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Important Facts About a Horse or Pony for Kids

For decades, horses or ponies have been popular gifts for kids. However, many enter the world of horse ownership without counting the cost first. While there are many people who successfully own and care for horses or ponies, even people who genuinely want the extra responsibility will need to carefully research what will be required of them when owning a horse. The following paragraphs will discuss some of the important aspects of horse ownership.

Reasons for Choosing a Horse

Evaluating your reasons for wanting to own a horse versus other popular pet choices is a good place to start. While there's no doubt that horses are beautiful and majestic creatures that are popular with kids, they also require a lot more commitment than other common pet choices. Before people jump on the bandwagon, they need to be sure they can properly care for a horse. This is vital to the health of the horse and is also important in avoiding future disappointment if things don't work out as planned. Discuss these issues with your entire family and make sure that everyone is on board with the extra time, effort, and energy that caring for a horse will create.

Counting the Cost

Literally counting the cost of horse care is a very important step as well. It's easy to fall in love with the idea of owning a horse. On the other hand, it's also easy to fall into the trap of not being prepared for the expense involved in the day to day care that horses require. Horses are large, active animals that need plenty of open space to run and get exercise. However, unlike a dog that can be taken for regular walks, horses require an entire field of open, safe area for them to roam about in. They also require safe shelter, such as a barn with a stable, for times when the weather may not allow them to be out in the field. The costs of extra acreage required to optimize the health of the horse can be substantial. In addition to this, there is the cost of food supplies, medical needs and vet care, general care such as brushes and saddles, and extra equipment. The costs involved in the routine health and care of a horse are vastly different than the costs involved in caring for a cat or dog. Parents should find ballpark figures of these costs and make sure they are ready and able to provide a horse with the care it needs to be happy and healthy.

Choosing the Right Horse

You and your family have decided you're ready for the responsibility of horse ownership. You've done your research and counted the costs involved in horse care. Now how do you choose the right horse that will have a personality that will fit well with your kids? When choosing a horse, you should look for those who seem to have happy dispositions. Horses can be emotional creatures and it's important to not choose one on a whim. While getting to know a horse, look for signs of aggressiveness or erratic behavior. Watch out for horses that bite, are difficult to saddle, or kick excessively as these are signs that the horse could be difficult to handle once you get him home. It is also advisable to have a full vet exam performed on any horse that you are thinking of buying. This will ensure you are choosing a healthy horse right from the start.

When a family decides to embark upon the unique world of horse ownership, the rewards and joys can be overwhelming. Horses are known to develop strong bonds with their human families, creating lasting friendships between horse and owner. Armed with a little knowledge and the patience to choose the right horse, these animals can bring decades of enjoyment to you and your family.