I was at the barn last night talking with another show mom and she was talking about her journey to buying their last horse. It was a long one. I remember how many horses I went with them to look at. Out of over 400 facebook formun horses, craigslist ads, dream horse ads and horse recommendations they finally found a good one. There were several reasons why they couldn't find a good fit, but the biggest was honesty.
You would be surprised how dishonest people can be in the horse industry. It really saddens me. I always thought the cowboy way was paved with honest people and a hand shake was word, but I have found this not be true.
My mom bought my daughter her first horse that was going to be just hers. The people said it was bomb proof and would be perfect for my, at the time, 6 year old daughter. It was anything but bomb proof. The minutes we got it home it went nuts. She kicked, bucked, bit. You name it she did it. We couldn't give it away. I have asked myself so many times why someone would lie when it involved a child.
It has really made me look at ads differently. I have found a few great tips by trial and error to help when finding out if it is what they say it is. Here's just a few:
Facebook is an amazing thing. I found out more about the people selling a horse and the horse by looking up the profile of the seller. When we got out Indie I looked up the owner and everything she said he had done was all there. She had pictures of him in almost every scenario. Rodeos, parades, trail riding, shows...ect! She was honest about what he had done. Another horse we were looking into not so honest. The owner stated she had, had the horse all his life. On her facebook paper she had pictures of him and wrote in a caption that she had, had him 6 months. She also jacked up the price in a formun higher than on her page. Facebook can also tell you so much about the environment the horse comes from.
Word of mouth can be almost your best resource. It will give you a clear picture of the character of the owner as well as the horse. We had considered buying a horse a few months back and before hand made a phone call the the trainer they drop the name of. They stated he had put extensive training on the horse. The trainer didn't even know who they were.
The Internet is full of information. If they state its a world champion you can guarantee it will be recorded somewhere. Check out the breed websites and see if they are as accomplished as they are.
Don't just one once, go twice, three times is you need to. unfortunately we have looked at a few horses which were drugged to be sold. We figured it out after we looked the second time.
Most important of all is be honest yourself. Reputation is everything in the horse industry. If you know someone is looking at a horse and you know it is not what they are saying it is. Stand up and say something. I see so many adds, especially on facebook. If you've went to look at a horse and its not what they have made it out to be. Give and honest review of the animal. Person training styles aren't necessary, but an honest assessment. If the horse bucked you off say it. It will save someone in the future from wasting a day looking at it or bringing it home and getting seriously injured.
These are a few tips I've learned along the way. What are things you look out for when horse shopping??