I have made the very sad decision to put my pony Reggie up for loan. He has been an amazing lead rein and first ridden pony for my daughter and has done lots of pony club activities and schooling/ hacking. But this February he was diagnosed with having gastric ulcers which we think he got at pony club camp last July where the increased exercise, longish periods without food and the increased stress of travelling every day and being in a demanding environment may have triggered them. As a result of the ulcers, his behaviour changed and he became reluctant to be schooled and started bucking. His behaviour returned to normal by the end of the summer and he was ridden a lot up until November. In January he started behaving strangely again and he was agressive around food and generally bad tempered. At this point I had started giving him hard feed to supplement the hay which we think triggered the ulcers again as hard feed is acid producing. Someone recommended that I get him checked for ulcers, and sure enough we found them. They weren't severe, but enough to cause him discomfort and effect his temperament. He has been treated now and has returned to his usual lovely self, but in the meantime has been outgrown by my daughter who has moved onto a bigger pony.
I feel confident that if he is managed properly, there is no reason for them to return, but he does need to be brought back into work slowly and in a low stress environment. He is a brilliant lead rein and first ridden pony who is a dream to handle in all ways but I don't think his future is as a competition pony. He is laid back and not forward, likes to follow rather than lead and just wants a life with routine and security. He lives out at the moment but is fine stabled, he has never had laminitis, is brilliant with the farrier and never needs sedating when he has his teeth done. He is up to date with his teeth, worming and jabs and loads perfectly every time.
I would be happier if he stayed in the area, but if the home is right, I am happy for him to go further away.