No Stigma
We hear it all the time "I would never
sell my horse"  In the horse world
there is no stigma attached to
selling your horse.  The chances of
you finding the exact right horse,
that will do the exact thing that you
want to do, and then be able to
change as your needs change are
extremely remote.
There is a difference between
selling a horse because of problems
and selling a horse because it no
longer suits your needs.
The First Horse - Did you know
that the horse you bought when you
were a beginner, is still a beginning
horse, even though you may not be
a beginner rider anymore?  That
can cause a lot of boredom from a
lack of new and challenging things.
The Wrong Horse - How do your
personalities work together? Did you
start out just wanting to trail ride and
now you want to show?  Trail horses
usually aren't suited to run barrels
or jump fences, it is time to find your
horse a good trail home and buy a
new horse.
The Older Horse-Older horses can be worth their weight in gold.  More
and more horses are living up to age 50!!! They are being shown into
their 20's and ridden into their 30's and 40's.  With proper dental care,
vet care and diet as well as being cared for much better, horses are able
to be utilized later and later.  Don't put your older horse out to pasture if
he is not suiting you, that is not good for him!!! (See photo below on the
left)  Sell him to a beginner who needs an older forgiving horse, or donate
him to a handicapped riding program where he will be loved and cared for
while he works for a good cause.
My Child is no longer interested-We see this one a lot, and a lot of it
stems from the above problems.  Children learn extremely fast.  You
bought your beginning child a beginner horse, now your child has learned
from him, is confident and wants to do exciting things, but he still has that
beginner horse.  That horse will not change, it may be time to get your
child a more challenging mount.  Or you could be having the opposite
problem.  Did a qualified trainer help you find your child's first horse?  
Maybe the horse is too advanced and the child is truly afraid to ride it.  
That is the problem that the above girl had that is laying down on her new
quieter horse in the second photo.  There is nothing wrong with that.  
Some children like and need quiet docile horses (one with more "Whoa"
then "Go") that is what they enjoy.  Make sure that you properly evaluate
your child's reasons for not riding.  We can help you do this as well.
Contact Us
So why do we discourage
selling problem horses?
Are you sure it is the horse that IS
the problem?  Be sure that it is the
horse and not the rider.  Our
philosophy is that 99% of the
problem with horses is rider error.  If
your horse misbehaves with you,
and not with a trainer, then you may
need to figure out what you are
doing incorrectly or we guarantee
that you will have the exact same
problem with your next horse.  And
remember, the better trained the
horse is, the less they can usually
tolerate constant errors made by the
rider.
Top Ten Ways to Ruin a Good Horse
1.  Let all of your friends ride him unsupervised- You wouldn't let an
untrained driver drive your car would you?  Rough hands and mixed
signals can cause a horse to become frustrated and eventually start
misbehaving.
2.  
Put the wrong saddle on him-Have you ever had a pair of shoes
that didn't fit?  Hurts doesn't it.  Did you know that not all saddles fit all
horses?  If there are any pressure points on his back, that is going to hurt
REALLY bad after awhile.  Be sure to get your saddles fitted properly to
your horse for the most comfort.
3.  
Use the wrong bit- When you go to the tack store, have you ever
wondered WHY there are hundreds of bits to chose from?  Different bits
have different controls depending on how the horse was trained and what
you are using him for, the wrong bit can be very uncomfortable, painful
and even useless for what you want to do.
4.
Always blame the horse for the problem-Was the horse nice when
you bought him and now he is REALLY bad?  Horses don't just become
bad on their own.  A Horse will always act like a horse is supposed to act
when reacting to inexperienced handling.  We have seen horses go from
good to bad in as soon as a week to a month with improper handling.  
After having your horse evaluated by a good equine vet to make sure
there are no pain issues.  Go and see a very good trainer or instructor
and ask them to evaluate you, your tack and your horse.  You may be
surprised at what they find.  Don't be surprised (or offended!) if it turns
out to be rider error.  If your horse behaves perfectly for the trainer, then
it is you, and/or your tack, period.  If your horse misbehaves for the
trainer, then you may want to consider sending him to one for a short
refresher course.
5.  
Never discipline him-Horses will test their riders, if you don't
discipline him immediately when he acts up you are telling him that it is
OK to be bad.  Take lessons with a good instructor and learn how and
when to discipline your horse when he misbehaves.  It is your
responsibility as a horse owner to make sure that your horse has good
manners.
6.  
Make excuses for his bad behavior-"He is young, that is why he
bites and kicks".  "He had a bad experience in the trailer, that is why he
doesn't like getting in one" "I shouldn't of brushed my hair out of my eyes,
or he wouldn't have bucked me off"  There are no excuses for this.  Why
do you see other more experienced people NEVER having these types of
problems?  Because they don't make excuses.  They deal with the issues
until they are no longer issues and if they can't do it then they find
someone who can.
7.  
Stop learning - "Where education ends, abuse begins" One of the
things we tell all of our students is the more you learn about horses the
more you realize that you don't know.  Most beginners think there are
about ten things to learn about horses, most advanced horse people
know there are about ten thousand things to know.  Getting to that point
is one of the biggest break throughs that students have when it comes to
learning.  It can be very humbling.  Keep listening and learning, nobody
learns anything when they think they know it all.
8.
Don't fix a horse that startles easily- One of our students notices
that the same horses seem to get hurt over and over again at the vet
clinic she works at.  Horses that "become unglued" at every little thing can
become a walking vet bill, constantly hurting themselves.  Spending some
time truly "bomb proofing" your horse and training him to think first rather
then react can be one of the biggest money savers you ever do.
9.
Buy a horse that is too young, too well trained or not trained
enough for your skill level
-One of our students said "Green on green
equals black and blue"  A green (untrained) rider on a green horse will
not work.  100% of the time you will ruin the horse for life!  That is one of
the biggest reasons why we see people who don't do anything with their
horses.  Don't buy a young horse to "grow up" with your children.  If you
are untrained you need to find a horse that has years and years of
experience and will tolerate and forgive your mistakes as a beginner.  
Spending too much on a horse that is too well trained can be bad to.  A
well trained horse will not tolerate a beginner who asks him to do ten
different things at once.  They will become confused and eventually they
will just stop working.  Never do the above two things unless you are
working diligently with a qualified trainer/instructor.  Not spending enough
money on a horse or not getting help finding your first horse.  You can
find low cost horses that are good, but there is a difference between a fair
price and a too good to be true price.  It is a difference between a $300
car and a $2,000 car.  Both are inexpensive, but which one do you think
you will have the most trouble with?  Which one will need more repairs
and won't be reliable.  And if you didn't know anything about cars, would
you just go out and buy one without bringing someone with you who knew
about them?
10.  
Think that reading books and websites are enough- You
wouldn't read a book on cutting hair and then go out and open a salon.  
Book reading and studying are great, but it needs to go hand in hand with
hands on experience.  Don't undervalue the benefits and savings that just
a few hours with a good trainer can make.

Copyright 2005/2006 DFW Riding Lessons -- All Rights Reserved
Don't let your horse
waste away out in the
pasture.
How old would you guess the
horse in the above photo to be?  
You can click on it to enlarge.  
Would you believe at the time this
photo was taken he was age 20!  
This is a horse that M-Bar-K Farms
used as a lesson horse for ten
years.  With quality diet, exercise,
dental and veterinary care, horses
remain useful and stay healthy and
younger looking for many years.
Problem Solving
Problem Solving
Do you enjoy your horse?
If you dread riding or even
dealing with your horse, that is
not necessary.  You would be
amazed at what a few hours with
a good trainer can accomplish!
See our
Testimonials!
This is what we like to see!
We want you to have an
enjoyable experience with your
horse.  If you are considering
selling your horse because you
have been injured or are having
to much trouble with him,
consider coming to us for help.  
We have saved many people
from a possibly regrettable
situation.
Because we hear and see so many people with serious problems
with their own horses we decided to put together this page as a
reference to people who don't know where to go to get the help
they need.

We are sure that just about everyone knows someone who owns a
horse that they cannot ride for whatever reason.  We see horses all
the time in pastures who never seem to get ridden.  Horses need a
job.  The ones left out in the pasture usually deteriorate, the ones
that are utilized will stay healthy and live much longer.  

Remember "Where education ends, Abuse begins"  We truly
admire people who strive to learn the most that they can about their
horse and his well being.  If your horse exhibits ANY of these
behaviors, then you have a dangerous problem that needs to be
dealt with immediately.

Biting, Kicking, Rearing, Bucking, Not Stopping, Bolting back to the
barn (barn or herd sour), invading your space on the ground, trying
to get away when on the lead or bolting to soon after he is let
loose, spooking, chronically startling at moving objects, irrational
fear of normal barn items (ie: blankets, rakes, etc).  This is a
problem at ANY age!  We don't care if it is a foal that is still wet
behind the ears.  It is never cute, or acceptable to tolerate these
behaviors. Ever.

These problems that we see are more annoyances, but they can
still cause a lot of unnecessary grief and anxiety for the horse
owner.

Not standing still when tied or being worked with on the ground,
pawing, stomping, ear pinning, tail wringing, head tossing, not
loading into the trailer, not coming up from the pasture or being
hard to catch, pitching a fit when under saddle, or not obeying, fear
of water, being aggressive towards you at feeding time, constantly
injuring himself because of misbehavior (ie: runs into gates etc.),
being balky when asked to do something on the ground or under
saddle, fighting or being evasive when being bitted (when you try to
bridle him), not allowing you to pick up his feet or clean them, trying
to lay down when asked to do something, tries to rub you off on
trees etc. Refuses to move when asked to do something they don't
want to do.  Constantly tries to run to the gate when in an arena or
round pen (gate sour).  Being aggressive towards other horses
when under saddle.  Anxiety when away from other horses while
being ridden (whinnying or calling to herd mates).  There is no
excuse for horses to behave this way.  We can go over each
problem with you and show you how you can work to eradicate this
kind of misbehavior.

Most of these problems are easily fixed when you work with a good
trainer.  We can quickly find the reasons behind these problems
and work with you to fix them permanently.  Please call us before
you get rid of your horse!  As bad as you think the problem may be,
it may be something as simple as the wrong tack or a pain issue.  
Let us evaluate you and your horse and work to put you back in the
saddle!

Also, please be sure to get references when choosing a trainer.  
One of our students just saw a young horse permanently crippled
by a "trainer" who did not know what they were doing.  Remember,
we never abuse or mistreat our horses.  That is just a shortcut for
people who do not have the skill that they need to be affectively
dealing with these problems.
469-682-4405