Most horse enthusiasts dream of owning property where they can keep their horses. Being able to look out a window of their home to see their horses grazing on grass is a dream that can be fulfilled by working with a real estate agent who specializes in horse properties. While the lay of the land and the structures are important to consider, there's one other crucial thing to think about when searching for an ideal property for your horses: water. Here are several things to consider regarding water and horse properties.
What's the water supply like?
Some horse properties have natural water sources, but that doesn't necessarily mean the horses will be able to drink from them. Use the interactive maps provided by the Department of Interior to find the properties you're researching. Then, you'll be able to determine whether or not there are any rights protecting them and if the water quality is good for horses.
Most horse properties have wells as a source of water. If there is no natural water on the property, such as streams or creeks, you will need to be sure the water well can handle your thirsty horses. On average, a horse drinks 5-10 gallons of water daily. Also, you'll want to be sure the water access points are easy for you to reach. That way, you won't have to haul buckets of water to the water trough every day for your horses.
What's the field drainage and soil like?
You'll also need to consider how rain and snow melt drains from the field. Dry footing is important for horses, since a wet field can be detrimental to the health of your horses. Constantly standing and grazing in mud can lead to many problems, such as colic and mud fever, as well as problems with their hooves.
Also, marshy, wet, or muddy fields don't have good soil quality, which is important for grazing on healthy grasses. Avoid clay-based soils and soil that is too rocky as they cannot provide quality vegetation for your horse to graze on. Request soil sample testing of various parts of the property before starting the process of closing on the property. Take the results of the test to your horse veterinarian for guidance.
When searching for a property for you and your horses, it's a good idea to work with a real estate agent who is knowledgeable about horses and their needs.