I had a call this morning from a casual friend who wanted to let me know a hunt person she knows is looking for a field hunter that she could whip off of. (sorry for the awkward sentences ).
When she told me the top price, I didn't say anything. However, my guess that a horse with those qualifications would be more like 20k.
Am I right?
I would agree with Jennifer - in this economy and in most places (besides maybe VA) selling hunt horses can be a challenge. But that all depends again on the location and how good of a rider the Whipper-in may be ?
While I have only minimal personal hunting experience, I'm tempted to say that there are options out there. For example, I have a foxhunter-turned-eventer who would love going back to the hunt field (hounds are his angels). He fits judybigredpony's description of being an extremely rare find, and he is definitely worth his weight in gold (and then some... maybe platinum. Or titanium). Not sure if I'd ever let him go for 10k, but he could have an incredible season as a whip horse on a lease for the staff, or an individual person.
ManyDogs, maybe let your friend know that there are options out there.
In my experience, yes, you can get a great field hunter for under $10k. But it depends upon where you are buying... hunt horses cost a lot more in Virginia, and I've heard most horses out there go for around $20k. You can probably negotiate a good price, since it's a tough market to sell in.
Late to this party, but if she does not intend to ride in the field, it's a lot easier to make a whipper-in's horse. You just need something brave enough to go off by itself and jump without a lead, safe enough to take care of you, and sound enough to work much harder than a field horse. You might have some issues when you're roading or have to have the hounds packed up tightly, but if you can move about at will, you lose most of the meltdown problems you get in the field. And of course, it must not have any issues with hounds.
I bought a horse from a lady after she answered my dog question by throwing a stick between the horse's hind feet. Her German Shepherd raced up and fetched the stick, the horse never even flicked an ear.
I'm not sure what happened to the lady who was searching. I put her in touch with a friend in NoVA who had a great former hunt horse but I don't think the searcher ever called. Geez.
If I didn't have 4 horses already (and a very tolerant DH) I would have bought friend's horse!
PS-I have ten dogs so my gang is used to dogs everywhere. NOT that it is akin to hounds/field/horses/galloping/etc. but hopefully it will help a bit if I ever do take one horse/pony out in the hunt field.
PSS-please don't ask about how many cats we have.
And then there was the baby pot-bellied pig in Tractor Supply....