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Horse experience

Share a little about your horse experiences.

I have always loved horses and used to ride quite a bit when I was younger up until several years back. It has been a while for me , but I am geting back into everything slowly. This past year we got two horses one is a paint who is 15 hands and the other is a bay and he is about the same height although alot smaller built horse than the paint. The bay was a cutting horse and is a little much for me to ride and the paint is slower and easier going although he does get ill sometimes. He does have quite the attitude. LOL.. He is a character though and may be just a little overweight. I would rather just walk along and not run like everyone that rides with us so I think Merlin is going to be the perfect horse for me. We are not a non profit organization , we just love horses and want to offer some of them a good home if we are able to.

Merlin's Magic

Merlin is a 17 year old thoroughbred that has had to be retired due to injury in his pastern joint. He did the children's hunters and Big Eq classes a couple of years ago, then when his owner went to college he went with her to school in FL He did the Adult Amateurs 18-35 and also the Adult EQ He also did the level 3 jumpers and has shown all over from NY to FL to the Hamptons He did very well in the equitation classes and has loved going to shows :) He has many year end awards from Fl He is not registered with the jockey club as he never raced but he is registered with the USEF.

Merlin's story : In April 2006 the owner went to get him out of the paddock (he was turned out with two other horses who beat on him hes a whimp )and his leg near his pastern was swollen , it was in a really strange place (if you look at the photo of him grazing, carefully you will see in his pastern that it is large) She called the vet so they could sonogram it and they said he had torn all the ligaments in his pastern joint and he would need 4 months of stall rest. 2 months later she went by to check on him he had him turned out with the other horses.They left her barn immediately.

Needless to say it never heeled properly and the joints ended up fusing and the bone was touching bone.In October of 2006 he started to not be able to put any weight on the leg and he just seemed to be in so much pain So She had the vet come out again to take x rays etc.. He told her there was no cartilage in the pastern and they could do surgery that would cost over $15,000 and he would be in the clinic for over a year and wasn't even sure if he would be pasture sound . The vet thought the best bet was for him to be put down. The owner agreed and the day before he was to be put down he was fine and up walking around happier then ever( he must have heard because , ever since then there has been no problem, ) She was able to start riding him last year and he was going great, a little full of himself but that was to be expected due to having over a year off (She also had him on cosequin and bute so that was helping keep him sound )

Now again a year later he hasn't been ridden at all except once a couple of weeks ago. She got on and walked him did on little trot up the long side of the ring he seemed ok a little short up front but he hasn't been worked , he just needs time to be worked again.

She has recommended to me to get him sound in riding again to start out the first week with a week of walking Second week trotting for like 5 mins in the beginning of the week and then 10 mins by the end of the week 3rd week keep trotting and keep adding more time on as you go and then canter at end of 3rd week and normal work on the 4th week We will see how he does and if he stays sound .

Merlin is going to be a part of the family here in North Alabama , once he gets here. I believe with his easy going spirit he will be a great friend to my sister who has asperger's syndrome, which is a form of autism. These retired horses do great with children and adults with different forms of disabilities. Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. Autism is defined by a certain set of behaviors and it affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. There is no known single cause for autism. People with autism or special needs often have a hard time communicating or expressing themselves. This is where a horse can help them... Its a proven scientific fact that horses have a calming effect on people and they can form a special and unique bond with a person. They can improve self esteem , confidence and communication skills.

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