Horse Buying-Not for the Faint Hearted!


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We all have a horse buying story! Either we heard one or we lived one or we are still experiencing one….horse buying is tough! 

Mum and I have been buying or searching for horses for as long as I can remember. 

And we look back and laugh at some of the interesting things we have seen and experienced that at the time weren’t that funny.

I still remember the day when I was three circles around on a young horse and the guy tells mum that it’s the third time the horse has ever been ridden.

Or when you go off to see a horse and you say it’s not what you are after, so they bring out a better horse, and it turns out they had about 6 for sale and they wanted to start you at the bottom and see where they ended up!

Over the last eight years we have learnt a few things about how to limit the possibility of ending up with a donkey/psychopath in your paddock…and I am sure others can add to this list…

Firstly…be suspicious…if they say the horse competed in 2016 and then again in 2019 when he won the championship…don’t go “oh wow he won the championship “, ask what the hell happened in 2017 and 2018?? 

Get an independent vet…not the vet who usually treats the horse.

Find one person you trust who knows someone who knows someone who might be able to tell you more about the horse.

If you found out he went to so and so for three months last year ask so and so about the horse…did they send him back and if so why? 

Ask to ride the horse somewhere else, and see it come off the float at the new place. If the horse has white foam from ear to ear, be worried! 

Don’t trust videos. I have seen people chase horses around and try for an hour with legs pressed on to get medium trot to pass it off as collected trot and make the horse seem “active”!

Don’t get on a horse if you don’t feel comfortable! Who cares what they think it’s not their body getting tossed around.

The word “calm” has many different interpretations…just because they say he is calm, doesn’t mean he is your idea of calm!

Don’t be too picky with stuff that isn’t important…if he has a white stripe that you don’t really like but besides that he is perfect…buy some horse makeup and paint it if you have to! 

Ask to see the horse before they saddle him up…see if he is already hot…have they already lunged him for two hours just to present him as “calm”.

I really really enjoy searching for horses, particularly lusitanos as I have come to love and appreciate the breed so much. I always have people contacting me in search of their dream horse and I feel honored that people trust my opinion and I have very gradually over the last ten years here built up a short list of people I trust who actually tell me “ this horse is not for a women” or “he needs a lot of lunging” or “ his price is lower because he has problems” etc etc.

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GP rider Jody Hartstone and the Lusitano I found for her in Portugal Ali Baba

My mum has taken two lusitanos to Australia and while it’s a long haul it is worth it, but just make sure you ask around, and be smart and overly cautious…

If you have any questions or are interested in finding a Lusitano please feel free to write to me at warnes@live.com.au ..and please comment your funny horse buying story below! 😊

Categories: Insight

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