CONSIDERING THE BASIC HEALTH
COSTS OF OWNING A HORSE
Again this page
is geared toward the new horse owner, or the person making a
decision on whether or not they should buy a horse. They
must consider that the responsibility of ownership involves
at least a minimum of preventative health care costs for
owning a healthy horse and keeping it that way. Assuming
that a healthy horse has been purchased there are basic
preventative measures that must be added to the cost of the
upkeep of a horse. A sound program of routine vaccinations,
hoof and dental care, and worming can reduce the occurrence
of 90% of the problems affecting the horse. This does not
take into consideration emergency care which sickness or
injury occurs. Sadly even with the best of care horses are
subjected to many illnesses and can get hurt doing just
Here are some of the health care measures that a responsible
horse owner should provide.
Depending on the area that you live in, and what your horse
does will determine the vaccinations your horse will need to
prevent disease. Horses that travel and are exposed to other
livestock will sometimes require different shots than those
that never leave the farm. Breeding and young stock too
require different vaccinations as well. Discuss your horses
needs with a local veterinarian.
A regular worming program is of paramount importance to the
well being of your horse. Although you can do this yourself
it is a smart idea to take a fecal sample to your
veterinarian to determine the extent and type of parasite
you are up against. Take some type to read some articles
about the damage that worms can do to a horse and you will
realize the importance of a good program.
CARE: Horses usually
require a checkup annually to check the condition of their
teeth. A vet or an equine dentist will "float" or file down
the rough edges or pull teeth if necessary.
Horses will need their hooves attended to by a farrier or
blacksmith about every 4 to 6 weeks. The cost will depend
greatly on the area in which you live. Horse that require
shoes will cost more than one that just requires a trim.
There will be a vast difference in cost depending on the
usage of the horse and the type of shoes required.
AND APPLES: Just as
the old saying goes an apple a day keeps the doctor away :-)