Getting a Pet Horse
Whenever the thought of getting a pet crosses our mind, most of us think of dogs or cats at first. If you like to keep things exotic, you probably want a pet snake, lizard or turtle. People, especially children living in the countryside, often love to ride their horses. Young kids are more drawn towards ponies than the usual cats or dogs. Well, who wouldn’t want to have a pet which they can saddle up for a ride? Not only those, but horses are also indeed beautiful creatures that look dapper in their stables or while galloping across lands. Having said that, is it really practical to get a pet horse? We shall find out here.
Costs of Owning a Pony/Horse
When you think of purchasing a horse, you must take into consideration a lot of factors. A common objection that most people have is the amount of money spent on owning a horse. It includes not only the price of buying but also their food, stay and health. Horses are obviously giant animals with a big appetite. They eat in huge amounts, and yes, it can get heavy on your pocket. The costs of owning a horse vary from place to place. It also depends on the type of horse you are looking for and where it will stay, along with several other factors. The buying cost is just one part of this equation. Don’t forget to consider healthcare, housing, food, and various other things that will need your attention and money.
The Cost of Purchase
While buying a horse, you will realize that its purchase price varies greatly, based on several factors. You can even get a horse for free if you adopt one in need of shelter or a home. If you hunt for a certain kind of horse or a particular breed, then be prepared to shell out at least some hundred to even a thousand dollars.
The Cost of its Habitat
Once you buy the horse, you need to keep it in a proper place. If you are planning on keeping it on your land, it would require few acres of the fenced-in area along with sufficient barn space. If you do not have such land, acquiring it would be pricey. People living in urban regions would probably have to board their horses at local stables. The boarding cost depends on the services provided but on average, and it would cost you several hundred dollars every month.
The Cost of its Food
Horses are known for eating a lot, and they need different kinds of supplements and vitamins. You would probably need to spend at least $100 every year for its food and feeding. If you want to feed it grains, the cost would further rise.
The Cost of Healthcare
Just like any other pet, horses need regular veterinary attention. From annual teeth cleanings to vaccinations, horses require many services that can add up to $300 or even more to your horse care budget annually. This amount can highly increase if the horse undergoes any health issue. Many horse owners go for health insurance for the horses, which cost around $350 or even more every year. This protects them from high veterinary costs.
Horses also possess hooves that need regular checking and trimming by a specialist known as a farrier. It has to be done every few months. While a hoof trim would cost you just $25, the price of complete shoeing can go up to a whopping $100. If you plan to ride that horse, that will require additional cost for the special riding supplies. Known as the tack, the supplies include brushes, bits, bridles, saddles and equestrian clothing. As per the American Quarter Horse Association estimates, these expenses can go up to as much as $1,500 to $2,000.(See, How much does it cost to buy a horse?)
Is it all Worth it?
Now that you know buying and owning a horse is definitely a costly endeavour, the choice is yours to make. As per the estimates of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, a minimum of $2,500 is the annual cost of keeping a healthy horse. It does not include stabling costs. As per numerous other horse-related organizations, the figure can be around $3,600 or even more.
While owning these giant animals is quite a pricey affair, horse lovers would tell you that they are worth every penny. For them, these special and unique mammals can a lot to the lives of their owners. Now, if they are worth the dollars or you want an affordable pet- it is up to you. Owning any pet is a huge responsibility, and with big animals, things can get all the more complex. Don’t make a rash decision. Think upon it, and if you think you are mentally, physically, and financially ready to own a horse, go for it.