Should you advertise a horse as "free"?
I'm looking for a new home for my mare who is primarily suitable as a companion horse with occasional light riding. I'm happy to give her away for free to the right home, but I'm not sure if it's the right thing to advertise her for free. In my experience people are interested in a free horse just because they're free, rather than suitable.
What should I advertise her as? Should I put a low price on her (like $200) or negotiable, or should I just put "free"?
If your intent is to just find her a good home, advertise 'for free' and be very picky about who you give her to.
I would be more inclined to put "price negotiable, home is not" or "price to be discussed". Putting "free" tends to attract some unsavoury types.
I would not put free. I would put something like, "If you are think you can give <horses name> a good home, contact me for more details and price". Free tends to attract the idiots who cant afford a horse, but are desperate to have one.
I have seen some people put "small re-homing fee" required.
I have given away two horses (both were dangerous). The first we advertised as free, with full disclosure of all of her problems, but did not include a name. We were contacted a couple hours later by a rescue who had owned her before the people we bought her from, who were aware of her issues (they were pain related, and because we had not been told by the previous owner, had not been able to manage). They took her, got her back on track, and now I believe she is used as a trail horse suitable for all ages.
The second horse I gave away as free was advertised for cheap and we still got all the wrong people asking about him (mostly young teenage girls who called themselves 'professional trainers'). We found his next home through a friend, and now he's happy as a clam outside of the arena, toting his new owner around to get his daily shopping done :lol:
Honestly, I think the BEST way to find a 'free' home for your horse is through word of mouth, people you know and who will give the best care. If you're unable to do that, then I suggest you just be very careful / selective of who you pick, look at multiple homes, visit the home or stable the horse will be kept at and ask for references (vet, farrier, trainer, friends, etc.)
Yes, you have to be very careful with this...people who may not know about horses will try to take them, or even meat buyers. It happens.
Nobody values a "free" animal. Negotiate the price down if you like the buyer and his/her intentions for your horse.
What about advertising as a free lease companion horse with light riding and then discuss possible rehoming once you've got an idea of the people?
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I like "Free to an approved home".
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