View Full Version : Sharing horses- set my mind at rest :(

3rd November 2010, 06:54 PM
Who of you out there share or are sharers?

I am finding with my new man, and work and everything I am having less and less time for Uva! I hate it, she is still getting vital attention and I spend as much time as possible, but it seems I am constantly juggling and spending time doing work, or with horses or with man is detrimental the others! I have moved Uva onto a yard nearer to home to help with this, and have started looking for a sharer!

Now I was a sharer once and I loved it. I was considerate and treated the horses superbly. But its different being the other way round! Uva is so precious to me the thought of sharing her is making me feel a little scared!!

I know its for her best interest, I cant ride her mon-fri as no lights, and the weekend are flying visits as thats when I see my OH (he travels 275 miles down from Yorkshire every weekend to see me) so riding isnt happening so well then either! He is moving down at xmas which will help, but still cant ride weekdays!

Uva has perfect care, is groomed daily, field poopicked and muckout etc every morning before work, its just her riding thats being let down!

Please set my mind at rest with success stories of how great sharing is!!

3rd November 2010, 08:20 PM
I started out loaning as my mum wanted to see how dedicated I was really lol. I'd like to think i was a good loaner, poo picking the fields, mucking out and grooming for hours!! My first experience wasn't great tbh as the owner didn't particularly look after her horse and he was in a right state. Luckily for me she'd written up a contract that said if it was felt that he wasn't being looked after the loan would end, but she didn't say on which side so i told her I didn't like the way she treated him and ended the loan. I really dnt want to scare you off of loaning, there are a lot of nice and grateful loanees out there but I'd make sure you have a written contract. I'm now contemplating putting my boy up for part loan too and I know how hard it is to think of letting other people loose with them Xxx

4th November 2010, 04:27 PM
As we travel for work quite a bit we have had various sharers over the years for our horses. We have been incredibly lucky with every single one and are still in touch (and friends) with them all.

We have a very detailed contract that a solicitor friend drew up but I made sure that the whole thing was worded to stress that the horse's welfare was paramount both as a reason for the contract and in day to day care. The contract states clearly what is expected from the sharer and from us as the owners. After that it is a matter of clear communication. I am a bit mother hen at first with a new sharer, and all the sharers have a laugh at me for that, but I don't apologize. Our horses are big, fit and active. I would hate for them to hurt anyone and equally I would hate for them to get hurt.

We know our horses have love and care when we are away, and we get some contribution towards costs (we tried not charging but found people were not committed enough to do it this way). In return our sharers get a free lesson from me each week, they also get to compete, go hunting and to clinics for which we provide transport.

Seems to work pretty well all round for us.

4th November 2010, 04:52 PM
I have been happliy sharing Zebedee for 4 1/2 years now. It was hard at first as I was a novice rider and didn't really know what to expect from sharing. If I'd been given a contract as Partner described with a little bit more support I think it would have been easier.

4th November 2010, 05:46 PM
I shared a lot of horses before I got Saffy and 9 times out of 10 the owner was a spanner :lol: When it worked though it was a great arrangement and was beneficial for both parties. The only advice I'd give is to vet potential sharers as much as possible and definitely get a written contract drawn up.

Laura T
4th November 2010, 06:53 PM
I have shared and loaned several horses and all bar one have been very successful:). The one that wasn't was because the owner was not honest about her horse and the fact it had only been lightly backed when I took her on.She told me the mare was a novice ride!

I have always felt very lucky that someone has let me share their horse when I was not in a position to own my own, it is a privilege and I always viewed it as such.

The care the horses received was always as good as, if not better, than I would treat my own horse as I was aware they were not mine and I was being given an enormous amount of trust by the owners.

A written agreement is a must and it should be tailored to suit each horse e.g no fast work on hard ground, no jumping, horse must always wear boots etc. The BHS have a good sample agreement that you can amend to suit.

I think sharing can be really beneficial for both owner and sharer if you get the right person and get the ground rules in place.

Best of luck:D

Horse Mad Mum
4th November 2010, 08:28 PM
I have had two sharers and both have been great just draw up a contract and be specific and support however you choose untill they are comfortable, it can be good fun HMM X

4th November 2010, 08:33 PM
The lady coming on Saturday is a full time mum, and is in her 40's and has owned horses in the past including 2 ex racehorses. She sounds perfect on paper, and I think in her 40;s means she is less likely to bomb round and ruin her (or am I being naive??)

Thanks for your support guys, will def draw up a contract!

4th November 2010, 10:21 PM
It may be a little naive as I know 40 year olds that still act like 16 year olds and should know better but I also know 16 year olds that act as mature as 40 year olds! I think you just get a feel when you meet someone. I wouldn't rush into it, invite her down a few times before you make it official but generally from the way she talks about her previous horses or hobbies etc you'll get a good idea of the type of person she is. Have got my fingers crossed for you that she turns out to be the 1 and puts your mind at rest Xx

5th November 2010, 06:47 PM
IME you really can't judge someone from a phone call or on paper. There were 2 sharers in their 40s and 50s at our previous yard and I would not have let either of them anywhere near my horses. Conversely there was a 13 year old lad who I would have taken on like a shot if he had been 18 (our solicitor advised us not to take anyone under 18 for legal and insurance reasons).

Don't count out or in until you meet her and see her interact with you and with your horse. We see prospective sharers at least 3 times (once in the school, once on a hack with me, then 3rd time schooling and/or on a hack with one of our trusted others). At some point in that process we agree a one month trial period (under the terms of the contract). So far my first impressions have always been on target, but I want to give them the chance to see if they approve of us too and fit in with the yard. I have in the past taken on someone who was not as 'good' a rider as one of the other interested parties, but who had more empathy with the horses and seemed more like they would fit into 'the family' (horses, us, other sharers).

Apart from setting out roles and expectations, the contract covers how to terminate the agreement. That is important and as I said we have managed to get through share terminations and still stay friends (all ex sharers have visiting and visit ride privileges!). Again I have seen other shares at other yards go horribly wrong as there was no procedure (ie advice) for how to end the share.

Final point. The horse is still yours and all decisions should ultimately be yours. You should also retain 1st choice to ride etc and a good way to do that is to make the share contribution less than half the costs (ours are about 25% of what the horse actually costs to keep for the month). BUT try to consider things from the sharers point of view too and work out what suits you both re how much riding and when or if that will vary then how you will decide and communicate eg weekly.

PS as yours is a mare, put something in the contract about not putting her in foal.

5th November 2010, 08:23 PM
I think you probably already know about me and Till :) I part loaned her for almost 3 years until I ended up buying her and it was a really great arrangement. I got on really well with her owner, treated Till with utmost respect, loved her to bits as though she was my own and would never have taken any risks or liberties with her.

Hope it goes well tomorrow and you have a good feeling about her! :)

7th November 2010, 08:20 PM
Thank you for all your input guys!

The lady came up and ride, and all credit to her Uva really put her through her paces and was a bit of a cow! However, the whole process made me feel quite ill and I have come to the decision that I cannot bear to share her, I am to selfish!

I told the lady it was nothing personal, and apologised for wasting her time, and removed all the adverts this evening. I spoke to my other half and we have decided to try and move her to a different yard onto a part livery basis with a floodlit school in the new year to free up time. Money isnt really an issue, and I have come to realise I would rather she was only ridden a couple of times a week just as long as it was only me riding her!

This is probably a decision you will think is mad! Any other horse I have had or dealt with I could have shared but Uva is so precious to me as soppy as it sounds I cannot bare the thought of someone else doing what I should be doing with her!!

Thank you for all your input. Partner you sound like you really have a serious vetting process and have been very helpful! Very interested to hear of others experiences too!

7th November 2010, 08:42 PM
Sounds like u made the right decision. I think if you're not 100% into it then its a harder thing to do. Hope things work out for you riding wise, keep us updated how u're both doing XxX