Horses: The Sport of Kings

8 Feb

“Why on earth would you want a horse?” my mother screeched to me over the phone. I rolled my eyes, knowing that another lecture was coming. She wondered how would I be able to afford a horse on a teacher’s salary, honestly I was questioning it myself. Like everything I do in life, I threw caution to the wind and bought a horse not knowing exactly what I was getting myself into. Now that I have owned horses for over 25 years and have a horse farm, I know the cost of a horse intimately. I can tell you, like a good accountant, what the formula is for calculating the costs. I would like to break ownership into the following categories: stable costs, tack costs, vet/farrier/dentist costs.

Stable Costs- if you do not own your own farm, you must find a suitable home for your horse. Depending on your needs for your stable will dictate the cost. An indoor riding arena in the Northeastern United States ranges from $400-$1,200/month. A boxed stall with feed and hay given three times a day without an indoor will cost approximately $250-$500/month. Field board which is putting the horse out in the field with a lean-to or shed will be approximately $100-$300/month. Self care board is when you feed, muck out your stall, water, and care for your horse can range from $100-$300/month. You will be responsible for the feed, hay, bedding, buckets, etc.

Tack Costs-
New saddle $1,200-$5,000, a used saddle $250 and up.
Bridle $75.00 and up.
Halter/Lead Rope- $35 and up
Saddle Blanket- $30.00 and up
Coolers/Sheets/Blankets- $200 and up
Grooming Brushes/Combs, etc.- $25 and up
Shampoo/Conditioner/Fly Spray/etc. $25 and up

Vet- needs to come at least twice a year and give shots and boosters. One horse would be $60 and up
Emergency calls- $100 just for them to drive to the farm and everything else is extra
Farrier- $30 and up for a trim (no shoes) $60 and up for front shoes $100 and up for four shoes
Chiropractor- $50 and up for each horse
Dentist- $65.00 and up and depends on the needs of the horse, this needs to be done twice a year.

I will not tell you that horse ownership is easy or cheap. What I will tell you is that when you ride your very own horse, you will feel like the King or Queen that you are. You may have to sacrifice and learn how to do some creative budgeting, but your rewards will outweigh the pain.

Please consider ALWAYS consulting with your horse trainer before you purchase a horse and discuss your specific needs with them. They are the expert and they will help you realize your dream.

Find a horse, tack, horse trainer, or riding facility at

One Response to “Horses: The Sport of Kings”

  1. billgncs August 13, 2012 at 12:07 AM #

    we had horses in the summer in wyoming, we lived in cleveland, but I was saved when my daughter got a job at a horse farm. that job saved me a bundle!

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