The Complete Guide To Getting A Horse
At some point every little girl (and plenty of little boys) have wanted their own pony. As a child, it’s hard to understand why mum and dad were so reluctant to buy you one. Owning a horse is a decision not to be taken lightly. It’s a long-term commitment that requires a lot of time and money. But if you’re a dedicated horse lover and you think you can handle it, here’s our handy guide to make sure first-time owners get it right.
First Things First
Before you buy, there’s a few things you need to consider. Such as, do you have the time and energy to take care of a horse? Owning a horse can be extremely rewarding, but equally as exhausting, as horses need taking care of 365 days a year (yes, even Christmas Day!)
Do you have a home ready for your new steed? Will they live with on your land or at a livery? Will they be a solitary horse, and if not, have their previous living conditions allow them to cope in a stable with other animals?
Most importantly, do you have the funds? From insurance, to vet bills, and shoeing, horses are more than just the purchase cost. You need to think of the price of their ongoing care, such as bedding and food.
Now you’ve got the basics down, it’s time to consider what kind of horse you want. The more research you do now, the shorter your search will be.
So, What Questions Should You Be Asking?
Will this horse be ridden by just you, or other members of your family? If so, it needs to suitable for everyone.
Do you need an older, more experienced horse? Or would you like a horse with the potential to learn and flourish alongside you? If it’s the latter, you’ll need the patience and skill to train it, as “Green” horses are not necessarily the best for novice owners. If they’re still growing, the horse you think you’re buying may not be what you get further down the line. And if you’re still not the best rider yourself, an older horse will be better for developing your abilities – recommends horses aged five-years and up.
Are you interested in competing? And if you’re planning on doing it soon after buying, you’ll need a horse that knows the ropes. Ask the owner about the horse’s history, from how it shows, to its reaction to traffic, and how it acts around people and other animals.
What Else is There to Consider?
Other elements to seriously think about include size, breed, and the health of the animal. Whether you’re going for a cute little pony or a majestic Thoroughbred, make sure you get it checked out by a veterinarian, as a proper examination may find issues you’ve yet to pick up on, or at the very least highlight the strengths and weaknesses of your potential buy.
Write down what you’re willing to comprise on and what you consider absolute deal-breakers, then make sure you stick to them! As we said before, a horse is a long-term commitment, you don’t want to regret it later on. Take your lists to viewings so you don’t budge, after all, it’s easy to get carried away. Do the groundwork now, and you and your new friend will have years of happiness ahead of you!