Am I being negative of realistic

(101 Posts)
tallulahturtle Wed 03-Jul-13 00:30:54

I help a friend look after her horse, she wants to buy a second one . She is a first time owner (was going to loan but suddenly decided she would buy one this spring) and currently has a teenage horse who is very well behaved and a real confidence giver, is not spooky and has very good manners.

She's now decided her second one has to be a tb (as when she was young she always dreamed of owning one) and she likes the idea of owning a tb.
I've not owned before but I have loaned so I know the commitment involved and how hard it can be (eg winter).

She currently has the one horse on a routine of exercise twice a day which I am doing 50 percent of and I'm finding it exhausting as I work 10 hours a day with a 30 min commute, in a physical job.

Anyway the second horse, well we found one I rode him, perfect , responsive very non spooky, I was ready to buy him there and then.

She tries the horse and nearly falls off because when asking the horse to do a faster trot she did a pony club kick (the way she was taught as a child -she learnt briefly as a child then didnt ride until very recently), the horse broke into canter and she wasn't expecting it and ended up round his neck.

She decides the horse is not right for her as he is "too advanced" so we start looking again. I trying to steer her towards IDs and ISH , cobs etc and with a bit of age on them as she is not a brilliant or confident rider and also the horse would need to live out 24/7, so im thinking sturdiness rather then a thoroughbred who needs rugging up to the max. As she can't afford livery and wants the "simplicity of living out". She just wants a tb and no older than 12, I feel she wants an older confidence giving horse but every horse I tell her about she dismisses saying "too old".

She has said that she intends to exercise both twice a day, I'm highly dubious as I find it a struggle to do the one horse at the moment with light mornings and evenings and decent summer ground . I keep emphasising how hard winter will be and how impossible it will be to keep to a schedule of exercise twice daily, what if the ground is hard, what if it snows? What if we don't have the time, we do both have jobs.

Anyway she has now decided she wants to retrain an ex racehorse. As they are a breed she likes , cheap and if she does it," she will feel a huge sense of achievement"

We have no school,just a field the horses will graze in too.

Sorry for the rant but she is just so naive and I'm trying to help her into horse ownership . One moment she is saying, don't worry I'll do all the retraining if you don't want to , the next minute she asks me to jump her existing horse as she has never jumped and doesn't feel confident enough. I've said TBs can be spooky and flighty. She is fine with that as she says her existing horse is like that - she's not in the slightest , I've never ridden a more laid back horse. I feel the existing horse has been so easy to look after and ride that she thinks all horses are that easy.

I just feel she should stick at one horse.

Am I being negative? Or realistic? Is her next horse going to be like Pie from national velvet and just by some miracle easy to train by a complete novice and end up being a diamond of a horse. Did I mention she will not pay more than about 600 for her next horse.

Opinions please.....

You are being realistic. And she is potentially going to end up with a horse that is dangerous for her. What an idiot.

tallulahturtle Wed 03-Jul-13 00:45:19

Thank you!!!!! have been getting so frustrated with this.i know not all tbs are crazy, and dont want to stereotype but I just don't think this girl has anywhere near enough the experience. I'm so much more experienced than her with looking after horses and riding them and I would never buy a tb as one of my first horses - I know this is her second horse but she has only owned her first horse for two months.

My plan when I eventually own is to buy an older chilled out horse and keep it at a DIY yard with lots of other owners to give me support through those first few years ,then maybe win the lottery and buy a house when I can keep it at home :-) not go it alone in a rented field with one chilled out horse and a potentially crazy ex racehorse.

ChippingInWiredOnCoffee Wed 03-Jul-13 00:51:37

How about you stop helping her with this horse - tell her to look after it for a year herself before she even thinks about another horse.

She is being a complete idiot - but other than letting her find that out for herself I don't know what else you can do or say that you haven't already.

daisy5569 Wed 03-Jul-13 06:36:58

tallulahturtle you are being totally realistic, now you just need to convince your friend that her plans are not!
If she has only owned her horse for 2 months she will have no idea how much hard work winter will be let alone trying to retrain an ex-racehorse which in my opinion should be left to experts not novice horse owners.
Hope you manage to convince her otherwise, maybe as ChippingInWiredOnCoffee has said it would be good for her to have some time doing all the work herself with the existing horse so she realises how much work it will be looking after two

TobyLerone Wed 03-Jul-13 06:43:04

She wants a TB for £600 and wants it to live out?

She has no idea what she's doing.

xigris Wed 03-Jul-13 06:59:54

I had an ex racehorse for many years and while she was
lovely, a novice ride she most definitely was not! Your friend is being extremely unrealistic. And as for living out, really?!

tallulahturtle Wed 03-Jul-13 08:14:04

Well im off on holiday for two weeks soon so have a perfect oppprtunity to let her go it alone :-)

Butkin Wed 03-Jul-13 09:12:10

You are spot on with your thoughts and she is a loon. I work with TBs and have ridden out my own Pointers and they are hardly ever novice rides. Not only are they flighty as a breed they are also taught different aids in racing yards. Even just shortening up the reins will encourage them to go faster...

I agree with the suggestions above that she needs to look after her current one for a year without your constant help. Winters are very different and I'd council against leaving a TB that is in work (and therefore probably clipped) out during the Winter.

A £600 TB will be a flat yard cast off and will come with all the issues that implies. In the right hands they can be great (a friend is doing high level eventing on cheap TBs) but not in the hands of a complete novice.

Also why does she want to exercise her horses twice daily. That is nuts. I've never heard of anybody doing that. Even in racing yards horses which are prime athletes are only ridden 6 mornings a week.

What is she planning to achieve with them - does she compete and if so at what? Her idea of retraining a racehorse - does she have any clue what she wants to retrain it for and how she will go about it?

snorris Wed 03-Jul-13 09:33:35

Two horses is a big commitment anyway without taking into consideration that TBs tend to be more needy wink . I struggled with two native ponies, they lived out 24/7 and it didn't matter if they weren't ridden every day. I'm by no means an expert but having owned horses for a number of years I think it sounds like she will be taking on too much and it is unfair to expect you to take it on too.

Littlebigbum Wed 03-Jul-13 09:39:15

Is she just pipe dreaming? Because she can go look, thing £600 is just a little over meat price. [pls correct if wrong]

This is one of my RI's regular complaints - people who buy ex racehorses because they're cheap but don't have the skills to bring them on and it ends up dangerous all round. And who in their right mind would chose a TB if they need the horse to live out 24/7? I'm no horse wonder-woman, I don't even know my own horse, but thank god I have RI who has seen fit to teach me horse care & bits about choosing horses etc.

Your friend doesn't really sound like she has a clue. Can you take a month off and leave her to do everything? People who don't realise they have no idea are sooooo dangerous!

jemstipp Wed 03-Jul-13 11:48:11

I have owned a few thoroughbreds and have one right now. They are not all idiots, in the right hands. What is your friend thinking and more importantly, what are you thinking when it you who is doing a lot of the work now. She has absolutely no need of getting another horse when she doesn't do everything with the one she has. She will end up hurting herself or this new horse.

Noooo, stop her! I have one TB who came to me retrained and reschooled, I work p/time, my children are almost adult and I find it hard to do as much as I should with him. At best he gets hacked out 3/4 times a week and lunged once or twice, and I still feel it's not enough. The only time I have had two at the same time was when I bought the current horse before having to have my old one pts - he wasn't being ridden at all, but the sheer logistics of feeding, grooming, poo picking and just give attention to two was tricky to say the least.

My TB's have both lived out 24/7, and are happier for it, but you do need to feed them more, have more expensive rugs and look out for the dreaded mud fever at all times - likewise shoeing can be much more expensive as their feet are generally not as hard as a native's.

Retraining a racehorse is a massive commitment, and not for the faint hearted, those short of experience or with little time. In the meantime the existing horse would suffer. Ex racehorses are cheap as chips for a reason and whilst there are some potentially lovely riding horses out there are also some which are just not suited and your friend really doesn't sound experienced enough to deal with one at all.

She will end up ruining No1 horse, probably ruining No2 horse and being miserable and broke as well.....

Just thought - how about totting up all the costs for her - double absolutely everything and then if she's really considering a TB add another third on top of it. Perhaps that would put her off!

Who the fuck exercises their horse twice a day? <<faints>>
she is bonkers!

Pixel Wed 03-Jul-13 16:28:56

Your friend is deluded and I agree with everyone here, except we have wintered out a TB that we had on loan and his owner thanked us for returning him in such good condition, so it can be done, though I doubt someone who hasn't even gone through one winter with an 'easy' horse yet will have the know-how to manage it.

If she is serious about this I'm afraid I can't see a good outcome. Do you think she is just getting carried away with new horse ownership (especially as it's summer and everything is still a novelty) and fantasising a bit rather than meaning it as something for the very near future? I mean we've all done it, before coming down to Earth with a big bump usually! I think you need to help with the bringing down to Earth by stopping doing things like jumping her horse for her. It's the only way she'll realise she still has a lot to learn.

lovebeansontoast Wed 03-Jul-13 18:30:04

Yes, she is deluded, and I think it's your duty to "go on holiday" for a week and show her just how deluded she is....

As a matter of interest why does she think her current horse needs excericisng twic a day if it's living out? Mine would be gobsmacked if I tried that malarkey?

Tb living out?!?!?!?! HA! She can't afford livery.... what will she do when flighty tb breaks itself & she has a whopping vet bill - plus the amount of feed for the tb. They're pansys & not to be taken in lightly, rarely novice rides & complex to look after. Perhaps you should showyour friend this thread? She's going to end up either hurt of buggering up a horse

Tbh, I've seen more than one TB winter out. You need to start roughing them off before the autumn moult starts.
But personally, I wouldn't touch a TB with a barge pole. They are gorgeous, beautiful and lovely, but always seem such hard work. I suppose its the difference between driving a Mondeo and a Ferarri. Everything about them is just so much more expensive!
Natives are just so much harder to break!

I think someone with the right skills and experience could buy a TB ex racehorse, retrain and have them live out. But she doesn't have the skills or experience!

tallulahturtle Wed 03-Jul-13 22:30:30

Thanks for all your support and opinions With the current horse the farrier today told her exercise twice a day was too much (she listened to him thank god) doesnt listen to me. I will be going away for two weeks soon so will see hpw she is when i get back. She is off to view yet another tb tomorrow, ive told her shes crazy and biting off more than she can chew but she doesnt listen. She has a childhood dream,and she is sticking by it. I cant walk away now as i care about the existing horse and dont want my friend getting into a dangerous situation . She said earlier that she doesnt want a non tb as she will "get bored of it" and sell it on but a tb she wont get bored with apparently. I despair!!!

jemstipp Thu 04-Jul-13 12:05:28

Stop helping her!!!!! You are facilitating her idiocy. I know you love horses too and if I had a few friends like you I'd be in my element, unpaid workers, Hell Yes!!! Come on Mrs, you are more than that and she doesn't heed your advice, so let her stand alone. I'm sure she may be a lot of things but her current neddy won't suffer.

SlowlorisIncognito Thu 04-Jul-13 14:28:18

Depending on where you are in the UK I would say you are not going to find a safe, sensible horse for £600, even a TB, which are often cheaper. I think they are nice enough as a breed, but not especially hardy, so if the horse is to live out, it will need rugging and feeding over winter (at the very least), which will be more expensive in the long run.

TBs do also have a reputation for injuring themselves, obviously this is a stereotype and you will get some that are fine, but what is she going to do if it needs box rest or she gets a big vet bill?

On the other hand, if her current horse is living alone, that's not fair on it either, as horses are herd animals, and really do need the company of other equines.

I think she is being unrealistic and silly, but obviously you can't stop her, and in some ways it is better to stay friendly with her incase it becomes a welfare issue. You could suggest one of the ex-racehorse charities, as at least these horses have been professionally retrained, so they may be able to match her up with something more suitable.

Butkin Thu 04-Jul-13 15:45:26

That is a good suggestion Slowloris - get her to talk to one of the many ex-racehorse charities as they will be able to assess her and find her something suitable. They will probably have done the hard initial work as well. If you start with www.ror.org.uk/ they will point you in the right direction for your location.

As mentioned if she is going to leave it out all winter it will need it's full coat (and New Zealand) so no work as this would mean clipping...

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