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Am I being taken for a mug here?

(36 Posts)
stopthelights Sun 10-Nov-13 18:24:53

My dd has ridden for several years. She is a competent rider but was getting bored with lessons. We asked at the stable she normally rides at if she could part loan a pony so she could learn some stable management and ride a bit more. The stable agreed we could have a pony on part loan. This would allow my daughter to look after the pony and ride on Sunday and one or two other evenings a week as long as the pony was not being used in lessons. The agreement was that we would pay £150 a month plus pay for insurance for the pony so there would be public liability insurance as the pony was being used outside of lessons. My dd would muck out, clean tack, do hay nets etc on the days she rode. We thought it was quite expensive but agreed.

Fast forward a few months and the pony needed a new turn out rug (we bought one), then a new stable rug (which I found on e-bay) but the last straw is my dd came home with two farriers' bills totalling £160 (£80 from September and £80 this month) which we are supposed to stump up for...

I am beginning to think I am being taken for an absolute mug here. I don't mind contributing to the cost of shoes but given that the pony is used in lessons and only ridden by my daughter a maximum of three times a week I think asking us to pay the full cost of shoes is a bit much. However, I am new to this game (and very naive too I can hear you say) so I am willing to be corrected but AIBU to think this is taking the mickey somewhat?

JumpingJackSprat Sun 10-Nov-13 18:27:12

Paying all of that you might as well have bought her own pony! ! Can you find a good share with a private owner?

stopthelights Sun 10-Nov-13 18:32:20

Thanks Jumping - that's exactly what I thought when dd came home with the 2 farrier's bills. The problem is dd absolutely adores this pony and he has given her a lot of confidence. They do get on very well together and I like the yard. I just don't like being taken for an idiot angry

JumpingJackSprat Sun 10-Nov-13 18:33:22

Did you have a contract when you took out the part loan specifying what you would be paying for?

cq Sun 10-Nov-13 18:35:59

I think you need to get some sort of agreement in writing for exactly what you are paying for. What if the pony gets sick and needs a vet? How much of that are you expected to pay? Sounds like they think you are a blank cheque.

I've just started sharing - I pay £200 a month and half her shoeing, end of. I can ride up to 4 times a week if I want (I don't have the time), all tack, rugs, food, vet bills and insurance are covered by the owner. I have my own 3rd party & accident insurance as I'm a member of the BHS. Horse is on full livery so all I have to do is turn up, brush off & tack up. Brush off & rug up after and either turn out or leave in stable depending on time of day. And leave all tack etc clean of course.

Basically the owner is happy the horse is getting more exercise, and she's getting help towards her bills. I'm happy as I get to ride a lovely horse with none of the ties or big bills. But we did set it all out in writing, along with agreed notice period, so that we know exactly where we stand.

Sorry to ramble but hope that helps give you another perspective. smile

Booboostoo Sun 10-Nov-13 18:37:05

This! You really need a contract detailing exactly what you are entitled to, what you are supposed to pay for and terms for ending the agreement.

stopthelights Sun 10-Nov-13 18:39:14

The yard owner was very funny about signing a contract but we agreed verbally that dd would ride Sunday and 1 or 2 other afternoons, she would continue to have lessons with the owner once a week (extra £18) and that she would muck out, clean tack, do hay nets, water buckets etc whenever she was at the yard. We took out insurance and agreed to pay £150 but this was a verbal contract. Now the owner seems to be changing the rules as she goes along.

I know someone who owns a pony at the same yard. The pony is on working livery but obviously the owner rides the pony a great deal more that my dd does her loan pony and she seems to pay the same.

stopthelights Sun 10-Nov-13 18:41:35

Thank you everyone. I am going to have to go back to the owner and insist that a contract is drawn up. Am I right in thinking I shouldn't have to foot the full bill for the shoes though given that the pony is mostly used in riding lessons (i.e. not by dd)?

Loshad Sun 10-Nov-13 18:46:23

I think it is quite common for loaners at riding schools to be asked to pay for shoes ( certainly the one near me that does loans expects it) however I do think both they, and your dds riding school are taking the piss big time. Cq yours is pretty expensive as well IMO. You are after all doing the owner a favour in terms of exercise, otherwise she would be adding considerably to her full livery bill.
Op seriously you could run your own pony for less than that, it might be easiest ( on your dd) to let the arrangement continue to run its course until you can reasonably say she has outgrown the pony ( hopefully for your sake quite soon grin and then look into buying your own! by that stage as well your dd will have even more stable management experience under her belt.
For comparison purposes ( mine are at home though) I spend around £1800/year on basic running costs for my TB event horse and my ds4s old little pony (ie feed, haylage, bedding, insurance, vets fees, they are barefoot and I trim them myself) so £150 all in per month for 2 horses. Competing and be registration fees push the coats into the stratosphere though grin

mrslaughan Sun 10-Nov-13 19:24:00

I wouldn't be surprised about half the shoeing cost, but all the shoeing cost when the pony is used for lessons is (I think) taking the piss.

If she didn't say about the shoes in the verbal contract., I would take the shoeing bill back to her, and say something along the lines of - "there seems to be some sort of mistake......but I feel to safeguard us both we should have a formal contract, and have something drawn up already to present her with.
The BHS have good templates.

Booboostoo Mon 11-Nov-13 08:02:38

A contract is a must because it clarifies all sorts of issues including costs. You must also have clear terms for cancelling the agreement otherwise she may ask you to contribute to costs at times when the pony cannot be ridden.

The agreement can be anything you like, but what you have in place so far sounds quite expensive so I wouldn't be adding the cost of shoes. Are there any other RS around you could go to for other options, or perhaps livery yards where someone is looking for a share for a pony?

OldRider Mon 11-Nov-13 16:40:48

Anyone else think the shoeing is expensive? I pay £60..the farrier does lots in the yard at the same time so no travelling costs to be added.. I think paying for rugs is really taking the pee, are they yours when the arrangement ends? I suspect the YO would like to keep the arrangrment so you are in a strong position to negotiate. Btw how much per hour is thay pony earning the YO when it is used in lessons?!! Good luck..we've all been there.

mrslaughan Mon 11-Nov-13 19:38:12

Yes very!........ - think they must be the new titanium ones they have developed in australia for the racing industry...............

VinoTime Mon 11-Nov-13 19:49:59

They're taking the piss.

How many other children ride the pony and how many lessons is it included in? Surely you should only be paying a percentage of the costs based on the above factors? Balls to paying it all! Jeez, they've got a nerve.

You'd be cheaper just buying your own at this rate.

Aeroaddict Mon 11-Nov-13 19:54:38

You are definitely being taken advantage of. I'd be very concerned about the unwillingness to have a written contract. It makes it far to easy for them to make it up as they go along.

Lexis1980 Tue 12-Nov-13 08:28:31

cq I was under the impression the BHS membership insurance doesn't cover you if you pay for your share. Just my understanding but please investigate.

I pay £70 per month for my share and ride once a week (weekends). I don't pay for anything else. I have my own insurance (Petplan do a policy for sharers)

Huskylover1969 Tue 12-Nov-13 10:25:00

We have our horse on loan and have a very detailed list of who pays what
We pay two front shoes every six weeks £60
Insurance £25 per month
Vaccinations £40 per year
Dentist £50 per year
Back treatment £40 per year
We have just bought her turn out rug
Costs nothing for her stables etc and we can ride her for up to 3 hrs a day depending on if she's been ridden already
Her owner is lovely we renew 6 monthly and have to give 2 weeks notice each way
She's up for sale and I'm just praying we can buy her

WillowKnicks Tue 12-Nov-13 12:30:51

I once really had the mick taken out of me with a pony I loaned from a riding school, so you have my sympathy!

I can't believe you're having to buy rugs, doesn't the pony already have rugs? I also think the shoes are expensive, I pay £65 including road studs & I pay more than some of my friends but I think my farrier is excellent.

If she won't commit to a contract, why not go down & ask the YO everything that you have to pay for & say you are writing everything down so you can remember, then at least YOU have it in writing & nothing else can be added.

mistlethrush Tue 12-Nov-13 12:35:46

A friend shares, pays £100 a month, shares cost of shoeing etc, and can ride as much as she wants...

dopeysheep Tue 12-Nov-13 15:21:30

Blimey for £150 a month plus shoes plus rugs your dd could have her own pony. And you could then get a sharer for that and cut down your bills even more!

I think the riding school sound very unscrupulous and taking massive advantage of the fact that they know how much your dd loves this pony. Very low of them imo.

dopeysheep Tue 12-Nov-13 15:23:00

Btw my farrier charges £75 for a set of shoes which is why my guy only has fronts!

dopeysheep Tue 12-Nov-13 15:25:34

I also agree that CQ's £200 a month sounds a lot for a share but if everyone is happy then it works.

Floralnomad Tue 12-Nov-13 16:37:34

cqs £200 doesn't sound expensive to me ,depending on where you are in the country full livery is very expensive . I'm in the SE and even basic full livery at a half decent yard is about £100+ per week .( note the half decent yard)

Lovecat Tue 12-Nov-13 17:27:02

This was now 10 years ago, but I 'shared' a riding school horse (in London, so not a cheap place for stabling/feed etc!) for £15 a week. On top of that I had to muck out & make up feeds (and bath her in the summer) on Sundays and give her a full groom 2 nights a week, plus clean her tack once a month. She was "mine" on those 2 nights once I'd groomed her, and I could do what I wanted with her - exercise her, do training, take her into a shared lesson that the instructor ran for owners & loaners on one night a week, pay for a separate private lesson or go for a hack - I'd pay half cost if I chose to have a lesson. Sunday all the sharers went for a hack together in the forest. Over Christmas there would be separate events for owners & loaners.

We were never asked to pay for feed, tack or shoes or anything beyond the £15 a week and the small amount of effort required as above, and it was a perfect beginning to owning a horse or pony.

I think this school is completely ripping you off, sorry sad

cq Tue 12-Nov-13 18:04:19

I'm happy with £200 a month. She's a lovely Irish TB, yard is in the SE and is a BHS training centre, 2 indoor schools, 4 outdoor schools, show jumps, cross country course and miles and miles of quiet hacking on country lanes and through woods. No way I could afford to own & run a horse of this standard in this yard on my own.

I will check out the details of my BHS insurance though - thanks for the heads up.

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