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“I want a pony!” A brief guide to the costs of owning a horse

What bucolic daydream could ever be complete without the presence of a beautiful horse in the scene? Over the course of centuries man has treasured and relied upon this animal, whether at work, at play, or even, tragically, at war. Whether you admire horses for their grace, their strength, their personalities or simply their usefulness as mounts, there are clearly a great many reasons to want a horse of your own. To give you an idea of how much acting upon that wish might set you back, here’s a brief guide to the costs of owning a horse, from the beast itself to its feed.

Livery costs – start at approx. 1.500 EUR per year

If you don’t have a stable of your own or land upon which to build one, you’ll need to pay for your horse to be housed in a livery. Prices vary depending on whether you opt for a grass livery, a DIY stabled livery, or a full stabled livery where hay and feed are provided as part of your annual fee (this third option costs significantly more).

Hay, straw and feed – approx. 1.000 EUR per year

If you have not paid for a full livery service, you’ll need to pay separately for the hay, straw, shavings and feed which are essential to your horse’s daily life. Opting for a grass livery (rather than a stabled one) will save on straw and hay costs, which may allow you to cater for everyday essentials on a lower budget than our estimate.

costs of owning a horse

Healthcare, insurance and other costs – approx. 3.000 EUR per year

Whilst you can insure your horse for as little as 335 euros per year, other hard-to-predict costs relating to the upkeep of the animal’s health – including vet and dental bills, farrier costs and worming – can easily run into the thousands.

Purchase cost – 140 to 7.000+ EUR

The cost of purchasing your horse itself should be the very last factor you take into consideration; if you don’t have the budget to care for the animal properly, please consider a smaller pet. The price of horses varies significantly, depending on breed, pedigree and the provenance of these attributes. Prices can start as low as 140 euros, stretching right up to several thousand euros for distinguished specimens.

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