Readers, i have some tough decisions to make. It was only recently i wrote a post about a friend who lost her beautiful mare in a freak accident. Well that same friend, who has always admired my little wild stallion, now wants to buy him. Do i sell him? The pro's and con's have been playing through my head for days.
For a little while now, i have been playing with the idea of actually keeping Matai, the wild stallion for me. I've never advertised him for sale, or even thought about selling him before.I absolutely adore that horse, one of the few, that will always have very, very special place in my heart. Every time i ride him, I'm blown away with his willing attitude, trainablity, and the sense of safety you get sitting on his back, like hes genuinely trying to take care of you. he has beautiful paces as well. Everyone i talked to or rode with in the last few weeks, encouraged me to keep him, saying he was far to special to sell, including the girl who now wants to buy him.
I still had in the back of mind the idea of turning him into a little dressage pocket rocket. a dream you might say, of going from the wild to the the top level of the sport, with one little brown stallion. With his great attitude it actually wouldn't be impossible. He would never be a superstar Olympic horse, but he would easily be trained to do all the tricks. On the flip side, all my other horses, are not really appropriate for anyone else to ride, too big and powerful (16hh &17hh warmblood), for my mid fifties mother returning to riding, and my occasional rider boyfriend, to be safe riding. Where as i can see both mum and boyfriend being well taken care of on the little wild stallion. It is always good to have one horse on the property that everyone can ride...
But, horse riding is also my business, and i do have to make money. I cant keep them all, and i definitely do not have enough hours in the day to ride and train them all. So i would always struggle to find the time to really train the little stallion to his full potential. time is money too, and he would always have to come after the two competition horses and clients horses. Where as the friend, has no other horses, except her daughter's welsh pony... Selling him would also give me breathing space, to be able to finally get around to working with the other wild horse, Fern, and mean i would have a little money so i don't have to take on any more horses for other people, for a little while at least.
So back to horses being my means of bread and butter, i also truly love and care all the animals own, and even if i didn't, i would still do my best to ensure they only go to good homes. If i sold him, this would be the best home he could ever hope to end up in. He would be cherished and loved, she would have the time to train him, and I'm sure he would go on to be ridden by her daughters when they are old enough. Matai is fantastic around children, happily standing still while they climb all over him, he would love being a kids pony, and is definitely more than capable of fulfilling his potential owners dressage ambitions. This would be a way for me to ensure his future, it would be horrible if i had to sell him somewhere down the line, and couldn't guarantee him as good a home as i could give him now. I'm pretty sure he would never be sold again, if this girl brought him, and it would be a loving home forever.
Another on the positive side of selling him, is that i would still get to see him all the time. he would never be far away, if she wanted help or advice, or just to go for a ride like we usually do, i would be just down the road so to speak. Best of both worlds i would still see my lovely little boy, but without the cost of keeping him, or the guilt when i didn't have time to ride him. I would also see him him in the hands of a rider, who is talented in her own right, and a delicate, sensitive and patient rider, she would be more than capable of training him, riding and handling him, in a way that would carry on and improve the work i have already done. This is not something i say lightly or believe of other horse riders.
Part of me is selfish though. I feel i would be handing over the reins, just as the all the work i have put in, is starting to come together nicely, just as people stop rolling their eyes and give compliments when the see me riding my little brown stallion. All the hard slog, believing in and not giving up when he was a skinny, scrawny, unremarkable, underwhelming hairy thing, that stepped off the back of a cattle truck. Now when it gets to the fun part, i don't get to enjoy it, somebody else does. Part of it is also giving up the ' wild stallion' day dream i have been entertaining since he arrived. He would go on to be someone elses wild gelding. Not that is such a horrible thing i guess.
decisions, decisions. I haven't decided what to do yet. but if it all works out i will probably sell him, because it is the logical choice, if not what my heart wants. It is hard though, all that work to hand over now, what about Sonny, who will become his new mentor without Matai to baby sit him. The Wild horse Project also just wont be the same though, without one little wild stallion.