Finally back from vacation and so much to catch up on! We got in super late last night so I’m working from home and then braving the freezing weather (not in Jamaica anymore!) to go ride my pony. I’m sure he’ll be thrilled. Anyway, here was MY 2017:
Some definite lows:
Putting P up for sale, realizing that was a terrible idea and taking him off the market, re-training my already re-trained horse, treating for ulcers, not to mention ALLLL the stopping at jumps (pretty much every blog post from May-October). We can also add that time I tried to dye my horse’s tail because it’s STILL growing out.
Some fabulous highs: Obtaining my dear, squishy Volty, upfitting my trailer to save $$$ on hotels, starting to work with Trainer B, moving to a new barn, finishing a HT on our dressage score for the first time ever, jumping big (for us) jumps: here and here, riding bridleless for the first time, and of course, riding my awesome horse in a T-Rex costume that other horses wouldn’t go near. Wasn’t there something else? Hmmm, what could it be?
J/k- it just gets its own line: FINISHING OUR FIRST BN ON OUR DRESSAGE SCORE!
P and I did next to nothing from January 2017 through when I dropped him off in Aiken to be sold mid-February, and then I got him back end of March/beginning of April. So since April, here’s what we’ve been up to:
6,008 miles hauling
31 lessons with Trainer B
9 lessons with Trainer J (rectifying that this winter)
Countless trail rides
1 hunter pace
3 XC schoolings
11 Competitions, broken down as such:
1 dressage show
5 horse trials
5 Jumper shows
Average dressage score: 35
Last year I did a recap of my annual expenses and I was totally expecting that number to go down this year. But with P in “training” in Aiken for 6 weeks, plus ALL THE LESSONS to fix him when he got back, then with a new jump saddle and the upgrades to my trailer, I failed MISERABLY.
Board: $7,900. Old H/J barn was $625 and new barn is $650/month. In my area, full boarding typically runs between $500-$700/month, so this is at the high end but totally worth it. Board includes stall, daily turnout, premium grain (P gets TC Senior plus rice bran), quality hay fed free choice, including daily hay thrown in the pasture, supplements, blanketing, minor injury care, holding for vet/farrier; and has a large outdoor arena with a jump course and lights, a 40x60m dressage arena, a hacking trail with XC jumps, and a galloping lane.
Farrier: $1,455. P gets 4 steel shoes with clips every 4-5 weeks. Farrier at HJ barn charged $115 and new farrier charges $140 (ouch) but so far he’s done a good job.
Insurance: $798. Includes mortality, major medical, etc. I almost dropped my major medical policy this year due to never using it in the last 3 years, but didn’t, thank the good Lord above. I had to use it for the first time for ulcers and will never be without insurance ever again.
Vet/Bodywork Services: $855. P has PEMF done once a month and then he’s been chiro’d a few times as well. Other than the ulcers, which was taken care of besides the $350 deductible, P had an x-ray done on his perpetually puffy left knee to make sure he was still good, teeth floating, and regular vaccinations/coggins.
Lessons/Training/Schooling Fees: $5,840. This includes the training board for the 6 weeks he was in Aiken, the clinic we did at CHP in June, and then ALL THE LESSONS to fix P’s jumping. It also includes facility fees for schooling.
Shows: $1,924. This includes entry fees, USEA fees, and stalling/camping hookup costs when applicable. Does not include food or fuel.
Tack/Gear/Supplements: $8,140. This is mostly because of the addition of Volty, my new jump saddle. P’s supplements include FatCat and U-Shield.
Trailer: $6,878. Maintenance was minimal, the big expense was when I added the electric awning, AC, camper hookups, battery, and hinge extender.
Truck: $10,155. This isn’t strictly a horse expense, since I use the dually as my daily vehicle as well, but I definitely wouldn’t have the truck if not for the horse, so the expense stays.
Well look at that. I managed to outspend my own self by just about $14,000.
Bring on 2018!