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?

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