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Where are all the top quality hunter foals in the US???

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  • Where are all the top quality hunter foals in the US???

    I'm an adult ami who has been searching for a 1-2 year old, unbroke TOP hunter prospect and have been very disappointed in what I've found out there...

    The prices are outrageous and several of the better moving ones have had OCD lesions. What's up??? I thought the market was SOFT but I haven't found a sigle baby out there of good quality for less than 15K. I originally was only looking at fillies since I'd eventually like to breed down the line but after exhausting every internet site and personal contact I have, had to open my search up to geldings.

    I'm finding breeders are NOT willing to negotiate either. I realize that it costs a lot to raise youngsters but if you are asking 15-
    17K for a yearling and won't come down a grand to help with shipping costs, how motivated are you to sell?

    Can someone tell me if I'm going to have to fork-over 25K to find a suitable baby now? I need ami brain, good looks and good movement and average size. What is the fair market value for an unbroke 2 year old???

    Sincerely,

    FRUSTRATED!

  • #2
    Originally posted by Borntorun View Post
    What is the fair market value for an unbroke 2 year old???
    It depends. A top prospect will be worth its price!

    OCD lesions in a yearling, depending on the details, might not be a deal-breaker. 1) Before two years of age, they "can" go away on their own and might be just a wonky phase of growth. 2) In the end (I'll get flamed for this!), if you can afford a yearling in that price range, you won't find the surgery is expensive. If I recall correctly, it is around $1,200? In general, horses go to have a successful career without any issues post-surgery. It is done very often on TBs and Standardbreds.

    I would consider geldings with simple and operable OCD-lesions especially if they are under two years of age (and if I had your budget ).

    Good luck!
    www.EquusMagnificus.ca
    Breeding & Sales
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    • Original Poster

      #3
      I personally can't handle the 30 day stall rest and 30 small paddock confinement post-op on the OCD stuff. I would rather NOT start out with a problem! If one develops lesions, thats different and I would opt for sx. Otherwise, I do believe there are horses out there without OCD and its the product of overfeeding and breeding TB joints on WB bodies. I have personally owned many WB and Draft crosses without so much as a nick on digital xrays after years of riding so the OCD at 2 is very troubling to me

      Comment


      • #4
        I understand, but you need to realize that, as I said, you might find some anomalies on x-rays that will still go away on their own if you shop youngstock.

        And I totally understand you not wanting to deal with this as well. It adds another component of risk in an already risky sport!

        Lastly, without starting a trainwreck, I would suggest you do more reading on OCD. It is not the product of overfeeding and breeding TB joints on WB bodies. I "can" be a product of overfeeding, just as it can be a consequence of trauma or of lack of turnout or heridity (sp?).

        As well, it would be important not to lump TBs into the "unsound" category. The TB/WB cross has been done for a very long time and it not, on its own, a source of unsoundness.

        OCD is a complex issue and, I don't know how old were your previous WBs, but I wouldn't assume they never had a nick on their x-rays unless you owned them from birth.

        If I am not mistaken, TBs going through the sales get surgical corrections to hide OCD from risk-adverse buyers. They then go on to have clean x-rays, totally hiding the OCD. It happens as well with WBs; heck registries approve stallions with OCD-chips in Europe. They aren't as worried about it as we are.

        Is it good? I don't have an answer to that.

        Sorry for the rambling, I thought a bit of perspective on OCD could be useful to you or other readers.

        (I am not a pro though! I just had a filly who gave me a good scare with a major bump on her knee which made me do TONS of research on this topic! )
        www.EquusMagnificus.ca
        Breeding & Sales
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        • #5
          A lot of breeders went out of business with the sharp economy decline. A lot of breeders cut back and some retired. I bred last year anticipating the increase in the economy and demand. You should expect to pay top dollar for a top foal and be happy that there are still breeders out there to provide the quality that you are seeking. Good luck to you!

          Comment


          • #6
            Last Laugh Farm

            Contact Last Laugh Farm. They have a top notch breeding program, very nice mares and they use a variety of different stallions. They have several foals to young horses age, some already lightly started under saddle. If I were in the market for a show pospect, it would be one of the first places I would go. They are also great to work with with is a added bonus. Good luck
            http://www.lastlaughfarm.com/
            They also have a FB page
            https://www.facebook.com/lastlaugh.farm
            Worth A Shot Farm
            Finding the horse of your dreams, is always Worth A Shot!
            Visit our Website
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            • #7
              I am not a breeder but I think your expectations are off -- and I doubt very much you are going to find a top-quality 2 year old for less than 15k. Nice weanlings seem to go for 7.5-12k. At 2 the breeders are better off hanging on to them, getting them started US next year and selling for $25-30k than selling to you for $15k.

              Comment


              • #8
                At the risk of being accused of blowing our own horn, may I suggest that you consider Sakura Hill Farm youngsters? We have two Alla'Czar broodmares and are in the process of adding other hunter-producing mares. Our foals are consistently First Premium at their respective registry (KWPN, OLD (GOV) and BWP) inspections and we had the top hunter book foal in NA in the KWPN registry in 2012.

                Be forewarned, however- our hunter young stock typically are custom- or in utero- contract sales or are sold before the age of 2 months. This may typically be the case at other hunter-producing breeding farms- the good ones are snapped up quickly! Or you may wish to get even further ahead of the game and lease a reliable top hunter-producing mare and produce your own from one of the many hunter breeding farms....

                Other farms that come to mind are Worth a Shot, Silver Creek, Rising Star and others. Do not overlook the more jumper-bred foals if they have the conformation, movement and temperament that you are looking for. Have you considered attending the hunter breeding classes at the shows near you and making inquiries?

                Your standards are high. $15,000 and up would be a fair price for a good yearling and the price should not rise too much more until 3 unless the prospect has successful show experience. Best of luck in what I am convinced will be a fruitful search.
                Last edited by Sakura Hill Farm; Dec. 4, 2012, 09:03 AM. Reason: completion
                Sakura Hill Farm
                Now on Facebook

                Young and developing horses for A-circuit jumper and hunter rings.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Borntorun View Post
                  I'm an adult ami who has been searching for a 1-2 year old, unbroke TOP hunter prospect and have been very disappointed in what I've found out there...

                  The prices are outrageous and several of the better moving ones have had OCD lesions. What's up??? I thought the market was SOFT but I haven't found a sigle baby out there of good quality for less than 15K. I originally was only looking at fillies since I'd eventually like to breed down the line but after exhausting every internet site and personal contact I have, had to open my search up to geldings.

                  I'm finding breeders are NOT willing to negotiate either. I realize that it costs a lot to raise youngsters but if you are asking 15-
                  17K for a yearling and won't come down a grand to help with shipping costs, how motivated are you to sell?

                  Can someone tell me if I'm going to have to fork-over 25K to find a suitable baby now? I need ami brain, good looks and good movement and average size. What is the fair market value for an unbroke 2 year old???

                  Sincerely,

                  FRUSTRATED!
                  For what you are looking for ("TOP hunter prospect", pretty, quiet) and where you are looking (I'm assuming warmblood breeders who know hunters) $15k isn't going to get it done.

                  If people aren't willing to negotiate, it is because they know what they have and what they can get for it, or they don't need to sell.

                  Sounds like you are going to have to come up in your price, lower your expectations, or start looking in more offbeat places.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I think it all depends on if you are looking for something that has shown on the line. I know the prices on my babies with show experience is higher than those I have not shown...though I prefer to sell mine as wealings so by the time they are 2 I have usually shown them if they are truly a TOP prospect. I can see a yearling with show experience possibly fitting into your budget but not a 2 yo with show experience.

                    Have you contacted any hunter breeders and asked if they know of anything that may fit the bill for you? They may not have what you are looking for but may know someone who does. I can think of a few nice ones (reasonably priced too) for sale off the top of my head.

                    I agree with Sakura Hill- many of them sell in-utero or are snapped up as weanlings. Most of ours are unless we are keeping them for a reason.
                    Last edited by NorthHillFarm; Dec. 4, 2012, 08:49 AM. Reason: spelling
                    www.NorthHillFarmNY.com
                    Like us on Facebook!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I can relate. Quality yearlings/rising 2 year olds were running 15 - 17K often times more than that!

                      Your best bet is to find a quality weanling/rising yearling but the downside will be the suitability and soundness risk down the road. Looking "off the beaten track" will also help you find some deals although it's true that there's less foals being bred now so the price will be up. The promising youngsters will most likely have started being show in-hand which will add to the price.

                      X-rays are less reliable for yearlings because lesions can self correct and new ones can develop. Also, keep in mind that the wonderful temperament / character of a baby may not translate to the way it is rideability wise. An amateur friendly yearling/2 year old may not fall into the same category once started under saddle so you are taking more of a gamble. Then there is jump style. Another gamble since the yearling may not have the right jump under saddle for the hunter ring. Yearlings are more affordable but way more risk.

                      OCD surgery has many risks for future long term soundness. I wouldn't buy a prospect, with that much risk and then do surgery. Some surgeries are successful but there are just as many that are not. It depends on the joint that's affected. Every vet I've spoken to said it's best to wait until the surgery is done and the horse in steady work for at least a year. This drastically reduces the risk.
                      Last edited by woodland cottage; Dec. 15, 2012, 01:45 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        My suggestion would be to contact the breeder even if the horse is a little more than your budget. I know for me, not breeding for Hunters and my foal is in utero still, I will seriously discount the price for a serious show home. I am just starting out and it does me no good for someone to pay full price and have that foal not competing.

                        I do think you are best off looking at yearlings and maybe even weanlings though. Can't remember the last really fancy 2yo I saw for sale under 15k.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Just for reference, I have a very nice baby that I actually purchased in utero. She is 18 months old and has never been shown on the line. I was recently offered $20k for her. She is a phenominal mover, beautiful to look at, and has the best mind I have ever seen on a baby. I wouldn't have paid that much but I do think her being a mare helps. People see a quality filly that they can eventually breed. I won't sell her for anything but that is a reference as to what people are willing to pay for quality. You have to keep in mind that a lot of breeders who didn't sell as weanlings know their quality babies at 2 are going to be quality at 3 and can get 30 days of training under them. Then their price goes way up.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by wanderlust View Post
                            For what you are looking for ("TOP hunter prospect", pretty, quiet) and where you are looking (I'm assuming warmblood breeders who know hunters) $15k isn't going to get it done.

                            If people aren't willing to negotiate, it is because they know what they have and what they can get for it, or they don't need to sell.

                            Sounds like you are going to have to come up in your price, lower your expectations, or start looking in more offbeat places.
                            Have you looked at www.bigeq.com or www.warmbloods-for-sale, both have some nice hunter prospects listed on their sites. Also, hanging out on this Sport Horse forum for a while, you begin to learn who the hunter breeders are and many of links to their websites.

                            Also, I agree that $15-17K for a rising 2 year old is not an outrageous price if the quality is there -- I know that is what I get for my top young horses of that age that are either hunter bred or dressage bred.
                            Kris
                            www.edgewoodmeadowfarm.com
                            Like us on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/edgewoodmeadowfarm

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                            • #15
                              I don't think the poster's expectations are unrealistic, but she may just have to look further afield and be willing to "filter" through some of the ads out there. We live in the middle of the country, so our costs are considerably lower to raise a youngster than someone on either coast. We also don't show babies as we have just found that the cost versus benefit just isn't there. With that said, we currently have a rising two year old gelding that "is" top quality and priced reasonably at $11,500. Good luck with your search! Those babies "are" out there

                              http://www.avalon-equine.com/aerosmith-davalon.html

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                              Equine-Reproduction.com Now offering one on one customized training!
                              Leg-Up Equestrian Assistance Program, Inc. A 501(c)(3) non-profit charity

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                              • #16
                                Ditto Kathy on this one; and I already had sent the OP a PM with some suggestions. One of the main ones was location! In that price range, for a top youngster, you probably won't find it on the east/west coast. I think the keys are to look at some of the smaller breeding programs and to look in areas that aren't known for being as "horsey" as the coasts are. We have an active breeders group in my area and the OPs price range is realistic for our area. For example I have a 2 year old, jumper bred filly, nothing wrong, great mind priced at $14k. I just updated her ads yesterday and had 3 responses overnight, ironically 2 from the esat coast area and 1 from California. In addition most of my horses sell to those areas; few stay local and the number one reason that I hear is "price". We also just started a "travel incentive", where if a potential buyer flies/drives, etc. to our farm to see a sales horse, likes the horse and buys it, then we will pay for 1/2 their travel costs. So far this has worked great for us, and has drawn people who wouldn't usually come to Missouri to find their next warmblood.
                                Already excited about our 2016 foals! Expecting babies by Indoctro, Diamant de Semilly, Zirocco Blue and Calido!
                                https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hills...h/112931293227

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                                • #17
                                  Do you really want a foal (title)? Or a 2yo?

                                  I chose not to sell my 2yo Apiro as a weanling, so then it didn't make sense to sell him in the 'tween' years if I didn't have to. He'll now be for sale next year as a going 3yo that I will start myself.
                                  Someone has to put the time and money into those years between weanlings and even two year olds. I don't think those prices sound outrageous for the quality you want.
                                  We're spending our money on horses and bourbon. The rest we're just wasting.
                                  www.dleestudio.com

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Hillside H Ranch View Post
                                    We also just started a "travel incentive", where if a potential buyer flies/drives, etc. to our farm to see a sales horse, likes the horse and buys it, then we will pay for 1/2 their travel costs. So far this has worked great for us, and has drawn people who wouldn't usually come to Missouri to find their next warmblood.
                                    Okay that's BRILLIANT marketing strategy. !
                                    Equine-Reproduction.com Now offering one on one customized training!
                                    Leg-Up Equestrian Assistance Program, Inc. A 501(c)(3) non-profit charity

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                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Equine Reproduction View Post
                                      Okay that's BRILLIANT marketing strategy. !
                                      I can't take total credit for it ; it is something I've seen more and more of in the Quarter Horse world and it has worked great for some breeders that I know. So far it is working well for me, too!
                                      Already excited about our 2016 foals! Expecting babies by Indoctro, Diamant de Semilly, Zirocco Blue and Calido!
                                      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hills...h/112931293227

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                                      • #20
                                        You could also try looking in Canada. There are some very good, small scale breeders here and I think you would find many of them competitively priced. The hunter market isn't as big here, but there are some very nice horses being produced.

                                        I also agree with others that OCD may not be the death sentence that some make it out to be. Personally though, I would consider one that was post-op and recovered rather than taking on the surgery myself in a prospect.

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