In a perfect world, a dedicated horse owner would never have to think that one day they would have to part with their beloved horse. Unfortunately the world is not perfect and things happen to people that affect their ability to own a horse and the horse may need to go on to another owner. If you find yourself in this situation, here are 5 things to avoid doing if you are selling your horse.
Do not list your horse for sale on Craigslist. Craigslist is known for only attracting people who are looking for bargains and that means they will want your horse for free or almost free. The ads are also cruised by people who take free and almost free horses and resell them quickly or send them off to a feedlot to be fattened up for shipment out of the USA to be butchered for meat.
Do not take pictures of your ungroomed and dirty horse as sale photos. That small deed speaks volumes to buyers. It tells them that you don’t really care about the horse and want it gone – TODAY. It also gives the impression that the horse is untrained, ill mannered or both, since the owner is either scared of grooming the horse or the horse would not behave for it to be groomed. When I say “groomed” for a sale photo shoot, I mean, bathed, clipped and groomed in a manner that the horse looks like it is ready to enter a show ring. Not like the photo below.
Do not clip or otherwise mark your horses’ coat with the words “for sale” on it. That is like putting a “looking for work” sign on your back if you were looking for a job. You would garner attention but probably not get a job.
Do not ask for a price that is lower than meat prices. Right now anything under $400 seems to be fair game for the kill pen buyers and horse traders. If a person cannot afford to pay a decent price for your horse then maybe they can’t afford to own a horse in the first place.
Know who you are selling your horse to. Run a background check if you think something is not right. Do a home check if the price you are asking is on the low side. When ever I bought a horse, I always had it delivered by the seller so they could see where the horse was going to live.
One last tip, list your horse for sale through a trainer, tell your veterinarian and farrier that the horse is for sale. Try selling via word of mouth before you list your horse on the internet. Post flyers in local feed stores, local boarding stables and the local fairgrounds. Internet sales should be your last resort, not your first choice.