Are you in the market for a new horse? Purchasing a horse is a big and exciting decision – but it can also be intimidating. With so many factors to consider, it’s important to do your research and find a horse that’s the perfect fit for you and your riding experience level. Novice riders should avoid young or untrained horses. An experienced horse is a better option to help boost confidence and skill level. It can be helpful to follow these guidelines when looking for a horse, no matter your level of experience.
1. Choose the right size.
When looking for a horse, size is an important factor to consider. Horses are measured in hands, and one hand is equal to four inches. Depending on the size of the rider and what the horse will be used for, the size of the horse can make a big difference. It’s also important to note that a horse’s weight should be no more than 15-20% of its body weight, although this can be lower for younger or older horses. Additionally, remember that the weight of your tack can add additional weight to the horse as well.
2. Choose the right breed.
With over 350 breeds of horses and ponies available, it can be difficult to decide which breed is right for you. While certain breeds are known to excel in certain disciplines, it’s important to keep in mind that each horse is unique and has its own personality. Quarter horses are a popular, versatile breed for any discipline. Do your research to find out which breed works best for your riding goals and personality.
3. Choose a horse that fits your personality.
One of the most important tips for finding the best horse for you is to choose a horse that fits your personality. Each horse is unique and has its own traits, so it’s important to spend time with the horse and get to know its personality before making a final decision. Some horses are more laid back, while others are more energetic – it’s all about finding the right one for you.
4. Choose a horse that is suitable for your experience level.
This is one of the most important tips to consider when looking for a horse. You want to make sure the horse is suited to your experience level. If you’re a novice rider, a novice horse would not be the ideal choice. Having an experienced horse to boost your confidence and skill level is much more beneficial and safer. Even if the horse is young, make sure it is well-trained and safe.
5. Choose a horse that matches your riding goals.
Think about what you’re looking to get out of riding. Are you looking to compete in an event? What sort of horse do you need for that? It’s important to choose a horse that suits your riding goals and can help you reach those goals. This can include choosing a certain aged horse or a horse trained for a certain discipline. Make sure you do your research and find the horse that’s the perfect fit for you.
6. Bring someone with more experience than you.
The best way to ensure a successful horse shopping trip is to bring someone more experienced on the journey. This person can help guide you in the right direction and provide an extra set of eyes to look for any potential issues. Not only can they help spot issues, but they can also ask questions to the owner and steer you away from any false advertising or unsafe situations. It’s also beneficial to have them ride the horse first to make sure it’s a safe ride. Finally, it’s a good idea to avoid any horse that is already saddled, tied up, and sweaty before your arrival. This may be an indication that the horse is not safe and not the right option for you. With the right preparation, you can find the perfect horse for you.
7. Prepare questions in advance.
When selecting a horse, it is important to come prepared with questions. Ask about the horse’s age, medical history, and training. Additionally, inquire about any bad behaviors, such as kicking or biting. Lastly, be aware that a horse is a free-willed animal and can develop vices or bad habits during its lifetime. Therefore, always remain vigilant and keep your guard up while around a horse.
8. Take a test ride.
Test riding a horse before you buy it is a great way to make sure it’s the right fit for you. You can learn a lot about a horse just by riding it. If you’re able to visit the horse in person, take the opportunity to do a test ride and spend some time getting to know the horse. Before you ride, make sure the owner does it first. This is a great way to make sure you’re making the right decision before you commit to buying the horse. Test riding is invaluable and can help you make the best decision for you and your horse.
9. Do a vet check.
Always have a vet check the horse before purchasing. This can help uncover any issues and validate any that the owner has mentioned. Horses with injuries or issues are usually listed at a lower price, so it is important to know if it can be managed and how much it will cost. Performance horses should be able to do what you need, so if the issue affects this, it may not be the right fit. Treatment can be done if you are in love with the horse, but it is important to get quotes first. That way, you can decide if it is something your budget can afford.
10. Take your time.
When buying a horse, it is important to take your time and consider all options. It can be an exciting experience, but you want to make sure it is the right fit. Safety and the horse’s mind should be the most important factors to consider. An open mind is key when searching for a horse, so don’t get hung up on looks or color when making the decision. Many times, the plain, ranch-looking horses turn out to be the best ones. Therefore, it is important to take the time necessary to make sure that the horse is safe, kind, and the right fit for the rider.