In every rider’s life, a little rain must fall. Inevitably we may find our horse injured and unable to perform the tasks asked of him. Many riders and owners are familiar with short term injuries and even some long ones. Yet when a horse owner is faced with a career-ending or even completely unrideable, they can be faced with some tough decisions.
Due to the recent problems in the economy, it makes decisions about a horse’s future even more difficult. People are now giving horses away, even sound ones, as they can no longer afford to pay for even the most minimal care.
For those that decide to keep their horses and try to get them through recovery and rehabilitation, it can be just as difficult as giving a horse away. Doubt and hope and uncertainty all go hand in hand, as weeks stretch into months, and even sometimes into years. Riders have remarked that it is the rollercoaster of pouring thousands of dollars and hours of time that is the hardest part. Even going to the barn becomes unpleasant, never knowing whether it will be a good or bad day.
The most important part of any major decisions is to put your welfare and that of your horse at the top of the list. Having horses means financial and time sacrifices, but when the burden becomes too great then decisions must be made.
We all try to do the best we can for our horses, and as compassionate people that is all we can do.