The generosity of a horse predisposes it for abuse. It is the subtle forms of abuse usually having the best intentions that causes the worst damage, emotionally and physically. The first time horse owner who spoils them by feeding grains and sweet feeds, the backyard pet scenario with inadequate shelter and fencing and no training, harsh bits, saddles that don't fit properly, improperly trimmed or shod feet or lack of, being kept in fields fenced with barb wire, pressured to perform when they are not conditioned properly, poor riding and handling are all forms of abuse.
The damage done includes lameness, death, pain, a variety of health issues and emotional suffering. As a horse owner it is your responsibility to learn all you can on a regular basis in regards to caring, keeping and training horses. With access to the internet, there is no excuse to not be informed and learn constantly about these magnificent animals. Consult with professionals in the horse world who are concerned about the well-fare of the horse. If you cannot afford to keep a horse, DO NOT GET ONE! If you do not have the knowledge or horsemanship skills, DO NOT GET A HORSE. Take the time to train with a professional before purchasing your own horse. If you are a first time horse owner, do not get a young green horse. Have a trusted trainer help you find a good horse suitable to your level of skills and type of riding. Both you and your new horse will be happier.