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Taking horse to college

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  • Taking horse to college

    So I'm looking into colleges, and I got a letter from University of Miami. I looked into it further, and I really like it. The only problem is that it's 14 hours from my house. I'm taking my horse to college, and I don't own a trailer. So shipping would be a hassle, and i'm guessing quite expensive. Would this stop you form going to a school? What are some ways to cut down on shipping cost?

    Btw, due to it being so far away, he would probably only some home on long breaks such as Christmas and Summer.

  • #2
    I had a horse with me during college for all 4 years. Junior year I even had two with me! My parents lived in Florida and I went to school in Massachusetts, didn't stop me, the riding program and boarding was great and the horses also got a good education as well as exposure different things.

    I would use this site, it's great for getting the several different quotes quickly: www.travelinghorse.com
    Ryu Equestrian & Facebook Page
    Breeding Horses Today, for the Equestrian Sport of Tomorrow.
    Osteen & Gainesville, Florida.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by MCarverS View Post
      I had a horse with me during college for all 4 years. Junior year I even had two with me! My parents lived in Florida and I went to school in Massachusetts, didn't stop me, the riding program and boarding was great and the horses also got a good education as well as exposure different things.

      I would use this site, it's great for getting the several different quotes quickly: www.travelinghorse.com
      What school did you attend? My daughter, a few years from college, is already exploring her options and would desperately love to take our horse with her.

      Comment


      • #4
        It wouldn't have stopped me from bringing my horse with me...my horse is what keeps me sane during the school year! Luckily I only go to school about four hours away from home, so it's not too bad. He only comes home during the summer. I leave him at school during all other breaks, including Christmas, and have other people ride him for me, I don't think shipping back and forth even for Christmas break is worth it.

        Comment


        • #5
          Given the location of U. Miami and the costs of keeping a horse in Florida, I suspect shipping him down would be the least of your worries. If you plan to take him to college, I'd look into boarding and care options first and foremost.

          I'd also consider leaving him at home for at least the first semester so you can settle in and get set up in the college routine and get a handle on the local stables and horse community.
          According to the Mayan calendar, the world will not end this week. Please plan your life accordingly.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Carolinadreamin' View Post
            What school did you attend? My daughter, a few years from college, is already exploring her options and would desperately love to take our horse with her.
            I went to Mount Holyoke College. Cornell was my original first choice and Mount Holyoke my safety, but after visiting Mount Holyoke several times and meeting with the instructors, I made Mount Holyoke my first choice and it was a perfect choice for me and my horses!

            Feel free to PM me and I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have or put you in contact with some MHC Eq Team contacts.
            Ryu Equestrian & Facebook Page
            Breeding Horses Today, for the Equestrian Sport of Tomorrow.
            Osteen & Gainesville, Florida.

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by loshad View Post
              Given the location of U. Miami and the costs of keeping a horse in Florida, I suspect shipping him down would be the least of your worries. If you plan to take him to college, I'd look into boarding and care options first and foremost.

              I'd also consider leaving him at home for at least the first semester so you can settle in and get set up in the college routine and get a handle on the local stables and horse community.
              Yeah, I've thought of that. I'm thinking I might have to half lease him to someone.

              Comment


              • #8
                MCarver, I visited Mt. Holyoke and loved it. Ultimately, I didn't decide to attend there, but having the barn right there on campus was awesome.

                To the OP: may I be the lone dissenter? As a soon-to-graduate senior in college, I would recommend not taking a horse - at least not at first. College is a big adjustment, particularly when you are moving to a new city/state, not to mention the social changes, academics, etc. Please don't neglect your college experience for the horses - the horses will be there when you get out.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Tha Ridge View Post
                  MCarver, I visited Mt. Holyoke and loved it. Ultimately, I didn't decide to attend there, but having the barn right there on campus was awesome.
                  Especially in the winter when driving wasn't an option it certainly didn't give me an excuse to not ride!
                  Ryu Equestrian & Facebook Page
                  Breeding Horses Today, for the Equestrian Sport of Tomorrow.
                  Osteen & Gainesville, Florida.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I have to agree with Tha Ridge. I am a freshman at University of Florida this year and I didn't bring my horse up to school with me. I was way too busy first semester, I could barely make it out once a week for a lesson at a barn in Ocala. This semester I brought up a project to play with in January and I feel bad because I barely had anytime to ride her. My sorority takes up loads of time, plus I am taking 16 credit hours. I know my horses will be around when I work out my schedule, but college has so many things to do...I find it very hard to say "no" to going out at night- or hanging out with my amazing sisters.
                    I would say your best bet is to go your first semester without a horse and get yourself settled in, then take things from there. Best of luck! College is amazing...A LOT of work, but still amazing

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I had a horse with me all the way through college. Its all about how you prioritize. If having more social time or pursuing a very challenging major is what you want to do for four years, then don't take the horse. For me, I could have cared less about having hours to spend with friends. What I really wanted to do was ride and show both on my own and IHSA. My major was originally business and then changed to PolSci. Neither one was too time consuming that I couldn't ride at least 1 horse a day.
                      Eight Fences Farm. Mansfield, MA

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                      • #12
                        As a soon to graduate senior, I think it really depends on your major and what you plan to get involved in. The majority of the time I have been in school I haven't had a horse with me. This is my last semester and he is now out here with me since I finally have some downtime. I agree with a couple others that said not to bring your horse with you your first semester. You are going to be facing a lot of changes and it can be stressful enough trying to manage yourself and your school work without worrying about getting out to the barn consistently. Also it's important to get involved on campus, make new friends, go watch your school's teams play, get comfortable with the area; that is important since this is gonna be your primary home for 4 years. Don't give up the college experience completely for horses, it is loads of fun, don't miss out on it. I've missed my horses, but I wouldn't trade the experience for anything.
                        "There is no secret so close as that between a rider and his horse." - Robert Smith Surtees

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If you have the means to make it happen and truly WANT to make it happen, you can do it. Even if you have a rough major and an active social life. I've had a horse with me at college for all four years and I wouldn't have done things any differently. I'm not a huge partier and don't have a ridiculously hard degree, so I suppose that makes things "easier." On the other hand, I have a friend who is ChemE, gets fantastic grades, is on the Eq team, rides daily, and parties (probably more than one with all those other responsibilities "should," but she manages to make it all work).

                          Everyone and every situation is different.
                          "Last time I picked your feet, you broke my toe!"

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                          • #14
                            I am a recent graduate and I agree with everyone who says to leave the horse home for the first semester. I was so busy first semester of college getting used to everything that no matter how hard I tried, I don't think I would have gotten out to ride as much as I would have wanted. However, I might have had a happier first semester is my boy had been there with me. But everyone's college experience is different, so do what you think will work for you and if it doesn't work out you can always make amendments.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I went to school 15 hrs away from home and took b/t 1 and 3 horses with me each year. I even continued to show on the AA circuit while taking a full load of classes (which I'm not sure I would suggest doing to be perfectly honest ).

                              For me having my horses with me the first semester was the reason I didn't drop out and move closer to home ASAP! They were the one familiar thing in my life and helped me to adjust to a whole new way of living with minimal stress. I'll never forget rushing out to the barn after my first day of classes and being so relieved to see their faces! I had a miserable dorm experience and many days getting to see my horses was the only bright spot in my day/week.

                              I don't think I missed out on the college experience at all by having them with me from day one. Actually, several of my best friends from college were ones I met via horses! I had a very hard major and active social life and didn't have much trouble making time to see my boys. There were days I couldn't make it out but that's why having a barn you can trust is so important! My barn was wonderful with excellent care so I didn't need to worry if I couldn't make it out for a few days. Plus, it was only 15 mins from campus.
                              I do have my own trailer so that made it a little easier. The worst year was Freshman year b/c you HAVE to live on campus/in a dorm and they close down over winter break so you're forced to go home for the entire duration. I ended up just shipping my guys to Florida where my trainer took over their care from the end of November until I could fly down there after finals.

                              After I got my own apartment and stopped doing the winter circuits (sold my top horse and pre vet upper level sci courses became too difficult to manage 'on the road') I would leave them at school over winter break and just fly home for a long weekend at christmas. I would ship everyone home over the summer and back again in the fall which was kind of a hassle but we all survived!

                              I can't imagine college without my horses! They're the reason I did so well and graduated early. They kept me motivated and focused plus were such a stress relief! I'm starting vet school in the fall and plan on taking at least one of mine with me to school then too. I'll be much closer to home this time so I'll be able to see all of them regularly even if they aren't in the same city which I'm really excited about!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                We sent the horse(s) to college with our daughter and, since we breed and at that time had greenies, it was a super way to get training, mileage and experience on them much more economically than we could have done at home even. Having the horses, trainers and shows all under one roof and the college next door made for stress-free scheduling. The horses were a tension-releaser for our daughter and her peers on the riding team gave her a boost when the greenies tried her patience. All in all an excellent experience, but then it is an exceptional school--Mount Holyoke.
                                Sakura Hill Farm
                                Now on Facebook

                                Young and developing horses for A-circuit jumper and hunter rings.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I brought my horse with me to college (Colorado State, 1000 miles away from home) my sophomore year. My freshman year I lived in the dorms and didn't have a car to get to the barn, let alone time to ride. Right before my sophomore year I had an idea of how much time I would have, knew my way around the city, had an idea of where to board/train, etc. Right before my junior year I brought out my other horse.
                                  I'm glad I didn't have them my freshman year when I was just getting acquainted with the whole new experience. But it was very nice to have them the rest of the time. Also, starting my sophomore year, I lived "at school" (in the town where I went to college) year round, so there wasn't hauling back and forth to home.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I brought my horse up to school just before my sophomore year in college. I went to Villanova (in the burbs of Philly) and while the school doesn't have a riding program, I found a ton of barns in Radnor Hunt country. I boarded my horse and went on trail rides, groomed him, etc...didn't even show competitively. I just needed him with me.

                                    He stayed up there during breaks - I brought him home the first summer, and then after that I stayed up there as well and worked during the summer. He didn't come home again until I came back home for grad school. I'd suggest that, given the distance of your school from your home, you consider leaving him there during breaks.

                                    Important note - be sure that you have the funds (or the means to acquire the funds) for all the expenses you'll incur. My parents, not being stupid, told me I'd be reponsible for Rebuff's expenses, and I got a job waiting tables to pay for everything. You have to be sure that you can balance coursework (and that means getting good grades, not just scraping by) with all the extra time you'll devote to the horse. It's totally doable, though, and I personally am very glad that I did it.
                                    In memory of Rebuff (1974-2009)

                                    Rest in peace, my sweet man

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Only bring a horse if you are 100% committed to giving up part of your college experience for riding. I'm a sophomore majoring in Chemical Engineering (at the #3 school in the country for ChemE) and just sold my once-in-a-lifetime horse. I thought I could do it, and I really, truly loved my horse. But for me, the barn was a 40 minute commute one way, and I only ended up going there about 3 times a week. It wasn't fair to my guy. And there are always the unexpected things. My horse displayed colic like symptoms and was not responding to the normal care during finals week last year (ended up he was bit by a bug and got sick from it). That was super stressful and so hard to manage while taking 5 exams. Last year, he got tangled up in a fence and had a huge laceration on his hock, and it had to be rewrapped everyday. That was a huge time commitment too. It was hard for me when all my friends were going out, and I had to go to the barn to take care of a hurt horse. I think the only way it works out in college is if you are 110% committed to it. I knew horses would be in my life after college (but I still cry every night about selling my horse). If you have the opportunity to leave the horse behind and still get to see him in the summers, that's the option I would choose. I now have the opportunity to ride a cute German Riding Pony whenever I have time (for free!) to get my riding fix.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by eventingVOL View Post
                                        As a soon to graduate senior, I think it really depends on your major and what you plan to get involved in. The majority of the time I have been in school I haven't had a horse with me. This is my last semester and he is now out here with me since I finally have some downtime. I agree with a couple others that said not to bring your horse with you your first semester. You are going to be facing a lot of changes and it can be stressful enough trying to manage yourself and your school work without worrying about getting out to the barn consistently. Also it's important to get involved on campus, make new friends, go watch your school's teams play, get comfortable with the area; that is important since this is gonna be your primary home for 4 years. Don't give up the college experience completely for horses, it is loads of fun, don't miss out on it. I've missed my horses, but I wouldn't trade the experience for anything.
                                        Glad to see a fellow soon-to-graduate Vol on the boards! Do I know you IRL?

                                        Forestergirl99- you should have NO trouble finding someone to half-lease him, he's so cute.
                                        "My shopping list is getting long but I will add the marshmallows right below the napalm." -Weighaton

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