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  1. #1

    Default Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Hi everyone!

    I am new to this forum, so apologies in case I posted this in the wrong place.

    I am in the process of buying my first own horse and have been looking around since October last year. Finally I have found one which seems like everything I want - He is 10 years old, easy to ride with a great character, a perfect gentleman on the ground, and is already doing what I want to do (lower level eventing with an option of going up the levels in the future). I really fell for this boy!

    But of course there is a catch... Just the day when I wanted to get him vetted he got kicked to the shoulder by another horse out in the paddock. I cancelled the vet and went to see him - he was really lame on that leg The should was a bit swollen and hot, so the owner had cooled it and he was on bute.

    He rested for a week and I made another vet appointment. He seemed fine at home, but the vet then rated him 3/5 lame on that leg after trotting on hard ground on a circle line. Otherwise nothing seems wrong with him, legs and feet were in great shape. So the owner and I agreed to disregard the vetting and to try again in another week's time. The horse went back on bute for two days and is now resting again, only being hand walked and otherwise standing in a paddock with some other horses.

    Now my question is, how to go about this. It's my first horse purchase ever, so I don't want to make a mistake I might regret on the long run. I definitely don't have the money to buy and support a second horse in case this one becomes unrideable in the near future.

    If the horse still shows lameness at the next vet check, I am willing to give it some more time to rest and wait until it comes sound again since I really like him and haven't found any other horse so far that I felt so confident with (riding and on the ground).
    But what if the horse is fine now?? He has been out of work since over 2 weeks at that point, and I am afraid he might go lame again as soon as he gets ridden again. Would it be reasonable to offer the owner a full lease for a month or so to see if the horse will stay sound back in work? Or would this be rude to ask for? I would like to make sure the owner knows that I am serious about buying this horse, but I would also like to make sure I am not ending up with a horse that is still in the middle of a recovery, unable to ride it for an unknown period of time.

    Thank you very much in advance for any advice you may have for me!

  2. #2
    Veteran
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    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    In all honesty - I would walk away. A nasty enough kick to produce significant lameness may have done long term damage. If you do go for it I would stipulate a minimum of a three month trial period given the injury - you also will find your insurance will exclude this injury so why buy a problem?

  3. #3
    Old nag PorkChop's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Gawd, what a pain.

    I would tell the owner to get back in contact with me when the horse is sound,back in work, and ready to Vet again tbh nowt more you can do, not worth the hassle imho.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Quote Originally Posted by PorkChop View Post
    Gawd, what a pain.

    I would tell the owner to get back in contact with me when the horse is sound,back in work, and ready to Vet again tbh nowt more you can do, not worth the hassle imho.
    This, although by now I would have expected the owner to have stopped wasting everyones time and your money by getting her own vet to diagnose and treat the problem, you may think it is due to the kick and once that recovers all will be well but the lameness could be due to something else and it is not down to you to sort it out.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    That's really awful bad luck .
    The horses owner needs to get her vet in to diagnose what's wrong with the horse and treat it properly .
    I would ring her and say unless she does this you are no longer interested in the horse .

  6. #6

    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Thanks everyone for your answers! Although it is not what I was hoping to hear But I guess you are right... Such a shame though, the horse is really lovely! I guess I will see what the vet says in a few days and then either walk away or ask her for a trail period.

    And yes, you are correct that the lameness *might* also be unrelated to the shoulder injury. That would of course be a bummer to find out too after all the waiting. I was hopeful at first because the horse seemed to have recovered well within a few days, going from super lame as in 4.9 out of 5, to walking normally at first glance. But then the vet's rating as 3 / 5 really didn't sound that promising anymore.

    Oh well... and I always thought buying a horse was going to be fun, ha! LOL

    Thanks again for your help.

  7. #7
    Schoolmaster scats's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Gosh, what awful luck OP. I would continue your search, and perhaps ask the owner to let you know when the horse is fully sound, back in work and able to be vetted. You may well have found something else by then, but if not, and you decide to go for this horse, id be tempted to get that shoulder Xrayed as part of the vetting.
    **Team B Equestrian**
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Thanks everyone for your replies! Very helpful I had posted a reply earlier, but seems it got lost..

    Well, not exactly what I was hoping to hear, but I guess it's indeed smarter not to buy a problem. Such a shame, the horse is amazing But I am not even sure I'd call it luck or bad luck - could have ended up much worse if he got that kick the night AFTER I vetted him as I would have most likely bought him on the spot, and would have ended up with my horse being dead lame within the first 24 hours of owning it

    Anyways, I will wait to see how the next trot up goes in a few days and then make a decision. Thanks again!

  9. #9
    Veteran FestiveFuzz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Oh OP such bad luck.

    As someone who is currently facing putting my 5yo down after only 7 months of owning her I would strongly advise caution. In my mares instance she passed a 5 stage vetting with flying colours only to tear her DDFT a month into having her. It's been an emotional rollercoaster of soaring highs when she seemed to be responding to treatment, followed by crashing lows when she comes in lame again. It's been exhausting and I honestly don't think I've ever cried as much as I have in these last 6 months and now I'm faced with making the most difficult decision I'm racked with guilt and what ifs. I wouldn't wish this on anyone

  10. #10

    Default Re: Buying a horse with a recent injury

    Good news! After another week of rest I had a vet check the horse again, and he is fine No fracture, zero lameness!! The vet said he must have been lucky and it was only a painful bruise. He will go back into work now and if all stays well, I will go ahead with the purchase. What an unnecessary detour this was

    Thanks for all your help though.

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