How Much Time Does A Horse Need?

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Last Updated on January 12, 2023

Horses make amazing animals to own, however, they require a lot of time and attention. So, just how much time does a horse need? Before you purchase a horse, you should know how much time goes into caring for one.

Horse ownership is very rewarding, but it is also a big responsibility. You need to make sure your horse gets all the proper care they need along with having proper living conditions. Horses are high-maintenance animals, so you be well-educated on their needs before purchasing one.

How Much Time Does A Horse Need?

Horses require a lot of care and attention to thrive. Since they are herd animals, they benefit from spending time interacting with other horses. You also need to make sure your horse gets proper exercise, grooming, and outdoor time.

Grooming And Care

Horses need regular grooming and care to help maintain a healthy condition. Regularly grooming helps maintain a healthy, clean coat. You should always groom your horse before you ride or drive them.

Not only does grooming remove any dirt or debris from your horse, but it also can help prevent skin conditions and can allow you to find skin problems your horse has. Regular grooming sessions increase blood flow, which is good for a horse’s well-being.

How Much Time Does a Horse Need - Grooming And Care

Regularly picking out a horse’s hoof can remove any rocks that could cause lameness issues and reduces the risk of thrush. In addition, grooming is a great way to bond with your horse. It generally takes about 20 minutes to groom a horse and most groom their horse two to four times a week.

Horses should also have their stalls cleaned every day. Cleaning a stall will generally take 10 to 20 minutes when done daily.

Exercise And Riding – How Much Time Does A Horse Need?

Exercising is an important aspect of keeping your horse healthy. There are many different ways you can exercise your horse including riding, driving, longing, and hand walking.

Ideally, you want to exercise your horse two to five times a week. Depending on your horse’s fitness level and the intensity of the workout, each workout will generally last between 15 to 40 minutes.

Outdoor Time

Outdoor time is important for a horse’s health. Horses can benefit from exercise, herd bonding, and eating grass when outdoors. It is beneficial for their physical and mental horse.

Most horses can benefit from daily turnout. Depending on the barn, turnout can last for a couple of hours to all day. Some horses even live outside full time. If your horse doesn’t get regular turnout, grazing them outside two to seven days a week for around 20 to 30 minutes is beneficial.

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Feeding And Watering

Horses on average get fed two to four times a day and they should always have access to clean water. Ideally, a horse will get hay three to four times a day and grain twice a day. It is very important for a horse’s digestive system for them to eat regularly throughout the day.

Veterinarian And Farrier Care

You will also have to dedicate time for your horse to receive veterinarian and farrier care. Most horses will need veterinarian checkups once to twice a year.

Horses will also need to get their feet trimmed by a farrier approximately every six weeks. It takes around 20 to 45 minutes each farrier visit, depending on whether your horse has shoes or not.

How Much Does It Cost To Keep A Horse?

In addition to ensuring you have the time to care for a horse, you also want to make sure you can afford to take care of one. There are a lot of expenses that come with horse ownership.

Cost Of Board

Since there is so much time that goes into owning a horse and a horse requires a lot of land, most people choose to board their horse. Boarding a horse generally costs between $300-$1,000 a month depending on location, pasture or stall board, and amenities included with the board.

Most boarding barns will feed and water your horse for you and include the cost of food in the cost of the board. In addition, most barns will also clean your horse’s stall and turn them out to pasture on a regular basis.

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Training And Lessons – How Much Time Does A Horse Need?

While some barns will include the cost of training in the cost of board, while others will charge it in addition. The cost of board and training together will generally cost between $500-$1,000 a month. Training is ideal for when you are breaking a young horse or are maintaining a horse for showing.

Lessons generally cost between $20-$60 a lesson. Some training plans will also include a weekly lesson in the cost.

Farrier, Veterinarian And Dental Costs

It generally costs between $40 to $200 for a farrier visit approximately every six weeks. The cost will vary depending on if your horse is getting just a trim or shoes.

On average, regular veterinarian treatment for horses will cost between $300-$5oo a year. The cost of annual dental care is around $80 to $300 a year.

Costs Of Riding And Grooming Equipment

On average, grooming equipment will cost between $40 to $100. This includes brushes, fly spray, shampoo and conditioner and hoof grease. A saddle can cost anywhere from $200 to $10,000 depending on the discipline and type of saddle, though the average saddle is about $1,000. Other tack including the bridle, girth and saddle pad will be around $100 to $400.

Costs Of Riding And Grooming Equipment

Time And Cost Of Horse Ownership

Horse require lots of time and money to care for, however, they are very rewarding to own. Since horses need daily care and lots of space, most people will keep them at a boarding barn.

Do you have any questions regarding how much time does a horse need? If so, please ask any questions regarding the time and cost it takes to own a horse in the comments.


Can You Leave a Horse for a Week?

Even if your horse lives outside full time, you do not want to leave them alone for a week. You should check on them daily to make sure they have fresh water, food and are healthy.

How Much Exercise Do Horses Need a Day?

Horses should have at least 20 minutes of movement a day, which they can achieve from regular turnout. Horses should get exercise about three to four days a week for about 15 to 45 minutes.

Is it OK to Have Only One Horse?

Though it is ok to only have one horse, horses will greatly benefit from having other horses to live with. Horses are herd animals and can benefit from having a social circle.

Is Keeping a Horse Expensive?

Keeping a horse is expensive and requires a lot of dedication. On average, it will cost between $3,000 to $10,000 a year to keep a horse.

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