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mehpenn

Old For A Horse?

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I was talking with a customer today about horses and such and they told me they had their 16 year old horse on senior feed and supplements because it's "so old".... um...???

I don't consider 16 old... My mare is 17 and FAR from old in my book. Now, we do have a 32 year old that I consider old, but even then she's not on any special feed or supplements.

What would you consider "old" in a horse?

I'm thinking anything over 23 or 24... depending on their health and physical ability.

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20 is older. I personally would not buy a horse over 10, but that is just me. My uncle had a horse that died a few years ago. She was 36. Now that is an old horse.

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I would consider anything over 25 old. My friends have a 23 year old barrel horse that there 6 year old son is learning barrels on. Another friends horse is 40-now he is really, really old and my mom's horse is 33 and senile...

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Mine is 22 and is not on any supplements. He is very healthy and I work him hard.

It really depends on the horse's history. Some horses age way early and some don't.

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Well, we dont have a horse over 10. And I would never buy (or be able to afford) a horse over 5 years old. I'm sure "senior supplements" have ingredients in them that are just for keeping weight on the horses and such...it doesn't mean it has to be fed to an "old" horse.

Old is stiff knees, visible hip bones, losing weight and years. A horse can be old at 19. It depends on the horse.

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we've got a forty-something horse here...he's not on anything supplement-wise. Looks GREAT. Acts like a kid, he's basically our mascot. He was working and doing rides up until about 2years ago, when he started taking his riders out to sea and not going back on land without a LOT of effort....he was asking for retirement! lol

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25+ is old to me.

I've seen a very healthy 26 year old still running 3D times.

Geez... Look at HotShot, he's 21! lol..

I do agree it depends on the horse... But I consider 25+ old... But I won't buy a horse that's over 12, just cause there is really no resale value after 15 (in my opinion).

We gave away our 17 y.o. TB mare because I thought she was too old to sell. lol.

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Horses like people all age differently, so hard hard to pin down a certain age that is old. I lost a horse at age 28, her last year she really showed her age, but before that she looked & acted young. PD

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Jake is 17 and does not look or act a day over 10. I have always owned him and he has always been kept up to date on everything.

With our advancements in vet care and feeding knowledge I think our horses live much longer and are more useful later in life than ever before.

JakesMom

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I think 16 is like..what...say late 50's for a human...I reckon.

Not old enough for the AARP card...but old enough to have your birthday year included in those life insurance commercials...if you are between_____ and _____ you are eligbile......

People in their 50's start taking meds they never thought they needed before and worry about osteoporosis and stuff.....

So.....( man I was no help at all, huh?) Sheesh! [Duh]

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depends on the condition of the horse and the history of the horse... my best friends barn has a horse that is 17 there, and he looks like a 30 year old. he is on supplements etc, but he has had a very hard life of bad owners....

we have a 37 year old 17.1 hh tennesse walking horse/hanovarian gelding here that is a retired city police horse. he still runs with the herd of 10 horses and fights for his food!.. he looks great all the time... and my dads rope horse (we just reliezed last month when he hurt him self.) that he is 23 years old! good owners can make a horse live a long time!

i would consider old 25+ but i will never purcahse a horse over the age of 15... based on the style of riding that i do (roping/barrelracing)

Edited by Walking On Acid

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25 is the gray line for me. The last horse we bought for barrels was 17 and we thought he was old then. He ran and won until he was 27, went blind at 28 was ridden til just a few months before being put down at 35.

My mom's current gelding is 28 and still going strong. He could still run a 20 second pole run if my mom was still competing.

I do think the particular horse plays in some though. Ed at 35 looked better than Quincy does at 28. We start senior feed when they show that they are aging. The pops, cracks and signs of arthritis. They were getting glucosamine as a supplement anyways since they were performance horses.

Currently I have a 2 coming 3 year olds, and a 7 year old. They won't be old for a loooonnnnnggggg time.

Wanted to add that the tenses may be off, the passing of Ed is still fresh and he was my soulmate horse so him being gone still doesn't compute well.

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Leo was 38 and i still rode/showed him.. He LOVED being in workhe hated siting in a field.. Id have to give him all kinds of special feed to keep weight on him when not in use but if i was riding him he didnt get anything special...

I now have a 20 year old POA gelding hes skinny but was when i got him lil over 3 weeks ago hes not on anything real special only to put weight on...

Im MY book 30 is old any thing before that is still in there prime just depends on the horse

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I would have to agree with Hawk.

I don't even consider my horse to be adult until about 10, and then it is condition and use that keeps them young. My wifes 31 yr old Arab/Quarter, is still doing all the steep trails and working well. ( Of course my wife only weighs about 112!!) Me on the other foot, weeellll.... that is a sore subject! ( Think about 180!!!) My mare "Siseley", is only 9 yrs old, and only 14.2, with a very sturdy set of legs, so we work together well.

Steve

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My Lightning is 26 and just started losing a little weight this year. She's still going strong other than that. To ride her you sure wouldn't know how old she is. I just put her on senior feed this year to keep her weight up. 16 is only old if the horse wasn't taken care of and is having "old age" problems.

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16 is not old. I personally wont buy a horse that old unless its going to be a trail horse or something like that.

My mare died at 26 and thats pretty old for the horses in my area (well thats what the vet said). She looks like she was 10 and the only reason she died was because she had a twisted intestane. Now if that hadnt happened she would still be around to take care of her 17month old colt lol. I know shes was on the older side to have a foal but the vet said she was perfectly healthy and she was still going in season, he said it was perfectly fine to breed her once and he came out every 2-3 months to check on her. She carried and foaled beautifully, but that dang twisted intestane is what stoped her in her tracks.

I personally think it was a blessing for me, even though I miss her something aweful, she took me through my teenage years until I hit 20 then passed right before I hit 21. Now im going on 22 and her son is taking the place and he will be with me forever.

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I have a 19yr TB who looks OLD. He is skinny and is a hard keeper. We are starting him and my Paso Mare on supplements this winter.

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I have no definite idea how old my horse is, but he's definitely middle teens. I don't know if I'll ever be able to call him old or think of him as slowing down, lol. We've hit a rough patch as far as health goes, but I hope we're gonna get through this.

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It's funny hearing so many people say they won't buy a horse over 10.... for me, I'd PREFER not to buy a horse UNDER 10.... I guess I like the more mature horses, in my mind they must have more miles and more training. LOL

I know, I know... it's only in my mind. LOL.

I seriously don't see my Kelly as old... I still see her as she was 10 years ago. Health wise, looks wise, actions wise.. she's the same.

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My boy is about 16, give or take a few years. He was diagnosed with navicular pain at 10 and navicular disease at 12. I still rode and showed him actively after that with bar shoes, pads, the occasional dose of bute, and a series of Legend.

Now though, he's semi-retired, even though he is still way too young for that! The thing is, he doesn't know how to take it easy. I can't go on a leisurely trail ride without him wanting to race and jig.

He was always a real easy keeper until last winter. Now he is on senior feed (Nutrena, which he loves), vegetable oil and beet pulp in addition to increased hay rations to keep the weight on. His teeth were done last spring, and will be done again this spring.

On the other side of things, I once upgraded a 29 year old Morgan mare. She nearly died the winter before (this was in Alaska) because her "owners" stuck her in a field with a bunch of horses and round bales. They said she looked fine when the put the blanked on her in the fall, and was skin and bones when they took it off the next spring. That mare had been around the same area for a long time, and she had been on grain-only for years! Sheesh. But she gained the weight back, and lived out a happy retirement as a companion horse, getting hand-walked on trail rides and all the hay pellets, senior feed and carrots a horse could ask for. She died with the same feisty, flirty attitude she was known for at 31.

Another horse, that I bought when he was 19 was in great shape up until about a week before he died at 23. He was my 4-H everything horse as a youth, and stayed fat and sound year long. He developed some sort of mystery-disease (tumor? autoimmune?) and deteriorated really fast one December. We had him euthanized and buried on the property. If it wasn't for that anomaly, I have no doubt he could have lived another 10 years.

To answer your question, I believe that 0-5 is the horse's childhood. 5-15 is their prime. 15-20 is a mature horse. 20-25 is a senior. And 25+ are the golden years; may they live long enough to enjoy them.

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I would definitatly agree that it depends on the horse. My old horse is only 21, but he has really bad arthritis in his stifles and terrible foot issues, part of which is due to being ridden at a very young age. He hasnt been regullarly sound in the 6 years ive known him. However I ride another horse that is 22/23 and she runs every chance she gets. (Sometimes whether you want her to or not, which is a whole different issue)

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Life makes anything old...the type of life and care...People used to die at 50 years old but now the "new" 50 is 75...This also goes for horses..about 30 years ago most horses died at the age of 22 until nutrition and care interviened to raise that age level to 30 years old..

I have a 35 year old that can run circles around an 18 year old Draft cross..Could be breeding even..One is an Arab and one is part Shire and TWH. When horses are started too early and used up too early they've worn themselves out and act old..yet you can take that same horse that was used lightly and that horse could stay sound forever...You can do the reverse and get the same thing..It depends really on the individual...

I've also know horses with bad teeth from birth just like with people. Enamal is what supports a horses teeth just like with humans. Grazers will wear their fronts down where as a dry lot horse tends to need their teeth done more often..especially when their fronts are too long..yet if you graze a horse with lots of vocanic ash in the soil (Arizonia, New Mexico, some places in California and even here) the molars will be gone before they are even 25 years old.. Kinda like horses that live in sandy areas are more prone to need their guts flushed for sand. :happy0203:

So I'd have to say lifes challenges and environment is most of the cause of being old...and then some people are too cheap to get their horses proper dental care and its just "easier" to feed mush...then they wonder why they colic.... [Duh]

AD

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No i dont consider that old, 25 and up is getting old. My old roping horse was 33 before i retired him and he was 36 when he died...now that to me is old!

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One of the major things that has improved the longevity of horses is routine worming. Years ago the vet came maybe once a year, stuck a tube down your horse's nose and pumped a load of toxic milky looking stuff down the tube. Your horse didn't feel good for a couple of days and you would find the manure full of multi-colored dead worms for days after. We wormed our horses 2x per year. The majority of people that lived in my town, didn't worm their horses at all. Our Vet also filed their teeth once a year (also unusual).

Colic, twisted gut, founder, ulceration and erosion in the stomach & intestines from bot larva and poor general health from massive internal parasite load was the norm. A horse was so damaged internally, that eighteen was considered an extremely old horse. Our mare Piper was a happy, healthy 25 year old when my Aunt G gave her to my cousins. With in two years, she couldn't keep on weight, and was sold to slaughter. During that time they never had her wormed or had her teeth floated by a vet.

Every time I push that tube of wormer in my horse's mouth, I know that I'm extending the life of my horse and saving them from internal damage. It makes me feel good, even when one of the boogers wipes the stuff off on my sleeve. [ROTFL]

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