As brand new horse owners keeping a horse in their backyard the wife didn't think she could handle a horse and a baby. They had no idea how much work breaking water from troughs in the winter was, or that horses grew so much hair when it got cold.
They had bought Razz from someone that put some extensive training on him, and he hadn't managed to kill anyone so far so I thought he'd make a good horse for kids or beginners. His owner didn't know a curb bit from a snaffle, what the opening was on the headstall (for his ear), or other things that horse people would consider basic. They had taken pretty good care of them, they had a shed in their back yard he could stay in if the weather was bad, his feet were decent, and he'd been free ranging in a large pasture all summer. With lots of grass. Lots and lots of grass.
Razz waddled when he walked.
It was hard asking questions since his owners didn't really know much. She plopped around on him in his pasture, some kids that worked at a dog kennel on the property would ride him bareback, and someone had taken him on a solo trail ride to Brown County (the fact that he made it back alive as fat as he was seemed like a good sign). She had taken him to a show and contested him, but he was scared of the barrels. Since he had a nice little jog and neck reined pretty decent I surmised that poor Razz had only done showing in rail classes and had never seen a barrel in his life before his beginner owner pointed him at one! Also a good sign that she stayed on and seemed to have fun.
He did seem a bit spoiled, they stood at the gate and coaxed him over with cookies, and when he pulled away they let him wander off and come back when he was ready. He was a little girthy but his saddle fit poorly and he'd been out of work for 2 months.
The only issue I had was when I dismounted him he tried to leave for his pasture of delicious grass before I was off so we spun in a few circles then I backed him up hard when he tried to do it again. He was very surprised I got after him but went right back to being quiet. His owner said if he did that with her she would have just let him go. Which probably explains why he does it.
I always hate to suggest a horse would make a good kid's horse. I mean they're giant hairy animals who are scared of plastic bags. How kid safe could that be? What if he bucked when he lost some weight, or something else? However, I felt fairly confident that he'd be a good kid's horse after a month with a trainer and some lessons.
Cathy and I started networking him and there should be a few people going to try him out today. He's older but he's quiet and the neckreining and tidy jog should help him out. I'll keep the blog updated if someone takes him.