Skip to Navigation


Purchasing and Owning a Horse 101

Matching horse and rider, Shopping for a horse, Behavioral problems to avoid, Sales contracts, Pre-Purchase exams, Facility management, Basic equine nutrition, Basic equine health, Equipment selection

Content Expert
Dr. Chris Skelly (Michigan State University)

Owning a horse can be an awarding experience. Success depends on matching the right horse to owner, based on the prospective owner’s goals and equestrian ability. Once the match is made, both the fun and work begins! Horse ownership is a big responsibility, not just in relation to the size of the animal, but also in the amount of time and financial investment that is required in the day to day upkeep of an equine companion. A horse requires daily management including feeding and exercising the horse as well as maintaining the horse's housing. In addition, routine health care including annual vaccinations, parasite control, dental care, and hoof care must be regularly attended to.  After all of the necessary daily work and health care is accomplished, the owner can enjoy building a partnership with their equine companion through riding, driving or ground work. 

This course was developed with content from our Horse Selection and Evaluation premier course.  Topics in the premier course include:

• Uses and Breeds
• Identification
• Conformation Evaluation
• Unsoundnesses and  Blemishes
• Preparing to Purchase a Horse
• Horse Ownership