Cost of keeping horses and foals - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 03-15-2015, 05:54 PM Thread Starter
jk3
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Cost of keeping horses and foals

I am in Northeast Ohio and I am curious as to how much it costs to take care of a horse on a monthly basis. I would like to know an itemized list of costs to include labor, materials (bedding, hay), feed (including any supplements), vet costs, barn costs (utilities, maintenance, water, manure disposal, etc), farrier, dental work and any other costs I should consider.

For those of you who breed, do you have an estimate cost as to how much it takes to raise a foal from insemination (I realize this cost varies greatly depending on stud fee or live cover) to birth to training to sale as a yearling or two year old or even three year old?

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 16 Old 03-15-2015, 06:23 PM
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Just read an article the other day that sums it up well. There is more breeding horses than people think.

Before You Breed: Costs and Considerations | TheHorse.com
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post #3 of 16 Old 03-15-2015, 07:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paintedpastures View Post
Just read an article the other day that sums it up well. There is more breeding horses than people think.

Before You Breed: Costs and Considerations | TheHorse.com

I like that article, I was going to say it was roughly $10,000 or more depending on location, breed, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jk3 View Post
I am in Northeast Ohio and I am curious as to how much it costs to take care of a horse on a monthly basis. I would like to know an itemized list of costs to include labor, materials (bedding, hay), feed (including any supplements), vet costs, barn costs (utilities, maintenance, water, manure disposal, etc), farrier, dental work and any other costs I should consider.

For those of you who breed, do you have an estimate cost as to how much it takes to raise a foal from insemination (I realize this cost varies greatly depending on stud fee or live cover) to birth to training to sale as a yearling or two year old or even three year old?

Thanks in advance.
To figure out monthly costs you'll need to actually call around and get quotes from vets, farriers, and hay dealers.

The following numbers are some of my own and are averages for my area NE FL:

1.Vet: $420(year/ so $35 per month) This includes 3 farm calls one of which is to administer a Rabies vaccination, another is for a yearly check up, and the third farm call is 'just incase'. The yearly exam with blood work, physical etc. A Coggins is $30 here.

2. Farrier: $300-$315 for (8 trims on a 6 week cycle) trims only per year so $30-$35 per visit, shoes would add to this. ($25-$26.25 per month)

3. Vaccines:$230 yearly ($19.17 monthly roughly) I'm in an area where bugs almost never go away and we have a lot of transmittable diseases like West Nile, EEE, WEE from insects, then we have flu and Rhino/ EHV. I like to trail ride so I use the Strangles vaccine and I feed round bales so I do a Botulism shot as well just to be safe, along with tetanus and Rabies. I buy my vaccines and administer all except for Rabies, the vet does this so that it 'counts' on the health certificate. Some shots are boostered every 3 to 6 months.

4. Deworming: $120 yearly ($10 monthly) I do Fecal counts four times a year, well really only twice, but I order four tests, one for before and one for after each deworming, so at $25 per test it's a bit more expensive. I use Quest Plus in the fall for tapeworms and can get it for about $12. The other dewormer I use depends on what shows up in the test but typically $3-$6.

5. 'Health':$1,076.80 yearly ($89.74 monthly) This covers sand colic treatment, any supplements or medications that may or are needed. For me it's sand colic and Exceed 6-Way.

6. Dental: $200-$500. ($16.67-$41.67 monthly)This is for a basic floating once a year, the higher price is if the horse needs anesthesia for the procedure.

7. Fly control: $ 316 yearly ($ monthly) This includes fly spray, feed thru and fly predators.

8.Insurance: $500 year ($41.76 month) This is major medical, mortality and liability, costs will vary according to the horse though.

9. Bedding: $320 year ($26.67 month) Use will vary so will cost.

10. Hay and feed: $1,200.($100 month) This is for 600 pound round bales and a ration balancer, again cost will vary.

11. Self care board: $2400 year ($200 monthly) This covers utilities and maintenance.

Total costs per year: $7,082.80 - $7,597.80
Totally monthly costs: $590.24 - $633.15

Keep in mind I live in an area where it's fairly expensive to keep a horse and we have a lot of weather issues as well which affect prices.

"They see me rollin, They hatin, Patrolling they tryin to catch me ridin dirty"
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post #4 of 16 Old 03-17-2015, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
jk3
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Paintedpastures - Thank you very much. I just finished that article, it contained very good information and a lot to think about. I appreciate it.

Horseychick87 - Also very good information. I really appreciate your breakdown. It helps to see where the money goes individually and roughly how much each thing costs. I greatly appreciate your time.
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post #5 of 16 Old 03-17-2015, 06:50 PM
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You're welcome.

If you see enough of my posts on here you'll see some of the prices change from post to post, mainly due to a increase or decrease in fuel to get certain products to my location.
Hay will go up or down depending on our level of rain.

If you don't have any equipment for a horse I suggest going on Craigslist and looking in the Farm and Garden section for halters, leads, and smaller items like that as you can get them quite cheaply and many are in good shape.

"They see me rollin, They hatin, Patrolling they tryin to catch me ridin dirty"
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post #6 of 16 Old 03-17-2015, 10:14 PM
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Everyone will have different costs. My costs have to be in the lowest group on the board. Annually:
$1000/yr for hay
$100 on supplements
$40 for a trimmer (annual check up; I do all monthly trimming myself)
$200 for annual float/check
$100 (maybe) for wormer
In 9 years and four horses, I've spent about $1000 on vet services.

That's about it. I spend less on my horse than many people spend on their dog or even cat.

But you REALLY have to take that all with a grain of salt as most people board and pay for a zillion things that I have no need for. I don't do any annual vaccinations - just tetanus every 3 years I think. I don't show or ride with other people so I have no need for any of that.
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post #7 of 16 Old 03-17-2015, 11:01 PM
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Cost varries upon location, what sort of barn you're boarding at, what farrier/vet you use, what type of hay you feed and any supplements, etc etc. Prices vary on time of year too.

I live in southern BC, right on the USA border, it's a huge horse area and I am quite close to one of Canada's horse capitols (so international show grounds, lots of fancy barns, so horse's aren't cheap around here). There are a lot of smaller barns, and then a good handful top breeding/training barns. I board at a lovely barn and they go above and beyond for me - very homey too. They breed, so I get the whole large barns/huge arenas/heated lounge, but only a select amount of boarders due to a lot of the horses being the BOs studs and broodmares. I like it this way.

Board - this depends as sometimes I have them on full board, sometimes semi, sometimes a mix of the two. I pay anywhere from $900-$1150 per month. So $10,800-$13,800 per year.

Vet - I have always done my own vaccines so this is less than $200 per year. Emergency costs however? I average 1-2 emerg. visits per year, so anywhere from $350-$5000 is what I've spent on this in a year. My pony had surgery 10 years ago, and I don't even remember what that was but I'm thinking around $8000 at the time.

Dental - $750 per year. Younger mare has it done once, pony has it done twice.

Hay (incl. hay cubes,BP,grain) - nothing as my BO supplies it. Bales are $5-$6 for cheap ones, and $8-$12 for nicer quality (at least that's what it was a few years back when I occasionally bought my own bales).

Supplements - currently neither are on supplements but in the past I would spend about $500 per year on misc. things.

Farrier - ~$2000 per year.

Bedding - when I bought per bag at the local store it was $10 per bag (I remember when it used to be $4.75 per bag!). I bought probably $1500 worth each year. Now I pitch in with other boarders and buy by the pallet, this comes out to $750-900 per year.

Wormer - $180 or so, depends which wormer I get, it's pricey here.

Misc. things like new blankets/halters - Anywhere from $200-$500 per year, unless somebody goes all out and rips all the blankets beyond repair or outgrows them (*cough* Beverley *cough*), then it's much more lol.

That list doesn't include new tack items, or random things (like diapers to wrap a hoof if someone loses a shoe and farrier can't make it out, or shampoo, or new brushes, etc etc.)
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post #8 of 16 Old 03-17-2015, 11:08 PM
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I got this off of a rescue centre's website and its a pretty accurate list of our yearly expenses for one horse. Of course, horses with special needs and/or special feed will cost more, also, keep in mind that veterinary costs may vary. An illness or condition such as colic may come up and add on to your vet bill.

Sample Annual Horse Expenses

De-Worming – $50 (per session)
Veterinary Care – $50 (per visit)
Clothing – $125
Grain – $250
Dental Care – $250
Bedding – $350
Supplements – $400
Farrier/Shoes – $750-$1,000
Hay – $800-$1,000

"Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light."

Last edited by saddlebred99; 03-17-2015 at 11:15 PM.
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post #9 of 16 Old 03-17-2015, 11:32 PM
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I would never have even half a horse at those prices. I think I spent around 500$ all year but I shoe my own give only west Nile and wormer trade for my hay winter and also keep them at my house

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post #10 of 16 Old 03-18-2015, 06:47 AM
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I would never have even half a horse at those prices. I think I spent around 500$ all year but I shoe my own give only west Nile and wormer trade for my hay winter and also keep them at my house
Same here. The cost of horse ownership and breeding depends on so many things that it is in general impossible to give good estimates.

Other than boarding, your horses' diet and feet will make a world of difference in the costs.

We have always bought/bred horses from our Paint breeder that have good, "low maintenance" (simple diet, good feet, easy keepers) histories. All our horses (5) are at home (no boarding costs), out 24x7 (no stalls to bed/clean), fed pasture and free choice hay, a small amount (about a quart) of a good 14% pellet feed a day, and minerals (no supplements). They are all barefoot, I trim myself, and we do all the routine maintenance (shots, worming, etc) ourselves. Except for emergencies (rare) or specialized care (e.g. gelding), we have our vet out once a year for their rabies shot ($20/horse + farm call) and a quick look over. All five horses, aged 21, 20, 13, 11, and 2, are fed and cared for exactly the same (except mares when pregnant). Over a year, we average $70/month/horse, most of which is the cost of hay in the winter.

For breeding, we also keep it very simple. The typical live cover stud fee around here is around $1000, and mare care during the breeding $10/day (usually 8 days). We have the vet palpate at 2 months to verify pregnancy (around $120 including the farm call) and give 5 and 7 month Pneumabort vaccines ($17/dose). Since the prevalent hay here is fescue, we separate pregnant mares for the last 3 months and feed them orchard grass hay (more expensive), and ramp up their feed to 2x normal (same feed) through the first 3 months of nursing (not a major additional expense).

Foals start getting offered 1/2 cup of feed as soon as they are picking at mom's feed (which is very quickly) and ramp up as they can finish eating it. They reach eating as an adult during their yearling year. Foals get the rabies vaccine at 4 months and their standard vaccines (we use 6 way) at 4 and 5 months. After that, they are on schedule with the adults. Colts are gelded in the fall at 6 months (around November) when it's cooler and the bugs are gone (about $200 including farm call). We handle all the basic training (haltering/leading/lunging/saddle breaking) needed for riding ourselves (30 days of basic training goes for around $750-$1000 around here).
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