What you can expect when buying your first horse
Buying your very first horse is a moment you’ll never forget and one of the most thrilling experiences of your life. Riding someone else’s horse (even leasing) is not quite the same as signing the papers and forking over your money in exchange for your own horse.
- And that first ride? Exhilarating.
- And your free time? Replaced with horse time.
- And all that extra money? Well…
Depending on your needs and preferences, purchasing a horse might be rather costly. The price you’ll have to spend to keep them content and healthy is even more expensive. Have we discussed the cost of supplies yet? If you’re not cautious, things might quickly become absurd.
*Cover photo courtesy of Emily Harris from Sisters Horsing Around
Is owning a horse expensive?
Owning a horse can be expensive, depending on where you live . Living on a farm in a small town in the Midwest will likely result in much lower costs than living in the midst of a large metropolis. has to board at an upscale stable. Additionally, you may do more once you are away from plentiful, rich hay fields. expect to pay for forage .
Of course, certain expenses associated with owning a horse are as high as you make them.
Various dietary supplements, grooming products, and equipment things are more of a luxury and not really required. Go for it if you can afford it. If not, don’t be upset that you couldn’t afford to get your horse the exclusive gold-plated, diamond-studded bit. She honestly won’t care!
Check out our monthly horse expense reports view Stephanie Moratto’s second perspective after that:
Factors influencing horse cost
The cost of the horse itself Depending on a variety of various conditions, might vary greatly. The biggest variables include age, training, show experience (and earnings), athletic potential, bloodlines, and health.
This implies that a senior, grade mare that needs daily medicine, is only capable of mild trail riding, and is older than the 7-year-old imported warmblood gelding with Fourth Level dressage training. No surprise.
Here is one Australian event organizer who shares her annual spending:
Identifying needs versus wants
You’re better off when you initially start searching for your first horse. asking for help . Your trainer or teacher may be a huge help in keeping you in control and should know what kind of horse is best for you. The same individual (or persons) might be helpful when it comes to purchasing equipment or other supplies.
People that have been involved in the equestrian industry for some time have seen a lot of what is available and can let you know whether something is genuinely unnecessary.
Try your best to avoid making impulsive purchases and instead take a step back and think of the pros and cons of whatever you’re looking it. Your financial account will appreciate it.
Our friends over at Savvy Horsewoman Headquarters offer a wealth of resources and knowledge to assist you in creating a budget.
What does a horse cost on average?
Horses may range in price from $0 to $70,000,000, but fortunately for us, average horse doesn’t cost millions of dollars. The average cost of a recreational mount is about $3,000, which is rather affordable.
However, the prices may start to escalate very rapidly if you start considering competitive horses.
- Jumping horse —If you are looking into show jumping You plan to spend roughly $10,000 on a good beginner horse that will earn you ribbons. These horses need a certain level of athleticism, training, experience, and need to be bred for it.
- Barrel racing horse —Like jumping horses, barrel horses are well bred and coached athletes, and this is reflected in their worth. Expect to pay at least $10,000 for a decent one, but don’t be surprised if you see more going for $15,000-20,000.
- Miniature horse —Miniature horses are both quite distinctive and very popular right now! Although the greatest specimens of the breed may cost up to $200,000, you can certainly find one for $1,000. Fortunately, since minis are a rare species, they often cost less than $4,000. It may not bring in a lot of winnings, but a cheap mini is still pretty cute.
- Racehorse cost — Racehorses are often quite pricey since there is a chance to earn a lot of money. Although there are several estimates circulating about, you should prepare to spend between $50,000 and $60,000! Fusaichi Pegasus, the most expensive horse ever sold, sold for almost $70,000,000. That’s right – 70 million dollars!
- Polo horse —Polo horses are par for the course when it comes to buying a competition mount. Polo ponies may cost as little as $4,000, while more expensive ones can cost as much as $30,000 or more.
A other option to think about is purchasing a horse at auction. Here’s a video from Elphick Event Ponies about her experience.
Costs to feed a horse
The cost to feed a horse based on your region, their size, the amount of labor they do, their genetics, and the health needs. Many recreational horses that go on casual trail rides can be perfectly fine with just hay and/or pasture although in certain places they might be too pricey.
Expect to spend considerably more if you need to balance forage that is deficient in something or feed a concentrate to provide additional calories.
Supplements may be rather pricey as well, so you can be unpleasantly shocked if your horse develops a special medical condition.
In all, you should budget between $60 to $230 per month for hay alone before adding any concentrate or supplement fees.
Cost to board a horse
Like feeding, boarding might differ depending on where you are. If you’re in a big city or other area with hard-to-find acreage, you’ll have to pay a lot more than in rural areas.
Since boarding often includes feed and hay , a barn will have to increase its boarding fees if it must truck hay in from distant areas.
You can often locate a good barn for $400 to $500, but don’t be surprised if you encounter establishments that ask $750 or more.
Visit Amazon by clicking to see this thorough guide on horse care.
Average horse health expenses
Luckily, most veterinary care isn’t actually that bad . Finding vets is simpler and they may charge a little less if there are more horses in your region. You might anticipate spending $500 year on veterinary care, but maintaining an eye emergency fund is important.
You should budget between $5,000 and $10,000 if your horse requires surgery for colic.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does a Quarter Horse cost?
A quarter horse typically costs $3,500. They’re easy to find and pop up everywhere , but with good cause! They often make good company and can easily adapt to a variety of activities. They work with cattle, compete in races, jump, hike, and perform dressage.
What does a Friesian Horse cost?
One glance will explain why Friesians are so well-liked at the moment. They are stunning! Initially used for pulling carriages, they are now exchanging gears and have making a splash in the dressage world . You should budget around $25,000 to purchase one.
What does a Gypsy Vanner cost?
The Gypsy Vanner is another another stylish breed of horse! They have shown some promise in a variety of sports, including driving, leaping, and even trail riding! For one, you should budget at least $10,000.
What to do if you can’t afford your horses anymore?
Consider leasing your horse. With a complete lease, another party would be responsible for covering all boarding, farrier, and regular veterinary expenses.
You may always lease your horse onsite (he remains where he is) or simply allow the horse to be relocated someplace nearby where you can check on him often if you are concerned that the lessee won’t take excellent care of your horse.
Leasing for you, no? Think about switching your board’s kind. The least expensive option is self-care, but it often involves more effort.
Finally, you may sell your horse to a buyer who will adore him and has more money.
Consider lending your horse to your barn if it needs a new horse and provides lessons. You can negotiate with the barn manager for a discounted board.
For two to three riding days each week, you may undertake a partial or half lease on your horse. If your horse is show-level trained, you can offer him for a show lease, which can easily be worth $10,000/year, plus the leaser pays for board and the horse’s continued training.
Finally, if you have a mare and are willing to give up riding for a time, you might offer her as a recipient mare or arrange a breeding lease for a year.
No matter where you live, owning horses is a major expenditure, but certain places will just cost far more. With such a wide range in purchase costs for different horses and an even wider range in the cost of care it can be very difficult to come up with an average.
A recreational mount should cost around $3,000, and annual upkeep should cost at least another $3,000 in total. Worth it ? Totally!