How long until someone should consider buying a horse & convincing parents questions? - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 44 Old 07-05-2013, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by futuredoctor View Post
But only getting to ride once per week is painful.
You stated that you would need your parents to supply the upfront costs of purchasing the horse and equipment, but that you can handle the long term costs.

So why then don't you pay for more lessons a week? Put your money toward learning more about horses.

Since you have a desire to be a doctor, let's work a horse example in here.
You have been riding for a couple of weeks. And you now think you are "qualified" to own your own horse. That could very well be the exact same thing as you wanting to jump into college right now at this moment. Or else, only doing one year of college and jumping right into medical school. It just doesn't work that way. You would not be experienced enough for medical school if you only had one year of college. Just like you are not experienced enough with only a few weeks of riding to own your own horse. And even if you do buy a horse, you still need to continue taking lessons.

I know it seems like a time crunch right now, but you have LOTS of time for horses.

I've gone through optometry school and internships. There's no way you can move from rotation to rotation with your horse, and there's no way you have any time for your horse with 80+ hour work weeks. Unless your parents keep the horse for you. So just saying, that you should continue to take lessons for at least a couple years, and then possibly could consider leasing a horse during your time in school (so that you can cut off the lease when you need to move for rotations).

NaeNAe posted a cost example and I"ll post mine too.

Farrier every 6 weeks: Used to be $30 per horse but that will now probably double since my horse now needs special corrective shoeing.
Dentist every year: $120 per horse
Chiropractor every 6 months: $60 per horse
Annual vaccinations: $70 per horse
Dewormers per year: $50 per horse
Grain per year: $150 per horse
Board: $100 per horse
Annual health exam: $300 per horse
Horse trailer monthly payment: $230
Pickup monthly payment: $450 (you need a way to get your horse to and from lessons, right?)

Emergency - horse getting hurt in January: $2,000
Emergency - lameness evaluation last week: $250 + $100 in fuel to get to the specialist. And will need several follow up visits over the next couple months.

Did you think about the emergency stuff? That's where things can really add up in a hurry.

And I know I am forgetting stuff in that price list.
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Last edited by beau159; 07-05-2013 at 04:16 PM.
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post #22 of 44 Old 07-05-2013, 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Ian McDonald View Post
I tend to think that the concern that most parents would have (aside from the obvious one of expense) is whether or not their child's interest in a particular thing is going to be sustained long enough to make whatever it is more than just a passing fad. I might consider that any horse you buy, it's a good idea to approach it with the idea in mind that you may have to keep this animal for the rest of its life - because it's much easier to buy a horse than to sell one particularly if you care what happens to them after they leave you. Even your well-trained horses can become worth zero overnight if something happens to them!

Leasing is a good idea, as others have suggested. Another thing you might could try is to look around for people who own horses but don't ride them enough - if you can ride well and present yourself well you can probably get more horses to ride than you'd want!
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post #23 of 44 Old 07-05-2013, 04:25 PM
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Future Doctor, I know this sounds discouraging, but we've all been there. Some of us took a lot more time than others, but owning a horse is a HUGE deal in every way possible. They take a ton of time and money, and our advice is simply taking all of our collective experiences and mistakes and sharing them with you in hopes of saving you some of that grief.

I think you should talk to your parents, and share all the advice we've given you because your parents are in this too.

Recently one of my former students (lesson and high school) wanted to own a horse. She started out leasing a horse from our barn, which was great. Then her mommy found her 2 (not 1, but 2) horses that needed to be moved asap. So her mom, not knowing what she was getting into, took them both, put up a crappy fence on a crummy piece of property, that was not nearly big enough for 2 horses. Then, a friend came on hard times and they "rescued" her pregnant mare. This was all in January. The mommy thought she was making her daughter's dreams come true by giving her all these horses. The 16 year old is working 2 jobs to help pay for the horses. The foal was born in March. Still hasn't been seen by a vet...none of the horses have because no one knows what they're doing. None of the horses have been seen by a farrier either. Several times the horses have gotten out of the pasture onto a highway. It's a very expensive venture, and unless the parents AND the kid have some horse knowledge, or some very good resources, it's actually pretty dangerous to get involved in.

Please consider taking more lessons. Try to lease a horse at your lesson barn. That is the BEST way for kids and parents to get into horses, that way you always have a knowledgeable mentor on hand. My trainer has been instrumental in helping me find 2 horses, and in their care and training. I wouldn't even consider doing it without her help.

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post #24 of 44 Old 07-05-2013, 05:00 PM
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As a teen I rode at a stable where we kids did all the work. The BO had a bad hip from a horse accident. We were glad to do it and when I think back I learned so much, and I wouldn't have learned it without hand's on experience. We used a stone boat or skid to move the manure out of the barn so I learned how to harness a horse and how to correctly load the skid so we made two trips and not three. When ownership finally came my way I had all that experience to draw on. Talk to the BO, perhaps you can get a second lesson for helping with barn chores. There is so much to learn.
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post #25 of 44 Old 07-05-2013, 06:08 PM
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I definitely recommend leasing. You could even do a "free" lease, where you can bring the horse to your barn and then pay all (or most) expenses. You can still send the horse back to the owner, but you can see what having a horse is really like. I'm doing that right now, and that has given me the confidence to buy, which I am looking into doing right now.

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post #26 of 44 Old 07-06-2013, 03:44 AM
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I just thought of something else to mention -

As I previously mentioned, I'm 21. Since I could read, I was reading about horses. Every birthday and Christmas I received more and more books about horses that I would pore over for hours. Tack, breeds, feeding, riding.. I read about everything, and I thought I was ready to own a horse from like, age 10.

But then, 2 years ago, I did a 6 month course. I excelled in all the theory classes, I could catch and lead a horse like a pro, and I could dismantle and reassemble a bridle properly first go. When it came to tacking up, I realized that I hadn't known everything I needed to. It's the little things that come with experience. And when it came to riding, geez, I was way off. I'd never had lessons, but still thought of myself as an awesome rider. But I had no balance. I didn't understand all the subtle aids like half halts and leg yields. I couldn't two-point to save my life.

Sure, you aren't me, but I'm willing to bet that I was one of the most dedicated young horse lovers around. It was a huge thing for me to realize, after the first week of my course, that I was never ready to own a horse. You've had a few weeks of lessons, which means you probably have a better start than I had, so you probably won't need the 10+ years it took for me from when I started riding.

But now, after 6 months of that course, and 2 months of another course working with unbroken horses, I had the basis I needed to step out and take on a horse. I had all the knowledge, but the horse I chose almost ruined everything. Even after all that studying, I chose the wrong horse and the damage that was done will stay with me for the rest of my life.

If only I'd waited. Right now, I am free leasing the most amazing horse, the one I rode whilst doing the aforementioned course. He's at least 20, almost bombproof, and I can trust him completely. If my circumstances change, it'll be a hard decision but I can send him back. I'd rather never have a horse than have one that I couldn't properly care for.

Moral of the story? Don't jump in. Trust me, waiting will be the best thing you've ever done. Talk to your trainer, I'm sure they'll be more than willing to keep an ear out for leases for you. Leasing is an amazing option - it's still very stressful, but you have the comfort of knowing that if you stuff up and can't manage, your horse won't have to suffer.
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post #27 of 44 Old 07-06-2013, 06:40 PM
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If your plans are to go to medical school, I would definitely wait. The school it's self last four years, but then you have to do another four years of an internship where you will be working all hours and be down right exhuasted. My brother just went through medical school so I know from virtually first hand experience on that one. He hardly had any free time. Then you have to think about paying for a horse while paying off your student loans possibly from college and medical school. And paying for your apartment, since I can only assume you will have to move away from home to go to medical school. And then when you add a horse's expenses on top of those, I definitely say wait!

You'll have plenty of time for a horse, and certainly be able to afford one as a doctor. Play it off right and you can have one before you're thirty. Trust me I know it's hard, I used to beg my parents for a horse for years and they always said no, and now that I'm out on my own I see that they were right to say no. It's hard enough for me to pay for my rent, bills and feed my small animals without student loans. I can't imagine adding the expenses of a horse on top of what I already have.

It is certainly up to you on what you do but my opinion is wait, you still have plenty of time for horses (and no I'm not some old person trying to be your parent, I'm only 5yrs older than you). And just think, if you keep up with riding, by the time you finish your internships and pay off most of your student loans you should be pretty skilled and won't need to buy a perfectly trained $20,000 horse!
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post #28 of 44 Old 07-07-2013, 08:37 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Raven13 View Post
If your plans are to go to medical school, I would definitely wait. The school it's self last four years, but then you have to do another four years of an internship where you will be working all hours and be down right exhuasted.
7 year internship (called residency) if you're doing neurosurgery. It depends on the specialty. Some specialties are only 3 years, some are 7 or 8.
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post #29 of 44 Old 07-07-2013, 09:28 AM
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I'll be honest I'm going to nursing school and I dont have nearly enough time to ride! I'm either working, studying, writing care plans or attenting clinicals. Oh, then there is my two jobs.... We just all have accept that there are times in our life that aren't good times for having horses. The only thing that keeps me going is knowing when i graduate I will actually be able to afford my hobby. I will be able to buy my own property and train and show my own reiners. Until then I have to keep marching to my goal.

Ps, my mother NEVER paid for anything horse related, nor did I expect her to. Horses are a luxury item and we don't have money to spend on luxury. Every pair of boots, every lesson, ever bottle of cowboy magic, to saddle cleaner I bought/earned myself. If you want to make it in the horse world go buy yourself a good pair of muck boots and get down and dirty. Best horse education EVER.
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post #30 of 44 Old 07-07-2013, 09:44 AM
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I have several friends that are nurses, Dr, working on becoming or have other restrictive lifestyles. If horses are important you find a way. Many of the nurses and one of the Drs has a boarding agreement where they keep their horses close and can come ride at any time. The difference is that in exchange for partial board and to keep the horses fit they are used for lessons or leased by the BO/trainer. A couple have set times so they know they get to enjoy their horse and not interfere with his job or if they have an unexpected free moment they can come ride their horse or another if there is no way to reschedule or put another horse in their place. It works for them. OP you are young, this is what your second ride. Get comfortable, figure out a way to get extra ride time and learn all you can. You can make it work if that is what you want. The key word being you. Your parents may or may not be on board but if they are you are blessed.
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