Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: New South Wales, Australia
I work in a shop part time and this guy came in yesterday and we ended up talking about horses and how he had wanted to get one for his daughter. He said he was put off because it would cost a few hundred a week. I had a chat to him and he was really surprised that my horse wasn't nearly that expensive.
$170 per month agistment
$20 per month feed
$30 per month trimming
$15 per month dental/vet
Which is about $235 per month which is about $55 per week, or $2800 a year. Now obviously there are unexpected costs at times but all in all much less than he thought. Much less than other people pay.
Even with tack and rug cost its still not very high.
It got me thinking, why is my horse so cheap? Why are horses considered to be these super expensive animals and riding such a pricey hobby when there is such a huge variance in the costs? Reading this thread, many average under $300 a month, but then there are many others who spend well over $500.
Part of the reason my horse is so cheap is because I choose him to be. I chose a breed and individual that was tending to be fat, requiring very little feed year round. He is sustained on grass with the occasional supplement. I chose a horse that had strong feet and didn't need to be shod. I chose a horse who would need minimal rugging. And I choose to keep him somewhere with self care.
Yet all the books I read as a kid didn't say anything about this. Neither did riding instructors or anything really. It was all "horses are super expensive and you'll never afford one" when I think the opposite is true. Horses are pretty affordable as far as hobbies are concerned. I think I paid more to learn violin (which I didn't even learn because it was boring) than I do to own a horse right now.
Do you think having horses perceived as a huge, unattainable cost is a good thing? Or do you think that if people learned more about the choices they could make, learning about affordable ownership, that it would benefit the horse world?