Horses?

Bicoastal

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The purchase price of horses has skyrocketed during COVID, including backyard types as people had more time to spend on hobbies and many white-collar types had the same income with less expenditures. Prices may dip in a month or two for owners who don't have pasture or hay, dead of winter typically has lower prices than spring, but overall prices have tripled for backyard and trail types, doubled for the show types (which were already in the mid five figures). I can't stomach the price hike. If you can wait, wait.
 

Spokeless Wheel

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Does anyone know where to get an inexpensive, but well trained horse? I know there is probably not many places, much less places in the NW.
Try a rescue that has horses on site. Don't be fooled by auction rescues as I understand there are a lot of unscrupulous dealings going on. But there are a lot of legitimate rescues that go to the auctions and save some really nice horses. The rescues will be well below $5000. but may have some issues . An older horse that's sound is a great beginner horse. What do you want from the horse? Trail riding? Companion for another? A pasture pet to mow your lawn? What you want the horse for and how experienced you are will be the guiding light to the right horse. Try a legitimate rescue! Some will even do training for you and the horse!
 

Ridgetop

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If this will be your first horse and you have minimal experience with horses, I suggest you find an instructor and take lessons. Many training stables will have horses that they will know about.

For instance horses that have lots of training and are used as lesson horses can be purchased as they get to old to be in used a day long. These are usually snapped up by students that have ridden these horses and know them.

Here are some descriptions to stay away from:
Babysitter horse for kids Means won't move out of a walk until it collapses under you.
Great trail horse, just needs tune up Horse hasn't been ridden in years
Home wanted for beloved pet Might never have been trained to lead in a halter, let alone to the saddle
 

Ridgetop

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And more
Retired show horse - Probably injured
Owner's health forces sale - Owner often waits until the horse is too badly taken care of to work
Child's pet - bought for 1 year old and never trained
Nice horse, needs some TLC - Needs either complete retraining or constant medication

Having shopped for countless horses over the years for my kids and family I have seen all these ads and more. (Just like real estate, the language can disguise a lot of problems! LOL) I prefer a nice easygoing well trained older horse with good sense. I have been lucky to fund these horses. They ended up dying on our property of old age, having been retired. They earned their retirement with us having taken care of my kids and self on the trails over that time.

What you want is a horse about 16-18 years old with lots of trail experience. Good ground manners are essential. GET A VET CHECK EVEN IF THE PRICE OF THE VET CHECK IS MORE THAN THE HORSE!!! Saved me several times from buying a horse that had an injury. Even more important because I was buying for my kids and they like to cowboy their horses.

Show up at least half hour early and make sure that you see the horse in the corral so the owner has to catch it for you. You don't want the horse that the owner has saddled and waiting for you since they probably had to chase it all over the field to catch it or tranquilized before you came. (Happened to an acquaintance. When the tranqs wore off the horse was dangerous in the stall and bucked her off in the street when she finally got him saddled and got on. Then she found that she couldn't sell him because he had some ringbone!)

Take an experienced friend with you to look. Have the owner load the horse in and out of trailer if you plan to trailer with the horse. If you are not an experienced horse person, you need to have someone who knows horses to notice little things that won't mean anything to you.

Rearing - "High Spirits" Could be barn sour or just a habitual rearer.
Mouthy - "Looking for love or treats" Sooner or later you will get bitten

There are some wonderful horses out there. There are some good deals too. But there are many unscrupulous people who will sell you a problem. My uncle was a rodeo rider and cattleman. He also bought and sold horses. His advice "Don't trust a horse trader"!

Your best purchase will be from a family. The best horse for you will be one that has been outgrown by the teens in the family. (college, needs a more advanced horse for exhibition, etc.) These horses are sold to make room in the budget for the new one. The family is anxious for the new owner to love the horse. Don't rush to buy one that is cheap. You are better off to save a little more and buy one that is well trained, and is friendly and sensible.

Like L2Elk says the purchase price is nothing, the upkeep is the real price. If you think you are going to pasture the h9rse, how much grass do you have? Price hay in your area - a horse will eat 1 - 2 bales a week depending on the weight and the protein needs of the horse. Shoeing and trimming is an expense which will need to be done every month or two. Vet expenses - vaccinations, and the occasional sick call costs money. Tack costs money and needs to fit the horse. Grooming equipment, corralling, feeders, and if you are in the Pacific Northwest, you need to consider some kind of shelter from the worst weather.

HOWEVER, no need to be discouraged! Many boarding stables will have good horses owned by clients who offer lease arrangements. You pay part of the board (worked out with the owner) and have the use of the horse for a certain period of time. This can work to your advantage since you can arrange to take lessons at the stable and you are in a position to hear about any horses at the stables that might be sold.

This might be a better use of your money if the cost of buying a horse is worrisome. You can also see if you really want the work and expense of a horse this way instead if buying it and then selling it later.
 

wild stallion

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Thank you for the heads up, and I will look on those websites.
What do you want from the horse? Trail riding? Companion for another? A pasture pet to mow your lawn? What you want the horse for and how experienced you are will be the guiding light to the right horse. Try a legitimate rescue! Some will even do training for you and the horse!
I'm looking for a Trail Riding horse, and I am not the most experienced, but the horses that I ride sure are fiesty, and I can handle them alright. ;)
 

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