Care and Enjoyment
Hints & Tips
If you are looking to own a mature horse then it is important to think about the differences between caring for a younger or older horse. Older horses will more than likely have received training when they were younger, and so should be easier to ride and be more relaxed. However, the care regime will still be very similar as will the costs of owning a horse, whatever age they are.
Regular exercise is important for a horse of any age, as it is essential for maintaining the animal's physical and mental well being. Taking time to groom and handle your horse will also help to strengthen the bond between you and your horse. Older horses often have longer and thicker coats than younger horses and so will benefit from grooming, as their coats can become dirty and matted more easily, reducing the effectiveness of keeping the horses warm and dry.
Some older horses may have special needs that have resulted naturally from their ageing. Make sure you have a suitable care regime in place and a regular check by a veterinary surgeon about once a year.
Ensure you allow time each week to spend some quality time with your horse, as most horses enjoy regular human contact. This is especially important if they have recently retired from work, as they will have been taken out of the routine they have been used to for years, and will require additional attention and consideration.
Protecting against the unforeseen
Whilst owning an older horse can be a great deal of fun, trying to find the money to pay for stolen tack, or a vet's bill, is not so pleasurable. Some horse insurance companies also offer cover for mature horses; these are sometimes special policies aimed at older horses.
You may find that once your horse is past a certain age then they will need to be on a mature horse plan. This can sometimes mean that the cover will differ from the younger horse policy, as well as the premium changing in your favour! It is important to check the vet's bills section of cover to ensure that everything you need would be covered if something were to happen. Different companies will have different levels of cover for older horses, and you may even be able to pick and choose which sections of cover you require.
It is always important to read the small print when looking for a suitable insurance policy for you and your mature horse. Make sure you obtain a few quotes and research the cover provided to ensure you go for the right cover.