Moral vrs. Legal obligation. (S/O of another thread)

Discussion in 'Horse Chat' started by Dona Worry, Jan 15, 2017.

  1. Dona Worry

    Dona Worry Senior Member

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    The thread on Older horses and moral obligations made me think of one of the most frequent comments I get--
    "So are you going to sell your horse/colt and buy a trail/beginner/cow horse?"
    The answer to this is always "No, a lot of people donated money to help me buy her and get her home, and I promised I would be her forever home--And that goes for Quest too."
    And the response is:
    "Oh well, that doesn't mean anything legally!"

    Well, no. I guess it doesn't. A couple of the people who donated the most money/time are on my facebook, and I post pictures and updates on there, and those people share the updates to the rest of the people (Most of whom I don't know and will never know) and they love it.
    I could unfriend them on facebook, or even not, and just sell her or Quest to someone else and buy a 'better' one, and no one could ever make a stink about it. I never signed a contract. I never even met any of these people, and I do not owe them a thing--I have taken good care of her and her baby, and if I make the decision to sell, well, that is my right!
    But.
    I do not think it could ever be the moral right.
    I see online a lot of people use the fundraising network of people, get a horse for pittance, then flip it a week later for twice that. I don't donate money, and it ****es ME off. I can't imagine if I DID donate lots of time and money trying to get a horse safe, only to see it go back to auction.
    Even if I didn't send them away to auction (not sure if there is even one nearby, I have never heard of one) but worked hard to find a private home--there are no guarantees in life.
    Basically, the only way to ensure that they are treated the way I want them to be is to keep them for as long as they live--as I promised I would.
    So no--My horses are not for sale!
    If I can ever comfortably afford another, I may or may not get one. But, not if it costs the two I have.
     
  2. all4him

    all4him Senior Member

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    Thank you for taking her in and standing by her and Quest for life. I have a friend that is involved in rescue but just from the Facebook/financial standpoint and I know that she would be livid if she helped to rescue a horse only to have it end up back in the pipeline.
     
  3. mooselady

    mooselady Senior Member

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    I guess I'm already struggling on the morals of people donating time and money so you could get a horse you wanted, even if it was rescuing.

    I struggle with the moral of buying an animal that you knew nothing about, and transporting so far without being self funding.

    As to Quest having a home for life, well that depends, are you going to be the best home for him? Could he be happy and productive in a new home, well of course. Would not be so quick to say "a home forever" it could be that he would be better suited to another owner, you just don't know yet.

    Again everyone has a different view on so many things, it is hard to be black and white on it.
     
  4. Dona Worry

    Dona Worry Senior Member

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    Well, I joined late in the game--Wednesday or Thursday is when I saw her and the deadline was Saturday. She already had a couple hundred in donations, I was only looking to donate $20 myself, but the person fundraising told me at that point they needed a home more than money, so I called the closest barn with horses in it (not even joking, literally what I did) to see if they had room, called a bunch of haulers, one said she has a load coming to VT already so would do a DOLLAR per LOADED mile, and so yeah.....
    A bit of frantic research into horse vets (who prefer to be called Equine Vetinary Specialists, btw) and a trip to the store (or maybe several trips) and voila--a horse appeared on my doorstep, just like magic.
    I didn't even ask for donations of time or money--they were already in place.
    Was the whole thing smart? No, not at all, and until she was actually in my hands (and also when the usda showed up asking about her!!) I was 3/4 convinced it was a total scam and there was no horse, or she would not legally be mine.
    In a way. . . I feel like I trusted a lot of people to get her here, and they should be able to trust me to do my part.
    And I am sure that as long as Quest has a nice big hill and some horses for company, he won't care one bit if I am using him to his full potential or not.
     
    TheSnowLeopard and mkoktavy like this.
  5. mooselady

    mooselady Senior Member

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    Probably not, I guess it is just a sad thought to me....having bought and sold a few horses, it is always great to see one that finds it's prefect place, and perfect person. Not every horse and person are right fro each other. One very small example, Wills, she was out on lease when their trainer contacted me to ask if she jumped. I had to say that as far as I was aware she would be physically capable of jumping, but neither I or her breeder had ever tried her over so much as a ground pole, but they were welcome to try. Turns out that Wills not only jumps, she is a jumping machine, she loves it, she rocks it.....would never of known that if she has stayed here.
     
  6. Dona Worry

    Dona Worry Senior Member

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    My new plan is to have Quest be my kids' horse. . . Getting an early start, as it will probably be a few years before I actual have any kids, and much longer until my as-of-yet unborn children are ready to ride him!
     
  7. reicheru

    reicheru Senior Member

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    I agree it's not black and white. My horses are here to stay unless my financial and living situation changes. I'll have my less desirables humanely euthanized and try to find good appropriate homes for the others. I'd never expect anyone to keep any horse I've ever sold forever but I always ask that they contact me first before listing the horse... maybe my situation has changed and I'd like to buy the horse back.
     
  8. Arem

    Arem Senior Member

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    Honestly? While keeping them forever can sound "noble," that doesn't mean that it's smart or that's it's a wise idea for the horses or for your yourself.

    From what I gather, it would not be a bad idea for you to rehome them with experienced people and get yourself something beginner friendly and trained.

    Rehoming, or even outright selling, a horse is not a bad thing. Sometimes it's best for all.

    What if Quest never turns out to be a kid friendly horse? Are you aware of the amount of training and money that would go into that? You don't have the skills yourself. Which means you'd need to hire someone to train and then maintain him AND train yourself so you don't undo the work.
     
  9. D_BaldStockings

    D_BaldStockings Senior Member

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    Does the horse care if he is used?

    Obviously he isn't thinking about that at all?

    Suppose one of your yet-to-be kids/your husband/ you has a large financial need (medical, education, job loss, etc)

    Will you really set aside your child/ the welfare of your human family for the ongoing needs of maintaining 2 horses you no longer have time for (yep, kids take time) because they have no value to others, being erratically trained and unused?

    Responsibility for animals can include moving them on (selling) to the best situation for them. If you feel 'bad' about the money donated, offer to pay back out of the sale proceeds.

    Really, the rescue is over. Now it is ownership, plain and simple. Just look at how much you have spent on the pair so far. Dwarfs the rescue funding, doesn't it?
     
  10. foxtrot

    foxtrot Senior Member

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    I do have to agree that at this point, if you WANTED to sell them, there is no ethical or moral problem in that at all--IMO.

    The only potential moral issues I can see is if you literally sent her back to an auction where you knew a kill buyer would get her, since that negates the effort to rescue her.

    But if you sold her to a private owner, why not? And as for Quest, he wasn't the rescue, his dam was, so at least IMO he doesn't factor in at all.

    But, obviously this is all a moot point if you want to keep them. I don't really buy into the horse being used to its potential thing as long as the horse is happy. I had an issue here where I bought a weanling pony fully intending to keep it "forever" but the horse was just not a good fit. Loved him to pieces but he wasn't happy just being a horse, he was bored and wanted to DO things. I sold him to a rodeo home with kids and he's flourishing.

    But if the horse is happy, doesn't seem bored... potential doesn't matter. Whatever makes the horse happy does... IMO.
     

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