He deserves a rider who will enjoy him and you deserve a horse you can relax and have fun with.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by joiedevie99 View Post
                                      You've put in the time and effort to try to make it work- and it doesn't. Accept that- it's really fine. Not every rider gets along with every horse - and as an amateur, you have no reason to ride a horse you don't enjoy.
                                      Absolutely!

                                      And as the owner of one of those horses someone didn't fit with after trying... there will be someone who is the right match and SO GRATEFUL that you do it. My horse was apparently not happy before I got him, and his previous owner was an adult beginner who wasn't happy riding him. I'm so thankful she decided to sell him instead of just hanging on to him because he was a nice horse. Apparently I have a huge smile on my face the entire time I ride him - and I'm not one who naturally smiles much. It's just that he's such a great match for me I absolutely LOVE riding him and it shows.

                                      You deserve to enjoy yourself riding, and he deserves to have a match for himself, too. There is no shame in it, but rather good horsemanship in accepting that you're not a fit while he's a good age/physical ability to move on and help facilitate your purchase of a different horse.


                                      As for the people who will think you should keep them - tell them they are welcome to buy him from you! I bet they won't put their money where their mouths are.
                                      Originally posted by Silverbridge
                                      If you get anything on your Facebook feed about who is going to the Olympics in 2012 or guessing the outcome of Bush v Gore please start threads about those, too.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Remington410 View Post
                                        Let me preface by saying I'm an adult re-rider.

                                        My first horse was an older TB mare. She's retired now due to arthritis. I purchased my Oldenburg gelding when he was 3 - he's now 6. My intention was to event. He's a fairly quiet guy, and has good manners. My problem is that, even though he's done nothing wrong, I just can't get comfortable riding him. He's tall and lean, with a big stride, and I never feel balanced. I always feel like I'm going to come off. This hasn't changed in the two years I've been riding him. I have zero confidence on this horse. I think his age and size may just be too intimidating for me. But he's a really good horse!!! I'm not a particularly skilled or ambitious rider. I just want to have fun, and do lower level events. I think I may do better with a short, fat quarter horse packer type.

                                        I'm having a really difficult time deciding what to do. Part of me says there's no point in keeping a horse you aren't enjoying. Part of me says it's insane to sell a great horse b/c of some mental block I can't seem to get past. Everyone who knows this horse will think I'm an idiot to sell. And it would be heartbreaking for me, but I can't afford to get another horse without selling this one.

                                        Opinions? Advice? Help, please?
                                        He may well BE a great horse, but he's not the RIGHT horse for you, here and now. Riding is supposed to be FUN, and if you're not happy and having to make yourself get on him, sooner or later you'll make excuses not to and it'll all go downhill from there.

                                        No need to stay "married" to 'em! Sell him to someone who's been looking their whole life for him, and find the one that makes YOU happy. Sometimes they come in unexpected packages, too; people are very surprised at who I'm riding these days!

                                        Comment

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