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Discussion Board: What Does You Horse Suck At? The

When P and I had those 2 weeks where literally nothing went right (before I found out it’s probably pain-related), I was all about selling him. Or giving him away. If a glue factory worker had approached me after the 2nd horse trial, I would’ve paid THEM to take P.  I spent the 3 hour drive home from Aiken alternating between bawling my eyes out (and I’m NOT a crier) and mentally writing his “For Sale” ad.

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Then I talked to Trainer B, who I really thought would be thrilled I wanted to get rid of the horse. And Trainer B said, “No, don’t sell him. He’s too nice to sell.”

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Uhh, earth to Trainer B. Have you ever met us before? We suck.

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But then he said, “Everyone has issues. This is yours.”

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And then BO brought up that a new horse may not be the answer as well. When you get a new horse, you never really know what you’re getting. Sure, an ad can say, “No vices” and the pictures/videos will undoubtedly show the horse at its best, but there’s no way to know exactly what you’re getting.

I’ve owned P for 4 years. And he’s pretty perfect. Let me tell you the ways:

  • He self-loads on the trailer.
  • He behaves the exact same off-property and at shows as he does at home.
  • He greets you at the gate.
  • He doesn’t buck. He tried once, about 3 years ago at our 2nd ever dressage show in warmup and has never attempted it since. I didn’t even realize what he was doing until I saw video after.
  • Did you sprint up behind him, not realizing he’s a flight animal? Don’t worry, P won’t mind. I constantly have to tell the kids that not all horses are like P and to pretend like he’s spooky.
  • He’s never reared. Has never even felt like he was going to.
  • If he seems a little quick while leading him up to the barn, hand the lead to the nearest 4 year old. P’s nose will hit the dirt and his legs will slow to about 0.01 mph.
  • Hs spook consists of a jump sideways, then he keeps going.
  • He doesn’t call for other horses.
  • Will cross-tie or tie to a trailer all day, no matter what’s going on around him.
  • You can clip him anywhere with no twitch and no sedation. He’ll put his head down so you can reach his ears more easily.
  • Even though he loves his turnout, he can be stalled anytime, anywhere. At a show and horses on both sides leave? No problem.
  • He loves his water. No worrying about him getting dehydrated.
  • He’s a dream in the warmup ring. Get cut off? Have a horse get too close? No problem for P, he lets it all roll right off his back.
  • If you fall off, he stands there and looks at you.
  • You will win lots of contests and get free stuff because he’ll go along with whatever scheme you have in mind.
  • He’ll eat anything and it’s quite entertaining. Want to see a carnivorous herbivore? Come visit P and bring McDonald’s chicken nuggets.
  • He has a fabulous walk and trot. His canter has gotten progressively worse, but that is most likely due to the, ya know, hock arthritis. Doh.
  • No tack? No problem.
  • Vets and farriers love him because he just stands there and gives no trouble.
  • You can pretty much do anything you want to around or even on him.

Of course, no horse is perfect. Here’s how he’s not perfect:

  • He stops at jumps.

The end.

So…what’s your horse’s “thing?” What are they not perfect at?

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36 thoughts on “Discussion Board: What Does You Horse Suck At? The”

  1. Hmmm….let’s see…Gem has a TON of awesome qualities but she is terrible at lot too. I’d boil her issues down to “not taking input”. Gem knows it all. According to her anyway and sees no reason that anyone should be micromanaging her pace, rhythm, direction etc…Plus the mare is spooky as hell. Literally thousands of miles on trail and she will stool drop her shoulder and spin from a tree stump on the side of the trail. Sigh.

    Cruze. I haven;t had enough saddle time on him to figure it out but from what I’ve seen he is super herd bound. Every horse he meets is his new BFF and how dare they go anywhere without him. He has gotten better at home and no longer calls out for Gem and Pete while I work him, so maybe ti is better off property. Someday I might be able to find out. He has never spooked at anything though…dogs, farm equipment, 5 year old on a scooter, random toys left half buried in the arena sand…and is easy to handle on the ground.

    B is right though. Every horse has something and P is pretty spectacular at all the things. If his refusal issue is pain related, that is at least fixable.

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    1. Totally see what you mean about Gem. I’ve seen it IRL and completely concur.

      I hope you get to start taking Cruze out more soon. What a brat, and how frustrating. He doesn’t seem like the spooky type, though, which is good! The whole getting attached to horses is obnoxious, though. P seems to be able to differentiate when he’s with a group of friends (like XC schooling) vs strangers (like in warmup). He’s not a fan of heading away from a group of friends but the worst he does is bulge towards them, no calling or anything. That’s the worst. The rare times he has done it I’ve wanted to beat him 🤣

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  2. this is a really great post. it’s easy to think the grass is greener on the other side – but your list of nopes needs to get a lot longer and more dangerous before you should give up. runkle didn’t stop at jumps but he didn’t do anything on P’s nice list (horrible to get on trailer, tried to lay down for the farrier, tried to eat the vet, bucked reared etc etc) and I kept his crazy ass 😛

    I agree with trainer B, he’s REALLY nice and he would be very hard to replace.

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    1. He definitely would be- but I also have a horse because I want to event and jumping is, ya know, 2 out of the 3 phases 🤦‍♀️

      I’d let him eat the vet in exchange for him jumping. Shhhh, don’t tell the vet

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  3. Fly spray… Just can’t get over her fear of fly spray. I don’t mean like, she finds it annoying and moves away. I mean she gets wide eyed and snorts and shakes while trying to be good and stand still. For a non-spooky horse, it really sets her off.

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      1. Yeah. She’s well trained enough to stand there and let me do it most of the time, but her whole body shakes. It makes me feel terrible, so I use the fly wipes now.

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  4. wow can i have P? I don’t really need to jump that badly and the rest makes him sound like a Unicorn 🙂 HA HA

    Remus is pretty good. But the few things he sucks at are this:
    He will run you over if he can (i.e. scared or being a pill). He knows he is wrong but he does it then throws his head in the air cause he thinks you are going to beat him. IDIOT! Maybe does this once or twice a year but just don’t let him get his chest up against you because if he decides to go, you are GOING DOWN.
    He gets spooked by stupid stupid stuff. Like things you don’t think would bother him. (i.e that time at Fair Hill when the track meet was going on. Thousands of kids running down a hill from far away pretty much spooked the hell out of him and if he could have crawled in my lap he would of). But we can be out on a trail and nothing spooks him except maybe a man cover or ditch. SMH he will JUMP the ditch fine but walk by it. OH NO….
    He will spook when riding and scoot or spin out from under you.AGAIN RARE but the one or two times he caught me off guard (once due to a jump judge putting an umbrella up) yeah I ended up on my ass…and everyone thinks Remus is just a lazy fat QH not really!

    Otherwise he loads, stands, good for farrier, vet etc. Easy to be around (Now that i am around him a LOT i am glad). Fly spray without halter, put fly sheet on without halter, etc. Reasonably nice to other horses (Likes to make gross faces at poor Tate). He does suck majorly at keeping his stall clean. UGH. Otherwise he is pretty damn good…..thank goodness.

    I hope P is better soon. Fingers crossed all is better. I do agree he is pretty damn perfect except for the stopping.

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    1. 😂😂😂 He IS a unicorn, minus he stopping!

      I can totally see Remus wanting to jump into your arms, not realizing he outweighs you by like 1000# (probably more like 1500# since he’s been on extended vacay 🤣).

      Why in the world would a jump judge put an umbrella up when there was a horse coming?! Gah, some people.

      I’m a Remus fan, through and through. He has the look of the fat, lazy QH, but there’s clearly a whole different side to him!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. ha we may get more up at jumping but we dont go faster. But us together as a pair might end up in the middle with speed demon P and slow turtle Remus HA HA HA I do hope to get to a show with you once you repair your broken horse;) WE CAN REBUILD HIM I TELL YOU 🙂

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  5. Hmm. Stan is so stoic sometimes it’s frustrating because he doesn’t seem to take feedback. Q lacks confidence so she spooks a lot. And Griffin. Oh dear. When he’s of a differing opinion/uncertain he may rear and/or fling his nose in the air and act like he’s going to fall dramatically (no matter what speed) onto his left side with a rider – without a rider he WILL fling himself to the ground. Bit unnerving!

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    1. I’d probably die on Griffin. That’s so dramatic!

      Stoic is tough because it’s hard to get through to them. I feel your pain there.

      Hopefully Q will work through her confidence issues in short order!

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  6. All I can say I would of had major grabby hands if you had given P away!!! And then I would of felt bad and said KC your horse is perfect, here you can have Chimi 😂 lol jk!!!!!

    Gosh in all honesty Chimi’s pretty close to perfect but his no’s are really weird. Aka wearing ribbons, having his rider read a dressage test on his back (yeah that got me dumped from a halt!!!) anyone on the ground doing anything to him or giving his rider something (like water, a whip, or a jacket) , but if no one is on his back he could care less if you shove fingers in his mouth, throw blankets at him, or whatever else, just as long as no one is sitting on his back. Oh and can’t forget about horses approaching him head on in the warmup, that really freaks him out! And then he’ll randomly get his panties in a wad and not come in to eat breakfast bc THERE IS SOMETHING IN THE WOODS! I KNOWS ITS THERE!!! He also can be a pain in the ass about being caught. Sometimes you can walk up and put a halter on him and bring him in, other times you have to feed him cookies, and very rarely (thank god for that) nothing works and he’ll gallop around the field chasing the other horses so no one can get caught!!!

    The good thing is Chimi’s goods outweigh all the bads so I keep him around 😊 Or that is until you want to swap horses hehehehehehehehehe!!!! Jk I’d keep both!!!! 😂😂😂😂

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    1. I love Chimi. Maybe I could do dressage on P and then switch to Chimi for the jumping? 🤣

      Those are super weird quirks, but he’s a super special poneh so I guess it all works out. How do you manage to deal with avoiding horses coming at you in warmup, though?! Warmups are nuts!

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      1. Warmups are pretty terrible but I have to watch the general flow of traffic and just go the same direction as the majority of the people. Most of the time it works but every so often you run into a person that feels like it’s their duty to get as close to you as possible. I figure out who that person is and try to avoid them like the plague!!! The good thing Chimi just stops and flips his head up and maybe take a step or two back but by then the horse has passed and he’s back to being relaxed. Plus I know it’s coming so I bring him down to a walk or halt and just hold on. (The good thing being it’s only horses approaching him straight on vs coming up behind him) Basically I now have an appreciation of being a respectful rider in the warmup and keeping an eye out for the person struggling to keep their horse together instead of completely zoning out and focusing on just my horse. Oh and sometimes I just have to go stand in the corner and just wait. I probably should write a post about being a decent person in the warmup 😂

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      2. Geez, you made me really stop and think about how I treat warmups.

        Because P is so chill I tend not to remember that others may have issues. I do my best to steer clear of those who are out of control, and make sure that my path won’t interfere with someone else, but I don’t think I really notice when I’m approaching another horse from the front.

        Definitely write a post! It’s a good reminder for everyone!

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  7. Henry is not careful. He could not give less of a shit about hitting rails. I feel like he knows exactly where his feet are, because he’s so smart XC, he just does not care if he jumps literally everything by braille. He can and will tap every single one. Even with a square pole.

    Every once in a while he decides to be scared of hoses. Like deathly afraid. The rest of the time he’s fine. I’m assuming this has something to do with snakes, and if he wants to be scared of snakes, I’m ok with that, so I don’t really press the hose issue.

    He’s downhill, and has all the challenges that come with it.

    He DOES NOT like his ears clipped. I don’t clip ears, so I don’t care.

    Otherwise he’s a really easy and pleasant horse to own. I would take a million more just like him.

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    1. Omg, that’s so frustrating about the poles. Square poles make MY legs hurt just thinking about hitting those.

      I’d be ok with the hose thing also, since it could very well save me from snakes on a ride. Unfortunately P could care less about horses OR snakes and I have to be the one to save us.

      He does seem super easy going though. I’d take his close for sure

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  8. Uuuhhh, *grabbyhands* tradsies please!!
    Shiraz: bucks a lot at canter. throws her head around like a windmill when she is stressed. spooks at everything (unless it is a jump and then jompies solves everything), thinks folding chairs are death, won’t drink strange water, sometimes lies down on the farrier.
    Trainer B, so, so wise. “Everyone has issues. This is yours.”
    That sentence almost might stop my horse shopping in its tracks and just keep at it because Shiraz is also the best at cuddles. Comes from her beloved hay to greet me at the gate every time. Happy to leave other horses to work with me. Is so fun to work with (mostly) and can make any day better just by spending time with her.

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    1. Bahahah spooks at everything except jumps…we clearly have opposite problems!

      Although bucking is probably a no-go for me. I doubt I could even stay on anymore, since it’s been over 4 years since I’ve ridden one that bucks.

      Lies down on the farrier 😂😂 OMG

      And I love a cuddly horse, too. It’s nice to feel tolerated by these damn creatures.

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  9. P really is such a good boy! ❤ He's so great with your kids, too and those horses are really hard to come by. I agree with Megan that it is easier to think the grass is greener on the other side but P is such a nice horse that yes – since you've had him for 4 years, you know exactly how he is. You don't completely know what you'll get with a new horse. I'm just crossing my fingers like crazy for you guys that his stopping is due to soreness!

    Amber is bad with other horses and dogs. She WILL kick, bite, leap a few feet forward if a horse comes too close to her. She will consistently pin her ears at horses. She will mercilessly kick the fence of the horses stabled next to her. She will try to kick the other horse in the trailer. If a dog bites or attacks her, she will attack or kick it. She doesn't like them around her at all. There are other things she doesn't like too much, but it's not bad by any means, so those are really the only things against her.

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    1. She needs to show them who’s boss! That would annoy me too, though. The farm has a couple dogs so P is well-used to dogs by now (and chickens, thanks to Trainer B’s farm), thank goodness, because they are EVERYWHERE at shows!

      The grass always seems greener, doesn’t it? I suppose in real life it’s not always true though!

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  10. P is such a good egg!

    Doc is terrified of tractors. Nevermind one parks directly outside his stall every single day, they are terrifying and horse eating machines.

    Every once in a blue moon (um, see XC schooling a few weeks ago), I have no brakes. That is… not fun.

    But, he’s much the same as P that if you want him to slow down and use his brain, give him to a small child.

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    1. 😂😂 Those tractors are super scary. Can’t trust ‘em.

      Yeah, brakes is no fun. I have no brakes on XC in the nathe bit, thankfully the gag brought those back for me, as well as let’s me get his head up so we don’t snowball into a jump!

      P’s typically great to lead, but when he’s being brought in for dinner he sometimes wants to speed walk. Handing him to Noah stops that reeeeal quick. Love when horses tolerate tiny humans like that!

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  11. aw P really is such a special horse, i’m so glad trainer B was adamant that you keep him!! you guys will definitely figure the stopping thing out. every horse has their own short comings…. my guy hates being wrong, hates being driven forward against his will, and can be infuriatingly barn sour. these three things combined can make for some serious uglies ugh.

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  12. Dante is still a baby so it’s hard for me to say, He mainly just doesn’t know stuff but eventually I’ll find out what he really doesn’t excel at. (Right now that is cantering to the left.)

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