Monday, 24 March 2008

Should I? Shouldn't I?

Someone like biko perhaps?!

I've been wanting a horse for ages now, but keep telling myself I'm not ready yet.

So I threw my hands up to the universe (which has always been an excellent provider) and asked for somewhere to keep a horse, and someone to help me with it, and a horse.

And I waited.

And lo and behold, in the last week I have been offered somewhere to keep a horse, someone experienced to share it with (T), AND even a horse, on loan!

Sadly, thinking about it sensibly, the horse for loan isn't really suitable. She's a lovely mare, with what seems to be a lovely a nature (in the short time I spent with her on Friday), and she was good as gold when I lead her out to the field and turned her out.

At 15 hands, she's too small for me really (I want something 16.2 +), and she's too small for T. Also, T might like to compete, and so might I for that matter, so I need something well schooled that can help bring me on, and so sadly, this mare isn't the one. I will go and see her over the summer though.

BUT it has got me thinking really seriously about owning a horse. I started looking at ads in The Farmers Guardian and found a couple of perfect horses, for under £3K, with tack. Not that I have 3K, but the universe will provide if it's meant to be :)

It's a big commitment though, isn't it? It's 24/7, Christmas, New Year, Bank Hols. It's twice a day (although if I share with T, it'll be part time and therefore more do-able). And the cost is heavy duty too - and I'm out of work now. And if in work, there's no time to do it all any way, so you end up paying full livery fees for someone else to look after your horse!) But then it might just be the thing to keep me alive, you know. Healthy outdoor living. All that exercise.

Costs - ones I can think of off the top of my head...

Livery (room and board!)
Shoes and/or trimming every 6-8 weeks.
Veterinary Fees
Dental Fees
Tack/Clothing (rugs, bits and bobs that need replacing)
Lessons (because you still need those!)

I've seen so many people rush into buying a horse in the 18 months since I started riding. People who buy the perfect animal and fulfil their dreams only to find they're terrified of it 3 months later when it takes the rise out of them and completely walks all over them (literally in some cases). Or they realise they can't handle mucking out twice a day, everyday, so they stop going to the stable, and just leave the horse alone for days on end. I really don't want that to happen to me.

I need a gelding who is a gent. Who will let my kids ride him, and yet who has some potential to do more - just a little more. Some dressage, some jumping, hacking out... Can you see me in Pony Club ha ha ha!

I guess I ought to start to doing those pools, eh. Or better still - like, erm, finish my novel and sell the bloody thing, and repeat!


JJ said...

Oooh, Lisa, the High Priestess of Punk-chew-ation brought her horse Charlie 'home' this weekend! OMG. How exciting is that?

Anonymous said...

Id say "GO FOR IT!" The horse looks beautiful. Why not? you lucky thing! W would love a horse! Hope you had a Happy Easter. X

Caroline said...

Add on insurance, vaccinations (though you may have that under vet fees), petrol to get you to the yard and back every day, wear and tear on the car, and the fact that you've still got to fork out for it all if/when it stands on a stone in the field, bruises its sole and is unrideable for 6 weeks...

On full livery in Surrey, with no lessons, it cost me just over £10,000 for a year, which is part of the reason I no longer have a horse! It'll be a lot, lot cheaper if you're on DIY though.

Good luck with finding the right horse for you :o)

Casdok said...

Id say go for it too. :)

hesitant scribe said...

jj - That is soooo exciting! She finally went and did it, eh!!!

motherx - Easter was lovely thanks! Hope yours was too. If only I could have Biko - but he's in a riding school in Spain and they'd never part with him :( Someone like him would be perfect though!

caroline - oh yes... I know! Although if I can keep him at my friend's house/yard then no livery costs which would make a huge difference... but you are right. It isn't something to rush into!!!

Amelia said...

I have been riding for 10 years in the US and am having the same trouble. I did lease for several years and it is wonderful, some owners will let you lease with an option to buy, but mainly as you train the horse and get working well together the price goes up. I even had an offer for a free horse I loved to ride but had no place to stable. I had to turn it down sadly. Being a horse person is nothing if not challenging and expensive, I would say wait on the buy till you find one that is dependable and you click well with. I know too many owners who sell after a year or two because they out grew the horse in size or training. Good luck and be patient, the right one will come.

maresy said...

universe is just saying your horse is coming, be patient, if one was offered, another will be, and when you are ready to commit, you won't have to question it, you will know it will be right. Take care, good luck, Tuesday! lots of love xoxo

Lane said...

Because it'll make you so happy, I'd say yes but...... wait until the right horsie comes along.
No livery fees is a big bonus but there's just so much other stuff to pay, not to mention total dedication.

I can understand how you measure potential horses against Biko. What a beauty. (as is that yard in the sunshine)

Jon M said...

Don't let me wife and daughter hear me say this but...get one!

Fiona said...

I've owned pones - big ponies but I would go for a horse now.
Just some thoughts:

A horse who could live outside most of the year?

A gent of a horse but perhaps one that you don't need to do too much with - gentle hacks, a few canters over the hills?

A rescue horse - can't remember the name of the charity - ILPH(?) has info.

You are so sensible not to rush into this. Now you are looking, you'll see horses everywhere so give yourself a couple more months for your horse to find you.

hesitant scribe said...

Oh what sensible advice from everyone!

I think you're all right!

1. Get one! but
2. Wait until the time, and the horse is right!

clairesgarden said...

well you can get good horses for nothing but its the keeping of them that causes all the.
why is horse at 15hh too small?
people always tend toward the gigantic 'these days'.
for example if you had a 14.2 highland pony you'ld have to be about 19stones to be to heavy for it. and it would live out all year round, hardly require any extra foor and can live barefoot, no shoeing!
one day a horse will appear that you will 'have to have', no thought of how much it'll cost. and that'll be the horse for you!

clairesgarden said...

p.s. apart from all the expense etc and looking for the right horse I would definatley say YES YOU SHOULD!!
look forward to hearing all aobut it!!