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tell me again, how much it costs to keep a horse...

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  • tell me again, how much it costs to keep a horse...

    I got to browse CL again...I sometimes do...came across a couple of decent fellows, nothing fancy but certainly not horrible.
    but since we are having some major expenses and a greatly diminished paycheck, I am not comfortable committing myself to the ongoing monthly expense of ownership.

    Just remind me again that he purchase price is the cheapest thing about a horse (99% of the time)

    Originally posted by BigMama1
    Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
    GNU Terry Prachett

  • #2
    Whatever your paycheck is, THAT is how much it'll cost to keep a horse. Oh, and if you have any savings, someone will need the vet. On a Sunday, at 4:00 a.m., on a holiday.
    Homeopathy claims water can cure you since it once held medicine. That's like saying you can get sustenance from an empty plate because it once held food.

    Comment


    • #3
      I've spent over three thousand dollars in the last 5 months on my horse and dog. The horse is even insured, but of course that is an additional $500 or so a year.

      There, how was that for discouraging!?
      DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Not very

        keep'em coming!
        (how did this end up on the farmboard...getting old...another reason not to get a horse, right! )
        Originally posted by BigMama1
        Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
        GNU Terry Prachett

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        • #5
          I'd say 3-5k per horse when you include everything.
          A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by FitToBeTied View Post
            I'd say 3-5k per horse when you include everything.

            about my estimation....
            Originally posted by BigMama1
            Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
            GNU Terry Prachett

            Comment


            • #7
              Keeping on property you already own, or boarding? How much acreage? The less acreage, the more hay you have to feed. Even then maintaining pasture to a decent level of health takes $$.
              ______________________________
              The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

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              • #8
                horses that are cheap to buy are always the ones that off-the-rack saddles don't fit so you have to buy $$$$ custom saddles; then they are the ones that need special shoeing at $$$ per month; then they go lame and need an assortment of $$$ supplements and medications; and then they live forever, gimping around, eating pounds of expensive grain and mountains of expensive hay and gallons of expensive medicines well into their 40's.

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                • #9
                  I've got 2 horses in my backyard.

                  Shavings: I go through approx 5-6 large bales of shavings/wk. That's easily 260-312 bales/yr. Let's average that to 286 bales @ $5.50/bale=$1573.

                  Grass Hay: $4/bale and I buy ~ 300 bales so that's another $1200.

                  Grain: a 50 lb bag lasts me about 9 days so for a yr I need about 40+ bags @ $18.00/bag=$720. I also buy about 100 lbs of oats for summer and several bags of beet pulp though the yr so that probably adds another $60-80.

                  Vet costs run on the average of $5-600 for annual Wellness exam, blood work and dental and some vaccines but I do my vaccines except Rabies so that probably runs me another $30-50/yr.

                  Farrier runs me $40 every 5-6 wks so figure 9 trims=$360.

                  So not counting buying blankets, equipment, etc, just the very basic feed, bedding, grain, vet and farrier runs me just under $4600. That doesn't account for any emergeny vet calls like arabhorse2 alluded to either.

                  Also it doesn't account for fertilizing the fields, mowing the fields, paying taxes on the land and it sure doesn't account for the barn, fencing, indoor and outdoor rings for riding. Heck taxes alone are ~$9K+. I think I figured out in '05 that if I had to buy the land and put up my barn and indoor and outdoor ring and fence the 5 post and rail paddocks/pastures it would have cost somewhere between $493,000 to $558,000.

                  Now, if those figures don't remind you that affording a horse is an expense, nothing will.

                  If you lived closer, I'd say come and ride the 2 retirees I have.
                  Sue

                  I'm not saying let's go kill all the stupid people...I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

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                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by JB View Post
                    Keeping on property you already own, or boarding? How much acreage? The less acreage, the more hay you have to feed. Even then maintaining pasture to a decent level of health takes $$.
                    LOL, if I had a farm I probably already owned a horse or two...
                    Originally posted by BigMama1
                    Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
                    GNU Terry Prachett

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Alagirl, I dont know where youre located, but you can shop for me! We're looking for an older horse and we'd like to "rescue" something that looks like it could use an upgrade!

                      Not quite as much fun, but you could spend my money!
                      Charlie Brown (1994 bay TB X gelding)
                      White Star (2004 grey TB gelding)

                      Mystical Moment, 1977-2010.

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                      • #12
                        I'm in New England, which is fairly expensive, but I figure on $8,000-$10,000 per year. Board $500/month, 8-9 trims/year from the farrier at $40, annual vet costs for shots, etc. $500-600, insurance $600, and then all of the various stuff you pick up at the feed store: fly spray, dewormers, treats, etc. Then there are new tack items you want, a blanket to replace the one with the big hole in it, lessons ($600-$1000/year).
                        That's if nothing goes wrong

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                        • #13
                          Since you'd be boarding you really have to start with what's available around you. Boarding is a fixed rate, at least for a time, so that's what it is. Even "cheap" board of, say, $300, means $3600 a year just for that, but most importantly, it's $300 each and every month. Or more. That is probably the biggest deal - you can pretty easily save the $$ for bi-annual vaccines along the way, but can you come up with board, at a minimum, each and every month?

                          Farrier fees - barefoot or shod? If shod, special shoes required? You can minimize expenses here a bit by choosing a horse who has been doing the work you want to do, on the footing you want to do it on, either barefoot or with boots. He'll still need trims, but usually trimming is a good bit less than shoeing.

                          Vaccinations - figure $150 every 6 months or so - that's pretty safe, unless you like to vaccinate for everything under the sun. $150 should cover all the core vaccines in most places.

                          Floating - figure yearly at whatever rate in your area - some are VERY high, like $300+, I don't pay nearly that much.

                          Those are the basics. Everything else is fairly optional You can get used tack for almost everything, for the most part - saddle may be something you have to get new, but again, you can decide you will not get a horse who has an "odd" back and greatly increase your chances of finding something used. They are also one-time expenses, usually, rarely needing to be replaced. Just don't develop a thing for collecting saddle pads LOL
                          ______________________________
                          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by JB View Post
                            Since you'd be boarding you really have to start with what's available around you. Boarding is a fixed rate, at least for a time, so that's what it is. Even "cheap" board of, say, $300, means $3600 a year just for that, but most importantly, it's $300 each and every month. Or more. That is probably the biggest deal - you can pretty easily save the $$ for bi-annual vaccines along the way, but can you come up with board, at a minimum, each and every month?
                            And if you go "cheap" for board, will that include everything, or will you be on the hook for additional grain or hay or bedding or whatever if your horse exceeds what is included with your board?

                            I pay a pittance for board, but doesn't include grain. Isn't a problem for an easy keeper, but my hard keeper winds up being quite a bit more per month.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              How long is a piece of string? It really depends on the horse, how you like to keep them, and where you live.

                              I'm in CA so it's expensive. Luckily I think pasture board is the best for horses, and it's cheaper - if you can find it here!

                              I have 2 horses at opposite ends of the needs spectrum. If money is an issue I strongly recommend you buy a horse who is an easy keeper and happy working barefoot. Learn how to trim feet and give vaccines and dewormer yourself and you'll save big and be a better horseman for it.

                              Horse 1:
                              Barefoot, I trim him myself, easy keeper.
                              Board: $320/month
                              Vaccines 2x yr/deworming 6x yr: $7.50/month
                              Dental work: $300/yr
                              ----------------------
                              $4230/year

                              Horse 2:
                              Expensive corrective shoeing, hard keeper.
                              Shoes $300/7 weeks = $171/month
                              Board: $320/month
                              Feed: $300/month
                              Vaccines 2x yr/deworming 6x yr: $7.50/month
                              Dental work: $300/yr
                              ----------------------
                              $9882/year

                              As you can see horse 2 is almost THREE TIMES more expensive to keep that horse 2. I didn't even include the $21/day medications he's been on the last 6 months for a fungal infection, or the fact I have to drive 30 miles round trip per day to administer them and feed him... argh.

                              I also budget about $300 per horse in emergency vet work per year, on the low side, as that's how much it is for a vet around here to show up and give some banamine or make an assessment, it seems. Horse 1 has done his twice this year so far...
                              ----------------------------------------
                              PSSM / EPSM and Shivers Forum
                              http://pssm.xanthoria.com/
                              ----------------------------------------

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                I gave myself a budget of 500 bucks a month, meaning that's the total, leftovers saved for a rainy day...6k a year. OF COURSE, if that would be the bottom bottom line, after the coins are rolled and the couch cleaned out and the ashtrays, the horse would implode and require a 10k veterinary bill...

                                But since all the horsey equipment I oen is a bitless contraption, not even the whole head stall nor reins and a pair of ropers/paddock boots....I am slow to pull the trigger...the 200$ CL special would could cost me easily 2k on top of the 6k alotment in stuff...
                                Originally posted by BigMama1
                                Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
                                GNU Terry Prachett

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Another thing to consider if cash is tight and you WOULD spend $10k on a vet bill is to insure the horse for major medical. It's not terribly expensive, really, and is protection for those crazy things that happen.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by Simkie View Post
                                    Another thing to consider if cash is tight and you WOULD spend $10k on a vet bill is to insure the horse for major medical. It's not terribly expensive, really, and is protection for those crazy things that happen.
                                    The horses I am looking at, that would be CRAZY to consider.....seriously.
                                    Originally posted by BigMama1
                                    Facts don't have versions. If they do, they are opinions
                                    GNU Terry Prachett

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
                                      The horses I am looking at, that would be CRAZY to consider.....seriously.
                                      But it's not the horse. It's how much money YOU would spend if the shit hit the fan. The mortality is inconsequential...it's the major medical that's important.

                                      If you know you would euthanise right away rather than spend a boatload of money to fix the free or nearly free horse, then spending the dollars on a major medical policy doesn't make any sense.

                                      But if you WOULD spend several thou to treat or fix a problem, then a MM policy DOES make sense, even on a "worthless" horse.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Figure out if feed is included in board. That can make a big difference and it can be a variable cost based on fluctuating hay prices.
                                        ______________________________
                                        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

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