Thursday, 27 December 2012

Advert of the Day

What's wrong with this picture?!

This pony is for sale- are you gonna be rushing to buy him?!

Here's my issues:
What's he got on his FACE?! Why is he tied to the saddle- apparently- is that the only way you can ride him?!
You couldn't be bothered to clean him up a LITTLE bit?!
Same to the saddle cloth- it's gross! Do you EVER clean tack?
BTW is he sweating?! How long did you have to run him around until he'd stand still for that shot?!
You ride him on THAT surface all the time- are you sure he's sound?
Um- how about a hat?

So you might think: brain fried pony with no brakes in the hands of someone who just likes to blast around. Why would you bother taking another look?
Except there's another little piccie, not the main one, of allegedly the same pony out hunting and looking like butter wouldn't melt- minus the bondage gear too!

Something amiss here- wonder if the above shot is from a previous home? Poor pony!! Here's hoping for a good place for him, and someone who doesn't mind cleaning his gear and can use a BRUSH!

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

She Did it on Purpose!!!

Today's post is courtesy of the blog Snarky Rider and comes from the source of a great many American selling horror tales, Craigslist.

Yes you are reading this correctly. The owner was 'mad that she didn't come out in the right colour so has not paid any attention to her'. A bratty comment if ever I read one- do they think the foal deliberately chose to come out this colour just to annoy them?! Part of me wants to pray that the owner is a child/teen as if adults are using this prejudiced, pathetic response as justification for ignoring a living creature I fear for the state of the world today. That said, are there NO responsible adults in their life to say hey, suck it up, you bred this animal, you are responsible for this animal, so you can at least teach her to be touched and brushed, to pick up her feet and lead politely until she can be sold.

Someone should have lectured this person on the realities of breeding- you can put the two horses MOST guaranteed to produce the foal you want together, and mother nature will decide to have a laugh and send you something random instead. Ask the top competition and racing breeders- everything can be in your favour- physical excellence, talent in each parent, bloodlines going back generations- and you will still get something completely unexpected at the end of it. Heck most sensible breeders would want to lecture this person on the joys of having a smooth pregnancy and a live mare and foal at the end of it- the experienced people know just how badly wrong things can go at the drop of a hat, despite every precaution.

NEWSFLASH: If you want a horse of a specific talent, sex and COLOUR- go out and buy it!!! That's the only way to be sure!

Oh the irony that her hated colour is the main feature in the title of her advert!! We don't even have a clue about her breed- no breed one presumes.

Poor little mite is headed no where good. That's if she survives grazing on a junkyard for the few weeks before the meat lorry collects her. That thing she's almost on top of looks like a leg breaking device- and hey, the person taking the shot didn't even stop to think hmmm that doesn't look great- HOW SCARY IS THAT?!

More commentary on this sad little ad over at Snarky Rider.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Showing the Horse off... Not So Much...

I'm not going to lie, this ad did entertain me.

14.2hh Ride and Drive Gelding - New
14.2hh 5 year old coloured gelding. Excellent to ride with excellent manners.
Good to hack out alone or in company and drives well, traffic does not phase him.
He is passported and microchipped and recently been wormed. He is now all ready to go to his new home.

So things are not GREAT in the first picture... but I'm sure we've all seen worse. The guys not got a very good position, and his attire is very questionable (THOSE wellies?!)... but it's the second shot that really makes it post-worthy...

It's a gem!

Ok, I sniggered. Sorry if that's mean, but what the h**l?! Has this rider EVER jumped? Poor pony's forward motion has been so abruptly arrested by the weight of the guy on his back that his nose is touching his chest! This is one of those cases where a nicer picture of him maybe being trotted (assuming the rider can trot of course) or even just walked on the flat would have been so much more encouraging to see.

All I'm learning from this as a potential buyer is:
1-Pony has jumped
2-If pony was jumped like this more than a few times I'd assume pony has also learned to stop rather than end up with no teeth and serious neck strain!

That's not even mentioning the handsome plastic chair jump stand and the fact that the 'poles' look like flat, rotting wood which would probably do some damage to pony or rider if either should end up on top of it and snap it.


Friday, 16 November 2012

Advert of the Day

Electric Annie, Yearling Filly

Electric Annie, 18 month old black and white heavy stepping filly. Excellent blood lines, mother Diamond Cutter bred, grandfather is Diesel.
Very very good forward going stepping filly, will only get better with age. Mouthed and long reined, going well ready to go into cart.
Loss of grazing forces reluctant sale

Mouthed and backed- great yes? Until you see the pictures...

Perhaps they meant DE- mouthed and DE- backed?! An 18 month old little filly, being pounded around hard roads by a guy who is not small and has the balancing ability of a tortoise with an ear infection?! How can permanent damage not be done?!

I just cringed at these shots. Especially the second one- like most normal people surely would, I took one glance and said OUCH. It boggles the mind that someone looked at it and said, yeah, that's a GREAT shot to sell her with. But someone DID!

My brain may have just exploded.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Why Bother Looking After it if You're Only Going to Sell it?

So how old would you guess this horse is?

Would you believe she's only seven?!

She looks like a badly kept 20 year old- many well kept veterans would put her to shame. She's had foals, heaven knows how many- it doesn't say. That might explain the dropped belly, or she could be in foal again, or, looking at the overall picture, she could be in desperate need of worming. There's no shine at all in that coat, her scrawny neck and prominent spine, withers and hips indicate her lack of condition. Ad says she's very quiet... boy I'll bet. She could barely raise a canter in that state.

I know she'd probably look a lot better well cared for but working from these admittedly poor shots I would never consider her ideal breeding material. Her hindlegs appear weak, her hindfeet look to turn out significantly and I fear that upside down neck of hers might be a permanent and very unattractive feature which we can only hope her offspring did not inherit.

I can't believe anyone would be willing to stand and hold a horse in this condition for sale- maybe that's why the guy is hiding behind a pillar. Was it too much trouble to throw in extra feed and a good grooming for even a fortnight before you took these shots, cos really, that's all it should take to cause a difference in her, unless there are deeper health issues at work we don't know about.

Poor mare. Used up and unwanted. Lets hope her next ride was not directly to the slaughterhouse.

Monday, 12 November 2012

Ahhh Training Aids

Here are some perfect illustrations of how I hate to see training ads in horse sale ads, from Dragon Driving. Example 1:

Here we have a sweet looking mare in draw reins. You can see that her head is tucked in beyond what we'd call the vertical- if you draw a straight line down from her ears  her nose is further back than it should be. Look at the overall picture this is causing- she looks like she would fall forward given the chance, and her hindlegs are not in the right position to carry her weight or the riders, which is what we are aiming for through schooling. This link has some further explanations of this.

Looking at this shot I would be worrying just how much she has been ridden like this, particularly in draw reins, and what she might have learned from it. To avoid the constant pressure of the bit some horses learn to back right off it and not accept the contact, tucking their noses in and fixing there. It's called going behind the bit/vertical or being overbent and it's a really annoying fault to try and correct!

Example 2, and here's another 'great' use of training aids:

This is a horse that definitely looks capable of working very nicely, with a nice active hindleg, but the fact that again, her head is winched in by the rein attached to her girth, immediately worries me. What does she go like without that assistance? Again, although the angle isn't the best, it appears she is being forced behind the bit (an impression not helped by her rider leaning so far back!). Unfortunately both advert pics show her in the same rein, so it's impossible to get a good idea of how she is without it.

To be fair to the owner, she admits in the blurb that the horse is a bit powerful for her at 5'1, so maybe the reins were introduced to help her feel safer and more able to stop. I only hope the 'dressage guy' who is schooling her is not the guy on her here as you'd like to think he could manage without them!

Overall, I'd rather see a horse going the way it goes without these reins and gadgets than a horse strapped down this way, as that's how I'd be able to assess what i might be able to do with it in future. You can't ride a horse in draw reins in a dressage test, so what's the point of only being able to ride it in them at home?

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Advert of the Day

Sorry for the absence folks- virus. Ugh.

Anyway I return to bring you this jaw dropper courtesy of Done Deal:

Ok, trotters for sale, no biggie, shown trotting nicely as you might expect, but also shown doing THIS (warning, slightly X-rated).

I am not really getting why they included this shot! Not only is it irrelevant to the ad itself (none of the horses are being promoted and sold on their basis of their being breeding stallions, although hey, apparently one is!), but it is not an attractive shot in any way, by any means, and is also an example of sheer idiocy- a CHILD, wearing NO HAT, clinging to a mare by it's halter for covering is MADNESS- oh and hey he's standing directly in front of said mare who could very easily decide she didn't fancy her date after all and make a sharp exit straight over the top of him.

I am also a little disconcerted by the mare herself, who really looks no age poor thing.

Anyway, erratic and a glimpse of near insanity. Had to make ad of the day.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Just a Suggestion- if the Saddle Blanket's too big for the Horse's Back...

Maybe you shouldn't be riding it?!

I despair sometimes- I mean this just LOOKS so wrong, how can anyone even cast a casual eye over it and say.. yeah good work!

Yes the saddle blanket is so long it practically covers this VERY YOUNG horse's rump!! Here are the close up shots...

Apparently she's a yearling- barely I'd guess, or slow to mature, she looks very babyish. I quote:

"Filly is a year old and we put the saddle on her with my five year old daughter and she did not buck."

Well that's alright then isn't it?! I mean if the horse doesn't buck that means it's A-ok, foal was born ready to be ridden and would gallop merrily off across country and into the sunset with a rider tomorrow given the right instructions!

I just don't get the point of this. I mean are you, dear reader, looking for your YEARLING to be saddled, backed and started? Wouldn't you rather have an ad telling you about it's excellent ground manners, friendly nature, ease of handling etc..? Why the rush to stick tack on and someone on her back?

This early breaking/starting/riding thing just gets more and more common... if only it got less and less frustrating!

The other big question of course being, if you are now trying to get rid of a mare and a foal, did you use enough forethought in breeding said mare in the first place? But that's a whole other headache to wind up in a future post...

Thanks to Chronicle of the Horse posters for this 'gem'.

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

My Eyes! My Eyes! #2

Oh dear god. Can anyone explain to me how this horse has been put together?

This poor soul looks like his (not very good) back end was attached as a complete afterthought- and is not that reliably attached now! And those withers are ideally designed to split the pelvis of the rider and make saddle fitting a hellish adventure. Never mind the neck... Overall he looks like a youngster going through an especially fugly stage. Sadly, according to the ad, he's five, so what you see is going to be what you get.

I know that the poor horse can't help looking this way, but it does illustrate an important point in terms of showing the horse off at their best in adverts. I am often saying to stand the horse up for the camera. In this case I say don't bother as it does this guy no justice whatsoever! Ad says he's working and jumping so get some under saddle shots showing this and use those instead- quite honestly, with that build and back, I can't picture it at all so I'd like to see the evidence!

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Get This Horse Away From Me...

I get the impression this pony is thinking 'get this owner away from me' too.

Let's read between the lines here.

'I can't handle her... I cannot get hurt by her anymore.'

This horse has reacted with sufficient violence to injure her rider/handler. Great selling point to start out with! But why might that be....

'We don't have proper equipment... i know she hates the saddle and is ok bareback'

Why would you ever try to work with a horse without proper equipment? I define that as a safe, flat area to work in, a decent bridle, a bit that fits correctly and is not rusty or worn, and a saddle at least vaguely fitted to that animal by someone with a bare idea of what they are looking for.

So she hates the saddle- had a saddle fitter out at all? Ride a horse for long in a saddle that doesn't fit right and you're looking at a sore, fed up, potentially violent animal. Imagine walking for miles in badly fitting shoes. No wonder they play up. Maybe the saddle is a good approximation for your horses- this is a little round pony.

'I have had her since she was 3'

This mare is now ten years old and the seller has had her for seven years. I get the impression she's been trying to work with her on and off (mostly off, her back that is) with minimal success, several bruises and possibly fractures.... It also means though that much of her ridden career has been with this owner. In what sounds like an ill fitting saddle. No wonder she's fed up!

That's not to mention whether her teeth have been examined, her feet given a good once over, and a vet been out to check for other sources of physical pain. Pain can come from the strangest places to cause violent responses under saddle, which is why I mention feet- a horse I knew started rearing when his owner tried to ride him despite showing no initial signs of lameness- a good examination and x ray revealed degenerative changes in the bones of the foot and I think the ultimate diagnosis was navicular.

'can't have the trouble with her anymore...'

Now that statement just screams show up with a trailer and forget the $100, you can have her...! Although...

'will learn to be trailered this weekend..'

This smacks of a misplaced confidence! If this pony has given her this much trouble just for riding I wouldn't guarantee she'll have trailering down in two days- especially given the lack of 'proper equipment'... trailer or large cart I wonder...

Good luck Goldie, I hope that despite the fact your owner 'can't have the trouble' with you, she takes enough care that you don't end up taking the nearest wrong turn to an auction with an unscrupulous buyer...

Thursday, 25 October 2012

How Did This Happen?

I can't get my head around this ad from Craigslist, as picked up by the posters on Chronicle of the Horse forums.

How do you manage to get to the point that you buy a horse, THEN find out you're allergic to them?!

This said there are certain other things that suggest completely clueless owner here- firstly they don't seem to understand that the use of the word 'mare' means the addition of the word female is not really necessary, and secondly they don't seem to know much about feeding and care- horse looks pretty poor! If that's all she's got in the way of grazing it's no wonder...

Which is a shame because she looks kind of sweet and like she could be pretty nice with some decent care. Hopefully she gets an upgrade to someone knowledgable- actually someone with even half a clue would probably count as an upgrade to her present circumstances.

Finally to add insult in injury she is posted in the 'boats' for sale category. You just can't help some people!

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Why I Wouldn't Buy From These People...

I found this ad on Equinenow and have to say I am doubting the professionalism of these sellers, website and all.

I've ranted in the past about wanting sellers to look half smart, at least safe. I am not a big fan of the no hat and casual clothes approach. But apart from that, fair enough one shot of riding a quiet horse in just a headcollar and leadrope...  But all of them?


Do these people have any tack? Can the horses even wear tack? And then we have this...

Small child totally helmetless and completely barefoot on a horse so tall that he could easily give himself a decent amount of brain damage just sliding off the side! Yep, real smart. Oh and in an open field with other loose horses who might at any time, being horses, decide something terrifying is going on and do a runner? Prompting normally quiet horse with kid on board to have herd instinct kick in with a vengeance and go hell for leather with them?! This child better have a velcro seat!

Finally there's this...

Now feel free to enlighten me as I haven't dealt with this fencing myself before, but this REALLY looks like two horses tied really tightly or inappropriately (a knot in the first and oh dear god... is the last one tied on directly by the headcollar?!) to non-permanent fencing that, should the horse panic in juuussstt the right way, could be readily lifted from its hinges, dragged, and given it's open framework, immediately trap and break a leg?

Yep, real smart these sellers. I wonder just how long they've actually been around horses- a short enough spell not to be aware just how quickly things can go HORRIBLY wrong I guess.

Friday, 19 October 2012

It's Nearly Halloween, How About a Horror Movie?!

This entry comes to us courtesy of the good folks over at Bad Riding- your place on the net for car crash horsemanship at its best!

Here is a sales video for a rather cute little horse- and like most true horror movies it gets scarier towards the end!

So flatwork, no the rider is not the most stylish but heck, I'm not going to throw too many stones on that one, I'm not exactly Carl Hester myself. Now just skip to about 2.16 and prepare your jaw to drop...

As I fear the video may be deleted, I have taken some stills for your viewing, er,  pleasure...

Ok seriously, you want the horse to fly over the jumps- NOT the rider! A bit more elbow flapping and I reckon she could be airborne! She appears to be throwing the (non plussed if slightly confused) horse at the jumps. Hey, here's a thought, if this is the only way you can get your horse to jump, maybe don't include that in the sale video?!

Still a cute horse. Lets just hope poor Gabriel is not yet at the point where he thinks he actually has wings with all that movement going on over his head!

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Advert of the Decade...

Seriously, someone designed this cracker over at Dragon Driving just to play on all my horse selling pet hates!

Non professional rider slouching all over and hanging off horse's head with random tack on it that fails to show off horse at all? Check!
Horse's apparent living space full of random junk and standing on said horse for no discernable reason? Check!

Using horse as jungle gum while at the same time managing to be utterly oblivous to the multitude of stains on said horse which could easily have been brushed off and are now transferring themselves to pants? Check!

Randomly dangerous manoevre which further illustrates complete lack of safe riding gear? Check!

I never look at one of these shots without hearing a voice in my head saying ' an' this 'ere's the last shot we got of yr uncle George, right before ole Bertha got a nasty wasp sittin' on her big behind...'

Anyway, gotta be a classic.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

My Eyes! My Eyes!

Those shorts have no place on a horse. Or anywhere else for that matter. Especially not with that top and those shoes. That is all.

Rest of ad for those interested:

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Selling Your Granny

When a good friend of mine was asked about whether she would be moving her old mare on now that she was busy with a couple of youngsters she was horrified and told me 'it would be like selling your granny!' Her mare is sweet, rideable, almost totally safe (as we all know no horse is guaranteed safe) and therefore might at least have a decent new home to go to if she decided that she would go down that route, but she is still an older mare, with her best years behind her and that occasional touch of stiffness and grumpiness creeping in at times.. She has earned a good home for the rest of her days, not put at risk of being overworked or even worse, passed from place to place.

Then we have this mare:

Lorin is 22 years old according to the details from the website at the bottom of this ad. She's never been ridden, but nowhere does the seller indicate if this is due to injury or just because they never got round to training her. Sadly in the current economic climate I can't see people who can just 'pet her all the time'and let her 'roam the fields' banging down the door. On the website it also promotes her excellent bloodlines. I wonder how many foals she may have had for this seller over the years? Interestingly I cannot see much evidence of this proclaimed 'move' either on the ads for her other horses for sale or on the website. Maybe this one is just surplus to requirements all of a sudden. Funny that,  being over 20 and unrideable.

Here's another golden oldie. This guy is 26!

Despite his advanced age I note he is not a quiet ride, which probably makes him unsuitable for the novices and children people might have considered getting him for, and despite her claims would not make him a family horse (most little kids are not intermediate riders!). I also worry that there is no full body shot-  the withers look pretty prominent so I hope he's actualy in good nick. The owner repeats loving home throughout the ad but just like before, I feel this poor guy is looking at the slimmest of markets.

I don't know these sellers and their exact circumstances, although I admit have drawn certain conclusions from their ads and related details, but this much I do know. We are in an economic crisis and people just don't have the money they used to have to spend on luxuries- and horses are a luxury. You can get a really nice, rideable horse with a lot of useful years ahead of them for silly money if you look in the right places- and they can be companions too. Horses like this pair are just not wanted- one is not only old but unrideable and the other is old and not the quietest ride.

I pray that the people who currently have these horses in their care are prepared to vet any prospective buyers to the hilt and arrange visits of where the horses will be- better yet to loan them out somewhere nearby rather than just hand them off and take any money offered. These are horses that are at high risk of ending up in an unsuitable home or on the way to the nearest market to have the last few dollars squeezed out of them before they get a one way ticket to abuse, neglect or slaughter. Personally? If these were my horses and there was asbsolutely no way I could keep them any longer or lend them to someone I knew and where I could visit regularly, I'd get the vet out and have them put to sleep after stuffing them with carrots and standing right there beside them. Then I'd know they'd received the care they deserved from the day they came to me to the day they died.

Just my opinion. What do you think?

Thursday, 11 October 2012

She's Got What?!

Way to boost a gal's self esteem! This poor lady finds herself advertised with her most noteworthy features apparently the fact that she has fish eyes (doncha need a vet for that?!) and a moustache! I love the fact that they spend more time noting these markings than they do mentioning what actual work she has done in the past!

Aside from the odd expression for what I presume are something like wall eyes (enlighten me please anyone!) we also have the fact that she has been running with a BIBLE stallion? Again, never EVER come across this before, any takers?
Incidentally I think we could enlarge on 'running with' and make it 'pregnant by'... if these shots are anything to go by...

Also I wonder if that's last year's foal popping up over her neck?! Poor old girl, hopefully she lands on her feet regardless of her facial hair and dodgy eyes....

Tuesday, 9 October 2012


Ok, so maybe it's just my warped sense of humour but this ad tickled me. When his partner announced she needed to sell her stud, I wonder if this chap decided it was his opportunity to titilate some local ladies and try and find a job as a stripper at the same time by advertising his own studly qualities?!

Looks like a reasonable horse as far as I can tell, but note that I'm not getting the best view of him as the most prominent shots feature Mr Baseball Cap displaying his bronze pecs, bulging shoulders and rock hard abs!

Exhibit A:

And shouldn't this one have Hello Ladies emblazoned across bottom right shot (of patient horse apparently having his hind leg readjusted)?!

Well, lets just hope horse finds a new home and Romeo gets the new career he seems to be craving!