Elijah – the ‘poverty is owning a horse?’ is funny. I always heard that ‘poverty is owning a boat’. If you buy a good horse, preferably one of the few with a kernel of sense, and have good pasture and rotate them, I don’t find it a great cost. Now when I rode competitively? Yes it got very expensive – maintenance, always maintenance – and the entry fees, and the right clothing. The blacksmith, the vet. A trailer and a truck to pull it.
But now? Not so much. Both horses are turned out most of the time. Grass a little more than 1/2 the year, the rest of the year round bales which are cheap here now. In the dead of winter, in bad weather I bring them in to the barn and feed oats too. I don’t keep shoes on them all year – only in the spring/summer and early fall for the one I ride on trails a lot. Horses do take care and attention. You also have to keep them busy with a regular job to do IMHO or they can develop some bad habits. I’ve been lucky with my own horses….any problems I’ve had have been the crazy ones with weird issues I rode for other people. Like with dogs, a lot has to do with how you raise, train and handle them. ‘course some are just born rank!
People should consider taking some riding lessons now – it’s fun and you’ll feel more comfortable being around a horse if the need ever arises when SHTF. Be prepared however to discover an entire new set of muscles in your legs that you didn’t realize you had.
Ok lunch over back to work