Convincing my parents to let me buy a horse - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 12:22 PM Thread Starter
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Convincing my parents to let me buy a horse

How can I convince my parents to buy a horse? I've been riding for a year (I know it seems like a short time, but my instructor is already considering letting me ride one of 5-7 year old horses. She already put me on her horse (7 years old), and I did well with her. I've been working for lessons all summer trying to prove I'm responsible enough. I know what a horse needs (farrier 6-8 weeks, dewormed twice a year, once a year dental care, ect.) I know we can afford a horse too (my dad has a good job in a large company). They just dont seem to want to own one. I know how to tack up, groom, ect. Does anyone have any ideas on how to convince them to let me buy one? I would get a horse no younger than 12, even with experience. I'm running out of ideas. Can anyone help?
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post #2 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 12:29 PM
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You can't. Owning a horse is a big obligation with a fair amount of risk. You haven't been riding that long and I am assuming don't have that much horse experience. There is a LOT that riding lessons doesn't cover and you can't depend that there will always be someone there to help. Keep in mind that you are ultimately asking your parents to spend a lot of their hard earned money and free time on your hobby. Keep things in perspective.

The best things to do would be to keep your grades up, your chores done and be proactive by learning as much as you can on your own from books, videos and other people. See if your trainer will let you work in exchange for cheaper or free lessons (but make sure to work out the details - x hours of work for 1 lesson). Ask for experience not only in riding but nutrition, first aid and handling. Ask to learn how to clean tack and look at tack fit and things like that.. Show you really are dedicated and that its not just a fad. Work hard and learn as much as you can. While it may not convince your parents to buy and maintain a horse, you will be a better horseman when the time comes for you to own.
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post #3 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 12:38 PM
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I agree with DancingArabian.

From your parents point of view, having a horse is a HUGE commitment for not just you, but them swell. It affects the whole family and it might not be what they need right now.

Appreciate having the opportunity to ride. The learning never ends.
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post #4 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 12:51 PM
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You don't know if your parents can afford a horse because as a child you simply have no idea how much they're spending on bills, food, a mortgage, car payments, insurance, and a hundred and one other things that cost money in order to live. There is no 'we', as you're not contributing to the financial pool.

If your parents don't want to take on the added expense of a horse, it's well within their rights to refuse to spend their money on your passion. You're riding and taking lessons, so you're already way ahead of many youngsters whose parents can't even afford that.

I agree with DA; learn everything you can so one day when you can afford a horse all on your own, you'll at least have an idea of what you're getting into concerning money, time, and personal commitment.
kitten_Val and goneriding like this.

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post #5 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 01:20 PM
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I'm a parent who purchased a horse for my (then) 9 year old daughter.

Because we do not have land, we have to board. I spend an average of $700 per month to maintain her horse's health, lessons, and shows. I have spent over $2,000 on vet bills when her horse decides to injure herself. These expenses can put a stress on our budget, but my husband and I both enjoy it and have chosen to make the sacrifice. Owning a horse makes ME (the Mom) happy and I'm able to do something nice for my daughter.

I think that as a young person, you need to understand that your parents work HARD for the money needed to support your lifestyle. That money is used for necessities (house, bills, food, etc) and anything left over is either saved for the future or used for fun. Your parents have the right to determine the use of their "fun" money. They earned it. If they want to use it to pay for their hobbies, vacations, "toys"...that is their right.

If you really want a horse, you need to do your research. Figure out the REAL cost of ownership (there are many threads about this if you search). Go to your parents with a realistic budget and a plan for how you will help (either with labor or getting a job). And, be ready to accept no for an answer.

You have your whole life ahead of you and someday, you may be lucky, like I was, and be able to buy a horse yourself.
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post #6 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 01:22 PM
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I am not sure how old you are, but perhaps you could negotiate with them that you will pay half of the bills, or contribute x amount each month toward the care of the horse. Horses are a large financial obligation and your parents are already paying for lessons, which is more than many kids have. The best bet is to talk to them with a logical plan about finances, what will happen to the horse when you go off to college (which might sound far off now, but will be there before you know it), how vet bills will be paid, where the horse will be kept, etc. the more 'adult' you act and approach this the better the chances are that they might agree to it. However the realistic aspect is that you may have to wait until you are an adult and can afford a horse on your own. In which case you should be gracious for the ability to learn all you can now.

Another option to look in to would be leasing a horse. This would give you some of the 'feel' of owning a horse without the long term commitment.
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post #7 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 01:52 PM
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Just keep working. Don't get discouraged. Do your best. Keep your grades up, do your chores, stay honest and good, and enjoy your time taking lessons. Work HARD at those lessons too. Don't get caught up in the "I'm not riding MY horse. I can't have fun if it is not MY horse" state of mind. You need to ride all kinds of horses to be the best rider. It is nice to focus on one horse of your own, but you are still only learning to ride that one horse. If you spend a few more years on lessons, you will learn how to ride and handle all different kinds of horses, which will make finding your perfect horse much easier. If you spend a few more years(NOT a long time) doing this, you could possibly start looking in the younger horses, the not perfect horses, or even the more advanced more competitive horses. The more types of horses you learn how to ride and handle makes "I can't get that horse because he does that" to "That is not so bad. I can handle that."

Taking lessons, riding horses that aren't yours, doesn't make you any less than the other girls that have their own horses. Don't feel bad. Don't be jealous.

And let me tell you something else: You WILL have your own horse. You might have to wait...and wait....and wait... but it WILL happen. Don't get impatient.
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post #8 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 02:01 PM
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I don't have kids, but I can understand why a parent would be hesitant to buy a horse for their kid.

Money is a big issue, as horses aren't cheap. The initial purchase price is often just a drop in the bucket compared to what it will cost to maintain it the first year alone. There are always more things that you will want and need beyond the most basic needs, especially if you want to show. Even if your parents can afford a horse, it doesn't mean they don't have other things that they'd rather spend the money on (paying off the mortgage, family vacation, replacing an aging car, etc.) If money is their main concern, there's probably very little you can do to convince them otherwise.

They may also be afraid that horses are just a phase and they'll end up paying for board & care for a horse that is no longer being ridden. I've certainly seen it happen even to kids that swear they'll never get sick of riding their horse. Selling a horse can take quite a bit of time, too, so it's not like they can just "get rid of it" if this were to happen.

I agree with Tryst that leasing is probably a more realistic goal, although with only a year of riding under your belt I'd encourage you not to do that either so you can continue to get experience on many different horses.
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post #9 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 02:47 PM
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If your parents are hesitant to buy a horse (and knowing how much work and money goes into one I'm not very surprised, many of us here (me including) were able to afford a horse only as adults), you may ask them if you can lease of half-lease the horse. This way you'll have more riding time AND will learn horse care.

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass: it's about learning to dance in the rain..."

"When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves."

"How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."
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post #10 of 19 Old 07-11-2013, 03:14 PM
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I hate the word "convince" paired with "parents".. I'm sorry but you can't really convince parents of anything especially with you're their child. They have been around the block or two and I'm sure they well already know what kind of work can go into a horse, most adults aren't dense especially when it comes to their pocket books lol.

And you really should not say you can afford a horse based on your father's income, that's actually a tad selfish, and whose to say if he will always have that job? I just didn't think it was very nice to put that...

Also a horse is not a fixed income with hoof trims and dental care... There are emergency vet costs that can happen at any time, financial issues that could come up.

If you are dead set on having a horse... you cannot own one just because your father is lucky enough to have a well-paying job in this kind of economy which is very rare. I'm sorry if this bursts your bubble but I'm just being realistic, this is a living breathing animal, reliant on our ability to be able to care for it and unfortunately we could love the heck out of it, but how much we care is reliant on how much we can afford it.
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