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Those of you with horse knowledge:

  • Thread starter dextersmycutegp
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dextersmycutegp

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Is it possible to keep a horse in field that is very sloped?
We have been considering saving a horse from camp rental string and we'd like to be able to keep it at home if it's possible.
The place we have room for a pasture is quite hilly-ish, although there are a few places where the land is more flat, and I'm just wondering if it's unhealthy for a horse to continually be walking on a slope.
Another question, for people with small horses/large ponies, is how much does it generally cost you per year to keep your horse?
Thanks!
 

WheeksUnlimited

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I don't think a hilly pasture would be bad, especially if it does have flatter areas, or less sloped. Unless the horse has leg, joint or hoof problems.

How many acres do you have that would be pasture? You should have at least 2 acres for one horse, that way you can rotate the pastures and keep it from getting too worn down. Don't fence your pasture with barb wire!

The most important foundation for your horse is 24/7 access to good pasture and/or good quality grass hay, plain white salt block, and plenty of clean water and shelter from the sun/wind/rain/bugs. I doubt you will need to feed grain unless the horse doesn't keep weight on with just the pasture or hay, will be exercised heavily, or is a senior. My horses are not fed any grain, but I use a wet beet pulp mash to put a vitamin supplement and the occasional medicine in it.

You will need regular deworming, hoof trimming, and annual vaccinations along with at least yearly dental checkups/teeth floating.

As for a yearly cost-it will vary depending on where you are. This is what I generally pay:

Vaccinations-Vet farm fee of $30.00 plus at least $100 for the shots. Annual, unless needed for emergency
Teeth floating-farm fee plus $75.00. My vet uses a power floater. Once or twice a year.
Deworming-I deworm every 3-4 months. $5 per tube generic ivermectin.
Farrier service-$20 per horse for general hoof trim every 8 weeks. More if shoes are needed. (My farrier is pretty cheap-others charge $30-50)

Additional expenses-hay for winter, horse treats, riding equipment, fly spray,first aid stuff, brushes, halter and lead.

That is kind of the basics. I'm sure others will have more advice for you, too. Good luck with your rescue!
 

krittercrazy

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I would think that the side of a hill would not be a problem so long as it is not muddy. I have kept mine on the side of a hill and they have been more in shape for going up and down the hill.
As for cost that will definately vary with where you live and the shape the horse is in. Does it have any health issues. You should call a local equine vet to see what to look for and expect with getting this horse. It is a good idea to have the horse examined by a vet before bringing it home to be sure that it does not have a medical issue that may be beyond what you can afford. The cost for me here in Virginia run a little higher that those listed by WheeksUnlimited.
 

dextersmycutegp

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The pasture area is a little less than an acre, but we are already planning on feeding him (if we are able to get him) as much grass hay (and everything else) as needed for him to stay healthy.
His only health issue that I know of at the moment is he has his wolf teeth, and his teeth most likely need to be floated.
 

avcavies

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It is said that you are supposed to have 3 acres per horse minimum. Although, you said you are getting it from a camp rental company. It will most likely be an older, less energetic horse in this case. It depends on the horse, I guess is what I am trying to say. Good for you to try and save a horse!
 

dextersmycutegp

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How do people decide how much space a horse needs?
Right now at camp we have 12 horses in the space of about half an acre.... I suppose that's like a guinea pig or two in a petstore cage?
 

Fanch

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I have 2 miniature horses on a hilling area, with some flat areas(1 acre). I think size wise, its just like this site says the bigger the better. I have heard alot of different sizes, from 1-3 acres. Maybe to subsitute(sp?) for a smaller living area, take him out for exercise often.
 

kwene_2009

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The hilly area would be great for a horse because it helps build cardio(sp) and muscle. Do you have an inclosure for your horse? I did not hear you mention that! Here in Indiana, we pay $25 for farrier service every 8 weeks, $169 for vet in the spring, $8 for dewormer every 3 months, $6 for a bag of grain, and $2 for each bale of hay. The most expensavie thing with a horse is not the initial cost, but the feed, vet care, equipment, etc. Good luck with your horse and have fun!
 

dextersmycutegp

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We'd be building the enclosure after we figured out if we're going to get him or not. We are most likely going to (if we are able to get him) board him for a month or two so that we can make the nessicary altercations to our property. :)
 

kwene_2009

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Sounds like you have it all on track! Have fun with your new horse, if you get him!
 

aqh88

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How many acres entirely depends where you live and who you talk to. In some places it would take 10acres to keep enough grass for a horse where in other place an acre would do it. Now if we're talking space your still going to run into a huge debate. More than a small number of people keep their horses stalled 24/7 and their only excercise is riding with maybe a little turnout in an arena for an hour. Putting a horse on a half acre is a heck of alot better than a 12x12' stall but then again it's nowhere near putting them out on 42acres like I do. On a half acre though the grass is gonna get eaten and stomped into nothing. You may just have a dirty mudslope after 2years unless you do some work on rerouting the water down the side instead of letting it flow across the whole hill.

Personally I'm not so concerned with the space(so long as they aren't locked in a stall 24/7) as the fact you want one horse. Horses are social. Even more so than guinea pigs. In my opinion it is just plain cruel to keep only 1 with no company. Even a mini pony, goat, or similar stock would be ok instead of having only 1 animal. I had to bite my tongue close to bleeding when someone was going on about how their horse is just fine alone cause it made friends with the ducks and geese and how it follows them around all the time. Well it follows them cause it's so darn lonely and that's all the company it has even though they can't interact back anywhere close to how another horse would. Horses crave attention and will develop behavioral problems if kept alone. Sometimes these problems are either self destructive like cribbing or fence destructive like chewing. Other times those problems can be dangerous towards humans like nipping at, trying to play with, rub on, and groom people.

Lastly if your looking for a fence I suggest electric tape even if it's in combination with something else. We've tried a few dozen types of fence in the past and the only fence we have had no injuries or escapes with is electric tape. It's highly visible and respected by nearly all horses. However to keep smaller critters including mini ponies you need hog/cattle panels or mesh wire behind the tape or they will slide between the rails.
 

dextersmycutegp

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I have been thinking about the whole herd animal bit. I'm just not sure how to broach that topic with my parents.
I have some nieghbors who have two llamas, who also really like horses and just don't want the expenseod owning horses, so we may end up boarding him in their field with their llamas for companionship. Their field is quite a bit larger so that's a big plus, but it would be more expensive to board with them.
 

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