Kissing frogs

I have an acquaintance who is a new rider (less than 6 months), and recently imported a lovely 10yr. gelding who was very fancy. I caught up with her over the weekend and apparently, as this horse has gotten in consistent work, he has now begun bolting at the canter and even blowing thru emergency stops (scary!). When she asked for a bit more info from the importer/breeder, she discovered he had only recently been gelded (which explained the studdish, complicated behavior). A recently late-gelded horse is a sketchy match for a beginner adult Ammy, and it makes me so sad to hear that the trainer/seller/breeder were not upfront about the background of this particular horse.  He dumped her twice in one lesson (luckily she was not seriously hurt) and she made the decision to find him a new home, and find a better fit with the help of a new trainer. 

When I hear stories like this it always horrifying: finding the right fit is so critical, especially when you are a new rider: nothing can wreck your confidence like being over-horsed, or having a personality conflict.  "Buyer beware" is sadly so true! While I didn't get a trusted trainers input for any of my horses, I did take a video camera and family members with me: they filmed and asked good questions while I test-rode: the mare who was breathing like a freight train because the trainer had worked her into the ground the two days prior,  that "show horse" who was 200lbs underweight and didn't know anything about anything except eating cookies (poor baby), one prospect no-one in the barn liked and "the only good thing about her was she didn't buck", and another filly who was dead to the aids and wouldn't canter, even tho' the girl showing her had hidden spurs under her jeans (which we heard her say when we watched back the video)....)

While I've just been exceptionally blessed with both mares, and willing to take YEARS to make my own unicorn: I would definitely get a trusted trainers input on any future purchases or breedings. 

How did you pick your current horse? Did you have to kiss a few frogs before you found a prince? Did your trainer give you any tidbits of good advice?


  1. I don't understand why people would sell a horse that is not suitable to a rider. It's not fair to horse or rider. I mean, I guess I get it in terms of money but then it must mean that these people do not care about the horse's future.

    1. I 100% agree - making good matches between horses and riders only makes the seller look good :)

  2. I've never had a trainer's advice when buying a horse, but I'd certainly do so if I bought another. I cannot imagine why someone who's only been riding for a few months would import a horse. Her trainer clearly does not have her client's best interests in mind.

  3. I'm the worst for advice. I go if I like the look of them and the seller sounds honest on the phone. Then, I let the horse tell the truth. Maybe it's the price range me and my clients have mostly been shopping in lately, but I usually find that people want their horses to have a good life, so I try to be very very clear about what a life with me would be like. I've had a good run of luck... Knocking wood it holds.


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