Heyyo! It’s been a while in the making, but I am absolutely ecstatic to welcome you to my bitty little corner of the internet! It’s been a chaotic few months (as moving tends to be), but I’ve got a few little tricks that help keep me organized, at least where my horse is concerned, and I’d love to share them with you.
First up: my budget & spending tracker.
Owning a horse is not for the faint of heart. Or the faint of wallet. (Or anyone overly concerned about saving money, really.)
I’m in a bit of a sticky predicament: See, Sunny is the actual center of my universe, but he is also a horse, and if you look in the dictionary, I’m pretty sure one of the definitions is “the living embodiment of ‘expensive’.”
Yet, despite being a broke-ass college grad who is in the process of moving and, at present, doesn’t actually have a job/steady stream of income (*distant sobbing*), I’ve spent the past few years perfecting my method of affording my horse, and it boils down to two major points:
1.) How many bags of feed could I buy instead of this Very Important Thing?
I’ve passed on shoes, clothes, purses, and other various total splurge and not-so-splurge buys because they just weren’t worth spending the same amount of money as a week or a month of feed would cost me. (Seriously, WHY are shoes so expensive? Jeez! *slinks away with 99-cent flip flops instead of $20 sandals*)
Sure, someday maybe I’ll be able to afford the $20 sandals AND feed for my horse, but alas, today is not that day.
2.) How much do I need to save for this Very Important Horse-Related Thing?
Understanding exactly how much horses could cost is a fine balancing act between sound financial planning and losing your mind.
As I said earlier, horses are the living embodiment of “expensive”. Feed is expensive. Farriers are expensive. Board is expensive. Lessons and/or training is expensive. Shows are expensive. And vet bills… Don’t even get me started. I’m pretty sure I could’ve paid for college out of pocket with all the vet bills my horses have racked up in my lifetime.
But let’s not think too hard on that.
Let’s focus on the sound financial planning part.
Some people prefer putting together a budget and filling in columns with various normal bills and things they have to pay and trying to “plan”.
As for me, well, I know what my bills cost. They don’t tend to fluctuate that much. What does fluctuate, though, is what I spend on my horse, so I tend not to budget in the traditional sense. I prefer to call it “hoarding my tip money in my boots for a rainy day because my old man is probably going to pull something AGAIN”.
If you’ve had horses for more than about five minutes, you’re probably familiar with how much money you throw at various people, but keeping track of your spending can get a little… interesting. (And by “interesting”, I actually mean chaotic.) In the interest of preserving everyone’s sanity, I put together a quick bill & spending tracker for horse owners. This prints out on regular ol’ 8.5” X 11” paper, but I keep mine folded up in my wallet so I’m forced to remember NOT to splurge on said $20 sandals.
So, if you would like that healthy little reminder in your wallet, too, download your bill & spending tracker here:
Next up: feeding cards!
If you’ve only got one horse, like me, it’s super simple. Or, maybe you’re like my friend Bryan. He’s got, like, a couple dozen horses at any given time, all of whom get different feed, different supplements, and also live in different barns and turnout areas on his property, so feeding generally takes forever.
To combat the chaos, I’ve put together a handy feeding chart for you. There are two versions: a comprehensive list for you to fill out and hang up in your feed room to reference while you feed, and a stall version for you to put up at every horse’s stall with their individual information nice and handy.
Take your pick, doll, and may the odds be ever in your favor.
P.S. Don't forget to share this with your friends. ;)