Thursday, March 31, 2011

I feel like such a f@#%ing idiot.

Sorry for the language but I am so frustrated with myself right now.  I love my horse.  I would never knowingly put him in any pain or danger.  The problem is I am ignorant.  There are some people that I see with horses and I think to myself "they do not deserve to own a horse".  But the truth is sometimes I think that I don't deserve to own a horse.  I have constant reminders of my ignorance on my horses back that I will never be able to make go away.  They will always be there staring back at me to tell me, if I could do that to a horse what makes me think I should own one? 

I posted a picture a few posts ago of Steady and I am sure if you saw the picture you know what I am talking about.  I will post it again in case you missed it.

There is one smaller one on the other side too.

 The glaring white spots on his back.  They follow us everywhere telling everyone, "Look everyone this lady is an idiot horse owner and she put her horse in terrible pain!!"  I can say I didn't do it on purpose.  I can say I didn't realize he was in pain until it was too late.  I can say I didn't know and all those things would be true.  But it doesn't change the fact that it happened.  It doesn't change the fact that I fear that I will do something in the future like that out of ignorance to endanger my horses wellbeing.  Sometimes I just don't think I derserve to own a horse.  Looking back I can see SO many signs that Steady was trying to give me.  It's like I have to be whacked over the head with a 2x4 to take a hint.  Hind sight is 20/20 but I wish I had a little insight in the present to prevent such problems.

I can give every excuse in the book to try to justify why I didn't know but it doesn't change the facts.  That everywhere I go and anytime someone sees my horse including me it is like the scarlet letter painted on my horses back.  That I am a f@#&ing  idiot!


  1. Everyone has to learn sometime. Don't beat yourself up.

    Besides, if they don't know you, they can just assume his ignorant previous owner did that and if they do know you, they'll know you're learning and improving all the time.

  2. A lot of TBs have those. It's partly because of sensitive skin and thin coats. It's also because saddle fitting is not an exact science and it isn't always immediately obvious that the saddle isn't fitting right. Spider has a spot over his withers where his mane grows white. He also has white hairs on his legs from being bandaged too tight. I didn't put the marks on his withers or his legs, but I am responsible for the nice spur rub on his right side (I wasn't even wearing spurs when it happened!) and the blanket rubs on his shoulders. It happens, don't beat yourself up about it!

  3. I know what you are feeling. I have those days for SURE. Not seeing signs of early onset colic to stop the snowball of our drama.
    With Steady, he is giving small signs that are easy to miss but at least you are constantly going to now, revise, readjust, and question things...which yikes, can be bad too! :)
    He's a lucky boy to have you..dont be too hard on yourself. Until someone invents the talking device we can put on our horses, we can only guess.

  4. Don't beat yourself up - we all make mistakes and thankfully horses are very forgiving. That's how we learn - by making mistakes - sad but true.

  5. Spur marks on my girl's left side just about did me trainer said just get soft touch spurs - she is young, it is going to happen.
    My daughter rides a TB and we have a semi-retired OTTB - the OTTB was our first horse and we went thru just about everything with him that first year.
    One thing that helps in our situation is boarding at a small private facility where the owners treat all horses like their own. If they notice something, they let us know. The more eyes on them, the better!

  6. Stop beating yourself up! :) You are a fantastic horse owner - Steady was clearly a happy and well adjusted young man. And as a TB, he's got sensative skin. Those white patches could be from the saddle, or even a case of rain rot, an ill fitting blanket, a bite, etc. They are pretty common in TBs and other "sensitive breeds" (my old Morgan mare has them all along her topline, we were never sure of the cause) and is not a sign that your horse is abused. It's more than clear that you only want to do right by your horse. Saddle fitting is just a PITA, as we all know and yeah some horses are stoic and aren't exactly loud about when a saddle doesn't fit. Live and learn. *hugs* Your horse loves you, that is clear!

  7. Ditto everybody's comments. Take it easy on yourself, for pete's sake. Steady is so well loved, it's plain to see. We all learn. Some people would never even have noticed, and if they did, never have wondered whether they had any role in it. I rode my new mare for two months not realizing she had some soreness. Once I discovered it, I devoted the winter to helping her, so now we've both been rewarded by following the learning curve, don't you think?

  8. Thank you all so much. Your words have really comforted me. I am really struggling with all of this right now and helps to now that I am not alone in those struggles. I want to make Steady happy and healthy and sometimes it can feel like I am taking shots in the dark trying to do so. Karen you are right about his stoic personality. By the time the guy really protests the situation is usually at its worst. He doesn't complain much which has it's down sides.
    LOL I love the idea of the talking device. Someone would be a very rich person that invents that.
    Kelly I agree that for those reasons boarding would have a big benefit. But with 4 horses and owning our own property it wouldn't make sense for us to board.

    Thanks again everyone you really have lifted my spirits today!

  9. You are not alone -- Solo has borne the white marks of shame, so does his best friend, Pete. I got lucky, caught them fast and they have mostly shed out. But I too hung my head in shame whenever I had to take my horse out with a bare back. It happens. The important part is what action we take once we realize there is a problem.

  10. Seriously, add me to the chorus of "Stop being so hard on yourself". Saddle fitting some TBs is next to impossible-and they can be SO sensitive and thin skinned that the marks appear sooner then other horses. All you can do is move forward and know you're not alone:)

  11. Kelly if you read this I cannot comment on your blog and it is driving me I don't know if there is a reason you set it up that way but I would like to ask you to change it :). Also no way to email you so this was the only way I could think of contacting you. I wanted to ask you about the expo, what tack shop you go to and what kind of vest you got for your daughter.

  12. I agree. Don't beat yourself up. We all make mistakes and feeling guilty does no good. We have to learn and move on. I thought I knew 'everything' about horses because I'd had horses since I was five years old. That was before I got Chrome and then I realized I knew very little (specifically about raising weanlings/yearlings). We all have learning curves. It's not a big deal.

    If it makes you feel any better I didn't realize weanlings had to have their hooves trimmed so I didn't have his trimmed until he was a year old and now he has club feet that could have been prevented . . . talk about feeling stupid. Once I realized what was going on I though how dumb can I be? Of course they have to be trimmed. Just because they are pretty and not chipped doesn't mean the heels aren't long or they aren't wearing unevenly, etc (I've learned a TON about hooves in the last year thanks to him). White spots aren't going to hurt Steady. Chrome's club feet are something I have to deal with for the rest of his life. So don't beat yourself up, just focus on continuing to learn as much as you can. :)

  13. You know. After reading that over again I realized it might not sound like how I meant it to. I'm not trying to scare you or one up you. I was just trying to provide a little perspective. You're doing such an amazing job with Steady and I don't want you to beat yourself up. A ton of people struggle with saddle fit. I hope things are looking up. And sorry it's taking so long to read your posts. Things have been a little crazy lately. :)


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