Watching the horse you sold with it's new owner...
Recently sold a mega talented young pony to the loveliest people. He doesn't want for anything in his new home, and is spoiled rotten. However, it makes me sad to see him with his new rider as he has deteriorated a lot since he left us. He was very calm, quiet, auto changes, basically very well schooled and educated. Now I watch him at shows cross cantering around with his nose poked to the outside, spooking at jumps, refusing and running out... this is a pony who I'd never had a refusal with, and absolutely wasn't spooky at all! It makes me very sad as I felt he had real potential to reach the top and I thought this rider could do it for him. It's definitely a rider fault, but really I cannot state this to new owner! We are friendly with the new owners, but it makes me sad that he has changed in such a negative way as he had such a bright future ahead.
Anyone else experienced anything similar? Is there still hope for these two to get it together anytime soon??
A personality change like that to me suggests that their program-feeding and turnout- is very different to what he got with you. I would be inclined to ask them if they have added a high protein grain or sweet feed or decreased turn out. Just say he seems difficult and I want you to have the pony I sold you. Be open to offering help with schooling him to get changes back. Or remind them how he was taught to do changes.
well, Im sure you know thats its not really any of your business unless the new owners ask for your opinion. Sounds like he has a good home though, spoiled rotten and loved. Im sure the people will get it together and it will be a good learning experience for the rider, who Im assuming is a child since we are talking about a pony. Im sure they dont want to continue having these problems and will seek help at some point. Just try not to let it get you down Remember, he is loved and taken care of and probably happy as a clam running around with his nose where he wants it.
You know, make yourself available if they want to speak with you but...Pony is well cared for and they have not complained directly to you or asked advice making this an MYOB situation. Be available, initiate pleasant non specific conversation but do not offer advice unless asked.
The absolute last thing you want to do is go to a parent about what you see as failings in their child. Trust me on that one. Nobody, adult or child, like a previous owner to hint at how much better the horse/Pony was when they had it.
And your dreams for the Pony may not be what they can handle finacially or even want to tackle. It is their Pony now.
Hopefully they will work it out as almost all of us did with a new mount when we were younger/less experienced. Let it go.
When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.
This is exactly why I keep and campaign personal horses on a regular basis. Each season I have something going- right now it's a nice PreGreen horse, but I've done ponies and First Year horses. I don't keep them all, but I always keep something long enough to prove them. It's very disappointing to see a lovely prospect fizzle because of poor riding, training or management.
I had one really cool import that I really wanted to keep but was pressured into selling him. We had him marching around the 2'9" in the fall, on track to come out in the PreGreens. The agent for the buyer assured me that it was a great program and they had agreed to hook up with (top pro rider). 2 YEARS LATER we run into the horse at a show going very poorly in the baby greens. Not the same, simple, confident horse we had sold. Very disappointing.
And to add insult to injury, I had given him a really great name. They changed it to something cringe worthy. That's why you just have to keep them sometimes!
Hopefully this is a normal adjustment period as they figure out how much grain, turnout, and program he needs. And hopefully the riding will improve with time in the saddle. As findeight suggests, many of us went through this at some point.
No harm in asking how it's going and if they ask for help or advice, great.
This happened to a horse I sold a couple years ago (and actually ended up buying back).
What I have found is that there are rarely horse problems – it’s usually problem riders. Every time you interact with a horse you are training him. Even if your horse is well trained with the lead rope, you are training him every time you use the lead rope. Even when you pet your horse, you are training him.
Some horse people just don't think through what they do when working with their horse....resulting in easily and unknowingly affect their behavior.
Horses need to be understood for their new owner to be successful with them.....and riding/handling with little or no understanding of general horsemanship isn't doing them any favors
We have all gone through it though!!! In my situation, I knew it was something I was doing - sought out some eyes on the ground, fixed my riding and everything worked out just fine. Hopefully it's just an adjustment period
Best of luck to your heart and mind OP. It's obvious you care about your former pony or you wouldn't be positing about it. Technically, ActNatural is right - it's not really your business. But it's hard to see something that was once so awesome on a down hill slope....one that may eventually come knocking at your door asking for a refund!!
That's how I ended up with my paint gelding... I knew the last thing I needed was a short, fat, halter bred APHA horse for hunters, but I loved him so much and DH was about to sell him to someone who wanted to run barrels with him . I put the money down that day so I wouldn't have to see my perfect hunter ruined.
This kind of story happens all the time. The people with the money to buy a nice horse aren't always the ones with the ability to ride it to the best of its potential. I recognize that a certain percentage of the horses I sell (although I don't sell many at all anymore) are either going to be dropping down in their level of performance or not ever reaching their full potential. The best I hope for is what your horse has: a loving home where he is well cared for. When the new owner is a young person, I think there is a lot of hope that they will get on track and improve.
I would wonder about saddle fit first. Then as another poster posted, the new routine may be very different also and lack of turn out, feed and other things can greatly affect the pony's performance. You could alway contact them and ask how things are going and let them know that you are more thanhappy to help if any "issues" arise. Other than that, there is not much else you can do. Good luck.
Last edited by alliekat; Nov. 14, 2012 at 08:50 AM.
Ok this drives me crazy... if pony is being cared for well, then mind your own business. If you voice your concerns you will only knock the confidence of the new rider (who I'm sure is feeling down about the problems they are having). It is not easy for everyone to click with a new mount and not everyone is a superstar rider.
I have sold horses that were very successful with their new owners and others that were not. I had a super sweet oldenburg mare that was clocking around the pregreens and quiet enough to hunt on. The teen I sold her to had been riding for a while and was working with my trainer. It was a great match until teen discovered boys and mare sat in a field for 4 years. I got a call from the mom asking for help (she was a herd bound, antisocial monster at this point). I agreed because they reached out to me and because it was the right thing to do. After a month the teen saw that horse was w/t/c quietly again (although still had major respect issues) and decided she wanted her back. She rode her twice and has been back in the field ever since.
Yes it stings a little to see a nice horse go to waste, but it is not your horse anymore. Move on.
Just going to play devil's advocate for a second, but maybe its not the rider 100%. If the pony was very well-schooled and being ridden by more competent riders, mayb it never had a chance to get away with anything. Perhaps with his new rider, who maybe is weaker, he has her number and knows he can pull stuff with her and get away with it.
When I sell a horse that I have trained or re-trained (I rarely get the "trained with no holes" variety to start with), I usually type a little "story" with numbered paragraphs to go with them, including my training experiences, food choices, set-up, shoeing, etc. I also give the bit and usually the bridle, custom show stuff, etc to the buyer too. I know that people appreciate my little "stories" and come back often to give me updates or ask questions. Once I actually got a horse back to re-hab which was wonderful. Kind of like when your ex remarries and you want your kids to be happy with the new step parent. lol. Keep the communication open, friendly, and inviting. Never mf the kid or rider. Offer support when asked, that's it. Then I move on to my next project!
OP says in her post she sold a mega talented young pony... OP I would just keep your mouth shut.. otherwise you could open yourself up to a potentially difficult situation. Is the rider you sold young pony experienced or somewhat green like the pony, did you sell pony under the impresion that the pony would be under the management of a trainer? A friend of mine sold a nice green pony to a woman, about 6 months later the woman complained that the pony had stifle issues and look out because the lawyer would be contacting them and the PPE vet for nondisclosure. First, pony never had any stifle issues, well friend opted not to respond or otherwise contact the new owner... suffice to say about a year later that pony was one of the top 10 in the Pony Finals...
Honestly, make it clear you're there to help if they want it, and until that possibly happens just butt out.
I sold a horse two years ago, to basically the perfect home. I had him incredibly schooled on the flat, and an up and coming pro was jumping him. For a big, clunky percheron cross I would say he reached his potential and exceeded it. When I sold him he was fit, schooled and going very well. I knew the kid I was selling him to didn't have big ambitions, which would be perfect since he wouldn't really hold up to going around the 4' as he was doing with the pro.
She rode the horse consistently in lessons for the first few months and was very successful... but then she slipped into old habits of light hacks, days off and roadwalks. From what I know he became pretty unmanageable at that time, with such a change in schedule. I told the new owner as well as her coach that I would always be happy to school the horse if they liked, all they had to do was ask. They never took me up on it, and the horse has now really settled into his new life (she even bought a western saddle and got really into trail riding).
For a while there I was constantly worried about the horse, feeling guilty that all this was going on. Now that it's been a little longer I'm so happy with the situation. And honestly, I'm so glad I didn't end up riding the horse for her, I think it would have put her on the wrong path for what she wanted.
So offer help, and then stand back. The horse is well cared for and that's all that matters.
i have had same situation with my show mare are i had to sell..which person didn't fully pay for her(but that's a whole different story)..anyways i had to sell her as finances could not pay for all the horses i had. she was a 7 yr old morgan hunter packer.out of the whole barn i was the only one who was able to ride her.i put alot of work into her.all i had to do was pick up the reins and she would soften to my hand immediately.now i had met up with new owner afew months later and she showed me pictured of the horse in a martingale..i told her right away this horse did not need a martingale at all.to me that meant when she changed hands all was lost of my time and effort..it sure did hurt to see she had fallen back in different hands. i have had to just stand back and not think about it. but like others have said they have bought the horse and we have to back off and just suggest things..all they can do is take it or leave it. but im so with you on the sadness you feel when the horse you have ridden and worked with so long go so very badly.