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Old 01-17-2012, 03:35 AM
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Finally a team!

Last week the breeder I got my shire horse from emailed me and said if I was interested in my geldings dam that he would make me a terriffic deal. Well, I agreed to go look at her and think about it. We went yesterday. I was pretty sure he couldn't make me an offer I couldn't refuse. I had looked into buying the mare a little over a year ago and he was asking $7000 and I just decided that even though that was a good deal I wasn't willing to pay that amount for another horse (especially considering I just keep horses for fun). I also made sure NOT to take the truck or trailer (the guys farm is almost 2 hours from here. So we went to look...

We got there and the breeder got the mare out and hitched her with another mare of his and he and my husband went for a drive down the road to see how the mare drives.

They got back and my husband said to me "we need to talk". I figured we were going to talk about what he thought and what we were willing to pay... nope. He said "he's gonna loan us his truck and trailer to take her home".

In the end we got...

1) a quality shire mare who is currently in foal to the best stud in the nation (yes she's pregnant and due in June)
2) the other mare that was driving with her and is an old pro at teaching green horses to drive in a team.
3) A set of 4 leather show harnesses and collars
4) 3 working harnesses and 2 collars
5) Bridles for every harness
6) a single training draft cart

Grand total... $3700

I do feel bad that the reason the breeder is having to cut back so much is because his wife is ill. I felt guilty driving home.

We agreed to $3700 for the one mare and the equipment, and he gave us the other mare because he can't keep all the horses and doesn't want the older mare to go somewhere that someone would work her to death or abuse her (she is old), and despite my better judgement I decided to take her home and give her an easy life of some light occasional driving to keep her in shape and give her a sense of purpose and pride. I originally told him no on the old mare, and he looked heartsick so after a day of consideration we have decided to go back and pick up Allie.

I always feel kind of bad when a good deal comes from these circumstances, but am glad to have my beautifully matched team (my gelding and his mom are almost identical and look great together).
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Old 01-17-2012, 04:03 AM
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Re: Finally a team!

I have a hard time with photos, but I'll get some tomorrow.

I really don't need so many horses, the foal we will sell after it weans (probably nest spring).

The foal will temporarely take us to 7 horses, so we currently have 6

3 shires
1 friesian
1 mustang
1 pinto

The old mare shouldn't be around more than 2 or 3 years. She is not only old for a shire (they live 18 to 20 average), she's old for any horse.... 26.

But she's in great shape and excellent health, and now she can retire to being my buddy and she can pull the tiny light training cart we have to my in-laws and back occasionally (only a mile away).

I am such a sucker My bleeding heart gets me in trouble, so I thought we were safe if I let my husband decide, but aparently he's got just a big bleeding heart as I do... lol
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Old 01-17-2012, 08:45 AM
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Re: Finally a team!

Congrats on all your new Shires including your upcoming foal! You did get a very good deal. I once had a Clydesdale although we actually rode her rather than drive her. I bought her for my ex husband because he just had to have a "big horse". She was very good natured, but also very green. He never bothered to work with her, and I was working 5 of my own at the time. After our divorce I sold her to a lady who had had a Belgain that she trail rode, but the horse had just died. Last I knew they were very happy together.
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:40 AM
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Re: Finally a team!

I had originally bought my gelding as a riding horse. I broke him to ride and I plan to break the younger mare to ride as well. I have some painful back problems, and draft horses are very comfy to ride. I can ride him all day with no pain. We also cut a lot of firewood and use him occasionally to drag logs up to level ground to be cut and loaded.
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Old 01-17-2012, 10:44 AM
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Re: Finally a team!

I like to be sure that horses are always broke to ride (even drafts), simply because if something happened and I had to part with them they have a better shot at not winding up going to slaughter if they have skills. Most people don't drive a lot, so driving horses should know how to ride as well.
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Old 01-17-2012, 12:23 PM
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Re: Finally a team!

I agree it's probably a good idea to break them to ride as well in order to give them the best chance of a good home if needed. And yes, they are comfy. One of my friends used to have a Percheron that was like sitting on a big, cushy sofa.
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Old 01-17-2012, 12:50 PM
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Re: Finally a team!

That is amazing I have always wanted horses and plan to get into that more when I get more land but that will be a bit for that
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Old 01-17-2012, 11:27 PM
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Re: Finally a team!

I bet those shires are like sitting on a couch to ride. You got a great deal.
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Old 01-18-2012, 01:53 AM
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Re: Finally a team!

They're like giant rocking chairs. So smooth and they cover so much ground so quickly and powerfully. I often convince people to climb up and ride him for at least a few minutes and learn first hand how painless it is to ride him. I could have gone with any type of gaited horse, but I love riding bareback (especially in the winter), and a draft is big and warm and sure footed.
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Old 01-18-2012, 02:05 AM
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Re: Finally a team!

The great thing about shires is that even though they are considered the biggest of the draft breeds, that is only reffering to height. More often than not a standard sized saddle with a slightly longer girth fits them just fine. They aren't as wide as belgians and percherons, just incredibly tall. It depends on the type of shire, but most of them these days are just not overly wide. They learn very precise foot movements, and I use my gelding to work cows sometimes. Granted he is not as quick as light horses, but he can still pivot and quickly cut off a cow. He can run all day, and long after a light horse is spent he is still going. The only light horse locally that has just as much endurance is our mustang, and she is lightening fast and can go forever (but I am almost crippled when I am done riding her). I love all horses, and I love our light horses, but all horse people have that breed they are a sucker for, and for me it's Shires
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