Thursday, January 10, 2013

What are you paying for in a Miniature horse
Often I have people call the farm asking about one horse in particular. I give them everything they want to know about him or her only to have them ask at the very end, "What kind of deal would you give me if I buy this horse?" This is the pain of every breeder in the industry, suddenly people are treating us like we are selling a home rather than a product. And perhaps even worse the breeders and the worst at doing it.

So I would like to point out a couple of things to make the buyers out there think before asking this question.

You are not buying a home or a used car

What you are purchasing from a breeder is a animal with linage and papers. Do you go to a reputable dog breeder that has beed out all genetic abnormalities in his blood line and say, "What kind of offer can you make me?" Like any business there are people that breed horses just to put a body on the ground and turn around an sale sale sale! This is where you will have to do your homework but not all bargains are truly what they seem. You could go to a farm and buy a hose that was drugged for $200, only to get it home and find out its psychotic. You could buy a $100 dollar mini that will drop dead after a month. Come to find out that $100 dollar mini had worms and was so sick it could be passed on to your other animals. Or lets say you get the mini to the vet in time to save it's life I guarantee you that the vet bills will make up for it.
When you go to a reputable Mini Horse breeder you are getting an healthy animal, and if the animal isn't all together there in the head they will tell you so. With a reputable breeder there are no surprises other than the possibility that the animal may go an inch or two taller than they thought they would. With a reputable breeder you are getting a love of the breed, a standard of exalts, and a honest opinion.

Now that's not to say that a reputable breeder will not have $200 pet quality horses in stock. Don't don't get angry when they are all bought up before you make it to the farm.

Pet Quality Vs Show Quality

So yes there are cheep horses out there that are perfect in every way, but that doesn't mean that they are show quality. Keep in mind that you can dabble and show a pet quality horses but let people know when you do open classes that it is such. No Breeder lets a show quality horse go for $200. But for the family to love on and bush and feed it's an education for the kids that's unparalleled. Nothing will tach a child more in this world than what a pet can.

A rideing horse for $100
Ok this is for the first time horse buyer here with kids. Do you really want to put your kid on an animal that should never be ridden in the first place (See Are Miniature horse good for kids to Ride in this blog) that's education in that particular subject is only worth $100. The broken arm that is sure to fallow will cost you more.

What that Question says to us Breeders
Now I'm not trying to be mean, but when someone ask me this question I feel that they're money is tight so they couldn't afford the animal in the long run. A mini is a lot like a child, but with less doctor visits, but that once a year vest isn't cheap. Our vets let us administer our vaccinations and medical shots
because we have been doing this for 20 years. This saves us some money but we have the experience to know what we can handle and what needs a vet 10 minutes ago. The vet aside look at the food cost. You could spend up to $300 a year on feeding a mini if you have a large enough grass area. $1000 or more to feed all year long.

Actions and 'todays market'
On more than one occasion I have had people tell me that I can not sell horses in todays market for what I'm asking for (One thing: This is my Parents farm and they make the prices, I only run it), but let me tell you; I have been. Others say that they can get a horse cheeper at Action. No argument there. But you don't know if the animal has been drugged, you don't know the health nor can you get a vet to check them out, and if something goes wrong actions are sold 'as is'. Don't get me wrong there are great Actions out there, you just wont be paying $100 for a horse without a 'no sale', and you can find some great horses there too. But be smart about it and very carful.

No I don't mean to sound mean or rude but do keep in mind that a reputable miniature horse breeder is a person too. We are not a big corporation like walmart that runs little mom and pop stores out of business, we are mom and pop stores. We need to make these animals pay for themselves and for our own livelihood. For some of us not only are our horses 4th generation but the we ourselves are. We are not hobbyist that only have mini horse for the joy of it, that's your part to play. Though we do enjoy it clearly because it is a lot of hard work. Most of us stay all night in our barns for 2 or 3 months to make sure the babies are born ok, only to go to our day jobs at 8am. We take showing classes so we can trim our animals feed the right way ourselves. In the state of Indiana some of us drive to other states just to show our horses on the weekend and drive 16 house round trip. We are dedicated and that is what you are paying for when you buy from us reputable breeders. So please think twice before you ask 'what kind of deal can you make me?'

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