Friday, February 26, 2010

Wait....What did I just read?

Todays post took me a bit off guard. I was scanning through the Wyoming CL ads 
figuring with as many horses there are in WY, I should be able to find some good blog worthy ads. 
I was surprised as most of them were pretty decent sale ads. It was about 2:30 am when
I came across this one. 

I read it through once, nearly closed it out, and then went, wha...? 
Did I just read what I thought I just read? 


Ad Text: 

Pretty cremello gelding, 2 1/2 years old, registered with AQHA by a Doc's Hickory grandson.

He was startet last summer with some rides in the roundpen and a ride outside - he was very easy to work with. He has some more growing to do and his training under saddle is put on hold until spring. He is handled every day, though, and his ground manners are great. He will probably mature to 14.1 or 14.2 hands.

He will be great for trail, ranch or arena with a laid back personality and very willing attitude. Exceptional cow horse bloodlines; this guy should stand out in the pen.

We have more young horses for sale, please check them out at

Pedigree at

Located 60 miles east of Gillette, WY, 100 miles west of Rapid City, SD
What I nearly missed was the ad stating that the horse had been ridden at the tender age of a year and a half! Now, if this were a race horse, that would be the norm as they do break and start training yearlings. However, study after study, and horse after horse has started to prove that this method causes horses to break   down years before horses that aren't ridden as yearlings do.

As a growing horse, the knee bones do not fuse together until somewhere between two and four years old on average, and in some breeds not until five or six. Riding a horse at such a young age puts an incredible amount of stress on the horses legs - basically its like a toddler weight lifting his/her own body weight. Not only is the child NOT able to do the work for any length of time, his/her body will start to show major signs of stress, injury, and possibly things like fractures and other bone issues.

Its the same in horses - yet for some reason its more accepted to be able to ride a  horse that young. I couldn't believe that I had just read that ... and had to go back and read it two to three more times to make sure I was seeing it correctly.

Then I scrolled down to the picture of the horse in question...


.... and groaned loudly. (My cat even got disturbed. She stopped purring for a minute.)

Obligatory click on the link to the website, and quickly found the page for this same horse. Funny that they have so many
BETTER pictures of this same animal on the website, yet they can't pick one of THOSE to show the horse off with. They have to pick the one where the horse is covered in mud and looks like it hasn't seen a body brush in weeks. What about this one? In that one he looks great!

(Actually, most of the pics are of him covered in mud. Yes, I understand there's snow on the ground. Its still not that hard to pick up a curry and take 5 minutes to get the dried mud off of him. YOU claim he's easy to handle, so there is NO excuse for showing pictures of a muddy horse! There are plenty of people that can and DO groom their horses in winter.)

Now granted they do say they turned the horse back out to .... "finish growing". My question is why did they feel the need to get on his back if they knew he wasn't done growing? Again, we wouldn't ask our Kindergardners to do a full days hard labor, why is it ok to ask our young / baby horses to do the same as their fully grown cousins?

This ranch has the slick website, the 'right words', and seem very professional otherwise. However, I just cannot stomach the notion that they condoned the practice of riding a yealing. What they think helps 'break' the horse in, just causes more issues for that horse long term.

If you really want to play trainer with your yearling WITHOUT riding it, this is the way to do it.


Ad Text:
2008 APHA Dunalino Filly reg#955923
Only selling her because she needs to be started and with two kids, a full time job, and her being boarded over 30min away she is not getting the time she really needs. She has loaded in the trailer, Feet are trimmed regularly, Vaccinations are current, ties, started lunging (walk/trot only). She is turned out on 5ac with sandy washes, trees, other horses, and a burro. Nice calm level headed horse. Nothing has bothered her from day one. 100% sound no previous baby injuries, no bad habits.
Prospect: Team Roping, Cow Horse, Competative Trail, Western Riding
asking $2500obo
The pics are all of her...the top two are from the other day, bottom is the day she was born showing her dun stripe, the other is her a 4mos.
Ok, so for those that don't see why this ad is better... both ads are for yearling horses. Both ads have owners that say how broke their horses are/will be because they worked with them as yearlings.

The major major difference is the top ad... the trainer rode the horse way before the horse was ready for it. The bottom ad, all the owner did was throw a bareback pad on the filly's back to get her used to the feel of something saddle shaped being there. This owner also threw a saddle on her and lunged her a bit... something, if done in moderation, won't hurt the yearling very much at all.

This palomino is a little bit cuter anyways I think... at least this one isn't covered in MUD!


Thursday, February 25, 2010

New Way To Eat Horse Meat... Breading!

For my second post, I searched high and low, and while I found a few ads that were okay to use... nothing really struck me as GREAT. 

Until I saw this one listed in todays Las Vegas list. 


Ok Here's the Text: 

"Horse For Sale.

10 yr Red Chestnut Horse (Um, this is like saying "its wet rain". Chestnut IS red. Pick one color word or the other, but not both. Its redundant and annoying.)
Stocky, broad chested breed with well-muscled hindquarters and a compact body. (Grrr, can't help myself here. this describes him as a stock horse. If he's a stock horse, than chances are he's either a quarter horse, OR a breeding stock paint. If he's not registered, he's grade. Your breed description, frankly, sucks.)

Great for Riding, Strong and Handsome! (So what has he accomplished under saddle? Is he trained? How much training? Inquiring minds want to know!)

Sound and healthy. 

(Are you ready for it?)

Great for breading!!! "

Oh 'cause I know we all just LOVE horse meat with some BREADING on it! Better grab a chunk of it, get it rolled in some herbs, a little flour, salt and pepper, oh - can't forget the breading - and fry it up southern style! 


Rant aside, I know perfectly well that 'breading' is spelled correctly. But come on here. If it just doesn't look right to you, then look it up! There are online dictionaries that can help. Or get someone ELSE to proofread. Authors do it, journalists do it, and these are people that eat, breathe, and live the English language.

What really concerns me here is even though they can't get the correct word for it, the current owners obviously have him as a stud. And they've probably been creating MORE of him. However, unless you were able to translate Breading into Breeding, most non-horsey folk wouldn't realize that just by the ad. NOT ONCE does it say this is a stallion. Which brings me to another point: the possibility exists that some unknowing person might just go see him not realizing he's got boy bits. Said possible buyer tries him out, and he decides to have a 'stallion moment' and tries to bite said possible buyer. Possible buyer then freaks out, and sues owner for not telling her he's a stud. There are a million variations on this possible scenario. A Child. An older person. Etc. This is not just annoying, its possibly dangerous. 

OR How bout this: Possible buyer goes to see him realizes that he IS a stallion and wishes to breed to a mare. All fine and good until she actually goes to have him do the deed live cover, he decides to go berzerk and ravish the mare. Mare goes insane having squealing, biting, angry stallion hovering over her, and she can't get away, so she does what any self respecting mare does and kicks him .... or rather tries to kick and gets the inexperienced new owner right in the legs, causing serious damage as well as a trip to the er. 

These may seem like 'what if' situations and some might say they'll never happen. Really? Ok. And keep searching for the end of the rainbow folks...

Doesn't seem like just a simple typo anymore, does it?

Here he is: 


Overall, not a bad horse. He's actually rather cute. IMO though, the ONLY picture that was worth the trouble of posting was the one taken of his profile, commonly known as a conformation shot. (For those non-horsey folk, its a picture taken from of the side to show how he/she is put together, their build, their conformation.) His isn't that bad, though some would say his backs a bit long, and his neck is thick as well as his throat latch. He appears to be cow-hocked, but as he's a quarter horse or quarter horse type, this is pretty common. I'd love a better shot of his front legs, as in the one picture from the front he's standing weird, and its hard to see if he's straight legged or not. 

I will credit the owner this: you can see very easily that he had been bathed before these pictures were taken, you can still see the water on the mats. One point for the owner.

Overall, I'm sure he's a very sweet, kind, and wonderful horse. Aside from the bath, this owner is just NOT really putting his 'best hoof forward' here. Leave out the three pictures that don't do him justice, leave in the one side shot, and for goodness sakes, please make sure your text is correct! 

Oh on a side note, and a personal pet peeve of mine.... WHY OH WHY is he still a stallion? We don't need anymore foals from stallions and mares that have accomplished NOTHING but eat hay and poop! As a stallion what has he done? Is he broke? Is he cowwy? Does he do well on trails? Does he do ANYTHING except be a testosterone ridden pasture puff that makes more unwanted horses to feed into the slaughter industry? The ad sure doesn't tell us, so we, as potential buyers, are left guessing. 

Geld him, THEN try and sell him. Bet someone would just fall head over heels with him, or at least give him half a chance to live long enough to be trained decently by someone that's willing to give him some miles and give this guy a job. Without his boy bits, whatever wonderful qualities he has as a stallion will just get that much better as a gelding. 

Note to owner/seller: This is a classic case of 1) Not nearly enough information about the horse and 2) Not having someone else look over the ad for stupid errors like this.

Lets compare.

This ad, from the Dallas area is a wonderful example of how to do it right. There is actually so much information on the horse being offered for sale that I honestly could not think of a single question I'd not already had answered. They, quite simply, covered everything.

(Psst, by the way, remember CL doesn't charge anything. You can type in a freaking novel and they don't care!)


Ad Text: 

2007 AQHA sorrel filly with a beautiful flaxen mane and tail - she is super flashy. This girl is well bred - she has over $677,000 NCHA money earners on her papers! Freckles Playboy, Doc's Oak, Justa Swinging Peppy, Lynx Star Lady, & Tenino Badger just to name a few. 10 of the 14 horses on her papers have won money at NCHA, and likely with other programs, but this is the only one I have checked. You can see her pedigree at:

She is green broke, but she has never bucked, kicked, and she has no vices... the only reason she is green is because she does not know a whole lot. She does not neck rein, but she stops and turns on a dime. She will do anything you ask her to, she will cross a muddy creek full of water, she will go into a tank, she will load into a trailer, stand quietly tied up, etc. She has been ridden in the pasture, in the round pen, and near the street and has never spooked. My 16 year old nephew is currently riding her to put some miles on her, and she will be ridden daily until sold.

She is just a three year old, but I would trust my 4 year old son on her she is so sweet. These pictures were from last fall, but the only difference is her winter coat.

We are asking $800 for her, please call Cecil at xxx or email with any questions.

This is how you sell a horse folks. See the difference?



This little mare, while having somewhat of a thinner neck and more upright shoulder, SHOULD sell for what they are asking for. She's cute, well fed, shiny, obviously rides fine on trails, goes through water, etc, etc. What more could you ask for? Kudos to the owner for taking the time to think out how best to present her for sale. It really only takes a few minutes, swear!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Welcome to the blog!

Howdy everyone! Thanks for 'tuning in'. I am creating this blog for very selfish reasons - I continually and obsessively read Craigslist for their ads. Its entertainment, and while one can find some great deals on things like cars, furniture, and odd items, what really irks me is when I delve into the horses for sale ads.

I have a lifetime working with horses. I have honestly never sold a horse. However, I have spent my entire life watching those that buy and sell horses, and it never ceases to amaze me how often the truth and or just plain common sense gets lost in the process.

So, while CL is entertaining for sure, I'm going to highlight some of the best and worst of the ads I've come across - as well as commentary on the ad itself. The ads that will be showcased on here will be chosen for several reasons. Obvious stupidity, Lack of simple common sense, wording/spelling/grammar to make any good english teacher run screaming down the street in horror, and well, whatever darn reason I feel like posting it for. I don't plan to censor myself or anyone else, so feel free to comment as you wish.

My goal here is to evaluate these ads from a prospective buyers perspective. I know I will not manage to make a dent in the hundreds of ads that get posted daily, but If I can help out even just a few people manage to sell their horses and NOT have them go to the KB across the border, then ON TO THE SHOW!

For our very first post, lets play "Whats WRONG with this picture?"

She's a very nice AQHA mare, good weight, well groomed, lovely legs.. wait.. what is that on her hind leg? A cast? Nope, it's just a bandage for whatever reason...yet the owners decided it obviously wasn't WORTH MENTIONING in the text of the ad.. yet its ok to post the picture of the horse standing there with its leg bandaged.

2/23/10 post

Ad Text:
Nice well broke mare that is started on barrels and needs someone to finish her out. Just have too many to ride and don't have time to finish her out.
Ey Yi Yi.

Ok folks, A) its generally not a good idea to post pictures of your horse standing with their LEGS BANDAGED UP! Rather ruins the whole vet check idea, eh? B) Simply saying you don't have the time to 'finish her out' is NOT enough for me to even consider emailing you, much less dragging my butt out, wasting gas, and finding out that the horse is some no name wild 2 year old becuase, well, C) YOU didn't give enough information such as Age, Parents, Registry Info, Personality Info, Etc. Guess what folks, most normal everyday horse owners don't have the time to finish her out either!

Note to seller: Beyond the obvious horrible FAIL of trying to sell your mare that is obviously injured, you might also want to consider ... nah. I can't get past that enough to care who the mare is or want to know anything about her.

Now to compare, here is a lovely ad for a chestnut Saddlebred Gelding. While Saddlebreds aren't always my favorite breed, I do like to admire them from afar. This particular horse is presented well, in a safe looking pasture/pen with a buddy. Theres several different pictures, including a nice one from the side. I can't see his feet though, which concerns me somewhat as this breed is one that can be subjected to some nightmare shoeing issues. She's got some great information on him, bloodlines, what he's ok with doing, and a little bit about his personality. Just enough to entice ME into looking at him for sure.

Ad Text:
This is a great Registered American Saddlebred! Extremely nice 3 year old gelding /16.2 hands tall, red chestnut, very blond mane/tail, just gorgeous! He is trained to RIDE and DRIVE. Extremely gentle and easy to work with! Just So Worthy---118848 . His Dam is by CH Foxfire’s Prophet! $16,000.00 We will consider all offers! He is very sound with no problems! Please keep this outstanding colt in mind! Thank you.



Ok, so now that we've got the first post out of the way, hope you enjoyed it, comments are always welcome, and by all means, send me those ads!

If at all possible, take a screen shot of the ad, as it is very common for the ad to be taken down by CL if its particularly horrendous. My blog email is