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  1. #1
    Veteran Hels_Bells's Avatar
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    Default Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    I have had my 33yo boy for 18 years now (since I was 12). He is absolutely full of beans, gallops around all the time and is generally a very happy guy. However, he does have a few problems associated with old age, 1) arthritus which is managed with 1 sachet of bute per day, 2) very few teeth left which is managed via hay replacers which are expensive but he does very well on and 3) lately he has developed a certain amount of incontinence which means he wees quite a lot especially when he is excited (i.e. his food is coming etc) to manage this he wears leg wraps, turnout chaps and/or baby oil for waterproofing.

    At the end of last summer we had a pony we had out on loan return home, she is 24, but is full of beans but her current loan home had outgrown her. The lady who had her was going to try to find her another loan home but my mum basically said don't worry HB will look after her bring her back here. This year is my final year of uni (I am a very old student). It has been a really hard winter and I have an awful lot on my plate. I have struggled to cope with three as my family are all completely non-horsey and I have to look after all three pretty much by myself, though hubby feels a bit sorry for me sometimes and helps out when he can.

    In short, I managed fine with just my two boys but three has really tipped the balance. I want to find a new home for the 24yo mare as she is sitting there doing nothing, it completely wasted and whilst she can't do a full days hunting etc any more she could certainly do an hour or so and also would make a great hack. She is probably just going to sit there for the next 10 years which IMO does oldies no good. Also I can't devote the time to her she deserves.

    My parents are fighting me tooth and nail on this and almost every day I get that "Sam (my oldie) is the problem" or "well you should have him PTS then it would be easier for you etc etc". I don't see why he should have to take the brunt of this. He is so happy and full of life, no one can believe how old he is and says he looks so well for his age, yet all I get from my family is that I should get rid of him. I don't mind looking after my 2 boys as I can cope fine, but the third horse has almost turned life into a mysery. She is really hardy so I tried to turn her out 24/7 with a rug on, mid February and I just got so much h*ll from my parents about it, my mum wouldn't talk to me for days etc etc as they think I'm being cruel to her etc - but I'm not she's a dartmoor and fit as a fiddle!!!

    Am just feeling a bit down about it, again tonight my dad was telling me I should "get rid" of my oldie at the end of the summer and I'm sick of hearing it. If he's ready to go he will tell me or it will be clear if he starts to give up etc but right now, I think he's too happy, his appetite is enormous, he's full of life. Just because he's older and has a few old age problems is that immediate reason to make the call!!!??

  2. #2
    Old nag Wagtail's Avatar
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    I do feel for you. Your old boy is so lucky to have you and there is no way you should have him PTS. Though I am sorry I can't offer any help. It's hard. I have seven horses that I do by myself as well as run a taxi service for two teenage sons, all the cooking, cleaning and washing etc. This winter was extremely hard and it is all the more so when you are in your forties!

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Your family needs a good talking to! Can you invite them round and explain it to them without getting upset, saying just what you have said above? They don't seem to have a clue how much work you are putting in and not to help you sounds really off to me. Say I am not coping, I am not happy, and if they want you to look after the 24yr old too, then surely they could do one day for you?

    I suppose looking at it from their point of view, it would make more sense to put down the oldest, however I don't mean I agree with your parents, just that it appears to be the logical choice. But if he is still full of beans then it is no-one's decision but yours.

    You will know when it is the right time, and at least you have spring just round the corner (honestly!) so life will get easier. So don't be bullied into doing something you don't want to do yet. 33 is a magnificent age, and you must be doing something right to have got him to that age.

    Just reread the original post and think I might have to pop round and bop your mother one on the nose for you Of course a dartmoor can live out in February!

    ETA: how about trying a loan home through the Pony Club - would she make a good lead rein or first pony for someone locally? Or could someone help you with her in return for rides or something? Just trying to think of practical ideas, but it's late so I have to go to bed.

    Sorry this isn't very coherent, but felt I wanted to reply as it seems they are being quite unfair to you. If you are doing all the work, the decision is yours, IMO.
    Last edited by DuckToller; 21-03-11 at 10:45 PM.

  4. #4
    Old nag Spring Feather's Avatar
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    No it is not a reason to get rid of your oldie. He has served you well and now you are serving him well. I cannot understand your parents stance on this and I find their attitude quite heartless (sorry I know they are your parents but I do ). I have a couple of horses older than your boy and there's no way they will leave this great earth until they are ready. They won't be pushed out just because they happen to be old. I am sorry you have been put in this horrible situation and have no words of wisdom other than standing your ground and telling them that having him killed is not on your agenda at the moment.

  5. #5
    Old nag
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Just remind your parents they will be old one day

    Seriously its difficult but they are thinking logicaly but if your old boy is still enjoying his life there is no reason to pts.

    On the plus side spring is springing and life will get easier, I do feel for you.

  6. #6
    Veteran Grumpy Herbert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dobiegirl View Post
    Just remind your parents they will be old one day
    .
    Yes, and you'll be choosing their nursing home.......

    How about seeing if anyone would like to share/loan the mare at your place? Then you could pass some of the care onto them but still keep an eye on the horse.

    It would be a shame to put your oldie down when he clearly still enjoys life.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Could you offer the ride of the loan pony in return for some chores. Also I would imagine being a Dartmoor said pony would prefer being out 24/7. We keep a NF and a 21 year old arab x show pony out 24/7 - they don't even use the field shelter other than to keep out of sun/flies in the summer - if it rains /snows they huddle under the trees
    Dubsie

  8. #8
    Old nag Pedantic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Simple, have your "old" parents put down, they are the burden by the sounds of things.
    Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, as long as it's the same as mine, hahhahahhahah.........

    http://www.youtube.com/my_videos?feature=mhee

  9. #9
    Schoolmaster
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Hopefully now spring is here, they can soon go out and you can concentrate on finding a new loan home for the mare?

  10. #10
    Veteran Sanolly's Avatar
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    Default Re: Oldies - am I being pig-headed or should I think about calling it a day?

    Seems like your parents put you in this position by saying to the loaner of the dartmoor that you would look after her. Yes your old boy has a few minor medical issues but at 33 I think he can be forgiven for that! I would just turn round and tell your parents that they will get no say in what happens to the horses as they neither help with their care or (I assume anyway) contribute to their costs. Besides as Clippy says spring is pretty much here now, and that should ease the burden somewhat.
    As to the darty being too old to loan I know several ponies who are in their mid 20's and all of them are still full of beans and doing everything their teenage sharers want to do with them - including XC with a great deal of enthusiasm!

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