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Thread: Who can tell me about Welsh Ponies???

  1. #1
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    Who can tell me about Welsh Ponies???

    Anybody?? Help!! I think I may be buying one. Just wanted to know what I'm getting myself into. DD adores this pony and he's perfect for her. She's so happy that she can put the saddle pad on him and get on and off by herself (she's 5). I'm on the fence, but they tell me fully broken Welsh ponies don't come along that often- there's not many trainers small enough to break them.

    He's 6, 4 white socks and a blaze- very cute. The woman who owns the farm where DD rides says that this pony would easily sell for almost $10,000 more than she's asking. The woman's husband was transferred at work so they have to sell all their ponies. I know 3 other people are interested. I don't want to miss out, but I don't want to do anything foolish. Figure we can always sell him since there are others who are currently interested. But also, they tell me he'll increase in value as DD shows him.

    Sooo- I know it's the holiday season so I'm not sure who is out there on the BB.

    We have him on a month long trial. I never bought a pony before and I need all the advice I can get!!

    Thanks!!
    Susan
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  2. #2
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    http://www.welshpony.org/

    Since I don't know much about ponies, I found this site for you.

    A few things I would think about before buying is--is this pony going to "fit" your daughter for several years? Is it going to be worth buying now when her size and skills are going to continue to grow? Are you prepared to cover the expense of owning a pony/horse---that means regular vet care, food, furrier care, the cost of tack and replacements? If you don't have acreage to keep him, how far away will you have to board him---will getting there be a problem after a while?

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by JJeannette View Post
    http://www.welshpony.org/

    Since I don't know much about ponies, I found this site for you.

    A few things I would think about before buying is--is this pony going to "fit" your daughter for several years? Is it going to be worth buying now when her size and skills are going to continue to grow? Are you prepared to cover the expense of owning a pony/horse---that means regular vet care, food, furrier care, the cost of tack and replacements? If you don't have acreage to keep him, how far away will you have to board him---will getting there be a problem after a while?
    yup! seconding all of this

  4. #4
    Get the advice of the trainer where she (DD) is currently taking lessons. Also plan on having her continue to take lessons since ponies are VERY smart and can develop bad habits as they get to know their little riders if they don't have nknowledgeable supervision. And I would never count on having the pony increase in value. If it happens, great. But that is actually pretty rare when it is being ridden by a very young beginner. The ones that increase in value are the ones being ridden by the "Professional Pony Jocks" (generally, very small but experienced 10-12 year olds) as we call them. Those ponies then become outstanding ponies for the young beginner kids. I'm assuming this a a small pony (under 12.2 hands) so the most important thing is WILL IT PROVIDE A SAFE LEARNING EXPERIENCE FOR NOW? You want to find a pony that will be safe and will help DD to learn while increasing her confidence. I have seen too many kids become insecure because they were put on ponies that weren't appropriate for a really young beginner. Mostly, listen to your current trainer/instructor and follow their advice (assuming you trust them.) And don't forget to have a pre-purchase exam done, regardless of how much the pony costs. You don't want to end up with a pony that can't be ridden, can't be sold, but still has to be fed.

    Good luck! I hope it works out and DD gets a PONY for XMAS!!!!!!

    ETA: And hopefully the PP meant FARRIER, not FURRIER. Although I do have a large pony that looks like he's covered in a beautiful mink coat... Maybe I should be seeing a furrier.
    "This better be important! Is the frickin' meadow on fire?" -- Charlie the Unicorn

  5. #5
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    I used to be involved in the whole horse thing as a BF did the amateur show jumping circuit and I was a not very talented rider myself.

    I am not clear though as to what your question is. If you aren't skilled in picking horse flesh (as many riders aren't), you rely on the expertise of your trainer. In this case the pony seems to be a very good match to your daughter and is recommended by her trainer.

    As to whether the pony is worth the price, there are so many variables -- I would imagine you could do a quick check on prices in the local horse magazines or newspapers. I know from having lived in Virginia that there is a significant horse community there. However, in the end (unless you are a skilled professional) you would want to bring in a horse professional anyway to advise you on the purchase.

    As to whether a pony would appreciate in value -- Keeping and showing a horse is SO expensive that any appreciation in the pony's value is almost besides the point -- and of course all kinds of horrendous things can happen to horses. While there are people who make a living buying young horses and schooling them, I don't think this should factor into your financial decision since it's so speculative. I do have an acquaintance who has set up a corporation and takes losses from importing horses but she is doing this almost as a full time occupation.

    As to whether to buy the pony, if you can afford it and the trainer recommends the pony for your daughter, why not. But of course afford in the horse world means much more than the initial purchase price. If you are boarding it, those fees of course -- and if your daughter wants to take riding to the next level as a serious pursuit, then schooling fees for both the horse and rider, equipment etc. Even if boarding at home, there would be schooling expenses, equipment, upkeep -- plus you would be responsible for the care of the horse since your daughter is too young to muck out the stable.

    Riding is a wonderful pasttime -- If your trainer recommends the pony as a good fit and you can afford, why not?

    As to whether to buy the particular pony, as stated above, most amateurs rely on a combination of their trainer's advice and a vet of course. If you trust the trainer, then any advice coming from people like us is really meaningless since we don't know the pony or the circumstances -- and can only offer very general advice -- if you don't know how expensive it is to actually keep and show a horse, again ask the trainer and then add some money. However, trust is of course the most operative word -- the horse world is probably as filled with shady characters as a used car lot.

    Lucky daughter to have the pony of her dreams within her grasp.
    Some days I pray for Silence, Some days I pray for Soul,
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  6. #6
    Susan,

    Nicely broke Welsh ponies are very hard to come by. Many times Welsh ponies have some very bad manners as a result of taking advantage of their owners (generally young children). I rarely have seen one that is well behaved. I did have a friend who had one that was nearly perfect, but occassionally her mother who was small would have to ride it to remind it of its manners. They sold this pony for a lot of money.

    Would you have to board this pony? Ponies cost a lot to feed, shoe, vet bills, ect. I would definitely try to understand my full costs. Also, will you have to buy a trailer to take the horse to the shows?

    Since Casey is pretty new to riding, I think I would really think twice about buying a pony at this time. Does she have the skills yet to be able to take care of this pony? Is there someone around to ride it for her if she is having trouble?

  7. #7
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    First of all, Casy is 5!?!?! Boy time flies! Does Ryan show any interest in riding? That would add to the equation.

    We don't have ponies but we do have horses. We don't shoe them anymore (we used to cowboy shoe them-front only-but they just throw them to easily). DS#2 has his shoed if he's going to ride on the pavement (as in a parade).

    We have 4 horses (2 geldings and 2 mares) and it costs about $5/day in feed for all of them. They get fed twice a day, about a scoop each feeding. They do graze in their pasture and we do feed hay in the winter months. can't really give you a cost on that as we raise our own hay. A guesstimate would be that they get a large round bale and it lasts about 2 weeks (a bale would normally sell for about $30). The mare that has a new foal gets 2 flakes (secitons) of a square bale a day and a square bale sells for about $15 but I'm not sure how many flakes it has. Plus they get a wormer in their morning feed and then wormed for botts once a month.

    The vet makes an annual field call for yearly exams and shots. We have them vaccinated for everthing but don't do a Coggins Test since they don't leave the property. It costs about $100/horse I think but I can check the books.

    The ferrier comes once every 8 weeks and since she doesn't shoe the cost is $25/horse.

    As for tack, it can be expensive but doesn't need to be unless you're showing. At least with him being 6 you won't have to worry about him growing out of his tack!

    Horses are wonderful! Hope this helps. And I'm sure if you have any specific questions that there are enough horse owners here that can help!
    Well-behaved women seldom make history!

  8. #8
    No matter how well you know the pony, have a pre-purchase exam done. Use a vet NOT associated with the pony's current owner. If you believe you will be selling the pony at some point (and you probably will be -- ponies frequently live into their 30s), you will want to consider xrays of hocks and front feet. Prepare yourself -- a good pre-purchase will run you $500+. But that's NOT an area you want to economize.

    Don't count on an equine's value appreciating. It might but the wretched animals can always find a way to hurt themselves and turn themselves into pasture ornaments. And horses/ponies are remarkably fragile -- one day you have a perfectly healthy/sound animal and the next day (after several thousands of dollars of emergency bills), he's unrideable or worse.

    As for the breed -- welsh ponies are the most popular on the small pony circuit. Depending on blood lines, they make awesome pony hunters. I haven't seen many doing dressage. I know of several doing pony club and gymkhanas. They seem to love games. They are slightly less evil than Shetland's -- perhaps because they're slightly larger and can be ridden by older children and small adults. We have one in our barn now who's as cute as he can be but bullies the horses like a little fiend and refuses to be caught unless properly bribed. All ponies are basically Satan's spawn!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by chizzy View Post
    All ponies are basically Satan's spawn!
    Now THAT ought to sell it!
    "Is ice hockey hard? I don't know, you tell me. We need to have the strength and power of a football player, the stamina of a marathon runner and the concentration of a brain surgeon. But, we need to put all this together while moving at high speeds on a cold and slippery surface while 5 other guys use clubs to try and kill us. Oh, yeah, did I mention that this whole time we're standing on blades 1/8 of an inch thick. Is ice hockey hard? I don't know, you tell me. Next question."

  10. #10
    You have gotten a lot of good advice here about economics, training, breeds, etc. It definately pays to cross all your T's and dot your I's when buying a horse. Having said that, if the pony is a good fit for your DD and you can afford it - go for it! I started riding when I was 3 and it was nothing but good for me! When I got my first horse I learned a ton about responsibility, chores, and love. Ate, slept, and breathed that animal, did my homework in his stall, worked myself to exhaustion caring for him. Trust me, I never had any time or energy to get in trouble! There is really something special about the bond between a little girl and her first horse (or pony). If this is something you can reasonably make happen I guarantee it will have a positive affect on your daughter for the rest of her life!

  11. #11
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    Hi. I, too, have horses -- breed and train them. You've gotten good advice here. Don't ever count on an equine increasing in value, even if you happen to be quite a good trainer purchasing high quality young horses to train and resell to a known and specialized market. It's always a gamble because horses are expensive to maintain (especially if you don't own land) and if they get injured, your resale can be completely shot.

    Bear in mind that while Welsh ponies are lovely and can be sweet, there isn't anything in particular about them that makes it important for you to spend thousands on a pure Welsh for your daughter. You could likely get just as good a pony of mixed breed for less money. Maybe even a better one for your purposes, as six is quite young for a reliable beginners' pony and you might want to get a good ten-twelve year old pony or small horse instead. As I'm sure you know, a safe and "bomb-proof" mount is more important than a cute purebred.

    If you do buy the pony, I second what another poster said about being sure it is ridden by an experienced rider periodically. Ponies are clever and sometimes malicious little beasts, and most of them (and many horses, too) will take advantage of beginners once they figure out what they can get away with. It helps a lot to give them some remedial work monthly.

    Check out the forums at Chronicle of the Horse. There are quite a few knowledgable people there, but remember to take some of what you hear with a grain of salt. As the old expression goes, "Two horsemen, three opinions."

    I don't mean to sound discouraging, BTW. This could very well be a wonderful purchase. Another old expression: "There's something about the outside of a horse that's good for the inside of a man." I started young with horses (lessons from age 5, bought first horse at age 12) and I can't think of a passion that's more healthful for kids and adults alike -- physically, mentally, and emotionally. Just be sure to get the advice of a trustworthy local horseperson who knows you and your daughter, and the pony.
    Last edited by tamawrite; 12-23-2006 at 11:28 AM.
    Blogging about Barb horses at The Barb Wire and about the simple pleasures of less urban living at Nightlife. Saddle up and come along for the ride!

  12. #12
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    Wow- okay----

    First of all, the pony is so quiet, I can't even believe it. He came off the trailer yesterday and didn't flinch at anything- barking dogs, all the ponies that live on the farm who were trying to check him out. Casey got on him and rode him after about half an hour. He rode around the ring like he'd been there all his life. It was really amazing. She's going to ride him more for the next few weeks.

    The whole story is that the woman who owns the farm where we go for lessons (Mrs. B) is taking in a pony who lost its tail. There's a woman selling all of her animals because her DH was transferred to Manhattan. Mrs. B was taking in the tail-less pony specifically for Casey to ride because she felt she needed a smaller pony. While she was there with her granddaughter and another of their students, they saw the Welsh pony, Major. There was never any plan and they weren't looking for a pony for us to ride. They had their student ride and jump Major. They thought he was perfect and they were quite impressed with him.

    I do trust this woman and her granddaughter. Mrs. B has been breeding ponies for over 30 years and has quite a good reputation in the pony world. She's won many awards, she used to ride and compete herself, and she's judged for about 30 years. We also have a very good friendship and I know she'd look out for our best interest. She wants the pony for herself, but she can't afford him.

    Board will be very cheap for us. He's been clipped so he needs a stall indoors.
    I know they'll take great care of him and they're talking no more than $200/month.

    Can we afford it? Technically, yes. This won't set us back or hurt us at all- it's an odd situation for us to be in and it only happened recently (as of our move).

    Casey is very excited to ride a pony that she doesn't need help with- she can put everything on him and she can get on and off by herself. He's quite good natured. Casey is very petite- she weighs 35 lbs at age 5, which is about the same as a 3 year old. She's not short, just very slight and the bigger ponies really take advantage of her- I've seen it during her lessons. She's not big and strong enough to boss them around.

    I rode for a few years when I was younger so I know a little bit. But I really trust this woman. Cheryl, I also heard the a good trained Welsh pony is hard to come by- that's why I'm afraid to pass him up. I figure if it doesn't work out then we can always sell him.

    As for his value increasing, Mrs. B feels very strongly that he's greatly under priced.

    Denise- I agree, I think it's a wonderful world for her to be entering. I know it can be expensive and all, but we'll see how far we can go with this. Right now, it's do-able for us. My step-mother and little brother are both riders. My brother is a nationally ranked youth judge for Arabians (he's 18). I wish my parents were more supportive when I was younger and helped me out with riding. They didn't encourage me. I only rode for about 3 years- from 9-12 or there abouts.

    As for my question, I really was just looking for advice and comments- and I got plenty of them, which is great!!

    Thanks so much!
    Wouldn't you like to be a Susan, too?

  13. #13
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    On a side note- does anyone know of the book A Very Young Rider??

    Mrs. B recommended it for Casey. The pony, Penny, was given to Mrs. B and is buried on her farm. There's a blurb about it in the back of the new edition.
    Wouldn't you like to be a Susan, too?

  14. #14
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    Susan,
    It sounds like a great opportunity...one that I wound't pass up!

    Good luck,
    Susan
    Well-behaved women seldom make history!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrsReber View Post
    On a side note- does anyone know of the book A Very Young Rider??

    Mrs. B recommended it for Casey. The pony, Penny, was given to Mrs. B and is buried on her farm. There's a blurb about it in the back of the new edition.
    Yes -- I am familiar with the series as they are photo documentary books showing a young girl and her horse -- and what it entails. The authoress also did books on young gymnasts and figure skaters I believe. They are about 10 years old as I got these for my niece when she started riding.

    Here's the url


    http://www.amazon.com/Very-Young-Rid.../dp/0394410920
    Some days I pray for Silence, Some days I pray for Soul,
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  16. #16
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    Thanks, Susan. I'm afraid of missing out on an opportunity that may not come along again. She really needs a small pony for her to build confidence. She fell off a larger pony- while it didn't stop her (and I know there are probably more falls in her future), she is very pleased with the thought of riding a smaller pony and being closer to the ground!

    We'll see how the next few weeks go. She'll get to really ride him today for her lesson. The farm has a saddle she's been using and they have a bridle that will fit him. He came with some of his own tack for the loan period. Not sure if it'll come with him if we buy him- but I don't know what else they do with it!

    I'm going to try to get some better pictures of him today. I couldn't get a good shot with the rain yesterday.
    Wouldn't you like to be a Susan, too?

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by blazedog View Post
    Yes -- I am familiar with the series as they are photo documentary books showing a young girl and her horse -- and what it entails. The authoress also did books on young gymnasts and figure skaters I believe. They are about 10 years old as I got these for my niece when she started riding.

    Here's the url


    http://www.amazon.com/Very-Young-Rid.../dp/0394410920
    Actually, the book is about 30 years old. I got a copy when I was 9... and that was 30 years ago. ****, when did I get so old. Anyway, it is a GREAT book for kids to read. And there is also a new version (it might be a DVD, not sure) that was made in the last few years featuring Addison Phillips, who is a very accomplished rider (and was one of the professional pony jocks I mentioned.)

    Regarding ponies being the spawn of Satan.. I have a friend that says "Ponies are just a socially acceptable form of child abuse!" Hopefully Major doesn't fall into that category!
    "This better be important! Is the frickin' meadow on fire?" -- Charlie the Unicorn

  18. #18
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    Just got back from riding again. We were there forever- the owner wanted to come meet us and see Casey ride. She thought they were perfect for each other. This woman broke the pony. I commented on how he doesn't do more than asked (i.e. doesn't break into a canter when you ask him to trot). She said she trained him that way so he's always behind rather than ahead. She was also training him to bow- she's going to show Casey's instructor so they can finish off that training.

    Anyway, I have no fear that the pony will run off with her and this has boosted Casey's confidence because she is able to handle the pony without much assistance- puts him in the cross ties by herself and can almost get the saddle on.

    Still tough to put the money out. My SIL is apalled at the price- but I also heard people say it's tough to find a pony that size for a child DD's size- as I mentioned, she's very petite.

    We have him on trial at the farm. DH isn't much help. He keeps saying we can bring the pony here and turn him out all day- I asked "then how will she take lessons?" we don't have a ring or a stall for him or really know as much as we need to know. But again, I have a feeling board is going to be very cheap.
    Wouldn't you like to be a Susan, too?

  19. #19
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    If you get the pony, you must post pictures! I have never tried to buy a childrens' pony, but I hear that the good ones are hard to find and worth their weight in gold.
    Blogging about Barb horses at The Barb Wire and about the simple pleasures of less urban living at Nightlife. Saddle up and come along for the ride!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrsReber View Post
    We have him on trial at the farm. DH isn't much help. He keeps saying we can bring the pony here and turn him out all day- I asked "then how will she take lessons?" we don't have a ring or a stall for him or really know as much as we need to know. But again, I have a feeling board is going to be very cheap.
    I would strongly advise against turning him out at home for two reasons: you and your DH are not experienced horse people; and ponies turned out all the time on beautiful Virginia grass are prone to founder, and then he would be useless.

    He sounds like a lovely pony, and you are very fortunate to have him on a month-long trial period so you can really get to know him. But as someone already mentioned, please have a vet (not the current owner's vet) do a vet check and make sure he's UTD on Coggins, shots, etc.
    - KATE

  21. #21
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    They explained that he needs very little turnout because he'll get fat- got to watch that!

    He's got all his shots and she was bringing over some documentation for coggins. I don't know any vets around here- I may be able to find someone who can refer me (my mom's friend's sister lives in the area and she's into riding- I think she has horses)- or I'd use the vet that the owner of the farm uses (not the pony's owner).

    I was looking at the pictures of DD on Major and then DD on the other ponies she's been riding. It's amazing how much better she looks on this little guy. It's still tough to put out the money for him- seems like a lot to spend, even though I think he's a pretty good deal.

    Don't know if this link will work from equine.com- but here it is:

    http://www.equine.com/Horses/ad_deta...5a54bb8228&p=2


    And here's a picture:

    Last edited by MrsReber; 12-26-2006 at 06:14 AM.
    Wouldn't you like to be a Susan, too?

  22. #22
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    He's adorable, Susan! I hope it all works out.
    Blogging about Barb horses at The Barb Wire and about the simple pleasures of less urban living at Nightlife. Saddle up and come along for the ride!

  23. #23
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    He's a cute pony. My only comments on his conformation are that his neck ties in low and his shoulder is pretty upright, but that really shouldn't be a problem for what you need him for. I would be worried that he looks quite a bit over at the knees. Hard to really tell, though, the way he is parked out and on a slope in those pictures. Being over at the knee could cause him some soundness issues later on, particularly if you jump him, i think. Something to ask your vet about though, as i'm not that knowledgeable.

    You really need to start with something as sound as possible. Because they only go downhill from there. Mine was 100 percent sound when i bought him. Six months later, he started to cough a little. Now he's descending into full-blown heaves. It's a shame. He's such a nice horse, and would be worth a pretty penny if he were healthy.
    - KATE

  24. #24
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    We went riding today- the owner called the farm and asked if we had made up our minds yet. She offered to let us lease Major for a year for 1/3 of the purchase price. If we wanted to buy him at any time during the lease, she'll apply the money to the purchase price. We're getting board for $200/month. If we pay for 3 lessons a week, we can go for as many lessons as we like or supervised riding (not sure exactly what that means) each week.

    They called their vet and she's going to come on Tuesday. I told them I want the x-rays done, too. My stepmother said never to scrimp on that because it can cause great heartache down the road. So, I guess we'll have a leased pony for the year!

    Works out pretty good- I wanted to see Casey go to a few shows first to see if it was worth pursuing the whole riding deal or not. However, I have had at least 3 instructors and a few other riders tell me that they're amazed at Casey's natural ability. She needs work and instruction, but they all think she really has what it takes- not all of these people had any stake in her success (or our money), so I tend to believe them.

    This should be an interesting year!
    Wouldn't you like to be a Susan, too?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrsReber View Post

    I told them I want the x-rays done, too. My stepmother said never to scrimp on that because it can cause great heartache down the road.
    Smart, smart, smart. I once took a horse I was absolutely sure I wanted for a pre-purchase exam. Thought it would be a no-brainer as I'd been leasing him for a few months and he'd never taken a bad step. The vet trotted him on concrete (pretty much an acid-test) and lameness showed up. Blocking showed it to be in the fetlock. Xrays showed a joint alignment issue that would have led to complete breakdown as a riding horse in just a few years (this was a 5 y.o. horse). Horse went very lame a few months later and had to be completely retired from work.

    Much better to spend the few hundred $ on the vetting and Xrays up front.

    Michelle

  26. #26
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    Leasing is a WONDERFUL way to go when children are involved. Just make sure you get everything in writing and find out how expensive those three lessons a week are, and whether they expect you to insure the pony. Have fun with him!
    - KATE

  27. #27
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    The lease sounds like a wonderful arrangement, and I'm glad to hear you're getting the PPE. The vet (or any unbiased, experienced horseperson who has studied conformation) will be able to tell you whether Major is over at the knees -- it does appear so in the photos, but photos can be misleading -- and whether you should worry about it. Being over at the knees is considered a serious fault, but it often doesn't cause problems for "light work" or "medium work" horses. It can be caused by injury to the back of the knee but is more often congenital. Either way, it can make a horse more likely to stumble; it also tends to predispose the horse to tendon and ligament injuries. I don't mean to scare you, though -- no horse is perfect and it sounds like you have good people advising you about the quality of this one. Casey is a lucky girl!
    Blogging about Barb horses at The Barb Wire and about the simple pleasures of less urban living at Nightlife. Saddle up and come along for the ride!

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