Dear Horse Buyer.....

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by welsummerchicks, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. welsummerchicks

    welsummerchicks Songster

    Jul 26, 2010
    Just heard another story about a person buying an extremely lame horse. Yup. Just a brief vet exam (eyes, heart, lungs), no flexions, no blood test, no xrays. Now they have horse they can't even give away, they can't ride. They can hardly afford the treatment for laminitis! They wanted a 'cheap horse'!

    And now they have no recourse. The seller gave them the opportunity to get the horse examined by a vet, but they wanted to go on the cheap. And since they didn't really check over the bill of sale (it says, 'AS IS'), they have no recourse. As is usually the case, the seller won't take the horse back or give back any of their money. AND the law is on the seller's side.

    AND...another account I just heard, person took the horse home and switched it over to their feed, and the horse got a very severe case of laminitis at the buyer's barn!!! In this case, from a very low quality hay to an alfafa hay and lots of wonderful supplements and bagged concentrates AND a nice, lush pasture that didn't have 20 horses on 1 acre!

    PLEASE folks - consider a blood test, on the day you try the horse, so there's not enough time for the drug to disappear before the blood test is done. I am wondering if in a lot of states, a vet tech couldn't draw the blood - that might make it cheaper.

    And PLEASE folks, when you buy your new horse - purchase a week of hay and grain from the seller, and gradually switch your new horse from his old diet to his new diet.

    Pastures, hay, even feeds, can vary radically from one place to another. AND this is a time of year when many horses can get laminitis very easily as grass is suddenly growing. And going from a bare dirt pasture that's overgrazed, to a nice lush field, that can cause laminitis.

    One gal purchased her own oats instead of buying from the seller - the seller must have fed very cheap oats in the hull. She fed top quality rolled oats and the horse got laminitis. Yup.

    Be careful of feed changes with your new horse.
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2011

  2. jettgirl24

    jettgirl24 Songster

    Feb 21, 2010
    Duvall, WA
    Ugh, I hate hearing these stories. The girl who I bought my horse from got another horse that she KNEW was lame because "he's her dream horse". She's spending an ungodly amount of money that she doesn't really have and is going to run out soon trying to get him sound and I can't even understand why... My horse has an awesome personality, he's drop dead gorgeous, and (knock on wood!) completely sound w/ absolutely no history of lameness. How often does that happen with an 18yo FEI dressage horse and who in their right mind would sell if you had that horse? She has the nerve now to complain about the new horse's unsoundness and how much money he costs her despite knowing all of this when she got him. Everyone at the barn just shakes their heads at her unbelievable lack of foresight.

    I'm just waiting for the day she comes back and wants to buy my horse back. That will NEVER happen but I know it's inevitable that she's going to ask sooner or later. All I can do is shake my head and praise the stars at the good fortune for my horse and I!
  3. welsummerchicks

    welsummerchicks Songster

    Jul 26, 2010
    I wanted to mention too that 'just getting rid of it' isn't much of an option these days. Most places don't allow on-farm burial and the bill for rendering the carcass and putting the animal down can be more than the purchase price (especially if that was 'free'). People can't even give away disabled horses these days - the only people who want 'em, quite often, you don't want 'em to have the horse. There are buyers out there, but lame, disabled, untrained horses are a dime a dozen or less.
  4. babyblue

    babyblue Songster

    Sep 23, 2009
    Hell the last time I sold a horse I GAVE them a bag of feed and several bales of hay. She went to a wonderful home but that was my baby and I did not want her colicing or having to wait in the trailer while they stopped at a feed store in our area for the right feed. Then I was going to just give them her bit too and they offered to buy her bridle and saddle so she wouldn't have to get use to anything new right away and it would fit perfectly from the get go.

    This is going to sound way harsh but no one should be buying a horse unless they or the person with them (parents/trainer/friend helping out) can do a basic soundness test. Eyes, lungs, heart, flex. If they cant do that then there is nothing they can do to help the horse till the vet shows up in event of colic or serious injury. I personally carry a stethoscope, light, camera and a needle and tube and can draw a tube myself then and there.
  5. babyblue

    babyblue Songster

    Sep 23, 2009
    Quote:in pa right now its cheaper to take the dead body to the ag building in hgsb and have the students do an autopsy on it and they cremate it then call the rendering guy. which hey its cheaper and you will know, in the case of an older horse or surprise death what happened. the trick is getting it there.
  6. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    It's not the best option, but around here we still have the auction. That's what happens to quite a few of the "unsellable" horses. There's still a large meat market for horses and not all of it is necessarily legal. Often it's cheaper for a person to sell at auction than it is to humanely euthanize. It's a sad thing. Every week at the auction I see a lot of lame and un-rideable horses pushed through that have all too often been bought and turned up lame. People just don't know what to do with them and can't afford to feed a horse that isn't any use.

    When people buy horses, they just don't want to listen if they find a horse they deem "perfect". I went with a friend looking to buy a horse once and caught lameness they didn't. Vet x-rayed and sure enough that 10 year old horse had spurs on its joints that even an older horse shouldn't have had. I advised my friend to buy elsewhere and not from the trader, but what did they do? They went and bought another horse that had a severe bucking problem. Hundreds of dollars into training and chiropractors later, and the horse still has issues. But he was their "perfect" horse and no one could say otherwise.
  7. Sierra pachie bars

    Sierra pachie bars Queen of the Lost

    Nov 8, 2008
    I took in several horses , I was willing to put food into them and try to get them happy and healthy. So there is people out their just got to find them. I am in love with one and I do have to put money into him because he isn't 100% sound. I only go out cursing with him. But tell you what he turned out to be one of those bomb proof horses so to me he's worth the extra money to keep him healthy. Also helps I have a awesome vet willing to cut me a break. I think he loves us for it too.
    Also you can try driving the horse yourself to the disposal place. Have vet meet you there and put horse down then drive over. They will pull horse out for you. I had go have one done this way. It only cost per weight or a set fee that for us was 70.00.

  8. michickenwrangler

    michickenwrangler To Finish Is To Win

    Jun 8, 2008
    NE Michigan
    I was lucky. The pony we got for DD had the same vet and farrier with her old owners as I do. Plus, the place I board at buys hay from the people who sold us the pony. Same hay, farrier and vet gave me the go ahead since they were familiar with her.

    Our case was the opposite. Pony went from pasture to dry lot to slim her up a bit.
  9. Anguissette

    Anguissette Songster

    Jan 31, 2010
    Eastern NC
    In my experience the old axiom, you get what you pay for, has usually proved to be true.

    Now that doesn't mean that people don't get lucky. But I prefer to hedge my bets and always go with a complete vetting. It saves money in the long run!
  10. WIChookchick

    WIChookchick Songster

    Aug 25, 2010
    Rural Brooklyn, WI
    Dear Horse Buyer,

    I am glad you have looked at horses and found a list of ones not too far away to go look at. I know you are seeing those cheap horses on the CL, the free ones on
    That pretty black one with the massive amounts of dread knots in its mane and tail, or that really skinny bay with lots of white, just needs some TLC...
    I am proud of you to go and speak to the horse owner, who decided not to ride the horse for you to see how it goes... do you remember the excuse?
    I think it was one of these, "Its my daughter/son/wife/cousin/friend/grandson/daughter's horse, I don't ride" OR "The horse hasn't been ridden in a couple of years, due to
    (insert reason here)" or "He/She is well broke, we started leading our small children on him, but we have never actually ridden him/her".
    Please remember that you can love a horse, but you need to be smart with horses, especially adding one to your herd, or to your home.
    Bring a friend or relative or trainer with you that is familiar with horses, that are experienced, get their honest opinion. You can put down a deposit to hold the horse
    until you can have it vetted or have a vet look at it.

    Things to keep in mind, if the horse seller gives an excuse why the horse hasn't been ridden, and doesn't have some one there to show you the horse's gaits, or to ride
    the horse... walk away. IF the horse looks half asleep, stumbles when is probably drugged, ... walk away
    If the horse is tied up, saddled and waiting for you to come and look at... ask to have all of that UNDONE, and have the horse put in the pasture/paddock it is normally kept in.
    Have the seller catch the horse again, groom, and saddle the horse so you can see how it is to have this done.. IF they refuse... walk away.
    (they probably spent half a day catching it and to have to do that again, would be too much work for them [​IMG] )

    You need to remember that there are red flags, keep in mind the temperament you want, the size and type of horse you want, your upper price range, and its cheaper to
    have a horse get a pre purchase exam than it is to have a lame horse you can't do anything with.

    Don't buy the horse right off the bat, that is what a deposit is for, think on it, ask for a trial period if possible, and follow the recommendations of your more
    knowledgeable friends. Have your trainer or more experienced friend try the horse and you try the horse, then discuss it.
    You are making a huge commitment to an animal that can live 30 years. You need to know why they are selling the horse, and you need to pick the right horse for you and your herd/family/needs.

    I hope this helps you in your search.


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