101 Questions to Ask When Buying a Horse
- How long have you owned this horse?
- What is the reason for selling?
- Do they have any vices or bad habits?
- Are they submissive or dominant?
- Are they registered?
- What are their personality quirks?
- Are they friendly or shy?
- Do you know their history?
What to check before buying a horse?
Buying a horse is not an easy decision. There are many things to consider: the size, breed, temperament, and even color of the horse.
What are 5 things to consider when buying a horse?
Horses aren’t cheap to buy, but it’s a small expense compared to the costs of looking after them. Food, shelter, insurance, vet fees and shoeing can all add up. Make sure that your financially ready for owning a horse and decide whether going through a school would be better.
What are the steps to buying a horse?
Essential Steps Shopping for a Horse
- Define your budget and goals. Before you start shopping, be realistic about what you want and need in your next horse.
- Do your research.
- Try the horse before you purchase it.
- Study the horse’s pedigree.
- Always do a pre-purchase exam.
How do you price a horse?
Six main factors go into setting a price for your horse: age, height, intended job, temperament, performance record and soundness. There are always exceptions to the rule, but these are good general guidelines. Age: “Age can work against you or for you, depending on what people are looking for,” Courtney says.
How long should you ride before buying a horse?
I think that at one lesson per week it would be best to take lessons for a year minimum before even considering owning a horse. Its not just for safety and knowledge but also because the horse that you will want and need as a beginner will likely be very different to the horse you want and need in a year, or two years.
What is the best age of a horse to buy?
How Much Does Age Matter? The ideal horse for first-time horse buyers is probably 10-20 years old. Younger horses generally aren’t quiet and experienced enough for a first-time horse owner.
Can a beginner buy a horse?
A beginner should not buy an untrained horse, especially if not involved with a lesson program. A beginner or even a novice rider should be riding a well-trained horse that will teach the rider. There is no better teacher than a schoolmaster. A child rider should not own a baby horse.
How many acres does a horse need?
In general, professionals recommend two acres for the first horse and an additional acre for each additional horse (e.g., five acres for four horses). And, of course, more land is always better depending on the foraging quality of your particular property (70% vegetative cover is recommended).
Is buying a horse a good investment?
Buying any horse is a poor investment. Unless you’re a top-notch trainer and can substantially improve the horse’s skills, that horse will be at a standstill with you. It will not increase in value and will cost you, over time, much more than its initial purchase price. You buy a horse for love, not for monetary gain.
What is the best horse for beginners?
Here are seven horse breeds that are often touted as ideal for novice riders
- Morgan Horse.
- Friesian Horse.
- Icelandic Horse.
- American Quarter Horse.
- Tennessee Walking Horse.
- Connemara Pony.
- Welsh Cob.
What is the cheapest horse?
The cheapest horse breeds are:
- Wild Mustangs.
- Quarter Horses.
60 Questions to Ask When Buying the Horse of Your Dreams
The purchase of a horse is a significant financial and emotional commitment, and it is critical that you make the best decision for you and your family. It’s easy to fall head over heels in love with a horse that looks fantastic or after enjoying a great test ride, but it’s crucial not to get too carried away. If you query about nothing else, be certain that you inquire about the following:
- The following information is required: a basic history of the horse’s training and riding experience
- What their disposition is like and who can ride them are important considerations. If you have any recognized health issues or concerns that have not been assessed yet, please let us know.
More factors should be considered in making your selection, and entire books have been written on the subject! However, if you’re seeking for the fundamentals, have a look at our list of the top 60 questions to ask before purchasing a horse. Even if you aren’t a seasoned rider, working with an expert trainer will be the most beneficial experience you can have. Whether or whether you have a professional to guide you, you’ll want to be certain that you’re making a safe and financially sensible investment decision.
Make certain that you comprehend how much horses cost.
Top 60 Horse Pre-Purchase Questions
If you are working with a trainer, they will be an excellent resource for helping you narrow down what factors are most important (e.g., the horse’s specific talents and personality) and other factors are simply nice-to-haves in a horse. Knowing the fundamentals ahead of time prevents you from spending your time visiting the incorrect horses. With the aid of these questions, you will be able to filter down the horses to those that you would be interested in seeing personally.
- Is it a stallion, a gelding, or a mare that you’re looking at? Breed
- How old is he, exactly? How tall are you? So, what is her overall demeanor like? In the present moment, who is riding the horse and for what discipline? What discipline(s) does she have a natural aptitude for
- Exactly what degree of rider is he most suitable for
- What are you requesting in terms of money? Is it a negotiable matter?
Before Initial Visit
Pre-purchase inspections should be scheduled so that you and/or your trainer may get an opportunity to ride the horse before making a decision to purchase him/her. Do not arrange a visit without first asking a few questions about the situation. Here are a few things you should ask yourself before arranging a face-to-face appointment.
- What is the horse’s present location, and are you prepared to let me or my trainer ride the horse if I come to your facility? Is it okay with you if we ride the horse for a time while we observe? Can we test ride in an enclosed arena or other safe riding place on the property before making our final decision? In the event that this is not possible, would you be willing to meet somewhere where riding is safe? Is there any well-fitting tack available that we may use, please? Do you think someone will be able to get her tacked up and ready? Please keep this horse for me until I have had an opportunity to do a physical exam with my veterinarian and study his vet records
- If I decide to acquire this horse.
Any horse you are contemplating acquiring should have a history, as well as the relationship between the present owner and the horse, which you should research thoroughly. Check to see if the individual answering your questions has enough knowledge with horses to provide you with accurate answers, and be on the lookout for any red signs.
- How long have you had the horse as a pet? What store did you acquire her from? Do you know anything about his past? Does your family have a history of abuse or neglect that you are aware of? During the time you had the horse, who rode her? Whether or whether she has ever been leased out or used as a lesson horse
- What is the reason for selling the horse? Is the horse officially registered? Is it possible for me to see his papers?
The reason for the horse’s selling is an important issue to inquire about.
When determining whether or not a horse is a suitable match for you, one of the most crucial elements to consider is the horse’s personality. It’s important to “click” with your new horse, which involves getting to know him and his personality. The specifics of the horse’s health, history, and training will be important in determining if it is a good choice for you, but personality is what distinguishes between a horse you fall in love with and one that you “just ride.”
- What characteristics would you use to define her personality? What does he like doing? Dislike? Is he endowed with any uncommon personality traits? Is she warm and welcoming? Is he more subservient or domineering in his behavior? How does she behave around other horses? Is he a person who has vices? How is she faring with the grooming? Clipping, brushing, shampooing, and plucking feet are all examples of grooming. When was the last time he was bumped, kicked, or bit
While it is impossible to predict whether or not a horse will remain healthy, you should be aware of the present health and medical history of any horse you are contemplating acquiring.
From the horse’s teeth to its hooves, you want to have a thorough picture of the horse’s health background. You will avoid getting a horse that will result in significant, unexpected medical bills or that you will be unable to ride if you ask the appropriate questions before purchasing it.
- When was the last time he was visited by a veterinarian? Has he ever been diagnosed with an illness? Injuries
- Deworming should be done on a regular basis. When was the last time you did something like this? What kind of dewormer do you use? Is he up to date on his vaccinations? Specifically, which ones does he receive
- Does she have any recognized health problems
- Do you have any worries regarding his health that haven’t been addressed by the doctors yet? Is she prone to colic
- Does he have a history of being lame
- And so on. Who is your veterinarian? Will you agree to enable me to study your horse’s medical records if they disclose them to me? Will you enable my veterinarian to do a pre-purchase examination? What kind of dental treatment has he had on a regular basis? Who is it that you are looking for? Any flaws that have been identified
- When was the last time she had her teeth brushed and flossed? Does she have any problems with her feet? Is she well-shod?
Check to see that the horse you are contemplating has the necessary training and expertise to suit your requirements before purchasing it. Depending on the sorts of riding you want to perform, some of these questions may not apply to you, or you may have additional questions that are more unique to your situation. If you intend to compete, you must be familiar with the horse’s past performance and demeanor away from home.
- Does he have a good posture for grooming? Is he easy to ride
- Does she stand still for a mounting block
- What type of rider would be a suitable match for him
- Describe how she responds to corrections. Is there anything to which she has a negative reaction? What strategy does he employ? Do you have the option to purchase it together with the horse? Is she readily startled or quite bombproof? Has he been ridden in traffic, on roads, on trails, inside, or anywhere else
- Has she been displayed in any circumstances? So, how did she fare? Is her personality different while she’s in the arena? How is he supposed to ride after taking some time off? How does she trailer her horse? Has she spent a lot of time in one? Are there any areas of training that may use improvement? Do you think he will respond well to a lunge line? How does she react to pressure?
If you are serious about acquiring a specific horse, you will want to learn as much as you can about the horse’s present lifestyle, care, and nutrition. Every horse’s nutrition is unique, so be sure to ask a lot of questions regarding the prospect’s current training regimen and food. This will assist you in determining whether or not they will be a suitable match for the barn or pasture in which you will be keeping them, as well as how much time and money you should anticipate to spend on their daily care.
- I’d want to know what his current schedule is, as well as where she now resides. She has a pullout space, but what kind is it? How often does she get turned out with other horses, and what kind of feed does she get? Supplements of any kind
- Is he familiar with any other animals (for example, cattle, dogs, or cats)? What was his response
- Did he ask if she had any allergies? Are there any foods or supplements that she has had a bad reaction to? Is he simple to catch? Describe how she responds to different settings.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is there anything else you should look for in a dressage horse when you’re buying one? Dressage horses have a great deal of movement. It’s important to get a chance to see them canter since the trot is much simpler to correct than the canter. The importance of temperament cannot be overstated. Look for something eye-catching that is also simple to train. Ascertain whether or if they have previous show experience by asking for specifics and looking at the tack they are using. Is there anything else you should consider while purchasing a colt?
- Beginner and intermediate riders do significantly better on older, well-trained horses than on younger horses.
- If you want to ride your horse mostly for trail riding, look for one that has a lot of trail riding experience.
- In order to lease a horse, what are the most critical things to ask yourself?
- First, double-check that you are still asking all of the critical questions outlined in this post.
- A number of questions concerning the conditions of the lease should be asked, such as who will be responsible for paying for the horses’ care (board, regular health care, illness and injury treatment, farrier, and supplements), and who will be responsible for paying for the horses’ care.
- Is it possible to select your own barn, trainer, veterinarian, farrier, and so on?
- What happens if the horse suffers a significant injury and is no longer able to be ridden?
Leasing a horse can range from a few devoted riding days per week at a set charge to complete care in which the owner is rarely, if ever, involved to a combination of the two.
A solid working connection with the proprietor is also advantageous.
What is the Coggins test and how does it work?
The ability to demonstrate that a horse is free of EIA may be necessary in order to sell, trade, or transport it, depending on where you reside.
A Coggins test should be performed on any potential horses before they are purchased by the buyer.
A pre-purchase exam (PPE) is a regular health check conducted by a veterinarian, often of the buyer’s choice, prior to the finalization of a pet purchase transaction.
Both the buyer and the seller should be involved, and the scope of what is offered will vary depending on the veterinarian, the budget, and the buyer’s specific requirements.
A flexion test is often conducted by your veterinarian during a preventative maintenance examination.
What is the cost of a pre-purchase examination for a horse?
There is no fixed standard for what personal protective equipment (PPE) should include, and it is frequently determined by the interests and financial resources of the customer.
It might be as little as $200 or as much as several thousand dollars.
Where can I obtain a copy of a horse purchase agreement?
There are several templates available on the internet. You may also think about asking your trainer or barn buddies what kind of contract they utilized. Local laws may apply to you while dealing with legal papers, and you’ll need to keep them in mind when making decisions.
Happy Horse Shopping!
When looking for a horse, being in a rush is one of the worst things you can do. Making a hurried decision, not considering all of your options, or “going with your gut” are all bad ideas that will lead to disappointment. However, with careful preparation, the assistance of an expert trainer or friend, and an open mind, your ideal horse will almost surely make its way into your life. P.S. Did you find this article interesting? Go to the following address:
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Questions To Ask When Buying A Horse
Assume you’re in the market for a horse and you’ve come across one that you like the look of. Purchasing a horse is a major choice that carries a significant amount of risk. The key to avoiding that risk is to learn as much as you possibly can about the horse in question before purchasing it. If the vendor hasn’t included all you’re looking for in the advertisement, you’ll want to contact him or her to find out more. That’s why we’ve developed a list of questions you should ask when purchasing a horse to ensure there are no unpleasant surprises down the road.
Before you watch, make sure you have as much information as you possibly can.
If you decide to schedule a viewing, don’t be hesitant to ask them to repeat some of the information they have previously provided to you during the process.
Continue working your way down your list of questions (carry them with you physically to mark them off or make notes), just passing over questions that have already been answered by the group.
What To Ask:
- The fundamentals Are age, height, and gender. Although it may seem apparent, these are the most important things to know. Considering that some dealers have a proclivity to inflate the heights of horses, it may be worthwhile to inquire as to whether the height has been measured or approximated.
- How long have they been in possession of the horse? – It’s a good idea to be familiar with your horse’s history. Was the present owner the one who bred them? Does anyone know where the horse came from or what happened to it? If they have just owned the horse for a short amount of time, it is possible that you may wonder why they are doing this
- What are the reasons for selling? – Is it possible for them to provide you with a legitimate explanation for selling this horse? If they are unable to provide a clear response to this question, they may be concealing something.
- Known vices– Has the horse ever bucked, reared, napped, or displayed any other stable vices? These may be something that you are willing to overlook or try to handle on your own, but you will want to be aware of harmful habits so that you may be prepared if they occur. Additionally, keep in mind that vices might be signs of underlying health issues
- What is their family history? Do they know their ancestors’ breeding history? This information may already be documented in their passport, but if not, inquire as to whether they are aware of the sire and dam’s identities. Additionally, if your horse is a mixed breed, this will provide you with an idea of its genetic make-up.
- Is it true that they’re registered? – Especially if you want to compete in specific classes, this is critical. If this is important to you, always double-check the paperwork before making a payment, and be certain that you are purchasing from the listed owner.
- What exactly do they eat at the moment? – Do they now receive hay or haylage as a diet? It is possible that you will wish to remain with the one they are used to if you have no personal preference. What additional meals do they receive, as well as any supplements, do they have access to? Is there anything specific about their nutritional needs that you should be aware of
- Is the horse up to date on its vaccinations? Have they been inspected by a professional veterinarian, and if yes, to what level? If not, are they willing to allow the horse to be vetted? Even if you do not intend to have a veterinarian examine your pet, it is a good question to ask. If they answer no, there might be a good explanation for this
- Is the horse up to date on its vaccinations? – If so, which immunizations have they had recently, and which ones are they up to date on? All of this information should be recorded in the horse’s passport.
- Who is the current veterinarian on the case? – Are they prepared to provide you with access to the horses’ medical files? If you want to keep the horse in the same region, you may want to consider continuing to use the same veterinarian office.
- Worming– Do they have their worming regimen up to date? If so, does the owner have a record of when the animals were wormed?
- What is the condition of their teeth? – Have they been to the dentist on a regular basis? When was the last time they were seen by the dentist? There are a number of dental concerns that you should be aware of
- What is the condition of their feet? – Is it a firm or a soft surface? What problems do they have with cracking, thrush, abscesses, or any other problems? Does the company have any specific requirements?
- Are they in good condition? – What is the rationale for shoeing the horse, if it is necessary? Do they have difficulty walking around without shoes? Do they require corrective footwear? Is it merely for the level of competition or road work the horse does that they are used? In order to save money in the long term, it’s beneficial to know whether or not your horse can be shoed without difficulty.
- Have they ever been diagnosed with laminitis?– This does not necessarily imply that you should not purchase the horse, but it is vital to be aware of the situation. Once a horse has been diagnosed with laminitis, he or she is more susceptible to developing it in the future and may require special attention to keep it under control. In addition, it might be associated with other medical issues.
- Do they have a tendency to be clumsy? – Some horses are simply pros at being lame, and they always seem to figure out a way to get around it. It’s beneficial to be aware of this feature before buying in a horse, but it’s also beneficial to be aware of any other niggles or previous ailments they may have had that might flare up
- What is the nature of their temperament? – How do they engage with others around them? When it comes to forming a relationship with a horse, this may be really significant. Are they shy and reserved, or are they outgoing and anxious to be seen and interacted with? Are they extremely laid back or extremely high-strung? Whether you have children, it’s a good idea to find out if the horse is accustomed to being around them.
- How do they get along with other horses? • This is critical if you have additional horses of your own, if they will be in a yard with other horses, or if you intend to ride with other people. • You may also want to inquire as to whether or not they are familiar with other animals, such as dogs.
- Is it customary for them to be turned out as a herd or on their own? – This is important to know so that you can gauge how comfortable they are when they are turned out. Do they get along with a mix of males and females if they are content in a herd? Do they like to be in smaller groups or by themselves, or are they more prone to become stressed in certain circumstances?
- What is the current daily schedule? – Is it now the case that they are allowed to roam freely during the day and sleep in the stable at night? Is there a limit on how many people may attend? Or do they remain in the area indefinitely? It might be beneficial for a horse to be able to maintain as much of their typical routine as possible when they move to a new home.
- Is it simple to capture them? – After being set out, will they come racing towards you or will they turn and run the other direction? Is the owner aware of any tactics for catching them if they are difficult to capture
- Are they suitable for clipping? – Does he or she have years of experience and has been trimmed hundreds of times during their life? It’s possible that they’ve never ever seen clippers before or that they’re simply afraid of them. If you want to know if they are willing to stand and have their mane and tail pulled, or if they are patient while being plaited, these are all things to consider.
- Are they now employed?– You will almost certainly want to know what level they are currently working at as well as their physical fitness. Inquire about how frequently they are now employed.
- Do they become agitated if they are out of work? – If you anticipate that you will be unable to ride the horse for an extended length of time, you will want to know how they will act when you are able to go back on the horse. Will they behave in the same manner as before or will they become a nuisance?
- Are they effective while lunging? – Try riding the horse first and find it to be fantastic
- Then bring it home and attempt to lunge it only to discover that he goes insane or refuses to move. This may be something you can work on, but it’s good to be aware of it ahead of time. Request that the current owner lunge at them when they come in for a viewing.
- What level of rider are they looking for? – This is critically crucial! You don’t want to be saddled up with a horse that is too much for you or even one that makes you feel confined. Determine if they are suitable for a rookie rider or whether they need a confident advanced rider.
- That is the person who rides them now? – Was it a kid rider or an experienced adult who took them out for a spin? Is it simply a male or female rider that they are accustomed to? Is it possible that they have been professionally broken or schooled? If so, have they been employed in a riding school?
- Are they forward-thinking or do they slog along? – Before you go on the horse, you’ll want to know how it feels to be on it. When you climb on a bike and give it a kick, you don’t want to find yourself spinning around in circles at full speed with no way to stop
- What strategy do they employ? – Is there a particular bit or bridle that they are rode in, and if so, what is the purpose for this? Is it there just for aesthetic reasons, or is it there to assist the rider in maintaining control?
- Is tack included, or may it be purchased separately? – If the tack they have on display at the viewing looks to be a good fit and in excellent condition, you may wish to inquire as to whether it is available for purchase at that time. Some merchants may even include it at no additional cost. Rugs, headcollars, boots, and other items that will no longer be required by the existing owner might be acquired as well
- Are they appropriate for your field of study? – What do you intend to do with the horse is not immediately clear. If you only want to do one discipline, the people you hire must be well-suited to that discipline. If you’re looking for a jumper, find out how far they’ve gone in contests or at home. If you are looking for a dressage horse, inquire as to what level they are competing or studying at, as well as what lateral movements they have learned. If you’re looking for an all-rounder, you’ll want to hear about their previous experiences in a variety of disciplines, and you may even want to inquire about their strengths and weaknesses in certain areas.
- What is your previous competition/showing history?– It is beneficial to know whether they have any winners from linked contests, as well as any other accomplishments. Inquire about their behavior at the concerts as well. Is it making them jumpy or frightened, or are they taking it all in stride?
- Do they have a simple loading process? – You don’t want to show there to pick up your recently acquired horse just to discover that you are unable to transport it in the horse box! At the very least, you want to know what to expect. It is beneficial to know whether they are accustomed to traveling in a trailer or a box, or whether they have been in both.
- Is it a good idea to hack in a group?– This is an excellent question if you want to hack your horse on a regular basis, even if it is only sometimes. You’ll want to know how kids react when they’re near vehicles such as automobiles, bikes, trucks, agricultural machinery, and any other sights they may come across when driving. Is it necessary for them to have another horse with them for reassurance?
- Are they suitable for open spaces? – Are they calm and collected with well-oiled pauses, or do they prefer to take the initiative? When riding in wide spaces, do they all ride with the same bit and tack?
Once you are satisfied that the existing owner has answered all of your questions and you are still pleased with the horse, it is time to put them through their paces (if you are buying them as a broken riding horse). This is the most enjoyable part! In most cases, you will observe someone else riding the horse first so that you can observe how they move and act from the ground. It is then your time to board the ship if you feel safe doing so. Keep in mind that a legitimate seller should be OK with you seeking to ride the horse on more than one time if you are serious about buying it.
Make an effort to get at least one night’s sleep before making a choice.
You should ask a lot of questions when you are thinking about purchasing your first horse, especially if it is your first time purchasing a horse, or you are purchasing a horse for someone who is just getting started riding or someone who is returning to riding after a long period of time away from it.
The questions you should ask a horse seller will differ from horse to horse and, more importantly, will depend on how you want to enjoy your horse. However, the questions listed below should serve as a good starting point for thoughts on the questions you should ask a horse seller.
How to Buy a Horse as a Gift
It’s tempting to buy a horse as a present, but making sure the horse and rider are a good match is critical. Therefore, the rider should always have the chance to ride the horse prior to making the purchase. If you are buying a horse as a gift for your daughter, it is preferable to either 1. indicate to her that you “might buy a horse” in the future, allow her to take a trial ride of the potential horse, “refuse” to buy it for a variety of reasons, and then return to purchase the horse later; or 2.
Questions to Ask a Horse Seller:
How old is the horse in question? For how long have you been with him or her? Do you have any information on the horse’s previous owners? What led you to make the decision to sell the source? These are fantastic questions to ask a seller since they allow you to have a deeper understanding of the horse by taking into account its history and prior owners. Listen closely, and you may be able to decipher probable troubles the horse may be experiencing, as well as the reason the owner may be attempting to sell the horse.
Question 2: papers and registration
Is the horse a member of a recognized breed organization? If so, does the owner have the horse’s registration papers? If so, has it been negotiated in advance at what point in the purchasing process the paperwork would be handed over to the purchaser? The answer to this is critical, especially if you intend to display the horse in breed competitions. Registration may add a significant amount to the price of a horse, and dishonest vendors may falsify a horse’s registration status on occasion. As a result, having a contract is always a good idea, and making sure that the contract specifies what documents will be included with the horse’s sale and when they will be turned over is essential.
Inquire about the horse’s registration documents and make sure the individual selling the horse is the registered owner before making a purchase.
This may include additional paperwork and payments (a requirement for most breed association shows or if the horse later has offspring that you might want to register).
Question 3: appropriateness of horse for your rider
What can you tell me about the horse’s personality? Give an example of the type of rider who would be the ideal match for this horse. (Hint: instead of asking “would this horse work for a beginner?” ask “would this horse work for a beginner?” or other non-leading queries.) What is the horse’s current energy level? What is the riding experience like on this horse if he hasn’t been rode in a few weeks?
Finding the perfect horse for you is critical when purchasing a horse, and these questions can help you assess whether a horse has the temperament or training level necessary to be a fun partner for the activities you wish to participate in with your horse.
Question 4: Height and Color
What is the horse’s height? (If you are unfamiliar with horse heights, or if the answer does not appear to be right, it is OK to take measurements!) Who knows what color the horse is. Even though these seemingly innocuous questions aren’t normally important to the process of acquiring a horse, knowing the answers is always a good idea. The color and height of horses are increasingly being misrepresented – when larger or smaller animals are specifically desired by a possible buyer, it is easy for a vendor to bend the truth just a little bit in order to make the horse appear to be a better match.
While mostly concerned with appearance, these concerns might be extremely relevant if you intend to breed your horse or if the equestrian activities you wish to compete in need a larger or shorter horse.
Question 5: training history
What is the history of this horse’s education and training? Who was in charge of training this horse? Is it possible for me to contact them? Any particular bit, equipment or cue/aid that this horse does not like or reacts badly to should be identified. In answering these questions, you will be able to have a thorough understanding of the horse’s training history. A thorough groundwork for training a horse was laid by an experienced expert who made sure to cover all the areas in order to produce a horse that is confident and secure.
In between these two extremes, there are many other styles of training, and asking the correct questions may help you identify potential training difficulties that may occur if you were to acquire the horse in question later on.
Question 6: medical
Who is your veterinarian? Will you agree to enable me to obtain a copy of your horse’s medical records from your veterinarian? (Obtain vet records directly from the veterinarian, rather than from the vendor, to avoid the possibility of manipulation.) Obtaining access to the horse’s medical history can give as much or more decision-making information as having the animal examined by a veterinarian, since the history can reveal injuries, illnesses, and even if the horse was routinely vaccinated.
Question 7: hooves
Is it necessary to shod this particular horse? Why? Is it possible that this horse has ever walked barefoot? How frequently is this horse’s mane and tail trimmed and shod? Every year, a horse that is healthy and happy being ridden without horseshoes can save hundreds of dollars in farrier costs. The majority of horses require their hooves to be trimmed around every six weeks; however, this might vary from 4 to 8 weeks on average. A horse with poor foot condition that need special shoeing can swiftly escalate in price, soon becoming a very expensive animal.
Question 8: experience
What have you thought of this horse thus far? Is it possible that this horse has had a variety of experiences in a variety of environments? Consider if this horse has never left the farm where it resides or whether it has had several encounters where it has become desensitized to situations such as horse shows and even trail rides before making a decision on whether to purchase it.
Having more exposure to other environments makes it less probable for a horse to get fearful when confronted with unfamiliar situations.
Question 9: handling
What are the ground manners of this horse? What does this horse do when he is confined for long periods of time? How does she react when she gets grounded? When you’re having your horse’s hoofs trimmed by the farrier? When a trailer is being loaded, what do you do? These are fundamental horse abilities, and a horse purchased for leisure and pleasure (as opposed to competition at the highest levels of equestrian sport) should be enjoyable and nice to be around when not being used for riding. While a horse is simple to handle when it is not being ridden, it makes everyone’s life that much easier.
Question 10: Vices
Is there anything about this horse that you don’t like? Is this horse ever a source of irritation for you? Why? What is the horse’s behavior with other horses? What if the seller is concerned about the horse’s well-being and want to place him in a secure new home? They will be forthright about any problems the horse may be experiencing. Just because a horse has a problem does not rule out the possibility of it being a suitable purchase for you; nonetheless, being aware can assist you in making the best selection.
You should be able to get a sense of whether or not a potential horse is a good match for you by paying attention to the responses and noting what is left out of the conversation.
In order to spend more money on a showy horse that isn’t well-suited to the rider or the intended usage, far too many people miss up on well-tempered, cheap animals.
After earning a Master’s degree in psychology and gaining over two decades of riding, breeding, and business ownership experience on horseback, Tatum has created a unique method to educating adult riders that incorporates the physical and emotional components of being a confident rider.
Wait! 7 Essential Questions Before You Buy That Horse
“Will he be a good fit for my riding goals?” is one of the seven most important questions to ask yourself while considering a possible purchase. If competing in trail events is something you want to pursue with your new horse, make sure your test ride includes lots of trail obstacles to prepare you for the competition. Image courtesy of H R file photo Are you looking to purchase a horse? Have you discovered a fantastic bargain? Please, take it easy! If you find a “excellent deal,” it doesn’t guarantee the horse will be an excellent fit for you.
Here are seven critical characteristics to consider before making that major purchasing choice, as well as a list of methods that may be used to any horse purchase (see the bottom of this page for more information).
Applying this information will enhance the likelihood that your future horse will be a pleasure to own and to ride, as well as a pleasure to train. Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? Let’s get this party started, mate.
1. Is he a match for your riding ability?
Of course, this is the most important one. The temperament and “brokeness” of the horse must be compatible with your degree of experience and competence as a rider and handler. The most common error I see at my clinics across the country is green, inexperienced people attempting to work with green, inexperienced horses, which is a recipe for disaster. When you’re a newbie, attempting to learn on an inexperienced horse is the most effective way to ruin your confidence, set your training back, and put yourself in a position to be seriously injured or killed.
- Horses that have been properly-cared for may continue to be serviceable and rideable well into their teens and beyond, and many of the older ones are excellent confidence-builders.
- ” That is to say, first purchase one who has already had the necessary training and expertise to instruct you.
- If you are unsure of your ability level, it is recommended that you have it examined by a specialist.
- This individual may also be able to assist you in locating that horse; further information on this may be found in “Smart-Shopping Strategies.”
2. Will he suit your riding goals?
First and foremost, choose what you want to accomplish with the horse. Do you like to go on long, calm trail rides? Want to be a contender in Western pleasure or reining? Would you want to try your hand at barrel racing? A horse with a diverse history in training and experience is required for each of these situations. You should walk away if the prospect’s energy level is too high for the quantity of riding you can fit into your weekly schedule. Without doing so, you will end up with a horse that is far too difficult for you to control.
To put it another way, be certain that the horse has been effective at whatever it is you want him to perform.
In most cases, a horse that is suitable for an adult will not necessarily be suitable for a youngster. Sometimes they are, but to be on the safe side, look for one that has previously served as a child’s mount.
3. Do his energy needs match your riding schedule?
This is one that is frequently missed. The procedure is as follows: Take a look at a horse who is part of a program that runs six days a week and you will see that he is as pleasant, quiet, and well-mannered as they come. You buy him, bring him home, and put him on your schedule—that is, three days a week when you can arrange it, and typically only on weekends—and leave him alone. During the course of a month, the pleasant, peaceful horse has transformed into a neurotic, high-powered disaster.
Many horses that are normally calm at home exhibit markedly different behavior when they are in unexpected situations.
If what the horse need differs from what you are able to provide for him, approach cautiously.
A trial period or a lease-to-purchase deal may also be beneficial in this situation.
4. Is his behavior consistent?
Obviously, you won’t be able to answer this question if you just ride him once, no matter how fantastic he appears to be the first time you get on his back. Return to him and ride him as many times as you can, in as many different situations as you can. Inquire with the owner about finding another horse, if necessary, so that the two of you may go on a trail ride—preferably somewhere far away from home base (because a lot of horses act much differently away from home than they do in their familiar stomping grounds).
If it is acceptable and the buyer agrees, you may also be able to ride the horse in a few of classes.
5. Is he willing, able, and happy to learn?
The most effective technique to determine this attribute is to experiment with various horse training methods. A good-natured readiness to attempt what you’re asking for is preferable than a seamless performance when you’re looking for it. To put it another way, if you try to bend his neck to the side from the ground or back him out of your personal space, don’t be concerned if he appears rigid or slow to respond at first. Instead, take note of whether he at least attempts to comprehend and comply with your request without becoming morose, irritable, or belligerent in the process.
If he does, and if he accepts the instruction without raising an argument, it is probable that he is a willing and good learner, which is a very desired characteristic.
6. Will he lope quietly?
You’d be surprised at how many people don’t lope a horse before purchasing him or her. Nonetheless, loping is really important, not just to examine how he lopes, but also as a gauge of his total training, willingness, and temperament, among other things. A pre-purchase checkup (also known as a vet check) is required before purchasing any horse, even if it is a cheap one. Cappy Jackson’s photograph is used with permission. You know, most horses feel a sense of duty to at least walk and trot, and they will do so without any prodding or encouragement.
- Obviously, the first step is for the owner to lope the horse.
- In the event that you are not comfortable loping the horse yourself (maybe because you want to get to know the horse better first), you should bring someone who is comfortable doing it.
- Having him do it on a loose leash would be much better.
- When you believe you are in command, you are more confident.
7. Will he pass a vet check?
A pre-purchase checkup (also known as a vet check) is necessary regardless of how much the horse is asking for. This is due to the fact that you may become just as connected to a cheap horse as you can to a luxury one, and any subsequent vet treatment will be just as expensive as it would be for a wealthy horse. Keep in mind, too, that every horse will have some bad characteristics, especially those wonderful, more mature confidence boosters. The idea is to communicate with the examining veterinarian about what you can and cannot live with in light of the horse’s planned usage and discuss your options with him.
- When an obvious, can’t-live-with-it issue is discovered, don’t be afraid to turn the horse away from the barn.
- This will not be your only opportunity, so don’t put yourself through unnecessary heartache.
- Make sure to review the smart-shopping methods listed below before heading over to Equine.com, the primary classifieds site of the Equine Network, to look for your next wonderful partner!) STRATEGIES FOR SMART-SHOPPING Seek assistance.
- The correct trainer may take a lot of the uncertainty out of your horse-buying choice, but only if you deal with someone you can trust and who stands behind his or her work and promises to follow through.
- In most cases, a 10 percent commission on the selling price is common; nevertheless, you want to prevent any additional markup on the side.
- Take some time to think about it.
- Avoid making an impulsive purchase, especially in a buyer’s market where there are a large number of horses available at a reasonable cost.
If at all possible, record yourself handling and riding the horse so that you may take it home and watch it over and over and show it to others.
Don’t be afraid to say what you think.
Then, when you put the horse through his paces, give him every chance to show any vices he may have (for example, ask to see him loaded into a trailer).
Leave as soon as possible if the vendor appears to be pressed about time, stating things like “Better get a move on, since I have someone else coming to view him later today.” Why?
However, if the horse has hidden flaws, the sooner the seller can close the purchase, the better, so that you don’t find out what those flaws are later on.
Allow the horse’s fitness to lead you rather than your emotions.
Those justifications are a clear indication that your emotions are taking precedence over your reasoning.
Such bells and whistles might take your attention away from more vital factors, such as your proclivity to kick.
(If he’s so skinny or has been harmed in any other way, contact animal welfare.
In particular, if you’re a rookie, the less constraints you place on your purchase in terms of yourwants (the horse’s breed, age, size, color, markings, and so on), the greater your chances of finding something that meets your requirements.
Don’t get too caught up with the color and breed of the dog; instead, focus on the temperament and experience.
You have the option to trade up if your requirements change.
You should not strive to convert your child into something he is not capable of becoming.
Make a hedging bet.
Although many vendors are not interested in this option, it doesn’t hurt to inquire.
Expect to hand over a post-dated cheque for the agreed-upon amount to the seller in this situation (subject to renegotiation if something of concern shows up on the prepurchase exam).
It may also be necessary to get a short-term insurance coverage to protect both you and the vendor in the event that the horse is killed or injured.
Viewing Your Potential Horse
Once you have discovered horses that appeal to you and meet your requirements, you may have a slew of questions you want to ask the seller before scheduling a visit with them. Make a list of questions to ask in order to establish whether or not this horse is potentially acceptable; doing so will save you time, money, and a wasted voyage. In order to determine what sort of horse you are wanting to buy or loan, you may want to consider the following questions:
- What is the reason for the horse’s sale? Would you say the horse is suitable for a beginning or experienced rider? What is the horse’s disposition like
- How old is the animal
- What kind of labor is the horse now engaged in
- Has the horse ever suffered from an injury or illness? What is the horse’s usual daily schedule during the summer and winter months
- What is the horse’s interaction with other horses like, both when ridden and when turned out? Is the horse capable of being ridden both alone and in company? Is the horse registered with a breed society, or is it eligible to be registered? Is the horse in possession of a passport? Is tack and carpets included in the fee or can they be purchased separately? In what ways does the horse want to be loaded, caught, and clipped
- What is the horse’s demeanor with the farrier and the veterinarian? How long have you had the horse as a pet? What stable did you purchase the horse from? Has the horse ever been diagnosed with laminitis, sweet itch, or colic
- And Is the horse properly shod? What is the horse’s behavior like at shows
- Is the horse vaccinated, and if so, are the vaccinations up to date?
When buying a horse, the vast majority of reputable vendors will want the prospective purchaser to be as knowledgeable as possible about the horse and will not want to waste their time scheduling viewings when the horse and purchaser are simply not a good match – so don’t be embarrassed to ask as many questions as you need to! If the horse appears to be a good fit, the seller should schedule a viewing of the horse. If you are unsure about anything, you should not make a choice right away. Inform the vendor that you will contact them back to schedule a visit once you have taken their responses into consideration.
The British Horse Society highly recommends that you bring an experienced individual who is familiar with your abilities and requirements with you to the horse viewing.
Viewers should pay attention to how the horse is handled, as well as its overall health, including its body condition, hooves, and legs.
Do not be afraid to inquire as to what things are; it is preferable to ask more inquiries than it is to ask too few.
Keep an eye on the horse as it is being tacked up; does it seem content with the saddle being placed on it, or does it squirm, kick out, or attempt to bite?
Is the horse accepting of the bridle being put on, or is he resisting it or displaying any symptoms of being afraid of the bridle?
Once the horse is saddled up, the vendor or their representative should ride the horse while you observe.
Keep your safety in mind at all times; if you have any reservations about riding the horse, it is doubtful that this horse will be suited for you to begin with.
If you are sure in your ability to ride the horse, inquire as to whether you can do so.
A horse in regular work should, however, be able to withstand being put through its paces at the walk, trot, canter, and jumping.
Be brave and call the seller to ask further questions or to schedule a second viewing if you have any.
It may take several viewings until the appropriate horse is discovered. Despite the fact that this might be upsetting, do not be discouraged. It is vital to take your time in order to ensure that you get the proper horse.