Should I Take on a Barrel Horse with Issues?

We’ve all been tempted…

We stumble across a barrel horse for sale with good looks or impeccable barrel racing bloodlines, and then – the PRICE! Too good to be true!? Maybe so, when it comes to horses with issues.

They might pull back, have the beginning of arthritis, signs of an old tendon injury, or they might (occasionally) buck, or have issues at the gate. The problems may be minor or major. They may be physical, mental or behavioral in nature (or most likely all of the above). Regardless,

there’s usually more to the issue than meets the eye.

It’s not uncommon for the outward symptoms to be just the tip of the iceberg. Under the surface there is often much more to be discovered.

The question is, are you ready and willing to handle any surprises that may be lying under the surface? Chances are there are some big gaps in the horse’s foundation, and truthfully it takes well developed skills and experience to properly and thoroughly fill in these gaps.

Everyone loves a fairytale story of an underdog horse and a rider that rise to victory against all odds. As much of a dreamer as I am, when it comes to horses with issues, I’m afraid it’s my duty to say that those cases are more exceptions than rules.

Of course, we’ve all known or owned horses that were rejected in one discipline only to find success in another. Or sometimes, because we lack the funds to buy the kind of horse we really want, we end up with a less than ideal horse and must make the best out of what we’ve got.

Sometimes these situations can turn out for the good, it’s certainly not impossible to ride off into the sunset on a horse with issues.

However, before you get too excited over a “steal” of a barrel horse (with a little issue, or a few), watch the video below for some critical considerations and questions to ask before you take the plunge.

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