Buying a horse is just the first step to have a smooth ride, and every first-time owner should already have the basic equipment for taking care of their four-legged animal.
Beginners should know where to look for these must-have items to have an enjoyable activity. While some items like brushes and ropes can be purchased before you can take your horse home, there are some things you should put off when you haven’t taken measurements for your steed. Saddles, saddle pads, headstalls, and bridles and bits are just some of these items.
Horse Equipment and Essentials
Depending on your horse’s appetite, they can eat more than a bale of hay in a single day. Hence, you need to make sure that you have a steady supply for several weeks once you’ve taken the horse to its stable. First-time owners should also make sure to install fencing for the security of the animal. If you plan to keep it on a stable, it’s better to have some bedding to make it more comfortable.
A stable source of fresh water is also necessary. If you live in a place with harsh winters, you will need to have a water heater or heated bucket. Those who keep horses in a barn must also have stable brooms, pitchforks, wheelbarrows and manure forks. There might be a time that insecticides are necessary to get rid of bugs.
Choosing Between Certain Items
Bridles can be confusing for many beginners because of different choices such as a one-ear tack. You could use one if you prefer it, but it’s a different story when you plan to enter in a horse show. These events may enforce rules about bridles.
Another thing to consider when choosing the right tack involves the habits and preferences of your own horse. Some are sensitive across the forehead that using a traditional browband can be irritating for your horse. One-ear bridles, however, are not as secure as other types. Your horse could remove it easily if it tends to shake its head frequently. Two-ear bridles could be your option, unless the horse has ear sensitivities.
The Cost of Horse Ownership
The annual cost of ownership for just one horse reaches almost $2,000 per year. Annual dental check-ups and vaccinations are some of the biggest expenses, but food and medicine are the constant expenses. For instance, a bale of hay may cost $10 each. Horses with big appetites can finish one in a day, so the price adds up when you estimate your expenses for a month.
Health supplements, dewormers and trimming hooves are other recurring expenses. The actual cost depends on how much you’re willing to spend. Take note that you would also need to pay for veterinarian bills if your horse becomes sick.
Horse maintenance can be overwhelming if you haven’t planned carefully how to take care of it. A spontaneous decision can hurt your finances, as owning one can be expensive over time. Once you’ve decided on keeping a horse, it’s important to find a trusted supplier of different resources from feeding to animal wear.