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Ending a part loan
20

dogrilla · 24/08/2021 15:47

Have been part loaning for almost 2 years and feel like it's all got a bit stale. Horse is nice but due to an old injury is restricted in what he can do. I hack out on him which is nice enough but I don't feel like my riding is going anywhere. Have lessons but they are pretty low key. Jumping and sustained cantering are off the menu. See everyone else going off in the lorry for events and training and feel wistful (I used to compete a lot when I was younger). Wondering if share/loans are always a compromise. Should I just feel happy to have a horse? If you've ever been in a similar situation how did you know it was time to move on? The thought of not riding makes me feel panicky but equally the prospect of another winter of paying a hefty sum to muck out and walk around the lanes is not rocking my world.

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HighlandCowbag · 24/08/2021 21:12

It's always a compromise because you can't afford the ideal, which is either a lifestyle that allows you the time to have your own at the bottom of the garden, or the money for the perfect horse in full livery at a perfect yard.

Depends on you whether you are happier not paying to do what you are doing and not riding. A safe, sane horse for part loan will always be popular tho.

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Catscatsandmorecats · 25/08/2021 07:23

As someone who part loans out her pony when someone ends the part loan (they outgrow her) it's a pain to have to try and find someone new but I never think badly of them. Circumstances change, kids grow, the pony is my responsibility not theirs.

Why not look around to see what is available near you that might be more suitable as a part loan and keep riding your current loan in the meantime? That way you won't miss out on riding at all. Some riding centres do part loans and offer lessons and competitions, loads more people are having to part loan more competitive horses now. You'll definitely find something that works.

A part loan, for both parties, is always a compromise in one way or another. But it doesn't have to mean riding a horse that isn't suitable for you 🙂

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dogrilla · 25/08/2021 08:53

Thanks both - am scouring local horse FB pages and have messaged a few yards to see if anything ever comes up. Doesn't help that I'm terrible with any kind of break up and the horse's owner scares the shit out of me - even when I'm on his right side!!

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Catscatsandmorecats · 25/08/2021 09:02

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Leftbutcameback · 25/08/2021 09:05

I think your loan would be a good opportunity for someone else (a rider who is like me!) so think of it as moving on for you, and probably giving someone else a chance. Good luck!

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backinthebox · 25/08/2021 09:32

Yes, part loans are always a compromise. You don’t own the horse, and trust me - no matter how much you feel you are paying it is almost certain that the owner is paying more! If you damage the horse you are not stuck with an unrideable horse and vet bills. If it’s not working for you, the good thing about a part loan is you can just hand the horse back without any financial penalty. However, the freedom you have to just walk away is not an option for the owner, and that is why the owner is able to impose restrictions on what you can or can’t do, in the interest in their horse’s continued good health. And unless you are paying out a lot of money, I’m afraid every horse comes with a lot of mucking out in the winter (or wrestling with mud and feeding hay in the field with the endless frustration seeing them use it as a bed or toilet that comes with this if they live out all year.)

However, if a loan is not working for you, the chances are the owner will eventually pick up on this. I have had helpers move on for all manner of reasons, and the majority of them - the ones who have not moved on because they abused my generosity or acted inappropriately on my horses - are still good friends. One of my current helpers is off to university next month and we will be sorry to see her go. She always be free to come back for the odd ride in the holidays. Other helpers moved on because of a change in jobs, or moving to a different part of the country, or getting a horse of their own (which I consider a compliment as it means I’ve helped them gain the confidence to go on to be an owner.) My helpers have ridden my horses in national championships and at county shows, as well as at lessons, Pony Club and beginner events, beach and pub rides and horsey holidays, and I always try to include them in any outings we have where I can.

But I appreciate not every horse is right for every rider. If this loan is not working for you, don’t feel bad about looking for a new one. Be truthful but respectful about the limitations of the current loan to the owner, give them plenty of notice, and be helpful while you are working out your notice. There’s nothing to piss a horse owner off like someone just disappearing in the night - it happens a lot in the horse world for some reason, and it’s a very small world out there! And be realistic about what a loan can offer - I offer as much as I can to my helpers but make it absolutely clear me and my children need the horses for Pony Club and competition, and when training for competition fitness there will be certain amounts of fitness work I expect everyone to take part in, and I also make it plainly clear that a proportionate amount of stable work is expected too. We have a system that is far too specific and detailed to describe here, but it works for everyone and I’ve only lost 2 helpers in 15 years to midnight flits - both of them teenaged girls and both of them with no filter on what they posted about me and my horses on social media (top tip, don’t take a horse hunting if you’ve been specifically asked not, and then post about it on Instagram because the owner doesn’t have an Instagram account so you think she won’t see it. 🙄 And then when the owner calls you out on this fact, don’t get all your mates to post on your Instagram and Facebook about how unreasonable the owner is and how ‘you ride it so much better than she does anyway, babe.’ 🙄🙄🙄 That’s not going to help you keep the ride!)

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lastqueenofscotland · 25/08/2021 10:36

I have part loaned and currently have a loaner for my mare. I think it is inevitable that one side compromises… if not both!
My last share admittedly I didn’t pay for but we just hacked- he was older and found the school increasingly hard work and was semi retired. But he was an absolute gentleman and very sensible in traffic so it was a nice destress. My current sharer is a nice enough rider but can be nervous so I don’t let her hack my mare alone.

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maxelly · 25/08/2021 13:57

Like others have said, with sharing it's never going to be quite like owning, you are never going to have the freedom to hop in a lorry and go out to compete or for days out on a whim, like you have found you always have to be mindful of what the owner would want and be cautious. I'm currently borrowing a lovely older connie whilst my own mare is injured and where I would normally trust my own judgement on things like is this ground too hard to go for a blast on, can I stick some fences up in the school and have a jump round, with him I constantly second guess and usually end up saying 'no' just in case as if he went lame or got injured on my watch I'd feel awful. But on the flipside the costs and commitment are so much lower as a sharer so its swings and roundabouts really.

It does sound a bit as though this horse isn't really meeting your needs right now, if you are a competent experienced rider and are prepared to pay a contribution/do yard work there are more high powered/schoolmaster/competition types out there for part-loan, while you might not get to compete a lot or at all (when I have had sharers we have on occasion gone to a competition together, they do one class I do another which works great for showing/SJ/dressage, not so much for eventing! and I wouldn't want them taking horse out along without me), and still might have to do some basic hacking/fitness work you would probably get greater satisfaction if you were at least able to have meaningful lessons and feel some progression? I think if you are polite and honest with horse's owner he can't legitimately have any complaints, he probably won't be delighted as good reliable adult sharers are hard to come by, but life happens, things change....

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dogrilla · 25/08/2021 16:23

@backinthebox wow - major cheek to go hunting against your wishes and then post pics! You're right that the horse world is v small. I find it v gossipy too - queen bees at the yard talk about everyone behind their backs (also why I don't want to rock the boat).

Am happy not to compete, just want to feel like my riding is going somewhere @maxelly . Riding someone's schoolmaster type behind the scenes would be ideal scenario.

Pros - current yard is close, horse is sweet and it was a total salvation over lockdown. Cons - it's £200+ a month to basically ride round the block twice a week (and do yard chores).

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CountryCob · 26/08/2021 12:53

Yes I think it’s a compromise to loan and there are lots of compromises in owning also. Horses are as i realise you see very expensive and hard work. £200 a month for access to a horse is quite good. Alternative is to find somewhere for lessons but you may not find the horses you are looking for there either. Competing and transport is massive in terms of cost and commitment and quite a different thing, lots of people don’t manage it as the cost and commitment it takes just to look after them takes up everything they have spare….

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CountryCob · 26/08/2021 12:54

Sorry I see you aren’t so worried about competing, maybe look around for a sportier horse on loan with facilities to train at? That is likely to cost more though….

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maxelly · 26/08/2021 13:06

@CountryCob

Yes I think it’s a compromise to loan and there are lots of compromises in owning also. Horses are as i realise you see very expensive and hard work. £200 a month for access to a horse is quite good. Alternative is to find somewhere for lessons but you may not find the horses you are looking for there either. Competing and transport is massive in terms of cost and commitment and quite a different thing, lots of people don’t manage it as the cost and commitment it takes just to look after them takes up everything they have spare….

Interesting. Not disagreeing with you as costs vary up and down the country etc and I of course agree horses are really expensive! But I was thinking £200 a month (bearing in mind OP does stable duties as well) sounds quite pricey considering she can only do gentle hacks. Certainly people around here (expensive SE) do pay a lot more than that, £500 p/month is not unheard of Shock but that would be for a horse on full livery at a fancy yard with no mucking out or other jobs whatsoever, not even grooming if you don't want to, and the horse would be a nice type, riding 3/4 times a week with opportunities to jump/do fast hacking/have fairly high level lessons on for that kind of price. For a horse on DIY where you do all the jobs on 'your' days the normal deal would be more like sharer pays for shoes (so £60-£100 every 6-8 weeks) or even sharer pays nothing since the owner is just glad to have the jobs done especially in winter. So I actually think this owner is onto quite a good thing for OP to pay what sounds like half their livery bill plus does jobs (which would cost them plenty to get done by a freelance groom if OP wasn't there and they can't/don't want to do themselves) and exercises their horse for them to their stipulation into the bargain - and I think from the sounds of things the owner knows it's a pretty good deal hence OP worrying they'll be upset if she says she's giving up the share.

Either way OP even if you were technically 'winning' in financial terms which I'm not sure you are, the horse isn't meeting your needs so I think you are def doing the right thing by looking into other options!
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NotImeldaMarcos · 26/08/2021 13:59

£200 a month?!?! Jesus. I used to pay £10 a day for a loan pony on full livery.

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CountryCob · 26/08/2021 14:03

@maxelly that is interesting and I agree that things vary a lot. In the midlands livery yards are hard to get as lots of demand for housing and very pretty/ great hacking. A local DIY yard advertised as £90 a week and is full!!! Shoes are around £85 for a good set. I agree it is nice to have help but it is also nice to have access to a horse that is safe and sane without the commitment, so I think it’s a reasonable all round deal. I have only ever loaned my horse for one summer when daughter was very young to an extremely experienced and exceptionally skilled family who improved his jumping and then they had a full loan, paid all expenses and I rode once a week also for free.

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NCfortoday2021 · 26/08/2021 14:04

I paid less than £200 a month for a similar sounding horse in SE, he was maybe a bit more advanced as he could have done dressage comps if we had had access to a lorry as had experience of this. Couldn't jump though as retired from jumping. He was on full livery at a lovely yard with an indoor and outdoor. I just turned up, groomed and rode. Worked out under £200 including half shoes.

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NCfortoday2021 · 26/08/2021 14:05

Also depending on where you are, near me there are always horses needing more advanced loaners. Harder to find novice/intermediate ones.

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dogrilla · 26/08/2021 14:17

Re. Costs - it's £200 a month for two days a week. There's another sharer that does three days for more (think it's near £300). The horse's owner owns the yard so has no livery costs (except obviously feed, bedding, vet and farrier etc). He also teaches so gets more for lessons on top of loan. All the riding schools nearby went bust or switched to livery-only over lockdown so there's def a strong market for shares. Wondering if riding schools will open again in general or whether it's more trouble than it's worth with insurance etc these days.

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NCfortoday2021 · 26/08/2021 14:45

I don't have a loan at the moment but riding schools are absolutely swamped near me. A lot sold some of their horses (horses seem to have gone up in value considerably) so have fewer available. If I had the time I would switch back to sharing without doubt.

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LaPufalina · 27/08/2021 20:50

@NCfortoday2021

I don't have a loan at the moment but riding schools are absolutely swamped near me. A lot sold some of their horses (horses seem to have gone up in value considerably) so have fewer available. If I had the time I would switch back to sharing without doubt.

I got the BHS magazine today which said something similar and appealed for working liveries for riding schools
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NotMyCat · 02/09/2021 22:21

I had a part loan for 10 years with complete freedom so they are out there! As many days as I wanted and I could compete/travel etc (I knew the owner from years ago when I had my own horse so she knew I was sensible)
My loan only ended because she died Sad and I was as heartbroken as if she was mine

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