The Heartache of Buying a Horse
 By Dream on Dreamer   •   12th Sep 2010   •   4,025 views   •   12 comments
The following story is about the last six weeks of my life and the horse that I thought would be mine foever.

Buying a Horse

It was a long search, that of one to find my next horse, I was searching for something that I could turn into a Showjumper. I looked at many, from Off The Track Thoroughbreds to Clydsdale Crosses, but nothing seemed right until my Mum found something, a 15.1hh Quarter Horse cross named Athena, a so called beginners dream. We took a gamble and went to see her, seeing I was hoping for something a bit bigger. As we pulled up, I layed eyes on her, she was stunning, a dappled grey, who'd held her dapples very well, with an almost blue roan mane. We decided to give her a chance, but the next morning our troubles started.

We had a small problem with the float, maybe it was a warning?

Once it was dealt with we were on our way. We had no troubles getting her loaded and ready for the hour drive home. There were no complications getting her home, which was good.

A few days later we had the saddle fitter come out and fit her saddle, she was all fine but we noticed a scar near her mouth, but that ended up the least of our worries. Two days after the saddle fit, I rode Athena once more, trouble free. I decided she'd be ready for Pony Club which was three days away, but first I was to have a lesson at my instructors. My instructor though she had a great temperament but began questioning her age, we were told she had done Pony Club and Adult Riders. I didn't believe she had done that after the lesson, she had poor balance in the canter.

Buying a Horse

At Pony Club she was an angel, she jumped a small dazzle board in Showjumping, I didn't do much of the Dressage lesson and was fantastic in games. We had noticed a small cut on her back leg but really had no concerns about it, but put antibacterial spray on it. Later that week I had another lesson which didn't end up too good. In the canter I lost my stirrup and tried finding it, but couldn't, so I used my leg to get a little bit of grip. She bucked and I came tumbling off, but was my grip really the reason for the bucking?

I rode her a few days later, she bucked again, but this time I was seated well enough to ride through it. I got off and checked her legs, making sure I hadn't missed anything when I groomed her, but nothing became present to me. I ended up doing ground work.

Now I'm going to skip a bit ahead. When we went up to get Athena to take her to a jumping clinic we found the cut had grown. We called the vet instantly, knowing it could be good news or bad. He thought it was just Proud Flesh and nothing to worry about. We had to clean it and put a mixture of things on it, but never made it to the jumping clinic.

A new problem had now arose, Athena and my older horse had formed a strong friendship, meaning she didn't want to get on the float. She would pull and pull until we gave up after breaking my good western bridle. We missed a lesson, five days before Pony Club.

Buying a Horse

I wish I could say it got better from then, I loved that mare, but it didn't. We got up early Pony Club morning and drove to the agistment, we couldn't get her on the float and I made the foolish idea of riding her there. We got up to the gate and had to turn back seeing it was locked, that's when it happened, she started pigrooting, which got bigger and bigger until I came off in the mud. It was painful, but I didn't have time to worry about my injuries, I had a horse loose, who had a clear path to a road and reins that could get tangled around her legs. I panicked and screamed out to my mum, I got up and began running, I limped along after the mare. By the time I got to her, Mum had hold of her but she had to go. I looked at her leg, she did end up getting the reins around her leg and there was blood. I hated looking at it but I knew what to do seeing my Pony Club had just done C certificate, which is a thing we do in Australia. I ran into the shed and got some cotton wool, a bucket and some Vetadine (everyone who has horses should have a First Aid Kit). I got some water and mixed in the Vetadine, she was still bleeding. This went on for about half an hour before I deciding I needed to bandage her. I stressed, seeing I hadn't had much practice on this type of injury. After I got the bandage on I had to go to Pony Club unmounted, Athena would later be sent to my Instructors.

It took our friend about 2 hours to get her on the float after Pony Club, but she finally got on. She would spend the first week at my instructors and I would only see her once. The week after I went to see her and did the basic stuff, lunging and respect on the ground. After we thought she was getting better, we got news that would destroy everything I had been working towards.

She had really bad Arthritis in her front fetlocks. She was a danger for me to ride and a danger to herself. She had no movement in them and we did what was best for her and had her put down.

I just wanted to share this story to show everyone that buying horses is dangerous, some seem perfect when you go ride them, but something goes wrong when you bring them home and you are left with nothing.

We called the man who sold her to us but he said it was our fault she got Arthritis, but the Physio comfirmed it was long term, so she had it before we got her. I still have my old and faithful mare, Misty, who is getting older, but still goes well.
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I'm sorry to hear it went so bad, she was very pretty. When you buy from an unknown seller, I guess things like this can happen. Can I ask how much she cost?
  13 days ago  •  2,790 views
One Tuff Cookie  
oh wow! thats REALLY sad! she was beautiful!
  13 days ago  •  2,829 views
That's so sad :( I'm sorry you lot her it seems like the two of you were quite fond of one another. If you don't mind my asking, did you work her and check her teeth before taking her home? There's nothing mentioned about either.
  13 days ago  •  2,955 views
I'm sorry that happened to you, she was so pretty.
But what I got from the story is that you didn't ride her before you got her, other wise you would have noticed the canter, and you didn't get a vet check before you bought her, which would have told you about the arthritis.
Those are two things that you should always do before buying a horse, ride them multiple times and get a vet check. You should never just buy a horse based on color and what you have been told about them.
  13 days ago  •  2,878 views
Heart Land  
Wow that story was very sad! :-[
  13 days ago  •  2,929 views
That is such a sad story. It is sad that things like this happen and we all wish that she was still alive. She was a beautiful horse!
  13 days ago  •  2,776 views
So sorry you had to go through all that heartache. I know what you are going through. We are dealing with uveitis on my new mare that the vet says she has had for a very long time. Previous owners deny any knowledge.
  12 days ago  •  2,866 views
Mystic Magic  
I know how you must feel about buying a horse you think is perfect but then finding out its not done what the people say and that its not as quiet or educated as they make it out to be. When I had sold my 12.2hh pony I didnt own a horse for 4 years. When I was 11 I started looking again. To make a long story short ill name the horses I have been through from when I was 11 till now (im 17). Zack, Toby, Mate, Bobby, Dolly, Folly, Buddy,. Tiger, Flash, Bear. In that time I had also borrow my nanas horse and a friends horse and those were the only 2 that suited lol. We brought Toby and Mate within a week of each other because mum wanted a horse to get back into riding as well. We ended up selling Toby and keeping Mate and we still have Mate today 6 years later. Then we went through all the rest trying to get the right one but I didn't realize until last year that I am not going to get any better then Mate because I had sold Flash after mum passed away and then I rode Mate at pony club and
  12 days ago  •  2,882 views
Dark Star  
Been here - mine didn't get bad enough I had to put him down.. but Archie, yes my crazy pole horse, was free when we got him. We said oh cool and our friends gave him to us. I rode him before we bought him and he was fine. But I get him home and he threw me everytime I rode him, he even sent one guy to the hospital. Now after some well earned beatings, he is an awesome show horse (I got lucky)
So if the deal is too good to be probably is. That's a sad story - sorry you had to put her down
  12 days ago  •  2,763 views
Fox Crest Stables  
Hence why you always vet check your horses before you buy them. Once simple vet check would have caught all of this prior to you buying her.
  12 days ago  •  2,925 views
Dream on Dreamer  
We had a good look at her and a long ride but the canter had no problems and we all learn from our mistakes: we paid $1,500 and yes it's harder buying from an unknown buyer and it was only really obvious what was wrong when she was being riden or had a full on check out (e-rays)
  11 days ago  •  2,832 views
Dream on Dreamer  
What lesson?
I had her on Lease and checked out but it was after we brought her the problems started then we decided to get e-rays?
  10 days ago  •  2,832 views
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