Choosing to find a new home for any horse can be an emotional journey but making that decision with an older horse is often even more heartbreaking. The thought of entrusting a stranger to care for them to the highest of standards, and not abuse their good nature and ability, can be a worrisome time.
Michelle, from Wiltshire, came to us in July last year (2022) to discuss her lovely Warmblood gelding Dylan whom she had owned for 5 years. He was 19 years old and not ready to retire, in fact full retirement really would not have suited him. Michelle’s work commitments were such that she could no longer keep him ridden as much as she would like and her daughter was now at university and needed to focus on her studies. So Michelle sought to find a local loan home for him using our website and unique application process.
Despite his age, Dylan received a great many applications and within less than 2 weeks a suitable loan home was found. Michelle was able to easily sift through the applications, decline any which were not compatible, and identify the most suitable people to view him.
Michelle chose Lucinda from Gloucestershire. She had owned horses all her life and currently has a 17.1h Warmblood called Hugo that she competes in BD Novice, working towards Elementary, and showjumping 1m. Lucinda wanted a sensible gelding for her mother (who has a wealth of knowledge but is now 70) to share with her novice 16yr old daughter.
Dylan has now been with Lucinda for over 6 months. He is predominantly ridden by her daughter Pippa but Lucinda helps to keep him fit whilst she is at school during the week. Michelle and her daughter Abi visited just after Christmas and she said “It was lovely to see him so settled and relaxed. He has two families wrapped around his hoof now!”.
When asked about the process of finding Dylan a Loan Home through RHRH Michelle said, “This process has been a resounding success for us – my daughter has been able to concentrate on Uni knowing he is with a family who love him as much as we do. It was really straightforward and Dylan is absolutely reaping the benefits. It’s given Dylan a new purpose. Whilst he is an older gent (20 now!) he wasn’t ready to retire but we weren’t able to give him what he needed. He would have gone down hill I think – physically and mentally – had we not been able to find the most perfect home and when HE tells us he’s is ready, we will bring him home to retire. Huge thanks.” Michelle
Lucinda also provided a super update saying, “I have just started learning flying changes on Hugo, so had a go on Dylan who was absolutely delighted to show me how it’s done! He has been full of it in the school ever since & Pippa has to be v careful to keep her legs still in canter otherwise he changes!”
We wish Lucinda and Pippa all the very best with the lovely Dylan and it is wonderful to see Loan Homes for elderly horses absolutely can work. It is all about finding the right homes which is what this website and service do!