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Choices (was horse slaughter)

The concept of selling horses is that the buyer receives full ownership of
the horse and the seller receives compensation, such as money ... after
that, the responsibility of the horse falls on the buyer, no longer on the
seller ... our experience with selling has been to hope that the buyer will
have the good sense to protect their investment, such as proper feeding and
veterinary care ... our experience with leasing mares has been less than
desirable, to the point that we would give them away now before we would
ever lease one again ... my father always said in order to get anything done
right, one has to do it oneself ... and this comes into effect when caring
for horses ... other care-givers just don't perform up to our expectations
... we have had leased mares come back to the farm a bag of bones when they
left in perfect condition ... we have had to bring a leased mare home
because the responsible party left town for a "couple of weeks" leaving no
food or water for any of the animals on their place ... fortunately, we were
notified by neighbors to come pick our mare up before it was too late ...
this resulted in bad feelings all the way around because the perspectives
involved were all from different angles ... if a horse is leaving your
immediate care, my advice would be to sell it to the new care-givers or give
it to them ... trying to maintain control over an animal that is not in your
possession can be a tremendously and impossibly bad situation.

Carrie Johns
Honey Creek Farms
Mabank, Texas USA

-----Original Message-----
From: Maggie Mieske []
Sent: Wednesday, March 15, 2000 12:10 PM
To: Susan;
Subject: RC: Re: choices (was horse slaughter)

I wonder if a written contract of sale for even $1 giving you "first rights
of refusal" might have made a difference??  Any thoughts out there about
this?  One of our clients will place some horses for a mere $1 with the
written agreement that she has first right of refusal to take the horse
back for the $1.  Horror stories such as yours make me afraid to sell a
horse!  We are getting too many here and I am so fearful of losing total
control of a horse I might sell that I have no idea how to go about finding
a good home and still be able to maintain some control over how the horse
is cared for. We have toyed with the idea of leasing one of the mares for
breeding or even as a  
4-H horse.  We could even lease with an option, giving all parties time to
make certain it's a "match" with horse and owner and everyone is satisfied.
 ????????????? All suggestions welcome!!

Maggie Mieske
Mieske's Silver Lining
10601 S. Richards Rd.
McBain, Michigan 49657

> From: Susan <>
> To:
> Subject: RC:  choices (was horse slaughter)
> Date: Wednesday, March 15, 2000 12:47 PM
> Reflecting upon this subject is not fun. I recall
> a decision I made several years ago. I had to
> retire my horse that I had used for 7 years. He
> had arthritic hocks and could no longer work at
> the fast pace I required. I was not in a position
> to 'retire' him (though he certainly had earned
> it!) and he was not totally I sold
> him to a couple of young girls that lived on an
> island and would only ride him lightly. I
> inspected their facility - it put mine to shame!
> Board fences, spacious run ins, grassy
> paddocks......I was quite comfortable in thinking
> that my horse would truly have a 'heaven on
> earth'! And of course I reminded them that if they
> EVER needed to sell him they should contact me
> first and if I did not want him back I would help
> them sell him.
> Well - the intentions were good but I soon learned
> the following:
> On the day I delivered the horse I mentioned his
> shoes were due for reset and left them the number
> of the farrier I used. A month later the mother
> called me and asked why the horse's shoes were
> falling off and would I come and 'fix' them?? I
> reminded her that she was to have scheduled a
> reset with the farrier.....oh, she 'forgot'....and
> did that cost very much??
> A week later another call - the daughter had seen
> 'worms' crawling in the dirt of the horse's
> stool......the mother was adamant that I come and
> worm the horse! ( I made no such promise to do
> that prior to sale) I did come out with a tube of
> wormer with the intent of instructing them in how
> to administer it. The daughter showed me the
> 'worms' - they were common red wrigglers~! They
> certainly DID NOT come out of the horse!!
> Another month passed and the weather was getting
> nicer. The girls wanted to ride more, but
> everytime they tried to go the old horse would
> only WALK. The mother called me because her
> 'friend' was convinced the horse was not
> sound......I had a friend's daughter about the
> same age as these girls accompany me out to see
> the horse...Michelle saddled the horse and warmed
> him up. Then she put him through his paces -
> walk,trot, canter, all with precision. Conclusion
> - the girls could not ride and the horse was being
> 'protective' of them by not going faster than a
> walk (this horse taught my kids to ride - and
> until they proved to him they had a secure seat
> they could never get him to go faster than a
> walk!)
> Well, I think that incident formed quite a brick
> wall between us. I would drive past the house a
> couple of times a year, my old horse was fat and
> well cared for in his grassy paddock. But after
> the third year I found out the girls had lost
> interest and they were offering him for sale
> again....I called and was told he was out on
> trial. The mother seemed evasive when I reminded
> her I was to have first option. The price they
> were asking was certainly within my current
> budget. I called around and finally got the full
> horror story from the woman's brother:
> My good old horse had been loaned out to a family
> friend to take hunting. The horses had been
> spooked in the night and my old horse ran through
> a barb wire fence, suffering severe laceration of
> both front shoulders. The 'friend' didn't want to
> pay a vet so him and his buddys healed the horse
> as best they could. Then they returned him three
> months later with the scars - of course the girls
> lost interest!! My final call was to plea bargain
> for the return of the horse to me - then the
> mother admitted that they had sent him to
> slaughter. I still cry thinking about it.
> So perhaps you can see how 'the right choice' can
> become the wrong one? Unless you retain 100%
> control of your old horses, you have no guarantee
> how they will end I wish I had just had
> him put down at my own expense long before !!
> Susan
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