Monday, June 29, 2009
Selling Canyon - A letter to the woman who sold me my horse
I remember telling someone that I'd never buy a horse from a trader, because at least with a person you had a chance.
When you listed "Prince" you noted on your ad that he was okay for a novice. And we were novices, this would be our first horse.
Novice. This was a horse that hospitalized you on numerous occasions.
A horse you wouldn't ride, couldn't ride, when you brought him out. That struck me as odd, but I trusted you because you knew I was looking for a horse for my daughter.
A ten year old.
You wouldn't sell a dangerous horse for a ten year old. What woman would?
The answer: YOU.
When I called you within our 30 day trail you LIED to me over and over. He was spooking because of me, you said. He bucked because I was in his mouth.
You lied and lied and when I took him to a clinic I learned just how badly you lied to me when I met trainers that knew you and knew this horse.
You'd sell a horse that you knew would buck, because he had bucked the last time you had ridden him in that trainer's arena to try to sell him. And he threw you off. He didn't sell there.
This was a horse that threw you and broke your hip.
A horse that couldn't be ridden on a trail, which was what we told you was the only thing we wanted to do, because he would spook at everything.
A horse you had for seven years, and you knew inside and out.
My daughter fell off him when he blew sideways, spooking at a pole. He's bucked with me so much that riding with me is just a plain old drag as I ask folks to take it slow around us.
When, on a big trail ride, a young green horse went on a bucking fit, "Prince" did the same - and NO OTHER HORSE (there were 30 there) DID - I started to get the idea that this horse was not broke.
So I worked with him, have most of the spook out of him after a year and a half. Now he'll spook in place, wait for me to walk him up to the offending object and give it a sniff. But try as I might, I can't get past the random buck in the saddle. After all the work we've done, the buck remains, although most everything else is solved.
I've come to realize that riding a bucking horse when I go out with my daughter is selfish. If I were to fall, then my daughter, who is just gaining her confidence with horses again, she would be in a predicament that is not fair to either one of us. Particularly since we already have someone with a level of disability in our home. We can't afford another.
My husband and friends have said to move on ages ago, but by nature I'm no quitter. I get attached, to boot. But I have to admit, this is beyond my ability.
I'm out of my depth with Prince, aka Canyon, and you knew it. I have to list him for sale because I truly can't get him past this issue. While I haven't been hurt, the angels can't hold me in the saddle forever. And increasingly I'm dreading going out for a ride.
Which isn't the point of owning a horse.
I know I'm no trainer. I've worked as hard as I can, but after talking to my trainer I'm taking her advice...
Canyon, as much as it breaks my heart, is for sale.
Because, as they say, a green horse and a green rider (which I consider myself - and him) is a bad combo.
I'm trying to be responsible. I'll keep working him. When he sells, the next person will be experienced, will know that he bucks on occasion, will know the limits I've reached. He'll probably go cheap, a lot cheaper than you sold him to me. That's okay, though.
Because I'm not you. Greed will never force me to compromise the safety of someone, especially their child (I've already turned two people away who wanted him for their child). I'd give him away to a trainer (not an amateur like me) before I'd sell him for a family horse.
And another thing. You bought a green horse on purpose, girl. I didn't.
I bought a green horse because of one woman's greed.
I decided to repost this. I had taken it off because the woman did end up buying Canyon back - on her own, I didn't call her (I had called her about 3 months in and offered to sell him back to her, but she declined then).
But I realized that this letter is very accurate and maybe even a good warning to horse buyers. FYI, Canyon was evaluated by a trainer and a vet. They had detected nothing wrong.