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How Much Does It Cost To Feed A Horse Per Week?

How Much Does It Cost To Feed A Horse Per Week?

Owning a horse is a dream for many, but it's no secret that their upkeep can be pricey. One area that horse owners can't afford to cut corners on is their horse's diet. Horses need a balanced diet to ensure they stay healthy and perform at their best. In this guide, we'll explore the costs involved in feeding a horse per week and provide you with tips on how to manage these expenses while ensuring your horse gets the right nutrition. So, saddle up and let's get started!

How Much Does It Cost To Feed A Horse Per Week Table of Contents

Feeding costs can vary widely depending on factors such as the horse's size, age, workload, and overall health. It is essential to research and have a plan in place to help you budget effectively. Below, we’ll break down the key components of a horse's diet and the associated costs.

Hay and Forage

The foundation of a horse's diet is forage. Horses are natural grazers and benefit from having access to fresh pasture or hay. On average, horses consume 1.5-3% of their body weight in forage per day; this means a 500kg horse would eat between 7.5kg-15kg of forage a day.

Hay prices can vary between regions, but on average, a bale of hay (approximately 20kg) costs around $5-$15. Assuming a horse consumes around 10kg of hay a day, the weekly cost for hay alone would range from $17.50-$52.50. Keep in mind, if your horse has access to good pasture, this cost can be reduced.

Concentrates

Horses that work harder or have specific nutritional needs may require additional feed in the form of concentrates. These can include grain-based feeds such as oats, barley, or commercially made, pelleted feeds. The cost of these feeds varies depending on their composition and ingredients. On average, a 20kg bag of horse feed can cost between $15-$30, with some specialty feeds costing up to $50.

It's important to consult your veterinarian or equine nutritionist to determine the appropriate amount of concentrate for your horse. Overfeeding concentrates can lead to obesity and other health issues.

Supplements

Some horses may require supplements to support their overall health, address specific deficiencies, or aid in performance. Common supplements include electrolytes, joint support, digestive aids, and vitamins/minerals. These can vary greatly in price, costing anywhere from $10 to $150 per month. Calculate the weekly cost by dividing the total monthly cost by four.

How Much Does It Cost To Feed A Horse Per Week? Example

Let's explore an example. We have a 500kg horse that works moderately, spending around 1 hour a day under saddle. It consumes 10kg of hay daily from a $10 bale and 2kg of a $20 concentrate daily, with an additional joint supplement costing $60 a month.

Weekly costs would be:

- Hay: $35

- Concentrate: $14

- Joint supplement: $15

The total weekly feeding cost for this horse would be approximately $64.

As you can see, the costs of feeding a horse can add up, but these expenses are vital to maintain their health and well-being. To help manage expenses, take advantage of bulk discounts when buying hay or concentrates and keep an eye out for sales on supplements. Always remember that it is essential to provide your horse with a balanced diet and to consult with your veterinarian or equine nutritionist to ensure a proper feeding plan.

At How to Own a Horse, we're always here to help you navigate the journey of horse ownership. If you found this guide helpful, please share it with fellow equestrians and check out our other informative guides on everything from grooming to riding tips. Happy riding!

how to own a horse clare
Clare Dean

Meet Clare Dean, a revered authority in the equine world. With over 15 years of horse breeding experience, Clare's profound knowledge extends beyond the paddock to encompass all aspects of horse care and riding. Clare's journey began with a passion for these majestic creatures, evolving into a career marked by rich, hands-on experiences. Clare's expertise doesn't just stem from theoretical knowledge, but from countless hours spent in the saddle and the stable. She has bred and cared for multiple horse breeds, infusing her with a deep understanding of their diverse needs and behaviors. Not just a horse breeder, Clare is also an accomplished rider, skilled in various riding styles. Her riding proficiency, combined with her breeding acumen, makes her a well-rounded equine expert. At heart, Clare is a lifelong learner, continually seeking to grow her knowledge and share her insights with fellow horse enthusiasts. Through her writings, she offers a unique blend of practical advice, scientific knowledge, and personal anecdotes, aiming to guide, inspire, and educate readers on their equine journey. Trust Clare Dean to provide reliable, expert advice on your path to horse ownership and care.

About Clare Dean

Meet Clare Dean, a revered authority in the equine world. With over 15 years of horse breeding experience, Clare's profound knowledge extends beyond the paddock to encompass all aspects of horse care and riding. Clare's journey began with a passion for these majestic creatures, evolving into a career marked by rich, hands-on experiences. Clare's expertise doesn't just stem from theoretical knowledge, but from countless hours spent in the saddle and the stable. She has bred and cared for multiple horse breeds, infusing her with a deep understanding of their diverse needs and behaviors. Not just a horse breeder, Clare is also an accomplished rider, skilled in various riding styles. Her riding proficiency, combined with her breeding acumen, makes her a well-rounded equine expert. At heart, Clare is a lifelong learner, continually seeking to grow her knowledge and share her insights with fellow horse enthusiasts. Through her writings, she offers a unique blend of practical advice, scientific knowledge, and personal anecdotes, aiming to guide, inspire, and educate readers on their equine journey. Trust Clare Dean to provide reliable, expert advice on your path to horse ownership and care.

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