Her question of "what made you interested in your first horse that led you to buying them in the first place?" is a good one. It's also relevant as I spend time watching my horses from the ground and in planning for baby there's a lot of thought around "why do I choose to do this, and what are my objectives?"
Separate question - but let's start with the real Blog Hop.
Prairie wasn't a total impulse buy, but she was the front runner from start to finish in my totally-rational-totally-justifiable search for a second horse. Mostly I was getting frustrated that Pia was still at Summer Camp, and I really (really, really) wanted something I could ride regularly again and enjoy. As casual perusing turned into obsessive shopping, Prairie continued to be a top contender, and in all honestly - it was her trot that had me glued in.
|I guess her canter was ok too (Pic from original ad)|
I couldn't find anything else that moved like Prair without jumping to a whole new price range (possible red flag), but I ascribed most of that price gap to her total lack of experience relative to her peers.
I have always been oddly okay with taking on horses that have zero experience, (in fact, aside from the original pony, all my horses have been total green beans). So I kept looking, I even dabbled in reaching out to some of the high end "factory farms" that pump out insanely expensive, insanely nice horses, but I kept coming back to that huge black mare with the big, floaty trot.
So we went to see her, I really liked her and after sitting on only two other horses, I decided to make an offer.
Then I got married two weeks later, found a new trailer that would fit her and the rest is history.
So the easy answer to why did I buy her? Her Trot. Turns out I like her personality a ton and there are plenty of other positive qualities, but really, her trot is what sold me.
If Prairie was "sort of" an impulse buy, Gus was that pack of gum you grab at the checkout stand cause you haven't tried "tooti-fruity-space-mint" before.
Gus was not in the plans, the budget (he might still not be in the budget) or frankly on my list of "horses to own in a lifetime." But he was in a tough spot, lame and seemed to be deteriorating daily.
We decided to take him on a "trial" of sorts in Feb of 2013 to give us time to suss out his medical issues and see if he would prove to be as bomb proof as I was hoping. He did, and we made enough progress on his sad feet and nutrition that The Boy talked me into moving forward with him.
What attracted me to Gus initially was his personality. He is a total clown and is very fun to interact with. He's playful and inquisitive, but also inherently extremely lazy which makes him a fun lesson horse you can trust with beginners or say... your husband.
It didn't hurt that Gus has literally every button installed and was perfectly happy to oblige irrational requests for leg yields, half passes, tempis, etc. He is just way too much fun to ride and very, very willing.
(crappy, but cute video of Gus from March 2013 about 6 weeks into working with him.)
We've struggled over the last year and a half to keep him consistently sound, and like many elder statesmen - there's a fine line between enough work to increase his mobility and fitness and too much work that overloads his old injuries... For the last 6 months he hasn't been getting quite as much exercise as I would like, but hopefully I'll be back into the saddle again shortly and we can pack some muscle back on the old man.