What to Avoid When Buying Your First Horse
When buying your first horse it can be an exciting time but you don’t want to end up with a horse which you can’t handle or which you can’t connect with after a few weeks. Choosing the right horse should take time and research and there are a few common mistakes to avoid.
As you set out to buy your new animal you need to make sure you know which kind of horse you want and that you have the right budget to be able to support the horse and look after it for its whole life.
And here is our guide to what not to do when buying your first horse:
1. Don’t go to buy a horse on your own
If you’ve never owned a horse before then take someone experienced with you to help you assess the horses you are viewing. You need the expertise to judge the horse’s personality and temperament as well as any potential problems with the animal.
2. Don’t buy a horse without riding it first
Never buy a horse you haven’t ridden as you can’t tell how you will connect with the animal just from looking at it. You need to spend time with any horse you are considering, handling it, catching it and importantly, riding it, before you commit to becoming its new owner.
3. Don’t buy a horse on impulse
You should always look at several different horses – never buy the first one you see and never buy on impulse. It’s important to do your research and shop around to make sure you are completely happy with the horse you select.
4. Don’t consider horses you can’t handle
If you are a novice horse rider don’t consider buying a really high-spirited green horse which you won’t be able to handle. You don’t want a horse which will be challenging and difficult as the first horse you ever own.
5. Don’t go over your budget
Horses cost a lot of money to buy but even more to look after feed and house so don’t be tempted to blow your whole budget buying an animal – if it means you have no money to look after it. Set yourself a strict budget before you start looking.
6. Don’t buy a horse without getting it checked by a vet
You should never buy a horse without first getting a pre-purchase examination from a vet so that you know how the horse is health-wise and whether it has any concerns or issues which might prevent you buying it.
7. Never buy a horse you don’t trust
If you ride a horse you like but it makes you uneasy or you have instincts about, trust those feelings and don’t buy it. You need to be perfectly comfortable when riding your horse every time. If you feel uneasy it’s not the horse for you.
8. Never buy a green horse
If you are a novice rider, avoid young inexperienced horses which will need consistent training. An older trained horse which you can rely on is a much better first time purchase for any horse owner. If in doubt ask your horse riding instructor for advice and guidance.
9. Never buy a horse which doesn’t like being handled
Make sure you handle the horse before considering buying it to see how it reacts to you, how affectionate it is towards people and how it behaves generally. If a horse is aggressive or skittish or shows any kind of behavioural problems, don’t buy it. You want a horse which enjoys being with you and responds positively.
10. Never buy a horse that is too big for you
Big doesn’t mean better when it comes to horses so make sure you choose a horse which is the right size for your needs and which you are comfortable riding and handling. If you go for one which is way too big it could end up causing handling problems further down the line.
Choosing the right horse can be fraught with problems, however; if you can avoid some of these most common mistakes then you are halfway to success. Investing in a horse is a big decision and it’s important to get it right.
Buying the wrong horse will not only cost a lot of money but it could have a potentially damaging effect on your horse riding and horse handling confidence, so it’s even more important to take your time, do your research, shop around and make sure the horse you choose is right for you.
By avoiding these common mistakes and taking a sensible approach to buying your first horse you should end up with a wonderful animal in your life and be able to fully enjoy all of the joys and pleasures which come with horse ownership.
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