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The tack room

How much does a horse cost?

70 replies

Redup · 06/11/2022 22:47

Daughter is mad about horses. I have no idea. Ex is determined to buy her one (I know....) I have raged about this and am getting nowhere. I don't have spare money to fund her hobby (she is 20 and her wages can't afford a horse)

OP posts:

littleworld187 · 07/11/2022 08:31

I was expecting you to say she's twelve

She's twenty, leave it to her and your ex


JesusMaryAndJosephAndTheWeeDon · 07/11/2022 08:34

To give some figures, I am in the Midlands.

My livery bill is £500 a month and includes hay, trailer parking and basic care, so turn outs, bring ins, rug changes, mucking out and giving hay/feed. It doesn't include bedding or feed or riding or grooming.

My bedding works out at about £14 a week but that is on a pretty cheap woodchip bedding bought by the pallet load. If I was buying nice shavings in small quantities in would be more like £20 a week.

Farrier costs depend on your horses needs, I put a lot of effort into barefoot so my farrier costs are low, about £45 every couple of months but a full set of shoes is more like £80 and can be over £100 when you start adding things like pads, stud holes, or special shoes.

Dentist twice a year at £45 a time. Physio once a quarter at £55 a time. Worming about £30 twice a year, plus the cost of worm counts. Vaccination about £50 a year.

Feed and supplements, if you are lucky perhaps £20 a month, but easily £50 or £100. I haven't worked mine out.

Insurance about £90 a month.

Lessons around £30 or £50 a time depending upon the instructor and whether you have to hire a school.

Saddle fitter about £50 twice a year.

Clipping £30 - £50 two or three times a year.

Then you have to allow for any hoc vets bills, and purchase of equipment. A new saddle will easily set you back £1000. A waterproof turnout rug £100, a wheelbarrow £60, but even small stuff like haynets and antiseptic cream need to be purchased for the first horse and need replacing regularly.

Take into account that a big bill can hit at any time. Vets bills aren't predictable, but avoiding incurring them inevitably ends up more expensive in the end.


Basecamp · 07/11/2022 09:00

How long is a piece of string? I've had horses on DIY livery paying around £250 a month and I've had them on full livery paying £800 a month.

Then on top you've got shoes, wormers, vaccinations, tack and equipment, competition fees (if that's your thing), running a horse box or trailer or paying to hire one if you want to compete.

And the final big kicker - vet bills. You can pay an extortionate amount for insurance or take your chances.

My last horse was uninsured because I felt the monthly premiums were too high and unfortunately he costs me thousands in vet bills.

Ultimately it's an extremely expensive hobby but not one that you should even be worrying about imo as your daughter is 20 ffs! If she wants it, then she has to find a way to fund it! Don't even spend another second pondering how to to pay for it.


BensonStabler · 07/11/2022 09:50

My dd loves horses. We could never in a million years get her a horse with the exception of a lottery win.

Age 14-17 we just arranged weekly or fortnightly, (sometimes less often) horse riding, jumping, trekking, lessons at around £30/£35 per lesson. So that she could get experience and confidence, and fun but without the owning side of it. She loved it.

She lessened going due to covid pandemic and then her important exams and catching up with school studies. After a while she prioritised another hobby that she had been doing since age 4 (dancing), school work and socialising, so she just one day decided to give it up. She enjoyed the experience and has lovely memories of her time there.

Just an idea for a compromise if she is keen on horses.


Fudgeball123 · 07/11/2022 10:28

A friend of mine loaned ponies for a year and then bought one for her daughter, 12. 6 months on and pony is up for sale as daughter has admitted she rather do other hobbies..
Given your daughter's age I would stay well out of this and leave it to her / her dad to finance it. Make it clear you're not involved (I'm assuming your daughter can drive herself)?


bravelittletiger · 07/11/2022 15:23

Hooverphobe · 07/11/2022 08:05

Sharing is a good idea and I’m seeing a lot of shares come on to the market as people’s finances get hit.

I know this is entirely off topic but where do you look for share adverts? I'm not yet ready for my own share but hoping I might be in the next year or so but I'm not sure where I would start (the yard I go to for lessons doesn't do them).


DotBall · 07/11/2022 15:26

Average £300 a month DIY livery where I am. That covers all food, bedding, farrier, routine vet bills (teeth and jabs) and worming. Insurance is £31 on top.
My horse cost £3k to buy but many people part or full loan.


Baconand · 07/11/2022 15:48

bravelittletiger · 07/11/2022 15:23

I know this is entirely off topic but where do you look for share adverts? I'm not yet ready for my own share but hoping I might be in the next year or so but I'm not sure where I would start (the yard I go to for lessons doesn't do them).

Local equine Facebook groups are usually where people advertise. Most areas have several. Tack and feed shop noticeboards too. Or you can put Wanted ads up as well.


maxelly · 07/11/2022 15:49

bravelittletiger · 07/11/2022 15:23

I know this is entirely off topic but where do you look for share adverts? I'm not yet ready for my own share but hoping I might be in the next year or so but I'm not sure where I would start (the yard I go to for lessons doesn't do them).

Old fashioned answer, tack/feed shop windows, notice board at show venues or riding school, word of mouth.

These days, social media, largely local facebook groups but perhaps also places like PreLoved and Gumtree? If you don't see any suitable 'sharer wanted' ads you can post up a 'sharer available' ad with some (honest!) details of your riding experience, height/weight and availability and you'll likely get some interest providing you are realistic, available (no good only being able to travel 2 mins from home on foot and only available every 2nd tuesday in months with an 'r' in them) and able to make a contribution either of jobs or financial or both...

Word of mouth also still big so you can ask any horsey friends (or your instructor if they won't take offense) if they know of anything local, even if they don't offer shares via the riding school they may know of some liveries that do...


Lastqueenofscotland2 · 07/11/2022 16:23

Facebook groups are the best for shares but be prepared to filter through a lot of crap/lunatics/people who just haven’t read the advert


bellinisurge · 07/11/2022 16:27

We loan a horse for £150/month from local stables. Get a couple of lessons a week and "experience " of caring for a horse. It was brilliant in lockdown because DD got to go up a few times a week and spend a couple of hours each time. She was part of the welfare package for the horse so we were allowed. And I got to accompany her. Sat in the car and did my work with fresh air and lovely views. Even remote attended some meetings.


TodayInahurry · 07/11/2022 16:37

How much does she know about horses, can she ride? She really needs to start out at a good livery yard with people to help her.

our livery is £900 per month, shoes £110, vaccinations, dentist etc probably another £200 or so. Lessons probably £200 or so per month.

We have horses here that have been bought for from £10,000 to £500,000.


Mollyplop999 · 07/11/2022 19:07

I own my own land and it costs me about £300 a month and they aren't insured. We've actually just been discussing it and if we didn't have the ponies we'd hsve a nice car instead of a 20 Yr old 4 x 4 , we could go on holidays and buy a bigger house. But having said all that my life wouldn't be worth living without them.


Harrysnippleno3 · 07/11/2022 19:09

A whole kidney; all of your money, and your right arm.


countrygirl99 · 07/11/2022 19:14

@Harrysnippleno3 you must keep yours on a shoestring😁


PinotPony · 07/11/2022 19:24

She'd be better getting a share.

I used to look after a lovely cob every Saturday. I'd feed, muck out, do haynets then flick a brush over him and tack up. Hack out or do some schooling/ jumping then turn him out. Back in the afternoon to clean tack and poo pick the field before getting him in, grooming (or washing if he was really filthy) then feed and say goodnight.

On occasion I'd go to shows with the owner in her lorry and we'd each both a class or two.

Cost me £60 a month.


Polkadotties · 07/11/2022 20:40

I don’t add it up 😂 probably nearly £1k a month


thankyouforthesun · 08/11/2022 07:56

I had a lovely share a few years ago whose owner was struggling for time. I went there two week nights and one weekend day (twice on the weekend day to do jobs).
The owner was often happy for me to have extra days as she had an incredibly busy job and family life and was paying daily charges for livery, and every time I went there it saved her on livery fees.
I used to chip in for other stuff like buying off bags of feed (could be £20 each these days) and £100 maybe once a year on a new rug, but without the commitment of ownership.
When I had my own I spent £800 a month easily.


thelobsterquadrille · 08/11/2022 09:10

A small fortune and then some 🤣

I can't afford a horse but I have weekly private lessons and that sets me back £140 per month. A two hour ride out costs me £90 a go - but luckily I get those paid for as Christmas and birthday gifts.

Horses are expensive animals. They're huge. They need shoes, a dentist, rugs, tack, lots of food, somewhere to live, a stable/barn, land for turnout. Your daughter will also need gear to ride - a hat, boots, maybe a body protector etc.

Then think of time. If you have plenty of spare time, DIY livery is an option but then you need to be there twice a day, everyday and pay someone if you can't get there. Full livery is much more expensive but it doesn't take up your time.

You also need to think about care when you go on holiday. I look after a lovely old horse who lives out 24/7 on private land and only needs one visit a day - that still costs the owner £10 a day for my time and all I do is feed him, poo pick and basically make sure he's happy and healthy.


krustykittens · 08/11/2022 18:08

Don't do it OP, she can't afford it and it is just not fair. We have four we keep on our own land, native ponies who are cheap to keep and they are still our biggest expense forcing us to compromise on things like new clothes and holidays. And they are a tie, our live revolves around them. But we are happy with this and made the decision to live like this after years of livery yards, as adults earnign a full time wage. She can't afford a horse at 20 unless she is making seriously silly money and if she is forced to sell in a year, her heart will be broken.


Askinvillarblues · 08/11/2022 18:15

I have a horse and he’s just had to have major surgery which has maxed out the amount the insurance were willing to cover and it’s been an extra £2000 on top of that. It’s not buying the horse that’s the expensive part! Mad idea to do it if you have no knowledge/understanding of everything that comes with horse ownership. Can’t she just have lessons until she’s in a position to pay for one herself? I was a pony mad kid but had to wait until I was in my forties before I had the time/money to have my own.


DGay · 08/11/2022 18:35

EmmaC78 · 06/11/2022 22:57

I budget £300 a month for one horse on DIY livery. It's cheaper in summer so the £300 is an average.

My best friend has a horse and she pays a minimum of $300 for board/feed. Does not include vet visits.


EverestMilton · 08/11/2022 19:05

Mine has just had major abdominal surgery because he got a tummy ache..... Vet bill is currently £7500 and rising. Although I have insurance it won't cover all of it. Oh and I've also had the joy of 5 weeks box rest which means in this windy weather trying not to kite fly a 600kg cob on the end of a lead rein during his daily walks. God love sedalin!. We are now on the stage called small paddock turn out for another 5 weeks The inmate is happier but is creating an abominable amount of mud and a yard like Colditz to thwart the escape attempts.....
I very much recommend gold fish.


countrygirl99 · 08/11/2022 20:56

I got a really good bonus this year. £6k after tax. Between the announcement and it appearing in my bank account my horse had spent the lot at the vets.


LaPufalina · 08/11/2022 21:43

We keep ours pretty cheaply (sharing a field, barefoot, no stables/electricity/running water) and share chores with the other owners/loaners but still costs c£300pcm per horse. One got kicked in September and it was three vet visits, £700 and a broken hand for me trying to dress the wound.

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