How Much Does a Pony Cost?

Last Updated on January 19, 2024
Written by CPA Alec Pow | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popinker

Owning a pony can be an incredibly rewarding experience. From their gentle nature to their compact size, ponies make great pets and companions. However, before bringing one of these special animals home, it’s important to understand the costs involved. This guide will provide a comprehensive overview of pony prices as well as the ongoing expenses of proper pony care.


  • Expect to invest $3,000 to $15,000+ to purchase a pony depending on age, breed, training, and soundness. Higher prices often reflect greater training and ability.
  • Be prepared for ongoing monthly expenses between $500 – $1,500. Recurring costs include board, feed, routine health care and training.
  • Account for additional one-time or occasional costs like medical emergencies, dental work, showing fees and supplies.
  • Explore co-ownership, leasing, DIY care, and preventative health to reduce costs without sacrificing proper care.

Bringing home a gentle, family-friendly pony can be priceless. But by understanding the full scope of required investments, you can plan responsibly for this rewarding commitment.

How Much Does a Pony Cost?

The upfront cost to purchase a pony can range between $500 and $20,000. Prices are generally influenced by factors like the pony’s breed, age, training level, and overall health and soundness. Here’s a look at typical price ranges:

  • Miniature pony: $500 – $4,000
  • Shetland pony: $1,000 – $4,000
  • Welsh pony: $3,000 – $10,000
  • Connemara pony: $3,000 – $15,000
  • Quarter horse pony: $4,000 – $20,000

Well-trained ponies ready to compete in horse shows or other events often sell for premium prices. For example, an extensively trained Welsh pony may sell for $15,000 or more. On the other hand, acquiring an untrained young pony can reduce upfront costs. But this route requires time and money invested into training.

When evaluating potential pony purchases, carefully consider conformation, disposition, and training level. Vet checks are also essential to rule out pre-existing conditions. While higher initial cost ponies are available, $3,000 to $7,000 is typical for a healthy, trained riding pony.

According to Equine Helper, the average cost of a pony is between $2,000 and $8,000. However, it’s possible to find a small pony for under $1,000, especially if you are looking for a companion or a senior pony that doesn’t require riding or driving.

Dollarsanity notes that ponies can range in price from $600 to more than $25,000. The starting price for less expensive ponies is around $1,200, depending on various criteria. Notably, the price doesn’t include additional costs like bales of food, stable space, grooming, and veterinary expenses.

Farm and Chill provides specific prices for different pony breeds, as follows:

  • Shetland Ponies: $1,000 – $3,500
  • Chincoteague Ponies: $2,500 – $5,000
  • Welsh Pony: $1,500 – $5,000
  • Pony of the Americas: $2,500 – $7,500
  • Miniature Horse: $500 – $5,000
  • Quarter Pony: $2,000 – $5,000

Other breeds like Appaloosa, Paint Horse, Morgan, New Forest Pony, Connemara Pony, and Grade Ponies have varying prices within a range of $500 to $7,500.

Responsibilities and Commitments of Pony Ownership

Before making the investment, it’s important to understand what owning a pony entails. Ponies have some different needs than full-sized horses. But they require the same level of consistent, hands-on care and oversight. Key responsibilities include:

  • Providing daily feedings, fresh water, and nutritional supplements or medications if needed
  • Regular grooming and hoof care
  • Ongoing exercise, training, and behavioral reinforcement
  • Monitoring the pony’s health with annual vet checks and vaccines
  • Arranging preventative dental care and other specialist appointments
  • Providing safe shelter from weather extremes
  • Maintaining safe boarding facilities like stalls, paddocks, and equine fencing

Committing to responsible pony ownership means being available to handle these duties yourself or partnering with professional caretakers. It also means budgeting for all the associated ongoing costs.

You might also like our articles about the cost of feeding a horse, leasing a horse, and getting horse farrier services.

What Are the Monthly Expenses of Owning a Pony?

Caring for a pony extends well beyond the initial purchase price. Monthly expenses quickly add up between housing, feed, health care, training and other costs. Here are some typical recurring pony ownership costs:

  • Boarding fees: $200 – $1,000+ per month
  • Feed: $100 – $200 per month for hay and concentrates
  • Hoof care: $30 – $100 every 6 – 8 weeks for trims or shoeing
  • Dental care: $100 – $300 annually
  • Vaccinations: $100 – $250 annually
  • Deworming: $50 – $100 every 2 – 3 months
  • Training: $500+ per month for consistent lessons and practice
  • Insurance: $200 – $500 annually for major medical or mortality coverage

Boarding fees make up a significant portion of monthly upkeep. Options range from DIY facilities where owners provide all care to full-service barns that feed, turn out, and monitor the pony. Pasture board averages $300 – $500 per month while premium stabling with daily attention can cost $800 or more.

Overall, budget $500 – $1,500 monthly to properly care for a recreational pony depending on the services needed. Show ponies involve greater expenses for training and competition fees.

What Other Expenses Factor Into Owning a Pony?

Aside from recurring monthly costs, owning a pony also involves plenty of additional one-time or occasional expenses. These include:

  • Farrier costs: $30 – $150 every 6 – 8 weeks for trimming or shoeing
  • Dental care: $100 – $300 annually
  • Tack and supplies: Several hundred dollars initially for saddle, bridle, brushes, fly spray, etc.
  • Transport: $500+ for trailer purchase or rental fees
  • Fencing and shelter: Hundreds to thousands of dollars for safe facilities
  • Veterinary fees: $100 – $1,000+ for emergencies or advanced care
  • Training Clinics: $100 – $500+ per clinic for access to skilled trainers
  • Show fees: $100 – $500+ per show between entry, travel and accommodations

Owning a pony also means budgeting for unexpected veterinary costs. Even with insurance, owners must be prepared to cover deductibles or expenses exceeding policy limits. Make sure you have an emergency veterinary fund.

Save Money as a Pony Owner

While ponies entail considerable costs, certain strategies can help reduce expenses without compromising care. Some options include:

  • Seeking lower-cost DIY boarding options and providing some basic care yourself
  • Splitting or sharing ownership costs through co-ownership agreements
  • Exploring lease options that limit upfront purchase and care costs
  • Joining pony clubs to access group training rates and shared resources
  • Prioritizing preventative care to avoid large veterinary expenses
  • Learning basic hoof and dental care skills instead of paying professionals
  • Buying quality used tack and supplies instead of new
  • Growing your own hay if you have enough land

Final Words

For many riders, the costs of proper pony care are well worth it. But smart budgeting and creative cost-saving approaches help keep overall expenses reasonable.

How much does it cost to care for a pony annually?

The annual cost of caring for a pony can range from approximately $6,000 to over $18,000 per year, depending on the pony’s needs and boarding situation. Basic annual expenses usually include:

  • Boarding fees: $2,400 – $12,000
  • Feed and hay: $1,200 – $2,400
  • Basic health care like vaccines and deworming: $200 – $500
  • Hoof care: $400 – $1,200
  • Dental care: $100 – $300
  • Equipment costs: $500 – $1,000
  • Training: $500 – $6,000

So for a minimally maintained pasture pony, yearly costs may reach $6,000. But an intensively trained show pony could exceed $18,000 annually between board, training, veterinary expenses, and competition fees. The average recreational riding pony kept at a standard barn usually falls between $8,000 – $12,000 per year.

Are there hidden costs in owning a pony?

Yes, pony ownership involves some hidden costs that can catch first-time owners off guard. Be prepared for:

  • Veterinary emergencies: Even with insurance, owners must cover deductibles and expenses exceeding policy limits. Have at least $1,000 – $2,000 available for emergency colic surgery or other intensive treatments.
  • Property maintenance and repairs: Fencing, shelter, barn, paddocks and other facilities require ongoing upkeep and maintenance. Budget several thousand dollars annually.
  • Training setbacks: Ponies, especially young ones, may experience training regressions that require going back to basics. This may mean extra training fees.
  • Outgrown equipment: As ponies grow and change shape, tack and supplies may need to be replaced. Expect these additional costs every few years.
  • Transportation expenses: From trailering to and from shows to transporting for veterinary care, expenses add up.
  • Long-term care: Be prepared if your pony has health issues later in life requiring specialized care. This can become quite costly.
0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *