Friday, December 30, 2016

The Cost of 2016

Mentally is was fucking taxing and imma take a few years to pay that loan off. lolz jk, mental taxation never ceases with horses, amirite?


It seemed that at the end of the year I was writing checks left and right to the vet and the farrier, and I thought for sure that I was going to tally those two areas up and fall dead in disbelief. Really though, they weren't as bad as expected.

Inspired by Karen's horse expenses posts, let's take a look at what Bobby cost in 2016! (It's cold. The weather is shit. My horse isn't doing much. Bear with me.)

Supplements: $822

  • This is the only one I rounded on. Bobby's SmartPak's run around $65 a month, and I bought a 50lb bag of Magnesium at the beginning of the year I'm still feeding out.

Farrier: $315
  • This doesn't seem like much until you consider Bobby was barefoot and trimmed by myself up until the first week of October. We're feeling super confident that he'll be able to go in nothing more exciting than plain flat aluminium shoes next cycle, so while shoeing is going to be a regular added expense next year, at least it won't be a crazy expensive one.
Lessons: $80
  • I paid next to nothing out of pocket because I worked off all my lessons and training rides. When Bobby got injured and lessons stopped, work went towards taking money off my board instead.
Board: $4,735
  • Starting in January I'm going to try to pay for a bulk block of monthly lessons which should be easy enough to fit into the budget with the break I get doing barn chores. Hopefully.
Vet: $1,168
  • Basically nothing, right?! I included body work in this total which makes the vet work seem even less expensive. I mean, what's a few x-rays and lameness exams in a year's work? Never mind that those x-rays were essentially useless and I never got a solid diagnosis with all those lameness checks.
Shows: $1,385
  • Gas included with entry fees. I never stayed overnight anywhere so I didn't have to pay for a hotel or stall. 
Tack/Gear: $1,866.75
  • Mostly spent on riding gloves I think? This section was anything from fly spray to blankets to miscellaneous tack--bits, bridle, reins, etc. 
Misc.: $1,326.78
  • Memberships fees and truck and trailer repair/upkeep costs. 
Overall total: $11,698.53
  • A mere drop in the water, yes? And in case you think your horse husband is the're wrong. Hubby's response? "Happy Carly: Priceless."

What about you guys? Did this year drain you dry, or run about par for the course? Any areas you know you spent more on than usual? Do you total your year-end horse expenses, or do you not want to go anywhere near those numbers?


  1. I tallied this up for shows but have yet to do it for board, vet and farrier... not sure if I am brave enough.

  2. The one year I added up Mikey's cost- showing, farrier, vet, board, lessons... I stopped counting at $10,000. It's really why I can't have two horses- I can't devote twice that to my hobby (because I would want to take both horses to shows, take two lessons with each, both would get chiro, etc).

  3. I am too afraid to tally.... D:

  4. Yah this would be scary for me! I started tracking it in a new way in October and already I'm approaching what you spent the whole year, most of it in vet bills! And 6 months of this year was him at rehab...

  5. I think you did REALLY good! I would be happy if I was in that area, but board alone cost me $6,900 this year, so for the sake of my fiancé, I'm gonna go ahead and leave it at that for fear of being single for the rest of my life LOL

  6. Oh good grief, I would hate to actually tally it up.

    Board plus feed was around $6000 alone, plus a couple thousand in emergency vet bills. Not too much for shows, so probably $500 in shows.

    Let's just keep it under $9000 and hope my husband never figures it out.

    Oh wait, I forgot about the new trailer...

  7. This is a terrifying thought, but a really neat one!! I might have to try this next year!

  8. I know how much money I saved by not having one, doesn't make me happy though.

  9. Very interesting! I've always purposefully lodged my head deep in the sand on this one, but I actually do track all of my expenses (thanks Mint!), and without the absurd cost of the saddle I bought in April, or the truck purchase in October, purely for hauling ponies - I spend $400 less than you. A cool $11,300.

    But I totally agree with L - it's worth it! I'd have a horrible shopping or drinking problem if I didn't have horses.

  10. I admire your transparency and in the best interests of keeping my marriage as drama free as possible must refrain from divulging such a figure. I feel better by reminding myself that I am not a clothes/shoe addict and my husband likes skiing (expensive) and mountain biking (bikes are expensive). Also, I probably should move to where you live. SoCal is ridiculous.

  11. You're incredibly brave to add that all up! And really, that wasn't bad at all! With my barn full of limping free loaders, I can't even begin to try and tally up what they're doing to my "retirement fund." Lol. I will never be able to retire.

  12. Haha I tallied up my yearly estimated costs a while ago and it came to around 12k...but this was before I moved to a barn that is $100 more a month for board. As a single person with a single income and thousands upon thousands of student loan debt, it's hard, but I manage. My horse is one of the reasons I just don't date or ever want to have kids - too many additional expenses!

  13. Yea...... I'm not gonna go there I think haha.

    I'm seriously impressed with your cost controlling measures and plain old economic sense. I know it got cost heavy at the end, but all things told I'm jealous of your ability to balance out the expenses!!! (Says the girl whose new horse gets $150 pedicures every 4 goddamn weeks omg wtf)

  14. Holy Moses. My husband would murder me if I spent 10k on the horse per year. Pretty sure I am coasting in near $4350 all inclusive, board, lessons, clinics, vet, farrier etc.

  15. You have done an excellent job keeping expenses down. My tally for 2016 is HIGH.... like really really high... I'm not brave enough to share, but we did WEF with 2 horses, showed all spring, summer, and fall, AND... I may have just purchased a German creature.... very very very pricey year... maybe 2017 will be better!!!

  16. Yeah... I spent a lot more -- but I do have 1.5 horses and I showed a lot soooo... IT WAS TOTALY WORTH IT.

  17. Wow, I'm totally going to do this for myself. I'm horrible at big picture budgeting and keeping track of things beyond just keeping them within my budget. You've made me curious though!

  18. I am impressed! And yes, you have a pretty dang good horse hubby. I told mine about tallying up year end costs, but he winced and said we probably shouldn't. He already says Bacon is his religion, and part of his salary is devoted to her.

  19. I want to do this for next year, but at the same time I'm like hmmm.... haha.

  20. Bahahaha mental taxation. yeahhhh. I don't total up my pony expenses for the sake of keeping my husband happy!

    1. Ditto here! I think if I added it up I would die a little inside.

  21. I just started adding up vet bills and stopped when I got to 10K. I'm sticking my head in the sand on this one. NOBODY NEEDS TO KNOW.

  22. Funny, SO just started talking about this as well to financially compare my horses to the racecar. Um, I don't want to go there kthankyouverymuch. Congrats on doing it, I am not sure I could bring myself to crunch those numbers anymore. Especially with two horses. Jenj has it right, NOBODY NEEDS TO KNOW

  23. Geez. My hubby was just saying something about it costing close to $2K a month for the pony and once I calculated it out, he was really damned close. And I only did 3 classes at a jumper show, one CT at home and one recognized HT at home. And had no vet bills (other than shots and worming). And I bought nothing in the way of new stuff. Except maybe some pants. And a jacket. Damn.


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