So you have an equestrian tack trunk, but you have no horse. Whether it is your first horse or tenth, buying a horse can be a very rewarding experience. Especially if you follow a process and have a plan. Without doing either, your experience can leave more to be desired. Here's some tips to make buying a horse a fun, exciting and memorable experience.
Before buying your first horse, create a checklist of what you want in a horse. Below are examples to note for your list:
- Breed of horse
- Height and weight
- Training experience
The list will save you from "impulse" buying meaning ie. falling in love with the first horse you go to see regardless of issues it may have or compliance with your checklist. Also, it is important that you not go over your designated price you can pay. Exceeding your budget could mean you have to cut corners elsewhere.
Where to Buy
The objective here is to find a good horse, one that is a "known" product. Therefore, get the word out that you are looking for a horse. Talk to veterinarians, friends, horse breeders, trainers, boarding stables, farriers and anyone familiar with the local horse populations. Check the riding clubs, equestrian tack shops, rescue groups, classifieds, horse magazines and online. There is no one good place to buy a horse. But there is one place you need to stay away from, that is a livestock auction. At a livestock auction, you never know what you are going to get as in a sick and unmanageable steed. Note that a livestock auction is different from a dispersal auction. A dispersal auction is one in which owners consign horses and other animals to be sold. Note, it is always wise to bring a knowledgeable person with you wherever you look at horses.
Questions to Ask Owner
When you talk to the owner ask him/her the following questions:
- Age of the horse
- How and where the horse has been ridden, saddle, trails, ring
- How often he is ridden?
- Who rides? Adults, children, both
- Age of riders?
- Horse’s Health History
- Why selling?
Getting a new horse is one of the most exciting experiences a person or family can have. Note: your due diligence can make the experience a great one as you can now put your equestrian tack trunk to work!