We see a lot of folks with several horses in the barn or the pasture that are never ridden. If you ask them about a specific horse, there is usually a story that goes along with it. More often than not, you hear something about needing to finish the training or the need to break the horse to ride in the Spring. Never mind the colt you are talking about is 9 years old.
Horse owners are notorious for keeping horses they want to ride, but don’t know how to go about it. Some may have the ability and the experience, just not the time required to get it the 120 days of training done. Others need a trainer, but don’t have funds or can’t find one who can fix the problem they have. So another year goes by and nothing happens. The horses stand there just continuing to cost money for feed, hay, vet bills, and care.
If you find yourself in this situation, you aren’t alone. We see it a lot. So what should you do. Well, we have some advice, but you won’t like it and probably won’t accept it. Decide if you really what to ride, be honest. Some people like a yard ornament. No problem, if you enjoy watching your horses without riding, more power to you.
On the other hand, if you truly want to ride, then you need to make some changes. First, cut your losses. Sell the horses you aren’t riding or training. Yes, you are likely going to take a loss. Guess what, you are going to take a loss if you keep feeding them! Give ’em away, sell them, and start over.
There is a large number of people who used to ride when they had a horse they could handle. Over time, they end up with 3 or 4 horses that aren’t ready to be ridden. They slowly stop riding their horses while thinking next year will give them the time or ability to resolve the impediment. Sell the horses you don’t use and buy one you can use. You will be far happier and money ahead to have one good horse you can ride when you want, then 4 horses that need something done with them.
It’s a choice and we understand not an easy one. We have all been there at some time in the past. But if you really want to ride and don’t have a good horse, you have to solve the problem. Like most things in life over which we have control, the hardest step is making the decision and then executing the plan. First decide what you really want. If you want to ride, then get you a horse you can ride and hit the trails!