• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Options for companion to a lone horse

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Options for companion to a lone horse

    Hi All,

    I am really getting tired of boarding and am trying to move into the country and just take care of my own horse.

    I don't want him to be alone, but am not sure I want to have 2 horses and was just wondering what some other options are that have worked well for other people.

    I have considered a pony, a mini, sheep, goats, etc. But would like to hear of experiences that people have had before deciding which is the best way to go.

    Thanks

  • #2
    I know you said you did not want another horse, but wouldn't it be great if you'd reconsider and adopt a "pasture pal" type horse from one of the adoption/non-profit groups? (You can see where this is going if you look at my signature!)

    There are so many kind, older or quiet horses, who, due to injuries or age, cannot be ridden, but are happy and easy to have turned out as a companion.
    We have all Thoroughbreds right off the track--all shapes, sizes and demeanors. My favorites are the older class horses who are smart, quiet, and have definitely earned their keep! Many are easy keepers, too.

    Can I change your mind????

    Maybe someone else would consider this?

    Call or email with any questions...
    Turning For Home, Inc.
    Philadelphia Park Racehorse Retirement Program
    www.patha.org
    turningforhome@patha.org

    Comment


    • #3
      Well if you want a second super easy keeper horse that I would think costs about the same to upkeep as a pony without the high risk of foundering let me know, we have an older saint of a retiree that hates his living arrangement and we would be happy to send him somewhere that he has nice grass and attention. Problem is we are in CA and not many people want one of those around here, and nobody wants to ship a 19 year old anywhere to hang out and mow the lawn.

      Comment


      • #4
        Actually if I were you I'd consider two companions.

        No matter what animal you decide on for your horse, it will most likely be a herd animal.

        If you decide to take your horse away (trail ride, show, hunting,) the companion animal would be alone and likely to be distraught.

        I always suggest a goat but people seem to have strong feelings about that choice. But it is a very inexpensive choice, and if you have the right fencing works out fine (if the horse likes goats!)

        But I'd say get two goats or two companion animals for your horse.

        Certainly a retired old schoolhorse or a pasture ornament horse would be worthwhile - just more expensive to maintain.

        Good luck.
        Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
        Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
        -Rudyard Kipling

        Comment


        • #5
          We have a mini donkey for our horse. They are so cute together and really get along great. If I take the horse out of the pasture without the donkey, the donkey gets really upset and calls to us the whole time. I don't take my horse anywhere, but if I did the donkey would come with us. We also have a potbelly pig that hangs out with them.
          CRAYOLA Posse: PLUM

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            We actually have thought about the "get two" companions. I don't do any showing and the only reason my horse might go anywhere would be on a short trail ride. He is somewhat lame in his hind right leg so he is only able to be lightly ridden.

            I don't know that I want to get a second horse because then if I do want to go for a short trail ride - then the other horse would be left alone and it is my experience that they don't usually like that.

            Also - with this economy my business has pretty much dried up and the added expense of how much a horse eats and the farrier, vet, etc really adds up.

            I am just looking for an inexpensive way to give him some company - although, I may consider a very small horse as compared to a pony as a possibility if I found the right one.

            For now, I was just looking for experiences people have had with having one horse and having goats or sheep, etc for a pasture buddy.

            Thanks,

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Qtina View Post
              For now, I was just looking for experiences people have had with having one horse and having goats or sheep, etc for a pasture buddy.

              Thanks,
              In that case, I'll tell you that I have had goats for a lone horse and it worked out fine. Economical (goats still eat most of the weeds), my horse was "ok", and when I went somewhere the goat had a buddy.

              Things have changed a great deal since then but I still enjoy owning goats. BUT - I have my place set up for multiple species. So goats don't get loose and wreak havoc on equipment, vehicles and my roses.
              Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
              Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
              -Rudyard Kipling

              Comment


              • #8
                I was in the same boat as you and took on a second horse. It was difficult because when I went out to ride, the companion horse went nuts. So we took on a third horse, a boarder. That solved our problem. Now of course we have 7 equines here....Equine companions are generally best, but if you can't do that, consider a pair of large breed (nubian, alpine), sturdy, de-horned goats. Introduce your horse slowly through a fence as many don't like goats.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by Watermark Farm View Post
                  I was in the same boat as you and took on a second horse. It was difficult because when I went out to ride, the companion horse went nuts. So we took on a third horse, a boarder. That solved our problem. Now of course we have 7 equines here....Equine companions are generally best, but if you can't do that, consider a pair of large breed (nubian, alpine), sturdy, de-horned goats. Introduce your horse slowly through a fence as many don't like goats.
                  I am very aware of how horses can go nuts when left alone - and I really don't need to have 3 horses (at least not big ones).

                  When I was little we had goats. I really liked them, but we didn't put them out with the horses, they lived in the barn and I just got them out to play with them and let them eat grass, etc. Sometimes we put them in a small pen outside to just get some fresh air.

                  So, a question - when you say some don't like goats. Is this just at first and you have to introduce them like you mentioned. Or are there cases you know of where the horse just never likes them at all?

                  I am thinking that if it is just him and the goats - he would learn to like them out of a need for companionship.

                  I have a friend who has the little pygmy goats and they live out with her horses and no one seems to mind.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Your horse may be just fine by himself.
                    Will there be any other horses at least within sight where you plan to move?

                    My guys spend a great part of their day gazing at the neighbor's horse who is turned out alone at least an acre away from my pastures.

                    My Senior horse doesn't even care when I take his friend offsite for as much as 3 days. As long as the food keeps coming he's fine by himself.

                    Of course the younger one hasn't been Home Alone but once and that was when Sr had to be left at the vet's overnight. He spent a lot of time calling and looking, but survived the experience.

                    If your guy frets when he's left alone then please do consider a retired horse as a companion animal. Really a goat, sheep or donkey is going to need care too - vet and hoof care.
                    And do you really want to have to learn a whole new set of animal care practices?
                    *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                    Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                    Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                    Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      My horse is happy living alone. I never thought that he would be, but he has thrived since I brought him home. Even when we hack over to our old barn, he doesn't start calling or anything, and he is happy to come home.

                      It really depends on the horse. I thought that he would need a companion, but he has been fine for over a year now.

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Thank you all for your input.

                        I don't think he would like being alone because he doesn't even like coming in the barn by himself. He will, but he doesn't like it.

                        But, sometimes I think it is because he knows they are out there and he seems to consider himself the leader - so I think he wants to know where they are at all times.

                        I have often wondered if he would be Ok alone once he got used to it, but would still consider having some sort of companion for him.

                        As for having to learn about taking care of goats - as I said, we had them when I was little and I loved them, so I have had goats before. That is part of why I am wondering about having them as his companion - they could be for me too

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Qtina View Post

                          So, a question - when you say some don't like goats. Is this just at first and you have to introduce them like you mentioned. Or are there cases you know of where the horse just never likes them at all?
                          .
                          I just lost my goat of 8 years. Two of our 7 horses loved him (one really grieved for him). The rest only tolerated him, and a couple never learned to like him. They did OK with him in pasture, but I had to be very careful that he did not come into a stall/paddock with a horse who disliked him, as they would kick at him. In pasture, they would not kick. Hope that helps.

                          Try your horse alone. He might do just fine!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I bought a Holstein steer as a companion...

                            Originally posted by Qtina View Post
                            Hi All,

                            I am really getting tired of boarding and am trying to move into the country and just take care of my own horse.

                            I don't want him to be alone, but am not sure I want to have 2 horses and was just wondering what some other options are that have worked well for other people.

                            I have considered a pony, a mini, sheep, goats, etc. But would like to hear of experiences that people have had before deciding which is the best way to go.

                            Thanks
                            Consider rescuing a steer that would otherwise go for veal...I did and Mootallica was the best turn out buddy for my horses...he didn't run, buck, kick or do anything other then just hang out. He cost $80.00 to buy and it was well spent. I had him 11 yrs and sadly he passed away last spring...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Llama?

                              If we eventually get our horse property, I'd like to get a Llama. They are supposed to make good guardian animals, plus I think with two horses, they may tend to get herd bound. I know mine would.
                              MnToBe Twinkle Star: "Twinkie"
                              http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/f...wo/009_17A.jpg

                              Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Sheep are kinda iffy-my old guy HATES any other animal except his younger cohort and thats probably because he knows he's stuck with him, so of course he hates the sheep. And obviously, if you do get sheep then buy ewes or whethers(like geldings) and not a ram. Sheep are sweet and FUN though.

                                I vote for a donkey, horse/pony, or a goat. My donk is a hoot and cheap in terms of feed and very sound/never gets sick.
                                Slave at the insane aslyum known as Hillyard Farms....

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I vote for a pony!

                                  There are so many ponys that are ending up at auctions. I heard at a local auction they were going for $20.00. Ponies live on air so he really wouldn't eat much more then a goat.

                                  We have always had our barn within 100 feet of the house. This way the horses feel like a real part of the family. Coolest thing I saw when the kids were little horses out chasing bubbles. I wish I had a video camera - but it is etched in my brain forever. My horses are involved in every BBQ and every time we let a dog outside or a cat lazes around the patio. It helps them alot to know they are not alone.
                                  The View from Here

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I have a standard donkey with my horse. I didn't mean to get a donkey but I couldn't leave him at that awful home. My horse was alone for 11 years and I am so glad I got him a buddy, not only do they play like crazy but the donkey is smart and brings my dingy horse in out of the rain. Dang horse would go into a trance when the weather was bad and just stand there. Now I can just leave the stall open 24/7 and they stay in when it is bad.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      We bought a companion Llama for my mare. It has worked out well for us. He has been around horses all his life, and I think he thinks he is one! He is gentle and low maintenance. (very little feed and very clean in the stall) Easier than a goat because regular fencing works. They have bonded closely so that I do still have separation issues, but it is more manageable since they can not call to each other. The woman I bought him from did say that she would ordinarily recommend buying two because they are social herd animals, but because this one had been around horses more than other Llamas he never learned Llama etiquette and was actually bullied by the other Llamas. So it was a good move for him as well. Before him I had two mares at home, and it was a total nightmare! Even just trying to lead one at a time to and from the paddock was nerve wracking. Good luck!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Qtina View Post
                                        Hi All,

                                        I am really getting tired of boarding and am trying to move into the country and just take care of my own horse.

                                        I don't want him to be alone, but am not sure I want to have 2 horses and was just wondering what some other options are that have worked well for other people.

                                        I have considered a pony, a mini, sheep, goats, etc. But would like to hear of experiences that people have had before deciding which is the best way to go.

                                        Thanks
                                        Been there, done that. Ended up with another horse anyway!

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X