How Much Does a Horse Cost?

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Owning a horse can be very satisfying, but you should know the costs associated with buying and maintaining a healthy, thriving horse before you purchase a horse. We’ll break down those costs to help you determine if purchasing a horse is right for you.

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Over 7.2 million Americans own horses, using them primarily for recreation, showing, racing, and working. Many people believe it can be significantly cost-prohibitive to own a horse, but it can be more affordable than you might think.

Related: Horses

How Much Does a Horse Cost Initially?

To buy a horse, you can expect to pay between $100 – $10,000, depending on the horse breed’s pedigree, how you are planning to use the horse, and your location. The average cost of a hobby-horse is about $3,000.

According to Seriously Equestrian, the most expensive horse breeds can cost up to $250,000. The most expensive breeds are:

  • Arabian
  • Thoroughbred
  • Andalusian
  • Dutch Warmblood
  • Oldenburg

The cheapest horse breeds are:

  • Wild Mustangs
  • Quarter Horses
  • Arabians
  • Thoroughbreds

Yes, Arabians and Thoroughbreds can get top dollar depending on their pedigree or be as cheap as $1,000. However, the most affordable breed is the wild Mustang. You can typically purchase a wild Mustang for around $100-$200, depending on where you live.

You’ll need to own or rent land for your horse

Related Link: How Long Do Horses Live?

IMG ALT TEXT: You’ll need to own or rent land for your horse.

How Maintenance Costs Affect the Price

Once you buy your horse, several maintenance costs go into owning a horse. Excluding buying your property, here are the most common costs:

Boarding

Where you keep and how you board your horse can also vary in cost. If you keep the horse in a pasture, then the cost is minimal. Or you can keep your horse in a full-service stall with daily exercise turn-out. Depending on where you live, a full-service stall can cost $400-$2500 a month.

Feed

A horse needs to eat 15-20 lbs of food every day. A well-mixed diet will cost about $850 a year to feed your horse annually. Your horse needs a balance of:

  • Grain Mix: A horse eats about .5% of its body weight per day.
  • Grass Hay: A horse eats about 1.5% of its body weight per day. The cost of hay is dependent on where you live and the availability of pasture.
  • Salt and Minerals: Your horse needs about two 5 lb blocks per year. A salt and mineral block typically costs between $10-25.

You may also want to supplement your horse with other minerals to help their digestion.

Rogue Pet Science offers their Origins Equine 5in1 horse supplement to improve your horse’s health and performance. The Origins Equine 5in1 food topper is an easy-to-use pelleted supplement full of probiotics, prebiotics, digestive enzymes, and butyric acid to improve your horse’s gut health and digestion.

Origins Equine 5in1 Front of Product Package

Origins Equine 5in1

Rogue Pet Science offers their Origins Equine 5in1 horse supplement to improve your horse’s health and performance. The Origins Equine 5in1 food topper is an easy-to-use pelleted supplement full of probiotics, prebiotics, digestive enzymes, and butyric acid to improve your horse’s gut health and digestion.

Would your horse benefit from an all-natural mineral supplement? Read Frequently Asked Questions about Rogue Pet Science’s Origins Equine 5in1 supplement.

Related Link: A Complete Guide to Gastric Ulcers in Horses

Health Care

You’ll also need to take your horse to a veterinarian for:

  • Deworming twice a year
  • Vaccinations
  • Coggins Test and Health Certificates

These vet services will cost about $250 to $500 a year. If you decide to breed your horse, this will also increase your number of health checks and post-natal care. It’s essential that your horse receives all the necessary vaccinations and deworming treatments to promote good health and longer life.

Farrier Costs

The farrier cost for trimming your horse’s hooves every eight weeks is a cost-effective alternative to shoeing your horse. But farrier services may be more expensive depending on where you live. This typically costs about $390 a year.

Bedding

Depending on where you live, you may need additional bedding for your horse. Straw bedding for a horse stall can cost about $400 a year.

Equipment

Equipment costs will vary depending on how you will use your horse. Most horse owners purchase:

  • Riding equipment
  • Training equipment
  • Grooming equipment
  • Manure spreader
  • Arena drag
  • Small Utility Vehicle
  • Horse Trailer
  • Truck

The cost on these equipment items will vary based on preference, use, and brand.

Other Ownership and Operating Costs

Other expenses also factor into owning a horse that pertains to your land, barn, and equipment. You can pay annual costs for insurance, taxes, and interest, depending on where you keep your horse.

Plus you’ll need to provide maintenance and repair on your fences, barn, and equipment as they come up. You’ll also need to maintain your pasture, water tub, and other horse-related equipment to keep a happy, healthy horse. These costs of horse ownership can vary depending on where you live and the size of your property.

Once you purchase your horse, it will cost you between $2500 – $3800 a year to maintain a healthy horse. This assumes the horse lives on your property. You’ll need to add more to the cost if you rent a stall.

Most people buy horses for recreation

IMG ALT TEXT: Most people buy horses for recreation.

Owning a Horse Can Be Very Rewarding

While it may cost about $6,000 your first year of owning the horse (including the price of the horse), it can enhance your quality of life and recreation. And as you learn to care for your horse, you’ll find ways to make owning a horse more cost-effective.

If you have a pasture and stable facility on your property, then owning a horse can be relatively cheaper. Also, the state where you live can dramatically affect the cost of owning a horse.

Rogue Pet Science recommends adding an all-natural supplement to your horse’s diet to promote better health and longer life. Rogue Pet Science makes natural, high-quality, and nutritious horse supplements that improve your horse’s coat and digestion.

Want more information about Rogue Pet Science’s Origins Equine 5in1? Find out more from the Origins Equine 5in1 brochure.

Related Link: EPM In Horses: Causes and Prevention

References:

  1. https://www.horsecouncil.org/resources/economics/
  2. https://extension.umaine.edu/publications/1004e/
  3. https://seriouslyequestrian.com/expensive-horse-breeds/
  4. https://www.helpfulhorsehints.com/cheapest-horse-breeds.
  5. https://animals.mom.com/average-monthly-cost-owning-horse-5504.html
  6. https://www.humanesociety.org/resources/rules-feeding-your-horse
  7. https://esc.rutgers.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/EconomicsHorseKeeping-1.pdf
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