The Bolting Horse.... link

ever_hopeful

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Having had to make the very difficult decision to have a mare PTS on Wednesday, because of her uncontrollable bolting, I am reading up on the subject. I'm probably trying to estalish if there was/is anymore I could have done but I came across the above article and it just made my blood boil. Is it me? Or is the whole tone completely patronising?

At one point it says, [ QUOTE ]
To the properly educated rider the bolting horse, under ordinary circumstances, is not dangerous. To the ignorant, the runaway often means a broken neck.

[/ QUOTE ] Charming... I guess that means I (and the previous 2 former trainers of this horse) must all be classed 'ignorant', then?
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Bosworth

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What a stupid article - a runaway horse is totally different from a bolting horse. To claim a bolting horse can be stopped from bolting is stupidity. A bolting horses runs blind. It reacts as a panic to something that may never have been predicted. I have only sat on one bolting horse and I was in an indoor school. We bolted around the arena banging into walls, smashing into girders in a blind panic. I eventually had to bail out and he smashed himself into the mirrors and caused a lot of damage to his head and neck. Nothing triggered him and nothing I could do had any effect. A bolter can kill, it has no awareness of anything, it has no self preservation and runs blind.

My old cob used to runaway, he knew his job, he would tank off with me ripping the reins through my hands and tanking off. He was safe though - he would stop when he felt like it and I was never truly worried about it, I knew he still had his brain engaged and thinking and his self preservation was still in evidence.

The only person showing any level of ignorance is the article writer - you are not. You are far far far from ignorant.
 

AmyMay

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Don't put yourself through it. A bolting horse is a short route to the undertaker. Simple. And the decision you've made is a sensible one - no matter how heartbreaking.
 

quirky

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Don't beat yourself up about your decision.

If your mare is a true bolter, you're doing the best thing for her. She'll either end up doing you, her or both of you a damage.

(((Hugs))) for wednesay.
 

Ellies_mum2

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For what it is worth I think you are doing the right thing so ignore that article.

I am lucky. I have never experienced a true bolt but like most others have had horses p1ss off with me on occasion. I have a 9 month old filly that I love to bits but in the future if she was to become a true bolter than I will do as you are doing. I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I sold her on and she hurt someone

(((hugs)))
 

0ldmare

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That article is clearly written by someone who has never sat on a bolting horse.

I have had the misfortune to do so once (only time in my life that I deliberately bailed out and the horse died by running blind and crashing onto some rocks on the beach).

The author of the article just plain deluded

I'm so sorry to hear about you and your horse, but it sounds like you are making entirly the right decision.
 

Lippyx

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A bolting horse runs away blind, and with any thought of the consequince (sp) i.e, roads, cars, ditches, cliff edges!!

A run away horse is normally down to disobedience, ignorance towards the rider, excitment!

I don't know your full story, but I'm sure you didn't come to your descision lightly, nor was it an over night one!!
 

teddyt

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The article makes a few valid points, but it was written in 1962, so will obviously have an old fashioned view on things.
OP- having a horse put down for your own safety is never an easy decision but im sure you did everything you could. With time you will feel happier you made the right decision. I am sorry for your loss
 

Cop-Pop

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I used to groom for people that had horse that bolted - he was on his last chance when he bolted across two fields through an open gate and on to an A road. Luckily it was 9am on a Sunday morning but he had been ridden for nearly three hours beforehand and he wasn't exactly fit. His owners had spent a lot of money trying to solve his problems but after that last episode they had him pts. Some problems can't be overcome and there is only one option - no matter how hard and heart breaking that option is.
 

Booboos

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Completely agree with what everyone else has said. You are making a tough decision, but it is the RIGHT ONE. Horses that bolt are unstopable, they seem to lose all sense of self-preservation and they are extremely dangerous. The author is clearly confused between a true bolter and a horse that pisses off.
 

now_loves_mares

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Ever_hopeful, I just went back and read your original post. It really doesn't seem that this article talks about the kind of horse you have, so please don't let it make you feel bad! You are giving this horse what she deserves - peace.

If I ended up with a similar horse, I would check a few key things - eyes being one of them, and probably something feed related like a cereal intolerance. (I know you had the horse recently vetted, so I'm sure anything obvious would already have been found in your case). But it would only be the key things, I certainly wouldn't be spending years and £ks on it. Then, I'd use any facts I'd found and make a decision, and I like to think I'd have the courage to make the one you made. It sounds like there is no obvious medical or husbandry reason for the horse to react like this, so you aren't going to "cure" it, and as you have said, she's hardly the happiest of horses anyway. It's so sad that her life has turned out this way, but I really think this is the best thing - for her AND you.

Hope it's ok when the time comes.
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Ravenwood

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When a horse bolts blind - its absolutely terrifying and there is nothing you can do. Fortunately this has only happened to me twice.

Horses that run off are a totally different kettle of fish. My first pony used to bolt but actually he was just running to get me off under the nearest branch - crafty bugger!!

Don't agonise over your decision, I am sure you came to the right decision as its not one to take lightly, scouring the internet for answers is not always the best thing to do!!
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MrsMozart

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Ignore it. It is patronizing and pompous, that was the norm for the era the book was written in.

Having 'ridden' a bolter, and back then being reknown for being able to stay on/stop just about anything, I can say I've never been so scared in all my life. I stayed on. We stopped, eventually. It is so different to horses that just bomb off every now and then.

Hugs to you hun. In this instance, you definately did th right thing. Give yourself a break.
 

chestnut cob

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Ignore the article, as someone else says it's totally pompous and patronising.

I'm sure you did / are doing the right thing by your mare.

I think the writer of the article uses the wrong word when he talks about a bolting horse - what he actually describes is a horse that's running away rather than bolting in blind fear / panic. The bit about a bucking horse is rubbish too - I'd like to see him prevent or sit my Welshy's bucks
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hopppydi

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There is a huge difference between a bolting horse and a horse running away with you as im sure you know!! I havent had personal experience of a true bolting horse but the trainer i have just bought my ex racer from has and he always has them pts. He has been around horses all his life, from native ponies, shires, arab racers, tb's and lots of problem horses he has sorted out but even he says that a true bolter needs to be pts as they are literally killing machines that can never be trusted.
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JS65

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An old saying was " bolt a bolter, teach a tanker"

As in, using a bolt gun to shoot a bolting horse, but re educate a naughty runaway.

You are doing a very brave and correct thing have the horse PTS, don't beat yourself up about it. It takes a level head to do the right thing.
Hugs to you xx
 

Tickles

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When I've looked at the costs of keeping a horse I've factored in that for every ridable animal I'd need on livery I'd have to have at least 2 on grass retirement. Consequently I've not yet bought. Very arguably this is my loss!

For most people keeping expensive unridable pets (I'm not talking about animals in pain here, just those that due to age/illness/temperament aren't ridable but could be happy at grass) would seriously limit the funds and/or time they had left for doing what they originally intended with horses.

Unless you're a bunny-hugger (and I do know a few people with retired horses who have given up riding as they can't afford another) or very wealthy this kind of decision is occasionally inevitable. It is the compromise most people have to make to enjoy this sport/hobby. Not that different than the compromise on, say, beef-cattle 'welfare' necessary to enjoy a burger.

I think the tone of the article was pretty normal for instructional texts of the time. It contains some useful advice that does work in certain circumstances but there is no reason to suppose all horses can be safely (or at least more safely!) ridable however experienced/knowledgeable the owner.
 
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