You’re thinking about buying a horse? Before you do, here are some considerations to make. You don’t want to make the same mistakes as many before you!
- Before Making a Decision
If you’re still undecided as to whether or not you should buy a horse, here are some considerations;
- Cost – As well as the initial investment, you also need to think about food and bedding if you’re going to be looking after the horse yourself. If not, there are still boarding costs to payout and these will include bedding and food. After this, costs will involve vaccinations and deworming at the vets, hoof trimming, riding lessons, and more.
- Time – The second-largest resource horses require is time; if you’re planning to look after the horse, they will need care and attention (and food!) twice per day. Even if you plan on using boarding facilities that cover these tasks, horses still need exercise in order to remain happy and healthy.
- Volunteer – When making other investments, we like to test and experiment before spending money. You can do the same with horses, and it comes in the form of volunteering. By either leasing a horse or volunteering at a stable, you get experience and find out whether owning a horse is a real passion or a passing fantasy.
Owning a horse can be rewarding because you have a big friend always waiting to make any day better, but they also need a committed owner. If you aren’t going to look after them yourself, you need to pay out for the right services and the right care.
- Before Buying a Horse
Do you still want to go ahead? Great, here’s some purchasing advice;
- List Your Needs – How will you use the horse and what kind of temperament do you want? When a horse needs lots of schooling, and the new rider doesn’t have experience or time, this causes lots of problems. Even if it costs more money, you might want to consider an older horse that has been trained and doesn’t need as much attention.
- Always See Potential Horses – Just because we CAN buy everything online these days, this doesn’t mean we SHOULD. With horses, you need to see before spending money. Unfortunately, many people have spent money only for descriptions to be inaccurate.
- Take Experience with You – If you don’t have the experience yourself, take some with you whether this is a friend, a friend of a colleague, or whoever it may be. With experience around horses, they will know to check ID, ensure the horse is fit for what you need, to look into the horse’s history, and also start moving towards the vetting process.
- Vet the Horse – What do we mean? Well, this process will see a trusted livestock veterinarian perform all sorts of checks to establish the horse’s health and condition.
- Vet the Seller – While the vet checks the horse, you can check the seller. Is the vendor reputable? Do they have reviews online? When given a history of the horse, do the phone numbers and names actually match up to the people who answer the phone when you call? With dealers, we recommend asking for references.
- Check the Return Agreement and Get a Receipt – No matter how trustworthy the seller seems, check the return agreement (some will offer money while others will only allow for a trade to another horse). After this, ALWAYS get a written receipt that displays payment terms, horse identity, passport number, and more.
If you make these considerations both before making your decision and when shopping the market, you can make more informed decisions and feel happy with your purchase when all is said and done!