Old Friends and New Vocations partner to help Thoroughbreds

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Curtis
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 11:40 am

Catalina wrote:If whoever "foots the bill" to get their horse into OF is willing to the OF stay being of limited time and the horse then either trained or otherwise passed to somebody outside of OF for that somebody's use, then obviously there is nothing wrong with it. Discounting of course that once the horse leaves OF they are essentially dependent on that new person living up to their end of the deal and returning the horse if no longer desired. As we all know, that doesn't always happen, and by the time OF or whoever finds out, the horse may have died or long since gone to slaughter - which to my mind was what the original connections probably thought they kept from happening by retiring the horse to OF. So it's not a clear cut black or white thing, it's many gradations of gray.
I'm with you on this. There is no reason to not want this to be wildly successful. If it is caulking that helps fill in those cracks that a horse like Bluesthestandard fell through, I'm all for it. Most of the information seems to be coming from New Vocations which for Old Friends seems to be business as usual. Sometimes it seems backward to me. A gelding like Game On Dude seems a victim of his own notoriety. He'll never go anywhere because he's an attraction yet he's an eight-year-old gelding who is turned out to pasture for life. If he wants to be ridden and likes showing, couldn't he be publicized by showing under his racing name for a few years before returning to Old Friends?
BlindLucky
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 12:03 pm

But then he wouldn't be around the farm to bring in the visitors and fundraising that helps support the rest of the horses, so it's a double-edged sword sometimes.
Photos from my racing travels: ThoroughbredJourney.com
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Curtis
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 2:47 pm

BlindLucky wrote:But then he wouldn't be around the farm to bring in the visitors and fundraising that helps support the rest of the horses, so it's a double-edged sword sometimes.
I think you're putting too much responsibility on one gelding. There are enough aged stallions there to take up the slack for him. This is rhetorical anyway. I know Baffert sent him there with the agreement that he never leave. But then again Kristin Mulhall sent a gelding there under the same premise.....
BlindLucky
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 3:33 pm

Curtis wrote:
BlindLucky wrote:But then he wouldn't be around the farm to bring in the visitors and fundraising that helps support the rest of the horses, so it's a double-edged sword sometimes.
I think you're putting too much responsibility on one gelding. There are enough aged stallions there to take up the slack for him. This is rhetorical anyway. I know Baffert sent him there with the agreement that he never leave. But then again Kristin Mulhall sent a gelding there under the same premise.....
I don't really mean Game on Dude specifically (or ONLY him), I mean that if they open themselves up to lending out big-name retirees for a second career, kinda like Icabad Crane--essentially finding them a temporary new home--then they aren't on the farm to draw visitors, and you're kinda rehoming them anyway.

Old Friends is basically a network of volunteers. I don't think they have the manpower to keep track of adoptions and "loaners", hence the NV partnership. They have 3 paid employees, which includes Mr. Blowen himself. They're not set up to run around keeping track of horses not on the farm--a lesson they learned the hard way.
Photos from my racing travels: ThoroughbredJourney.com
Catalina
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 4:45 pm

I'm not sure just what is New Vocations' current way of checking up on their graduates. I recall a mare that went missing less than a year after being adopted from New Vocations. NV had received, I think, one or maybe two written updates with a photo, but then nothing further, and by October 2008 (about when I heard about it) the mare had vanished, and the trail to the adopter had gone cold.
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Curtis
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 5:16 pm

BlindLucky wrote:
Curtis wrote:
BlindLucky wrote:But then he wouldn't be around the farm to bring in the visitors and fundraising that helps support the rest of the horses, so it's a double-edged sword sometimes.
I think you're putting too much responsibility on one gelding. There are enough aged stallions there to take up the slack for him. This is rhetorical anyway. I know Baffert sent him there with the agreement that he never leave. But then again Kristin Mulhall sent a gelding there under the same premise.....
I don't really mean Game on Dude specifically (or ONLY him), I mean that if they open themselves up to lending out big-name retirees for a second career, kinda like Icabad Crane--essentially finding them a temporary new home--then they aren't on the farm to draw visitors, and you're kinda rehoming them anyway.

Old Friends is basically a network of volunteers. I don't think they have the manpower to keep track of adoptions and "loaners", hence the NV partnership. They have 3 paid employees, which includes Mr. Blowen himself. They're not set up to run around keeping track of horses not on the farm--a lesson they learned the hard way.
There are other ways that Game On Dude or a gelding of his ilk can get work. I'm sure UK or some other local school has an Intercollegiate Equestrian Team (IET). Once retrained, via New Vocations, a horse could be housed at Old Friends and used for the IET horse shows. These is a fairly low-key club team atmosphere. Think 4H for college kids. Also they could partner with pre-vet programs at the local school or schools. The kids would get the hours they need for credit for their degrees and the school would do most of the monitoring. If the three employees and current volunteers can't monitor the activity, then they have too much activity and need to scale back.
BlindLucky
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 5:29 pm

Then send your ideas to Old Friends. I can't argue on their behalf with everyone, when I have no clue what they actually do on the back end, how they handle contracts, etc. I'm just guessing. I don't know that three people can't handle whatever it is you want them to do. But if they can help scores of other horses get adopted out via programs like NV, I don't see why they need to come up with complicated scenarios to loan out fan favorites that everyone wants to see when they come to the farm :(

And on the New Vocations front, it sucks that a mare fell through the cracks, but one case doesn't mean that the hundreds of horses they've placed should not have been adopted out. Again, I don't work for them, so I don't know what they do to follow up on adoptions, but I know they do have policies on each adoption and contracts enforceable by law.

I don't know what the solution is, but at least they're all trying.
Photos from my racing travels: ThoroughbredJourney.com
BlindLucky
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 5:31 pm

Curtis wrote:Also they could partner with pre-vet programs at the local school or schools. The kids would get the hours they need for credit for their degrees and the school would do most of the monitoring.
I do know that Old Friends does this with the farrier school, probably others.
Photos from my racing travels: ThoroughbredJourney.com
Catalina
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 6:56 pm

BlindLucky wrote:Then send your ideas to Old Friends. I can't argue on their behalf with everyone, when I have no clue what they actually do on the back end, how they handle contracts, etc. I'm just guessing. I don't know that three people can't handle whatever it is you want them to do. But if they can help scores of other horses get adopted out via programs like NV, I don't see why they need to come up with complicated scenarios to loan out fan favorites that everyone wants to see when they come to the farm :(

And on the New Vocations front, it sucks that a mare fell through the cracks, but one case doesn't mean that the hundreds of horses they've placed should not have been adopted out. Again, I don't work for them, so I don't know what they do to follow up on adoptions, but I know they do have policies on each adoption and contracts enforceable by law.

I don't know what the solution is, but at least they're all trying.
Re New Vocations, back then (2008) I got the impression follow-up was strictly on the honor system, with too many horses passing through NV to do anything more. Adoption contracts are obviously a must, but when the adopter sells the premises and moves to parts unknown, a contract and threat to sue are for the birds. The horses need better safeguards than that. Maybe a small group of field staff that actually goes and inspects the horses' situations, vets potential adopters and their references. I don't know either, I wish I did.
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Curtis
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Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:21 pm

BlindLucky wrote:Then send your ideas to Old Friends. I can't argue on their behalf with everyone, when I have no clue what they actually do on the back end, how they handle contracts, etc. I'm just guessing. I don't know that three people can't handle whatever it is you want them to do. But if they can help scores of other horses get adopted out via programs like NV, I don't see why they need to come up with complicated scenarios to loan out fan favorites that everyone wants to see when they come to the farm :(

And on the New Vocations front, it sucks that a mare fell through the cracks, but one case doesn't mean that the hundreds of horses they've placed should not have been adopted out. Again, I don't work for them, so I don't know what they do to follow up on adoptions, but I know they do have policies on each adoption and contracts enforceable by law.

I don't know what the solution is, but at least they're all trying.
Blowen doesn't seem to answer his emails. Maybe they'll put in a suggestion box. It really isn't that complicated. As stated, the name horses aren't going to be adopted out via New Vocations anyway. Some horses are perfectly fine with being a pasture ornament and some are not. I don't think their resume should dictate what they do. What I'm proposing is just a way to put the horses first and not the people. I thought that was the point.
TapitsGal
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Sat Sep 19, 2015 6:04 am

I have seen Stud Muffin out and about at various three day events/ horse trials in the NY/New England area. I know he lives at Akindale but goes out to shows. perhaps OF could do the same?
BlindLucky
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Sat Sep 19, 2015 9:11 am

Curtis wrote:Blowen doesn't seem to answer his emails. Maybe they'll put in a suggestion box. It really isn't that complicated. As stated, the name horses aren't going to be adopted out via New Vocations anyway. Some horses are perfectly fine with being a pasture ornament and some are not. I don't think their resume should dictate what they do. What I'm proposing is just a way to put the horses first and not the people. I thought that was the point.
Have you ever been to the farm? I'm curious why you think they don't already put the horses first. Horses like Game on Dude are healthy and sound, but just from what I've seen on my visits (granted, only a snapshot, but the same each time), he seems like a pocket pony. He and his buddy stand quietly for scratches and carrots, come to the fence to see people, then amble back to grazing and naps. It seems to be a pretty awesome life for a horse with such a quiet demeanor. If you're worried that he's bouncing off the walls wanting to race around a jumps course, I don't think you have to worry :lol:
Photos from my racing travels: ThoroughbredJourney.com
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Flanders
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Sun Sep 20, 2015 4:40 am

BlindLucky wrote:
Curtis wrote:Blowen doesn't seem to answer his emails. Maybe they'll put in a suggestion box. It really isn't that complicated. As stated, the name horses aren't going to be adopted out via New Vocations anyway. Some horses are perfectly fine with being a pasture ornament and some are not. I don't think their resume should dictate what they do. What I'm proposing is just a way to put the horses first and not the people. I thought that was the point.
Have you ever been to the farm? I'm curious why you think they don't already put the horses first. Horses like Game on Dude are healthy and sound, but just from what I've seen on my visits (granted, only a snapshot, but the same each time), he seems like a pocket pony. He and his buddy stand quietly for scratches and carrots, come to the fence to see people, then amble back to grazing and naps. It seems to be a pretty awesome life for a horse with such a quiet demeanor. If you're worried that he's bouncing off the walls wanting to race around a jumps course, I don't think you have to worry :lol:
I didn't want to actually put the pics here since they are copyrighted so I linked them. Really like the pics they post of Game on Dude and his bff, Yankee Fortune.
https://scontent-ord1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hp ... 2677_o.jpg
https://scontent-ord1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hp ... 9589_o.jpg
https://scontent-ord1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hp ... 7431_o.jpg
https://scontent-ord1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hp ... 0017_o.jpg
There were more pics shared, including after the last pic I linked, Yankee Fortune did get up, because Dude was pestering him so much. ;)
BaroqueAgain1
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Sun Sep 20, 2015 2:18 pm

I give them a gold medal for Two Horse Team Synchronized Napping. :D
lurkey mclurker
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Sun Sep 20, 2015 3:02 pm

Those are hilarious... :lol: <3
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