The very first thing that many people consider when they think of getting a horse is the cost. But they make one common mistake: they don’t think beyond the buying price.
Many people don’t consider expenses associated with the buying process and other aspects surrounding horse ownership.
This article is for those who are considering buying a horse and wish to understand all the costs of horse ownership.
So, how much does a horse cost? Some of the costs you can anticipate include:
1. The Cost Of Buying The Horse
The most significant determinant of the buying price of a horse is the breed. You may shell out as little as $2,000 or as much as $100,000 depending on the breed.
For example, the Shetland Pony costs about $2,000. On the other hand, the breed considered to be the strongest will set you back approximately $100,000. A person looking for a racing horse may want to consider the Thoroughbred, which costs about $90,000.
In any case, considering the breed will give you an idea of how deep you will dig into your pocket to buy a horse.
2. Where You Live
The other factor that you must consider is where you intend to keep your horse once you’ve bought it. Your place of residence is, therefore, an important factor when it comes to horse ownership.
You have two options in this regard:
- Create suitable accommodation within your residence.
- Look for a suitable boarding facility.
Let us consider these options separately.
1. Accommodation In Your Residence
Can your property accommodate a horse? Keep in mind that you must make your property as conducive as possible for the horse to live in.
You need to put up a fence, and everything else that a horse needs to be comfortable and happy. All of these come at a price.
Individuals whose property cannot accommodate sufficient forage have the option of supplementing it with hay. This means taking into account the cost of constructing a storage facility for the hay.
At times, you will need to build a shelter for the horse – a shed or barn. Whatever you settle for translates into additional cost and more so because you have to consider the shelter maintenance cost.
A potential horse owner must factor in everything that the horse requires as far as proper accommodation is concerned.
If you find it difficult or impossible to accommodate your horse on your property, the next option is boarding.
While the boarding fees are dependent on what the facility offers, the average cost is $600 per month. If you opt for a boarding facility that doesn’t provide exercise, food, and other needed items, it may cost you about $100 per month.
High-end horse boarding facilities charge as much as $3,000 per month. Besides the supplies, boarding charges are also dependent on the city/town and other services the property offers. Boarding facilities located in urban centers and metropolitan cities tend to charge more than those in more remote areas.
If your horse requires training, it is yet another expense depending on how long the training takes.
In some localities, horse owners are required to insure their horses against disease, death, theft, or immobility. In some regions, it is optional.
Even if it is not a compulsory requirement for you to have insurance, it is something worth considering. While the premiums can become expensive over time, you can always get a budget-friendly package.
Shop around for an insurance company capable of offering you an affordable plan, and at the same time, capable of taking care of unforeseen events.
Just like humans, horses also have their health care needs, and this will set you back thousands per year.
The healthcare needs of your horse include vaccination, deworming, dental care, and general checkups. The majority of these checkups can cost up to $300 per month.
Determinants of the checkup costs include location, vet’s charges, the distance they have to drive to get to you, and the cost of the vaccines. Watch out if your horse comes down with a severe condition, as it may mean shelling out a couple thousand dollars to treat.
Horse owners should consider keeping some amount of money aside every month to cover any unforeseen problems. You never know when you’re going to need it, and as such, it’s vital for you to stay prepared at all times. It helps provide some peace of mind.
Understand that at times, your insurance provider may not cover the entire cost of treatment.
Find out if you have to purchase new equipment for your horse. Understand that it will cost you a few thousand dollars for equipment that lasts between five and ten years.
You are therefore looking at about $1200 to $2400 per year, on average, when you divide this cost. Equipment in this case includes the comb, soft and hard brushes, tack (saddle, etc.), sweat scraper, hoof pick, and the bucket for carrying these items.
The above are the necessary expenses of owning a horse. As you can see, it is not a cheap affair.
Organizing your finances and putting aside some savings will go a long way in helping you make the load lighter and more manageable.