Sunday, February 24, 2013

Rehoming Faran

Okay, I have to write this before I change my mind or talk myself out of it..... I think it's time to find Faran a new home.  I don't like to write about negative stuff on the blog, so this probably feels like it's coming out of the blue for you guys, but I promise it isn't.  I feel uncomfortable even writing about this because I got slammed by someone for selling my goats (because I couldn't afford to take care of them anymore due to my husband's injury and job loss), but I have to tell you guys.

I mentioned that Faran and I do not get along recently, but I've been too busy to sit and write a post explaining why.  The main reason is because our personalities just don't mesh at all.  If you've been around horses long I'm sure you've met a horse before that you just didn't get along well with.  I'm a very unpredictable, fast moving, bouncing all over the place kind of person and Faran is a very reactive (more like downright explosive) and sensitive.  So just walking around him, reaching up to pull my hair out of my eyes, tripping over my own feet (happens more than you would believe lol) all sets him off.  And when I say sets him off I mean he EXPLODES!!!  I was going to get a video to show you, but the weather has been atrocious.  I can stand eight feet away from him and hop up and down (not even waving my arms) and he will spook and gallop away.  He moves so quickly we call it teleporting... I'm dead serious.

The other thing that I never mentioned is that Faran kicked me in the head.... it wasn't his fault.  I was medicating a sore and I should have been facing the other way.  He reached up to kick flies and when he brought his hoof back down he got me square in the head.  Yeah I know I should have been more careful, but I'm used to working with Chrome (yes I'm aware he's a horse and could hurt me too).  I didn't blame him for that happening (oh and I'm fine, didn't have to go to the ER or anything, just had some swelling), but it has caused me to not trust him anymore....  Faran is easily 1600lbs of complete and total scaredy cat and when something scares him he will run away even if you are between him and freedom.... he will just plow right over you. 

I thought we could make a difference and at first we did.  He responds beautifully to clicker training and was getting a lot more confident, but the explosiveness has never gone away no matter how much we worked with him.  I don't know if it's from when he was abused or if he's always had an explosive personality.  The problem is that he needs consistent work every single day and we just don't have the time.  I'm too afraid (and I hate to admit that) to work with him by myself and my husband is too busy with work and building our new home.  It's only been a few weeks since we've been too busy to mess with him and he has totally reverted back to his previous scaredy cat self......  I'm also afraid he's going to hurt my husband.....

We had our trimmer out on Saturday and we couldn't even catch Faran!!!  He followed Chrome into the round pen and my husband almost had the halter on him when Faran exploded past/through him and almost knocked him down.  I can't risk my husband hurting his back again....  it's not an option.  If he's not careful he will have to have surgery on his back.... as much as we love Faran we can't risk him hurting one of us.

So as much as I hate to admit it and as much of a failure as I feel right now because I honestly thought we could rehab him..... I really think rehoming him is the best and safest option.  He needs someone who has the time and patience to work with him every single day to win his confidence back.  I really hope you guys understand.... I know I don't need your permission, but I'd feel awful if you guys thought I was making the wrong decision....

Another thing I noticed as I've been thinking things over is that Faran is affecting the whole herd.... I had Zeppelin to where I could scratch him all over his face, side and back before we got Faran and now I can barely even touch his nose.  Part of that is not having the time to mess with him, but part of it is because Faran is so jumpy.  When Faran spooks (which is all the time) it scares Zep too.  When Chrome was Zep's role model he was a lot calmer and more inquisitive towards us, but now he doesn't want anything to do with us.  That makes me sad because I really like Zep.... his personality is more like Chrome's.  He's just skittish because he wasn't handled for the first three years of his life.

Anyway.... I'll definitely keep you guys up to date.  We're not doing anything rash.  We're looking around and researching everything.  I think we're going to go with a draft rescue.  They will work with him, evaluate him to see if he would ever be adoptable and if he's not they will retire him there and keep him for the rest of his life.  Anyway I'll let you know what we decide as soon as I know something.  Thanks for listening!

17 comments:

  1. No hate here, we have a strict "MUST be safe!" policy at my farm. We have 3 children and if we can't trust our critters to be reasonably safe, we can't keep them.

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  2. I think you are stronger in admitting that its time to find him a new home. He really sounds like a handful! Not to mention his size. Dont feel bad about it at all.

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  3. I honestly think that it makes you a much stronger and courageous person to admit that he scares you, and you can't help him any more, than to ignore it and get hurt! I think that personalities in horses and people have a LOT more weight that people give it credit for....there are some horses that amazing riders can't ride but a 10 year old can! It has nothing to do with skill of rider or skill of horse, and simply personality. Maybe you and faran just don't have compatible personalities, and therefor he is reactive and doesn't trust you and you don't trust him! I think it's so much better that you can simply admit it instead of ruining him by ignoring it for years until he cannot be rehomed or until he becomes such a liability the only option is to be put down, or any other equally bad outcomes. The only way I could see that you would be considered 'irresponsible' to me, is if you didn't send him somewhere that would be beneficial to him. But clearly, you are looking to give him a good future, not just pawn him off on someone else! So way to go! I know a lot of situations where people would let their pride get in the way of the needs of the horse, and clearly, you are not doing that, which makes you so much stronger than you think!

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  4. I agree with the comments above, it takes a strong person to realise and admit they don't feel they can do something. And safety for everyone absolutely must come first. Not all people get on with everyone, it's the same with horses, and the same with horse/person relationships.

    He sounds very much like Star, her reactivity is always there under the surface and I don't think it will ever go. She's also definitely a one on one horse. I could not cope with more than her. I hope everything works out and please don't feel bad or beat yourself up, you've tried and no-one could possibly ask any more than that :)

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  5. You are doing the right thing. You need a safe horse and one you get along with. Plus, admitting that you do not have the time (with a baby and donkey) and wanting Faran to go to a home where he can get the handling he needs is smart. You are rehoming him for all the right reasons.

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  6. Tough decision to make! But you have to do what is right for your family. You have such a good heart :)

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  7. I've learned that some people will give you a hard time just for the sake of giving you a hard time. I've seen other people get spanked for NOT finding a new home for an animal when they couldn't afford to care for it anymore or because the animal wasn't properly suited to the owner. People trade, sell, and find new homes for horses all the time simply because they decide that they want a reining horse instead of a jumper, an endurance horse instead of a show horse, or just a chestnut horse instead of a brown horse. People's hobbies change, their circumstances change, the amount of time and money they have available changes. It's life.

    I have a brother who is an incurable alcoholic and drug addict, and I have had people hassle me for not taking him into my home and caring for him, but I know if I did, he'd rob me and possibly kill everyone in my family. You have to look out for yourself. Not everyone is salvageable. A bleeding heart will eventually drain the life out of you. And just because someone disagrees with your decision doesn't make them right. Stupid people can be confident and forceful in their opinions, but that doesn't make them any smarter. You know what is going on. You are living it. Trust yourself. Guilt-free.

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  8. In following my blog you would have seen that last year I had a boarder who was difficult and spooky to work with and I thought I could handle him. He hurt me several times and I had to have surgery to fix the damage he caused and I am still not 100%. As a result I will NOT allow myself to be in that kind of situation again and I commend you for not staying there yourself.

    You can't save every animal and you must consider the safety of you and your family a higher priority. A rescue will be a much better place for Faran and you have already helped him more than his previous owner did. Don't feel guilty!

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  9. Anyone to be mad at you is silly! I hope you do find a draft rescue! That would be cool:)Smiles!

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  10. Hi - I'm new to your blog (need to go back and read some archives) but I just wanted to comment on this post as it really resonates with me.

    I had an arabX mare that I sold last summer. I hadn't been hurt yet, but she and I just didn't get along. I was too jumpy for her as well.

    It takes courage to realize when things aren't going well and to make the best decision for you and your family. I'm sure you'll find a good home for him.

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  11. You are doing the right thing. He's a handsome boy and there's probably a bleeding heart out there that would be happy to work with him. Good luck!

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  12. Really tough decision, but I think you are making the right one. His special person is out there and he's lucky to have you helping him find her/him.

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  13. It was really hard for me make the decision to sell Page but I know it was the right thing to do. We did not get along as much as I wanted us to and the fact was that someone was going to get hurt and that someone was probably going to be me. We just weren't a good match.

    I think you've thought things out very well and you will make the right decision. Wishing you the best!

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  14. It takes a smart horse person to rehome a horse they aren't equipped to train. You are a talented horse woman who might be able to rehab him in other circumstances but that's not the case now. You are being much kinder to him by finding him a home now than waiting. I think a horse like that would be better off with less turnout while they bond with people. And you are right about the daily interaction. Bre used to be reactive and needed daily one on one interaction. She wouldn't have done well on large turnout where she could avoid people who scared her. Someone is going to take him on who will be the right fit. And if you keep in contact it will make you feel so good to watch him improve. Don't feel bad! It is the right thing.

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  15. Safety is of the utmost importance and always an excellent reason to send a horse on his way. There is absolutely no shame in that.

    Even if the horse hit you in the head by accident there are plenty of horses that would not make that mistake. I see that as a lack of understanding and respect for human space.

    I have worked with a couple Percheron crosses and I have observed similar traits. The giant scaredy-cat thing gets old really fast.

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  16. Been there. It is so hard to let go, so hard to admit to yourself that you're scared and it isn't working.

    It's for the best, it really is. Best wishes to all of you.

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  17. So sorry to hear you're going through this. It is NOBODY'S place to judge you for this, and it's obviously not an easy decision. If it's not a good fit, it's not a good fit. Keeping a horse who doesn't 'mesh' can be dangerous for everyone involved. Good luck finding him a home, and don't let the naysayers get you down.

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