Horse People---Trimming horse's feet?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Willow's Meadow, Aug 14, 2010.

  1. Willow's Meadow

    Willow's Meadow Songster

    Apr 16, 2010
    I have been riding for 5 years but don't have a horse. I jump, show and trail ride. When I looked in to getting chickens me and my family researched the prices just to get a idea of how much they would cost. Same with buying/owning a rabbit. We wanted to know estimatedly how much each type of animal would cost to own/take care of per month or year. I am trying to do the same with horses, as I am intrested in buying one possibly next summer. I realize that there is no way to tell how much a horse would cost since the horse could get sick/lame and the vet would charge a lot depending on what happened. However I was much does it cost you each time your farrier comes out and trims your horse's feet? I am hoping to not have to shoe the horse. I want to rescue a horse from a shelter/rescue center.

  2. Rusty Hills Farm

    Rusty Hills Farm Songster

    Apr 3, 2008
    Up at the barn
    This really depends on where in the U.S. you are. When I was in California, it used to cost me about $100 for a set of shoes. In Colorado, that same set would cost me about $65. In Florida, it was nothing to pay upwards of $150, especially if I got it done at the show. A barefoot trim, done at home, was about $30 in Florida and about the same here in Alabama. My horses generally need trimmed every 4-6 weeks in the summer and every 7-8 weeks in the winter if I am not showing. I only shoe horses that I am working, i.e. cutting/reining/showing. Everybody else goes barefoot unless they have a medical reason to be shod.

    The best way to get a feel for prices is to ask around at local barns and feed stores.


  3. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    Rusty's right - price is very regional. However, a good farrier will not soak you on price. so make sure you shop around. And if you don't like the job, find another one. Horse's feet are vital and a good farrier is worth their weight in gold!
  4. babyblue

    babyblue Songster

    Sep 23, 2009
    I live in pa, have a farrier who really goes all out in care for my horse. 30 for a plain trim, 75 for full shoes. does not matter if it takes him 20 min or 2 hours to really look over a horse for a hoof soundness issue, same price.

    also as far as general costs go. I keep my horse at home, do all my own work and pay no board. total care works out to between 100-200 hundred a month. boarding round these parts is 250-500 hundred or more plus tons of extras. vet bills can get into the thousands. what my husband and I do to keep things reasonable is we are willing to pay up to and a thousand more then the value of the horse. having things planned in advance keeps us from making emotional decisions on what happens to be fairly old animals. emotionaly my horse can never be replaced. but for a family with small children you have to put sound logic and reason in place first.
  5. chickenzoo

    chickenzoo Emu Hugger

    Farriers around here are about $25-$35 for trims. I've never shod a horse, so i don't know about shoe prices, mine have always gone barefoot.

    A easy keeper type horse is fairly inexpensive if you are just using your horse for trail rides and pleasure. A roll of coastal hay around here right now is $45-$60, and if sheltered correctly can easily last one horse a month. I go through one a week with all mine. Feed price just depends on what type you buy and what your horses needs are, typically $8-$20 a bag. My 2 large horses could stay fat on air almost, so 1 bag easily lasts them a week, but my older horses goes through 1.5-2 bags weekly. Find a good vet, ask around, then ask around some more, they are worth their weight in gold. I do a lot of my own shots, as my vet got me started on that... hehe. I have him come out once or twice a year to do look overs, and a coggins test yearly. I can go meet him on his route to buy any supplies from him w/o a service call, and if he is visiting others in my area the day he comes, he splits the service fee between us. He is fairly priced and just a good all around person as well as a vet.
    Then you have worming, depending on where you are as to how many times a year, typically at least quarterly.That goes anywhere from $6 -$18 a tube, since you rotate wormers.
    Then you use Sandclear or the like down here especially, to push any sand etc,... out of the gut. About $18 a bucket typically
    A horse isn't too bad to care for until they get very sick... then it can add up, so you do your best to prevent it. Ask the vet what meds he recommends for you to keep on hand for colic etc

    Just remember a few things:
    ..... if their is a nail in a board - they will find it
    ...... if their is a weak point in the fence they will fall/ push through it
    ......if they can get a foot in it - they will
    .....if there is a loose string/ rope/ wire, they will get wrapped in it
    .....if the gate is shut and locked... check it again... cause the next time you see them it will be just the tail.....
    ..... if you think they can't crawl under it...go over it..... guess again
    ...... all mud puddles are endless casums to middle earth
    ..... if you leave something sitting in the field, even when no horse is in site, when you get back it will be decimated or stolen

    .... if you are going to need the vet, it most likely will always be after 8pm, on a weekend (typically Sunday), in pouring rain or snow

    They can be a joy to have... and also a pain... but they are worth it.

  6. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    Quote:Ain't this the truth! I've never had so much fun being stressed and broke in my life!!!
  7. welsummerchicks

    welsummerchicks Songster

    Jul 26, 2010
    I'm going to be a Johnny Raincloud and say that unless you really can very easily afford a horse, don't get one.

    To summarize, horses are expensive. So are pastures, barns, fences, all these things are pretty darned expensive, too. So is riding equipment, so is showing, so is trailering a horse.

    A suggestion: instead of getting your own horse, lease a lesson horse at a lesson barn. Ride it frequently, take care of it all day, whether it's sunny or raining or whether you want to go out with your friends or not....see if this is really something you want. Often it sounds really good, but taking care of them all the time, riding them often, it's just not for everyone.


    Ok, the gory details:

    First of all, you might not wind up buying a horse that is able to go without shoes. People will tell you any horse can have his shoes removed, 'always' actually is more like 'it depends'.

    Second, your horse might do ok on a plain grass pasture, or it might not. How much grazing is available on a given farm is, again, 'it depends'.

    Third, your rescue horse might not need any veterinary attention after it is adopted, or it might need a lot.

    Fourth, the horse could get hurt or sick, and need much more expensive veterinary care. Suggest having about 3000 dollars worth of 'emergency fund' at all times, or health insurance, or both.

    Fifth, the horse might be easy to handle, or you might need to pay a trainer to teach you how to handle and ride him. Lessons: about 40 to 100 dollars a pop.

    Sixth, they need to be taken care of. Every day, a couple times a day. They aren't like chickens where you can fill the feeder fuller and go away for a while. Hiring someone to take care of them while you're sick or on vacation - that's expensive too.

    Seventh, if the horse gets hurt bad or becomes really sick, he needs to be trailered to a vet clinic. Owners need access to a truck and trailer that they can use any time of the night or day or weekend.

    The costs here sound really manageable on the surface - 30 for a trim, 45 for a round bale, things like that.

    In truth, it's very hard to say what the real costs would be. They vary so much from place to place, and based on what people think is 'necessary'. Avoiding the argument about whether that is 'right' or 'wrong' (as horse people have very strong opinions when it comes to such things), I'll just say that some horses really need more veterinary, shoeing and feeding costs than others.

    I'll give an example:

    Hay, grain, supplements and bedding per month per horse: 300 dollars a month or 3600 a year.

    Shoeing, every six weeks: average, about 90 dollars per horse per shoeing (one has regular shoes, one has special shoes that cost more, one has no shoes and just gets trimmed). About 60 dollars a month or 720 a year.

    Dentist, about 80 dollars per horse per year (or 6.6 dollars a month)

    Veterinary, vaccinations in spring and fall, works out to about 120 dollars a year (or 10 a month), probably need to add more for worm medication given every 6-8 weeks.

    Doing all our own work, per horse, feeding(20), cleaning stalls(30), bedding (10), filling buckets (5), turning out, bringing in (10), sweeping, etc: abt 1 hr 15 min a day, or 45 hrs a month per horse.

    Figuring that most of the time that you spend on your horse is time you could be working at a job, there is a 'cost' of doing your own care, about 450 dollars a month.

    That works out to about 377 dollars plus labor, or 827 dollars a month, not counting what it costs to maintain your barn, fences, and the extra property tax you pay when you build a barn on your property.

    You probably need a place to ride. There might not be any connected to your property, and these days, there are not too many places where it is still safe to ride on the road, either just to ride or to get TO a place to ride.

    Of course, some people keep their horse out most or all the time in a field (if they live somewhere where there is any grazing all winter), which can bring the cost down (unless you had to buy the land, LOL). They ride in the field, the horse lives in the field, maybe there is a three-sided shelter in the field, just a shed.

    And some people board a horse. Board prices vary a lot. A backyard type barn, a do-your-own-stalls type barn, is cheaper. A 'full service barn' or one that has a trainer around that gives lessons, those are often more. So board can go from 300 to three times that or more. Board does not include veterinary care, shoeing, vaccinations, lessons, etc. Boarding stables usually have hours, you can't come just any time. at a stable can be...its own sort of ... head aches....
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2010
  8. Willow's Meadow

    Willow's Meadow Songster

    Apr 16, 2010
    Quote:I'm planning on adopting a horse from the shelter near us....they are $200. We already have a big barn with electricity, water and cement floor. Are neighbors used to have horses(2 years ago) and are going to let us use their 10 acres of individual fenced in pastures. I am not going to show/trailer anywhere. We have our own field that we are going to use for a family friend ownes 40 acres of woods with horse trails next to our house.....we will use that for riding as well. I took care of 30 horses for the past to years(with some help). I washed 60 buckets every saterday in the 20 degree weather at 7 am.....I mucked 30 sum stalls each week, fed, turned out, swept and taught I am used to the work. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2010
  9. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    I'll jump in with my own insanity......

    I have 3 mares - two with foals. We had a fourth mare, but she died in February.

    Our first mare is a beautiful horse, sweet as all get out. She was wearing shoes when we got her. She threw those shoes like clockwork every four weeks - farrier $45 (because he is SUPER nice). After 6 months of monthly re shoeing she no longer had a foot to nail to. So we went barefoot.....monthly abscess care - $50. Supplements to get foot to grow - $115. Started shoes again when ground froze - $65. Finally feet got right after a year. Sent her to boarding farm $18 a day to be bred ($2500 stud fee, $200+ vet work - fortunately she got it right in one cover and was a maiden so she didn't need extra cultures) She's at the boarding place 2 months. They don't have her feet done. She throws the shoe with half her foot. Now we are back to square one.

    Oh and did I mention she's a hard keeper? Oh yeah! So we have feed made special. It's $15.50 a bag because we have probiotic added in along with other stuff.

    Plus she likes to do this to herself.....
    Her most recent's way better now after penicillin shots $25 (cause I can do them myself), wrapping and sweating $25 and herbal spray(picking up a second bottle, they are a mere $40 each)

    This is her third major cutting this year. We have already spent a butt load on her legs and yet she keeps getting into stuff.

    Fortunately, I have a stocked fridge and barn of medical supplies. I have needles and syringes, creams and lotions, wraps and bandages

    All in all since the first of the year I have spent -
    $846.45 on medical supplies and wormer
    $520.01 on vaccines
    $ 75.00 on coggins
    $ 65.00 on health exams
    $1163.00 on vet care - of which there are several visits to the farm which is $40 just to have them step on the property
    $1550.00 on transportation
    $3856.00 on boarding

    I also pay
    $160 every three weeks for feed.
    $100 every 6 weeks for trimmings. Providing Pumpkin won't need shoes this winter. But it will go up in another month or so when the foals start being trimmed.

    And of course it's coming up on the fall which means teeth need to be floated - $125 per horse if nothing "extra" is needed.

    Then there are all the fees that go with registering a thoroughbred. Granted, you may not want a TB or may not have fees like this, but if you want to show or ride, this is akin to buying tack and supplies and paying show fees and such -since we don't' ride our horses.....
    $250 Jockey Club
    $125 PA breeders
    $450 Breeders Cup
    $825 per horse

    Then sales fees are $250 per horse plus a % of the sale price. We will be consigning the horses ourselves to save a roughly $25 - 35 a day fee for someone else to do it.

    Oh, and I almost forgot - STUD FEES!!! This year's breedings will cost $4000. PLUS one mare will have to go back to PA to meet my contract obligation - so more boarding fees next year! YEAH!!!!!!

    Yes I am crazy. Yes it would be a lot easier to swallow these prices if my DH hadn't been severely injured and lost his job this year. Would I change it? NO. I love these girls. We do the best for them we can - and we eat rice and beans to pay for it. It is a serious commitment - especially in this market since selling them when "they are too much trouble" is impossible.

    Remember, if you pick up a horse for $1 - ain't no one else gonna pay you more than that same dollar. But this is what makes it worth it, for us.......

    ETA - I forgot this foal ^ needs hernia surgery. Could run from $200 to $1000 depending on severity and method we chose.
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2010

  10. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

    Jan 23, 2009
    South GA
    It's not the initial cost....I paid nothing for any of these three horses UP FRONT. It's the monthly cost, the major incident costs, the up keep costs.

    I should have life or colic insurance on my mares, I don't

    I have them on 200 acres so I don't have to buy hay or extra feed.

    I don't own a trailer and I live a solid 30 minutes from the nearest horse hospital- if something goes wrong with one of them getting to a vet is going to be impossible and all the money I've put into them will be lost.

    I love these girls - they are the coolest thing I have ever involved myself in, but they are a social life killer. We don't take vacations, we don't go anywhere because the girls have to be fed twice a day, EVERYDAY.

    We have them with us because of the horrible experience with boarding farms we've had. If we lose our home, we are MAJORLY screwed.

    Like I said, my husband was injured this year and lost his job. He's not found work and we struggle EVERYDAY just to feed these guys. We tell each other "something will break loose. We'll be fine". But if we aren't, then they aren't and that is a serious thing to have weighing on your mind.

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