Monday, February 13, 2012

merlin at the kentucky horse show

21 Comments:

Blogger Allison Corinne said...

crazy jealous of that horse's hair.

February 13, 2012 at 8:29 PM  
Blogger SouthernGirl said...

Never commented before (but love your blog and books!), and do not know diddly squat about horses, but that horse is stunning. Just beautiful! I hope he becomes yours!

February 13, 2012 at 8:33 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

we will see! I got see him on Sunday!

February 13, 2012 at 8:37 PM  
OpenID jessieimproved said...

Just look at that mane. I didn't think horses were allowed to have hair nicer than mine!

February 13, 2012 at 8:46 PM  
Blogger Debi said...

He's simply stunning!

Was that at the KY Horse Park in Lexington? We used to live about 40 minutes from Lexington, and took the kids there once. It's a facinating place.

February 13, 2012 at 8:50 PM  
Blogger La profesora said...

Yes, it's the KY Horse Park.

February 13, 2012 at 9:50 PM  
Blogger Debi said...

Thanks, I thought it looked familiar. :)

February 13, 2012 at 9:55 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

so we're going to see him on Sunday. Me, Patty (farm gal draft horse guru) and Wendy (one helluva dressage rider with a lifetime of show and horse experience).

This isn't even a signed contract yet, and will only work if the seller will let me take him on as a full ownership, non show pony. His mane and tail will be brushed but he will be a farm boy if he lives here, not a diva. if the owners want him to continue in that vain it won't work out, burdocks and mud and foul weather being the main reason!

but I think it may come down to a low enough price, a good feeling, and a temporary boarding/lessons at Hollie's stable in Cambridge for a while. thank god it is tax return time! I can maybe swing 2-3 months but will need him ready for life on the farm by early summer.

February 13, 2012 at 10:04 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

He's a stunner!

Best wishes that Merlin can come home with you (who knows, maybe you'll pick up dressage?)

February 13, 2012 at 10:32 PM  
Blogger Goat Song said...

*Swoon, faint*...

February 13, 2012 at 11:07 PM  
Blogger Paradise Found Farmgirl said...

Fell's are crazy expensive in the horse market. That is even if you can find one to buy. With his training and age, he sounds like the perfect match for you. The older horses are wonderful teachers! I hope it works out so that we can see your progress together. I have a lot of fun with my driving pony, you will too!

February 13, 2012 at 11:53 PM  
Blogger Kpatt said...

BALDERDASH! said the old farmer. How old is that picture? That horse is past his prime. There is a reason they are getting rid of him. To avoid the vet bills in his future and the heartbreak of putting him down.
If you've got some extra cash,GREAT! Pay down your debt--don't buy another mouth to feed. You have been through some tough times. Buck Up! If you have to spend some money to feel better, buy some tools or fix up your buildings. Love you dear---Joel Salatin would agree.

February 14, 2012 at 8:04 AM  
Blogger Paradise Found Farmgirl said...

I disagree wholeheartedly with Kpat. I have an older rescued amish draft (18 hand gray Perch like Steele)that loves fieldwork and driving, that is older (20 years old) than Merlin and hasn't been as well cared for in his youth as a show pony like Merlin. You aren't looking to work him 12 hour days in the fields like the amish do. He will be a wonderful teacher and still has many, many years of productive life ahead of him.

Get a vet check done and if all is well go for it! I would take him in a heartbeat.

February 14, 2012 at 9:32 AM  
Blogger CJ said...

I've given up giving advise to anyone, the more I learn the more I realize I don't know.

My only question would be - having come from the UK, will you have to teach him to drive on the other side of the road? :)

Where there is a will, there is a way.

February 14, 2012 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger ladyfarrier said...

I agree that 15 isn't that old.
But Fells, although dream-inspiring they are, come with some special problems.

That lovely long hair in the mane and tail? Not going to work with burdocks. When I look at a horse pasture that has burdocks, my reaction is there is a farmer who does not care for their land.

That lovely feathering? Are you aware of the special care they require (treatments with oils, etc) to prevent scratches, a debilitating skin disease that results in damp/muddy areas? Do you have muddy areas on the farm (see previous message about horses in small areas and mud).

That lovely cart that Merlin is pulling? Couple of thousand dollars (I know, because I built mine from a kit and that's what the KIT cost). The harness, add in another $700-800.

Having seen the original picture of how Jasper was harnessed, which gave me pause, don't count on them sharing a harness.

You are talking a very big investment here. Nothing gets sick or hurt quicker than a horse, and it's never cheap. Colic surgery is now up to nearly $10,000...and as it's the #1 killer of horses a horseowner has to figure "how will I pay this if, worst case, it comes to this?"

I've seen people get free/cheap horses hundreds of times. When push comes to shove, they aren't free. And when things go south, the horse is the ultimate loser because, after all, they were free and therefore not worth the huge investment to treat or save them.

I hate to be so negative. He is stunning and most likely an absolutely wonderful chap. But I'e seen horse people do this over and over, and always with the very best of intentions..get in over their heads.

Jenna, from what you've posted, your experience with horses is somewhat limited. Riding lessons do not constitute horse ownership skills and knowledge. Jasper isn't a good gauge of skill, because frankly you can't kill a POA (said with a smile and years of dealing with them as a farrier).

Please.....take a deep breath and think long and hard. Crunch the numbers. A couple of months board would pay for some major improvements on the rest of the farm. It might buy a cart that you could use on Jasper. At present you don't have any means of using the horse you *have*.

"Maybe can swing" is a very precarious position to be in when it comes to horses. They spend every single day trying to kill themselves in expensive ways(any horseman will agree with this statement).

I hate to be the voice of negativism here...but it needs to be said.

February 14, 2012 at 12:36 PM  
Blogger Kpatt said...

I don't mean to be harsh, but the truth is that there are only so many hours in a day.(cliche) The time and attention that the new horse gets comes out of the time and attention that the current collection of animals get.
It's a purty horse. See what he looks like after rolling in the mud and with burdocks in his tail. It will take a lot of time to keep him looking good.
I am cheering for Jenna to make a go of her farm. Times of relative prosperity don't always last long. Paying down debt or creating an emergency reserve--buying next winters animal feed (etc.) are better moves than acquiring another bill/horse. Discipline...it takes dicipline to succeed.

February 14, 2012 at 12:45 PM  
Blogger The Hunt Box said...

There's nothing worse than having your bubble burst, but I do want to say to be cautious. I have seen so many folks buy their "dream" horses, carried away on a tide of excitement and fantasy, and it can really turn into a mess, especially if you have limited experience with horses. A lot of the commenters have really stated some true-isms, namely that the free/barter horse is the most expensive you'll ever own and horses are constantly trying to kill themselves in expensive ways. We just spent over $4,000 in treatment for a tendon injury on our hunt horse and he did it just playing in the field. Not trying to rain on your parade, just go into it with your eyes fully open and be aware that this horse is going to need a lot of time, attention, and money. I'm assuming he's still in work and, if so, that means he will need regular riding to stay civil and keep his skills. If he's not in work, then beware of early signs of navicular, etc. because that may be why they're willing to consider a barter (which I consider unusual for a horse with his resume and the relative rarity of Fell ponies).

February 14, 2012 at 12:57 PM  
Blogger buddha-girl said...

I have to agree with some of the other comments even tho I will rain on your parade as well. I have 4 horses. The grooming, cleaning, vet visits, feed, supplements, and tack is very expensive..and I board them as well. Horse trading is alive and well and a vet check on a free horse (a horse you don't know) is essential....couple hundred bucks right there! Check those feet for sure.... no feet; no horse. I think your resources are better directed to getting all the outbuildings, etc. completed. I love my horses dearly and I understand your desires completely.....but take a very deep breath. There are many horses out there....just be cautious...a free horse is never free.
Buddha-girl

February 14, 2012 at 1:26 PM  
Blogger buddha-girl said...

I'm in agreement with some of the other comments...get a vet check. There's always a reason (not always good) that someone has a free horse. His age is wonderful...my riding horse is 28 and exceptional. I have 4 horses...hugely expensive undertaking...and you need to be really good on your ground work which after reading about Jasper I think there is more learning to be done. I love my horses dearly and understand your desire but think your money and efforts might be better directed in finishing your out-buildings and other farm improvements, etc.
Maybe you could lease him for 2 months and see how it goes. Even with a free horse the adage "buyer beware" holds true. Remember Horse Trading is still very much alive and well. Love your blog and read it daily.

February 14, 2012 at 1:36 PM  
Blogger Kpatt said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

February 14, 2012 at 5:50 PM  
Blogger beccaWA said...

".....Not trying to rain on your parade, just go into it with your eyes fully open..."

I say, go into it with your WALLET fully open. :-)

February 14, 2012 at 10:24 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home