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Owner wanting DD to ride. Usual agreement?
24

FirstNameSurname · 15/01/2019 21:44

DD has a pony and rides twice/three times a week for the yard owner. Pony is a step up for DD and keeps her from getting lazy riding her own ( rides hers 5 days a week). We have been happy with this set up. She'll occasionally ride for others if holiday/ill but every pony has benefited DD in some way or another.

New pony in the yard, owners are experienced but it's their DD first pony. The child is very young and on lead rein only. My DD has been asked to ride for them. Pony is small but DD is small enough to ride. DD would be doing all the things their DD isn't able to, so basically keep it jumping, hacking etc until child can. Pony is definitely a first young childs pony and so isnt a challenge for DD, won't teach her anything new and she would only be doing it as a favor as she knows no one else in the yard is small enough to ride. It will take up her limited time at the yard and take time away from her pony. Its also not just the riding. DD has always been taught to groom, feed and turn out every pony she rides so the time really adds up.

What is the usual agreement in this case? I feel this situation is different from the others as the owners will be the only ones really benefiting from it. DD is only 11 so can't paid. I've not grown up around horses so am a bit clueless with these types of situation. Yard owners suggested she could charge them for her time and "work" with DD then reduce our fees slightly. Others think it's just one of those things you do for others in a yard regardless of the time issues and the fact DD wouldn't be learning anything from it.

Owners have seen DD ride others and are getting impatient with my none committal answers.

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Bunnybigears · 15/01/2019 21:49

Why cant DD be paid? Obviously it wouldnt go through PAYE but I cant see why the owners cant hand her a tenner (whatever figure is appropriate) every week.

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mando12345 · 15/01/2019 21:51

It's not a done thing to exercise other people's horses on a yard! Unless your daughter would enjoy riding the pony just no, sorry she hasn't got time.

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RedDeadRoach · 15/01/2019 21:51

I don't understand why the pony needs to be kept ticking over with jumping etc if the child who owns the pony isn't capable of doing that sort of stuff. The pony won't care if he isn't jumping. Most ponies would rather be in the field eating grass. It sounds like your dd has enough to do so unless she really wants to do it I would say no. Exercising that pony isn't your dd's problem. If they want it exercised they can lunge it.

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mrslaughan · 15/01/2019 21:56

If she has time - fine - but she should be paid for her time.

Just adding my 2cents - I think the owners risk getting it too fit for what they want -- though it maybe to keep it moving? Stopping it get fat?
I don't love walkers when it comes to ponies..... but that is an option if there's one on the yard....

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FirstNameSurname · 15/01/2019 22:03

Owners have said they want their child to see DD riding so she's not scared and more likely to learn. I'm not sure they have really thought anything through prior to buying such a young child a pony and are now cobbling together a plan.

I just thought under 13 weren't allowed to be paid so didn't suggest it.

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Belenus · 15/01/2019 22:03

No, it's not the done thing. I have sat on the YO's ponies from time to time to help sort out an issue. I do this as a favour - I'm an adult but light enough to ride 12.2+. If I'm schooling something regularly I charge. If owners don't want to pay me, I don't ride it.

I will ride other people's horses for free if the horse is nice and I fancy a ride. But a regular commitment for the benefit of the owner - pay or it doesn't happen.

At the very least, since she is doing them a favour, they can hand the pony over tacked up and ready and she can hand it back when she dismounts. Though I'd check the tack before I got on it!

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ChakiraChakra · 15/01/2019 22:12

DD hasn't got the time by the sounds of it. She's doing hers 5 x a week and YOs 2-3 times, sounds like she's got more than enough on her plate; after all, she's a child at school, not a full time employed professional work rider!

I'd just tell the owners you're sorry but she hasn't got the time to take on riding another pony, and suggest that they get a professional or a sharer.

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Nelson251 · 15/01/2019 22:16

If they just want it jumped or taken on a fast hack every now and again can you tell them she doesn’t have regular time but could ride the pony occasionally during half terms etc?

It sounds like she doesn’t have time for an additional regular commitment but that would work IF your daughter wanted to of course.

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FirstNameSurname · 15/01/2019 22:32

DD is keen to as she's a people pleaser like me and doesn't want to upset anyone. She's interested in a "ooh look, new pony on the yard" type way but feels pressure to comply.

Thanks everyone, I'll stop putting conversation off and I'll offer an occasional, when it fits in with us but not regular thing. I know they won't find a small enough rider so feel bad but its made me see they don't need a rider, they just want one.

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NicoAndTheNiners · 15/01/2019 22:39

Doesn't matter what the owners want. Your dd is under no obligation to them and it's not her problem.

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maxelly · 15/01/2019 22:44

Hey don't feel bad, you are not the one who bought an expensive animal for a nervous child with no clear idea how you were going to exercise it, you are def not the U one here, and if the parents on the yard try to imply you are then they are being VVU ! You are def right to prioritise your DD's time with her own pony and ones that are improving her riding, as well as school work and all the other things DC have to do with their time.

BTW there are plenty of ways to exercise a small pony without needing to find a small rider, they can be walked in hand, led from a larger horse, lunged, long reined, free schooled or put on a horse walker. All of this takes time of course, or you need to pay someone else to do it for you, but should be factored into your decision making to get the pony in the first place. And as others have said, many horses and ponies are happy as larry only doing light work a few times a week, providing they have horsey company, plenty of turnout and aren't allowed to get too fat, like MrsLaughn said a child's pony is often best off not hard fit in any case as they then get too fizzy for the child to ride!

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ChakiraChakra · 16/01/2019 00:27

Doesn't matter what the owners want. Your dd is under no obligation to them and it's not her problem.

This is so on the mark it's worth repeating.

If YO were to suddenly build a new stable block and 20 more owners with 20 identikit, lead rein but can do more and needs to keep in practice/fitness type ponies, and they all wanted your daughter to ride their ponies, would you say yes to all of them because you're a people pleaser? Now imagine the exact same scenario, but instead of all arriving at once they're arriving one by one and you are asked and commit to the first one, then you "have" to do the second, then the third, and a year later daughter is riding 20 ponies, falling asleep in lessons at school, not getting homework done, falling behind, friends have stopped inviting her to birthday parties because she never comes, she's not doing the nice things with her own pony because she'd not got the time or energy, etc.

Now okay, I don't think twenty ponies are going to move onto your yard. But at some point, you're going to have to decide that one more is too many more. It really does sound as if this one is it. Think of it as an excellent opportunity to learn to put your own needs first and teach your daughter to do the same.

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lastqueenofscotland · 16/01/2019 11:38

She can be paid and it’s not normal.
I used to have two ex racehorses on a yard and as one of them was particularly institutionalised (ie slightly dangerous) I got asked a lot to sit on their horses that occasionally got strong out hacking or bucked a bit or whatever.
I didn’t want to so I said no. The end.

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CalamityJane10 · 16/01/2019 11:45

Agree with posters above, this is t your DD’s problem.

Better to let them find a DC who could ride it, but doesn’t have their own horse.

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JamAtkins · 16/01/2019 11:50

I used to do this as a teen and I was paid. Not sure why your dd shouldn’t be. If they don’t want to pay for the service an obvious solution would be to get another 11 year old without their own pony to ride as a mutually benificial arrangement.

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FluffMagnet · 16/01/2019 11:53

Not what the YO will want to hear, but if you talk directly to the pony's owners, suggest they find a nice riding school nearby that will accept the pony as a working livery. Pony gets exercised, child sees pony being ridden by others and child will also (hopefully) have plenty of lessons themselves and increase their confidence.

It baffles me why people buy ponies/horses that they or their children cannot handle or don't want to ride. Completely agree that it was their choice to buy said pony and move to your yard, not your daughter's choice, and so it is their responsibility to look after the pony. I also agree that if you are expecting someone to ride, the pony should be presented ready to ride at the agreed time, and dealt with after the ride, by the owners. I think it is lovely that your daughter is so conscientious about the welfare side, but when it is eating into her time with her own pony, she should not be asked to perform all the additional yard work. Be careful that a favour does not turn into free full livery for them!

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KingLooieCatz · 16/01/2019 11:54

Not remotely your problem, if it even is a problem. Far less your DDs problem.

If needs be, there will be legions of kids that don't have a pony of their own that would snap your hand off to exercise a well behaved pony a couple of times a week.

As it goes my friend can't ride her pony as often as she'd like and has asked me to exercise her when I can, which is not very often. If I have spare time I'll check with my friend and ride, if I don't, I won't.

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Booboostwo · 16/01/2019 21:15

If your DD wants to do this of course she should be paid. You could then arrange with her that the money she earns is put towards her pony’s costs or in a savings account.

It is not a bad idea to get a more competent rider to put a pony through its paces once a week, but your DD is not obliged to help if she doesn’t want to.

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Frouby · 18/01/2019 06:59

Bounce it back that dd would like to ride her pony more but can't fit leisure riding and lessins into it and also with the pony being for a small child she doesn't want to mess it up. So if they want to book an instructor to teach dd on the pony she will do that once a fortnight maybe.

Otherwise she isn't confident riding a young childs pony incase she sharpens it up too much.

And I can guarantee that in 12 months time when this child is off the leadrein and coping with all the tricks that a small pony learns to get away with whilst being ridden by small, wobbly, nervous kids your dd will get the blame. 'Pony didn't do this when we bought it, young first must have done something'.

So just on that basis I would be declining unless dd is taught on the pony and benefits in some way.

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NameChangerAmI · 25/01/2019 18:31

Don't feel bad. My DD (11) rides a friend's pony and 2/3 times a week and is paid for her time. She only mucks out once a week, too. My DD also has her own pony, and is a much better rider than the actual owner, so the person benefitting most from the arrangment intially is the owner, not my DD. Thus she pays my DD as she knows this.

They have apporached you/your DD, who already has her own pony/ It is they who are gaining NOT your DD.

Another factor is that your DD is a far better rider than their own DD, so really the ball is in your DD's court, not theirs, and they seem to want to get the pony ridden for free, plus are probably assuming she will do yard duties on the days she is riding. OP, they are taking the piss, massively.

I would only allow it if:

They paid her
They don't expect your DD to muck out
DD wanted to do it or
DD didn't have a pony of her own and was desperate for the opportunity to tride (obviously this doesn't apply in this case).

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Wonderblah · 25/01/2019 18:40

Does your DD have any friends who would love to accompany her riding, but don't have a pony? As a non pony owner I used to spend all day, as often as possible, at the local riding stable, mucking out and doing all the dogsbody jobs in exchange for very occasional free rides. Riding this pony sounds like it would be a pain for your DD, but if the owners put in a bit of effort I'm sure they could find someone suitable who would love the opportunity to ride regularly.

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FirstNameSurname · 27/01/2019 13:54

Unfortunately DD is one of 2 young riders in the yard and the other is a little lazy and not interested at all. Friends just havent been around a yard often enough for me to feel comfortable being responsible for them, none ride to DDs standard either unfortunately.

Just to update.
Turns out family were on a wait list for the yard for a while (most jump the queue by loaning/buying horses already in the yard) when going to the list YO agreed her DD would ride if needed, since then the DD has grown too big and the intended pony is smaller than first imagined. So YO cobbled together plans for my DD to ride instead.

I've since met owners who have seen my DD ride, seen her at a riding school she helps out at and are very complementary about her about her riding and support of little ones learning. They have now offered vouchers for a local tack shop for DD in return for DD riding. YO originally stressed to them that DD would be keen to ride for them and didn't inform them of all her commitments.

DD schedule has been discussed and they are flexible and happy for DD to tell them how many rides she has managed that month and pay accordingly. DD is happy with this. They have also asked for weekend rides as often as possible so their DD can see him being ridden. I have also included that if pony needs formal instruction from YO they need to pay for that and YO is happy to monitor DD/pony for any potential issues. YO DD is to take on the duty of tacking up/turning out while DD is riding her own.

Hopefully it will work out but I think they are relying on too many cogs for the plan to work.

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JellyMouldJnr · 20/02/2019 07:32

surely they could get a part loan/sharer arrangement?

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Fazackerley · 11/03/2019 05:55

That sounds like a pain in the arse for your dd. I think both the YO and the owners are CFs tbh.

At 11 she should be cracking on with her own riding not dealing with someone else's mistake!

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