Purchasing a Horse

Important steps before you buy a horse:

  • Decide what you want to do with your horse
  • Determine what level of rider you are
  • Arrange for or build a safe place to stable your horse
  • Decide who will feed and care for your horse

Important questions to ask before you buy a horse:

  • What experience do you have in the horse industry?
  • What experience do you have in my chosen discipline?
  • Who else have you helped and what kind of success have they had under your guidance?
  • How are your fees structured?
  • What references do you have from other professionals?

Important questions to ask when you have found a horse:

  • How much has the horse been ridden during the past year?
  • Who has ridden the horse the most — trainer, amateur, youth?
  • How easy is the horse to handle after being turned out for a while and not ridden?
  • What kind of equipment has been used?
  • How much training has the horse received and in what areas?
  • What type of feed and roughage does the horse eat and what is its feeding schedule?
  • Has the horse ever had any colic episodes?
  • How often is the horse dewormed or shod?
  • How does the horse react?
  • Does the horse have any vices? (i.e., cribbing, biting, trailer shyness)
  • How often has the horse been away from home and what is his behavior in different surroundings?
  • And the best question — Why is the horse for sale?

Purchasing Exam

If a horse seems like a good prospect, and meets your approval through the evaluation process, you may want to arrange to have a purchase examination performed by an experienced equine veterinarian.

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