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How Much Does It Cost to Own a Horse
 By Winniefield Park   •   27th Jul 2014   •   2,368 views   •   2 comments
How Much Does It Cost to Own a HorseEvery now and again, Iíll sit down and figure out just how much it costs to own a horse. Itís good to know to budget ahead. If you want a horse, youíll want to make sure you can actually afford one, because the purchase price is usually the tip of the iceberg.

The Basic Costs
If you donít board your horse, youíll probably spend money on other necessities like feed. Few of us have pasture to support grazing our horses full time, so hay may be necessary.. Horse owners can expect to pay around $4 a bale and up or $35 for a 4x4 round bale. Hay prices can fluctuate wildly. After bad weather round bales can exceed $75 per bale. A full-grown horse can eat a half a bale per day. A low estimate of hay cost would be about $2 per day. Thatís $730 per year. You might get away with cheaper, but a lot of horse owners will pay much more.

A horse needs to be dewormed at least every three months. A tube of wormer cost about $15, but you may be able to buy it in larger quantities and save money. Many owners have a more frequent parasite control program. However, a low estimate is $60 per year.

Related: Horse Expense Calculator
Related: How to Convince Your Parents to Buy a Horse

Your horse should be trimmed by a farrier about every six weeks. You might find a farrier that charges $25 for trims, but many people pay $50 or more. Shoeing of course, will add to the expense. Fronts may cost about $125, with resets in the $75 range and all four for about $150 with resets over $100. Prices vary, and some farriers are much more expensive than others. But, even if your horse is barefoot, count on $230 a year for farrier work.

Horses need salt and perhaps mineral. Itís not a big expense, but I calculate about $100 per year for basic loose salt and a mineral mix.

Some horses need a supplement or concentrate to stay in top condition. A basic Ďconditioning supplementí may cost you about $1 per day or about $365 per year.

The yearly core vaccinations for rabies, tetanus and equine influenza are essential, and it will cost about $95 to have one horse vaccinated by the vet. West Nile Virus might also be included, or you may have to pay extra for that, or other vaccinations to protect your horse from diseases prevalent in your area.

Most horses will require at least one visit per year from the equine dentist or vet to have its teeth checked and floated. Count on about $125 per visit for this.

Of course, you can calculate in the cost of your property, liability insurance, land taxes and other expenses in keeping up fences, barns and vehicles if you keep your horse at home. And if you board, youíll of course pay a flat fee, with perhaps a few extras like veterinary charges and farrier visits. Prices vary greatly from place to place, with costs being higher near urban areas and popular horse areas. But, owning a horse alone will cost you at least $1705 per year or more. If you compete, own a trailer or need tack, or repairs to any of your equipment, youíll probably spend much more. If your horse becomes sick or injured, veterinary costs can be substantial.

What do you think? Can you keep your horse for cheaper? Or, are you paying for things like $10 square bales of hay, putting your costs much higher?
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Valkyrie  MOD 
Holy crap these are cheap prices! Where I live it's $15 a normal bale of hay and $80 a farrier trim.
  Jul 28, 2014  •  2,431 views
 
Winniefield Park  
There's lots of variation, esp with farrier or hay. We pay less than $4 a bale. $35 for a large round. I pay $30 for a trim.
  Aug 7, 2014  •  2,285 views
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