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You are in... Forums > Riding and Training > General > what should i do with my mare?

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genaprince

Joined:

Apr 12

Posts: 1

genaprince says:

what should i do with my mare?

 i own a 16.1 ISH mare shes approx 17. shes had quite a hard life shes showjumped upto grade B, had 2 foals, evented for a bit, been a hunter and then been a showjumper up to 1m15 for the last 3 years. she has a lot of wear and tear on her legs (large wingles, thoroughpins etc.) the last 18months iv been struggling a lot with soundness. long story short, she has eggbars and her joints have been injected and when i jumped her after this at home and she was fab but wehen i competed her she refused which is one thing this mare does not do ever!  iv advertised her as a broodmare but no-ones interested. so now i dont know what to do as i cant afford to keep more than 1 horse but obv want something i can compete. however i wont sell her cos i vowed she will spend the rest of her days wth me and she doesnt deserve to be passed on from pillar to post. part of me wants to compete her this summer on bute and pain killers so she can do what she loves (she lives for jumping) and then decide what to do in september but then the other part of me knows this has it negatives. whats everyones opinion. please dont be horrible to me :( (image taken 4 weeks ago when i jumped her at home after her injections)

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MoodyMare2904

Joined:

Oct 08

Posts: 102

Re: what should i do with my mare?

Could you perhaps find someone to loan her that only wants to hack out and maybe do the odd local show?  Then she will still be with you and being ridden but not hard as after the life she has had it may be better to slow her down a bit.

Have never really competed so my old mare only did hacking out and sponsored rides with jumping.  She was happy and stayed with me til she was 33!

You need to do what you feel is best for her and you.  If you can't afford to keep her then put her own loan and get another horse that you can compete.

good luck

Sarah

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greyandbay

Joined:

Mar 10

Posts: 3462

greyandbay says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

Injections into the joints only last a while - we had Grouses' coffin joints done, and were told they would need injecting again - is it 3 months or so? But as he then developed cushings and was pretty lame from lami it was never repeated.

I have a feeling that if she's as bad as that, if you compete her this summer then you'd pretty much have to pts in the autumn. She's had a full working life from what you say, so it's very likely her joints have suffered accordingly.

Is there no one near you who would have her as a companion, even if you offered to pay part of her bills, say for painkillers?

Hope you can sort something out.

The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man - Winston Churchill

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soniadevereux

Joined:

Jun 08

Posts: 4347

Re: what should i do with my mare?

I think your mare is trying to tell you although his spirit is willing her body just cannot do what you want her to do Personally i think giving her bute to continue jumping is selfish as you are only thinking of about you and not the welfare of your mare. Like some one else said if you continue you will need to have her PTS in the autumn as she will be so lame that it would be unfair to keep her alive.

This may sound harsh but put the boot on the other foot. If you had to take painkillers to keep you doing what you "apparently" love even if you knew it would do serious damage and you would be bed ridden after a few months for the rest of your life, would you do it?

Sorry if i have offended you but i am giving my honest opinion.

Horses - if God made anything more beautiful, he kept it for himself. ~Author Unknown

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TruStar

Joined:

May 08

Posts: 1190

TruStar says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

I agree with Sonia. 100%. this mare should not be made to jump on painkillers. It is not fair. If you can`t keep her as she is just in the field it is more humane to have her pts. Definitely I would never shove an unsound horse off to anyone else. you never know what your horse would have to go through there. Now you can shoot me for the pts, but it is kinder to the horse.

HAVE YOU HUGGED YOUR HORSE TODAY???

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nix123

Joined:

Aug 11

Posts: 282

nix123 says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

 I agree with Sonia & Trustar. It would be more of you wanting to jump not whats in her best interest. The awful thing is she sounds such an honest type that she would carry on trying her hardest for you to jump even though she'd be in pain. I dont think you would want that for her really. Let her live her life with quality. 

nix

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brook

Joined:

Sep 08

Posts: 5218

brook says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

 I honestly think that your mare deserves a rest and as long as she's not in any pain then maybe she could be put on loan as a light hack and companion. As you've said she's had a very active and hard life, painkillers will only mask the problem and continuing to jump her will cause more damage. I can understand your predicament, maybe you could ask around locally and find someone who is happy with doing lighter work and wants an easier life too ! I hope that you find the right person for her as she sounds like a real gem,  good luck. 

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rhapsody

Joined:

Apr 05

Posts: 2983

rhapsody says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

Loading a horse with pain killers and competeing is not only unethical but also against the rules of all affiliated organisations.  Even if you go unaffiliated it is completely not right.  Your horse may have enjoyed her competitive career but I'm quite sure she won't enjoy it any more if it is causing her such misery.  Either find her a sharer/loaner or retire her.

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SarahR123

Joined:

Feb 10

Posts: 451

SarahR123 says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

I hope my comments won't cause offence - I'm trying to be honest but considerate!  My vet & I were discussing things the other day as we have had dealings with a charity who have a "no destruction" policy pretty much regardless.  She was saying that people forget that euthnasia is a valid welfare tool.  If you don't want to keep a horse you can't ride you have two options as I see it.  One is to find her the "perfect retirement home" This might be hard as there are so many useful horses needing homes that ones that are "useless" (said in the nicest possible way) are seriously limited for choice.  If you don't really know the home she goes to you run the risk that she may be sold on sooner or later and could even be drugged up so that some other unsuspecting soul takes on your poor mare thinking she's got work in her and she'll suffer.  The second option is to have her put to sleep with all the heartache that will cause.  As I see it, its a case of being stuck between a rock and a hard place.  My ridden mare is 19 and so at some point over the next few years I'm quite likely to have two horses I can't ride and definitely can't afford a third so I do understand your feelings.  In my case I think it'll mean I won't have a horse to ride until one of them reaches the end of their days and I can look for a ridden replacement.  My unridden horse has gone through too much in her life to be passed on to anyone else and my ridden one deserves to live her days out with me after everything she's given me.  Good luck with whatever you decide - I hope if you decide to re-home her you find the perfect home - sounds like she's earned it!

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Rio186

Joined:

Jan 11

Posts: 99

Rio186 says:

Re: what should i do with my mare?

 

I completely agree with what SarahR123 said, being a farmer's daughter that's pretty much the way of life back home.  Not that we put down our working animals when they are no longer useful, we do retire them, but we definitely would never prolong their working days with drugs!  I have a 14.2hh mare who is my old pony, and she loved jumping and was very good at it, but never seemed to mind retiring either.  She now lives out 24/7 and still gets the odd groom, and is very happy being a natural horse out in the fields.  The more natural you can keep them, the happier they are.  All horses need really is water, food, shelter, space, and company 24/7 to be happy.  I don't think that any horse needs to be kept as active as they once were to be happy.  But if you can't keep their quality of life above a certain standard, I would much rather put an animal down than have it suffer.

Sorry if this sounds harsh, I was speaking about horses (and animals) in general, not targeting anyone!  I'm sure you know your horse better than anyone and will do what you think is right for her.

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3MoodyMaresMum

Joined:

Jun 09

Posts: 827

Re: what should i do with my mare?

Don't want to be horrible but you need to decide is this about you or your mare?  As said above I am sure she would be more than happy to live out with company and do what horses do - be a horse.  It is us humans that decide they want to jump and love to jump - her refusing is screaming volumes to me - she's had enough it hurts.  Surely grass livery won't break the bank and then you could buy another horse - or if you really feel she won't be happy retired then you have no option but to pts - I do think you would be wrong to pump her full of drugs to compete her this summer and in my personal view very selfish.

Sorry, but only you can decide and it will be you that has to live with the decision.  She is a very beautiful mare, find her a retirement home or pts - it would be kinder. There are people out there who take on retired horses - I have numerous times and I get huge pleasure watching them transform and blossom - down side I have to make that final choice when the time comes - and they let you know when they are ready.

Good luck with your decision.

There is no greater gift than to share time with a creature of such beauty - The Horse.

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