Sweet stud horse for sale. Not broke but sometimes can be caught and sometimes will lead if you have food. He’s never bred. Need gone ASAP. Highest bid gets him. No papers.
Reality check. If you’re posting your horse for sale like the (actual) ad listed above, chances are really good that the first folks interested in your horse isn’t the Good Home Fairy, but kill buyers looking for a deal they can sell per pound. Saying this isn’t being a negative Nancy – it’s being realistic.
Yes, there are folks out there that look for projects to rehab – I’ve been one myself! However the truth of the matter is that usually the people qualified and looking for a project are usually looking for something they can make a little money off of. By the time you geld, spend money in feed for at least a couple of months while you train, you’re lucky if you break even, especially if they aren’t papered. Speaking of papers, no you can’t ride papers but the truth of the matter is that papered horses will bring more than grade the large majority of the time. Not only that, papered horses have more options in competing.
Horse rescues are shutting down due to support drying up during the pandemic, and there’s been a flood of horses for sale due to folks losing jobs and falling on hard times. Even before the pandemic, it wasn’t uncommon to find good registered horses in the line up at the kill sale. If good horses can’t find homes even in good times, how is a horse without any experience going to find a decent home?
Although there are never any guarantees when you sell a horse, there are a few options and a few things you can do to help ensure your horse finds a soft landing, and you get the best price for your horse.
Having manners, a solid foundation helps in selling. If a horse knows the basics – tying well, solid trailer loading, lightness in the bit, knowing leads – they’ll have a better chance at finding a good home because they have more options. Horses that don’t have skills, especially stallions, have a much harder time finding a good home.
One simple thing you can do is take good pictures. You want to take a picture from an angle that showcases your horse’s conformation, and shows the angle of their legs and feet. You’ll also want to make sure they are groomed well. If your horse is used for competing or any certain events, you’ll want to include some action pictures and video as well. People are drawn to photos and videos on social media anyhow, so having pictures and videos will help you to get a cursory look at least. Also, using hashtags (#) in your wording will help bring more looks as well since people can search using hashtags in front of search terms. Examples are: #horseforsale, #AQHA, #trailhorse #barrelhorse #dressageprospect
If your horse is registered, you’ll want to take a good picture of the registration papers as well. Many people will search for specific bloodlines, and including that information up front will cut out a lot of uncessary questions. If your horse has a show record, you’ll want to include that information too.
If you have a trail horse you’re looking to sell, you can attract more buyers by also mentioning what events the horse may be a prospect for. That way trail riders and competitors will be interested in your horse. If you’re not sure what events they excel at, have a knowledgeable horse person evaluate your horse.
Networking and getting the word out to the right horse community is key to getting a horse sold. Groups that are often over looked when selling calm trail horses is 4H, Pony Clubs, and Therapy programs. Breed and discipline associations can also be a resource even if a horse isn’t registered. For instance, folks in the Arab association may know of someone that rides endurance that is looking for an Arab and registration papers aren’t a necessity.
Along those same lines, different disciplines and breed groups will tolerate certain things that other groups will not. For instance, most trail riders don’t want a spooky horse. However, some english disciplines are more concerned with quality of movement and are willing to work with a little spookiness.
If you need to find a home for your horse, there are options other than selling. Leasing to a Therapy or lesson program, or doing a care lease with a signed contract is one option that can work. Some trainers will also sell horses on consignment. This is a good option if you’re looking to find a better home for your horse.
Honesty really is the best option. If you’re not completely honest about your horse, then it won’t be long before the horse will be on the sale trail again and the new buyer may dump him at the nearest sale. It’s better to divulge too much than not enough. That way a buyer knows exactly what they’re getting into.