From Craigslist in Cincinnati (I wish I could take credit for this!)http://cincinnati.craigslist.org/rnr/1572465276.html and the text if the link expires....
I have been mulling over the Craigslist ads for some time now, keeping an eye out for a decent horse for my mom, and maybe to find someone to lease my older gelding. I have been apalled at some of the things I have seen on here. Those of you not of the equine community will read this and think I am bat-shit crazy, those of you posting the ads I am complaining about with call me a bitch, and those of you who are actually responsible with your horses, care about finding them good homes and care about buying quality stock will *sigh* and just nod your head sadly in agreement. First off: Quarter Horse Sellers-If you are selling a big, muscle-bound halter horse, include its HYPP status. No one wants to pay $10,000 for your N/H Impressive-bred piece of crap standing on double ott feet that could drop over dead a week after purchase. There is no such thing as an asymptomatic HYPP horse, just one that hasn't had a fit yet. Ask any responsible vet that is familiar with the condition. Or just do a little research. I have seen and heard of HYPP horses that have never shown symtoms drop over dead in their late teens. Don't believe me? There is one buried at a certian horse camp in Hocking Hills, I was there when it happened. The rider was nearly killed. Oh, and there is another one buried near 21 horse cave. Dropped over dead on the trail. And one at the bottom of Buckskin Falls. Stop selling them to people that don't know any better, or better yet stop breeding them all together. THIS IS GENETIC, stop breeding the positives and problem solved! And while I'm on the Quarter Horse subject, not everything is a barrel prospect. They need a certian conformation to successfully run barrels and not every horse has it. Second off:
Gaited horse people-I don't know why, but you seem to be the biggest offenders of this type, and it shames me as I am gaited horse person. Quit riding yearlings! No one with half a brain is going to buy a colt/filly started under saddle that young. Especially if you have posted pictures and written proof that some fat ass has been putting "tons" of trail miles on the poor thing. You are almost guaranteeing lameness at an early age, and a trip to the kill buyer with the state the horse market is in. And not everything is gaited, even if it is full-blooded and especially if not full blooded. Stop advertising horses that aren't gaited as gaited just because of the breed. Let us know if that TWH is pacey (and especially if it is trotty) before we drive 50 miles to try it out, because we will notice! Not all of us want to go through the trouble of corrective shoeing and retraining to fix the problem.
BYB'ers (Back Yard Breeders)-JUST STOP BREEDING!!! Any stallion that you are selling for under $5,000 is not stallion quality! Geld it, train it, hope it finds a good home. Having balls does not make it breeding quality. Same goes for the mares, it seems that any lame mare is a broodmare prospect, no matter what the conformation defects, genetic defects or how ugly. Have you been to a low-end auction lately? Some are turning away horses better that the ones you are trying to unload for $300 because there are so many the kill buyers can't take them all. Don't believe me? Head up to that shithole auction at Sugarcreek and take a look around. Check out the videos on YouTube about Sugarcreek while you're at it, or any of the other auctions just like it all over the nation. Just because you think your horse is sweet and cute and has pretty spots doesn't make it valuable to everyone else. Your horse will wind up on a double-decker headed for Canada. Then on a Frenchman's dinner plate.
And in general-Use common sense. Get your horse in good condition before you try to sell it. Some of these horses look like they are near-death. Wormer is cheap, use it. Feed your poor creature, it is hungry. If the horse has a big belly but you still see ribs and a backbone, that is not just how it is built or old age, IT HAS A PARASITE INFESTATION!!! Your vet would tell you that, if one had ever seen your horse in that condition. It is slowly starving to death. Horses do die from parasites. Google it. I know you have internet, you posted you poor looking horse on here. And while your at it, float their teeth, clean their sheaths, and have their feet trimmed. This is basic care. Hooked teeth, penile infections, slipper toes and quarter cracks are not normal. Not to the rest of the horse world at least. It is neglect, and it is illegal. You can go to jail for it.
Now, about those pictures...Why do you want to advertise your irresponsible parenting skills! Small children without helmets on young studs (or any horse for that matter) bareback is dangerous! I don't care how gentle you think they are, they are PREY ANIMALS! They have prey animal instincts that will never be bred or trained out of them. They can spook, bolt, rear or buck for no reason. It happens even to the best trained police horses, why do you think it will never happen with your untrained yearling? Ever hear the widely-publicized story about the 6 year old girl whose 20 year old dead-broke horse who the family had from birth spooked at a barn cat it had seen every day for years and reared up, flipped, and killed the girl? In front of her mother, who had the horse on a lead. And she was wearing a helmet. Didn't matter, she is dead. Google child killed by horse. There are hundreds of stories just like it. I'm not saying children shouldn't ride, I think it is great. Just be responsible about it.
And those ads...Learn how to spell. Learn proper grammer. Learn proper capitalization. If this is beyond you, write the ad in Word and use the spell-checker, then cut and paste. Don't post an ad that looks like a 12 year old wrote it. And if you are 12, get an adult to help. Also, it is an ad, not a text message. Make it presentable, for God's sake. Posting a poorly written and punctuated ads makes you look like an illiterate dumb-ass. It doesn't make people want to but your horse, unless it's out of pity. If you need a good example, check out the ads for the Quarter Horses in Monroe posted by whom I suspect is a certian preacher from a certian non-denominational church with a certian statue facing a certian highway. They are the big muscle-bound horses QH's with tiny 00 feet and no HYPP status listed. THEY write decent ads (and post nice pictures by the way).
Finally, just be honest. If you love your horse as much as you always say you do in those ads, give it a fair shot at a decent home by disclosing any behavioral problems, medical problems or vices so people who are actually willing to take those problems on are responding. If the horse is lame just say so. There are people willing to take lame horses, I have placed several myself. Be honest about any vices. We can tell if it is a cribber, especially when the front teeth are worn to the gum and your fence is held together with duct tape. We will know the toothless old sway-back isn't 8 years old, and we will know the sweet mare doesn't shoe well when she tries to kick our head off for touching her hock. Be honest about the horse's training level. Be honest about the medical history. We WILL find out. Most of us with experience will find out just by looking at the animal. Vices, illnessess and lameness do not rule a horse out of a good home. Some people just want pasture ornaments, or something safe for the kids and are usually more than happy to take on a horse that would otherwise wind up in the kill pen. We do have hearts.
And last off...Kudos to those of you that are posting good ads and being honest about what you have to offer! Kudos to those of you responsibly selling well-kept animals and doing your part to see they find good homes! Keep up the good work, keep setting the good example! I'm off my soapbox now...