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I've been looking around for a while and I've finally found the horse I think would be right for me. I've only had one horse before, and I'd like to start doing competitions. This horse has done quite a bit of dressage but he's 15 years old so I'm not sure whether that's too old for a competition horse. I'd like a bit of advice on whether to buy him or look elsewhere. He's a gorgeous gelding, with excellent ground manners and a quiet nature. His owner is friendly and her coach was there when I went to look at him. The price is also very reasonable. Pretty much exactly what I was looking for really. So all that's stopping me is his age. Should I be worried?

Hello Katy,

Have him vetted by a vet you trust.  IF he vets out, he could be the best buy you ever make.  You are rather inexperienced so it will be great if one of you has a bit more time in the competition arena.  If he vets sound...go for it.

Happy riding,


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Dorothy K Morris


I now live in Tucson, AZ. My expertise is in training and rehabilitating horses, and training riders for combined training for over 40 years, in Virginia and California. This includes dressage, cross country obstacles and show jumping. In my many years of experience and endless study of Classical theory, and my hands-on retraining horses,I have accummulated much knowledge of the different personalities of horses and how to approach their rehabilitation. At my age, I do not ride as much as I used to, but I don't see why I have to waste the experience I have. I can answer certain questions about starting young horses in English riding: dressage, jumping, cross country obstacles and basic equitation. I can help with rehabilitation of spoiled or difficult horses; however, many problems require sustained riding instruction/training and I cannot do this online. Some issues need to be observed to come to a correct diagnosis. If your problem is of this type, please find a qualified instructor/trainer. I cannot give riding lessons via email.


Experience in the area: Over 40 years of English riding experience, including Fox Hunting in Virginia where I earned my colors with the Blue Ridge Hunt, training young horses for hunting and/or eventing. Coached a rider from her beginning at Training Level Combined tests through her competition at two Junior International competition Three Day Events. She rode my horse that I also started and trained her to ride. This combination competed in the World Championship Three Day in Lexington, KY in 1978. I trained another horse (TB) through 3rd Level Dressage and jumping. He eventually competed at Advanced level Three Day. I have reschooled several horses with difficulties ranging from running away to running backward, to not allowing a bridle to be put on, to kicking out at the farrier, being "too much on the muscle over jumps", barn sour, etc

National Society Daughters of the Revolution (DAR)

Six novels (I am also a novelist)

Some college. Endless study of Classical Theory and training methods.

Awards and Honors
Who's Who of American Women, Who'w Who in America, Past Board of Directors FDIC-NACM

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