How To Buy a Retired Racehorse

A concerted and urgent effort to address the issue of slaughtering retired and old racehorses got the attention of the U.S. Congress and Senate and finally won the legal proceedings it deserved resulting in a law banning the slaughter or sale-for-slaughter of racehorses. On June 29, 2007, the last and final horse slaughterhouse was closed.

But that is just in the United States. Sadly, the horrifying and violent killing of racehorses continues to happen in Canada and Mexico where they are killed for their meat. If you think about it, killing racehorses so someone can enjoy their salty “Tapas” is utterly unconscionable and downright immoral and vulgar. If you share the sentiment of thousands of animal lovers and horse owners, then there is something you can do to save a racehorse’s life – you can consider buying a retired racehorse.

Why are racehorses retired by their owners?

There are a number of reasons why:

  • They got old and they’re way past the ideal age for racing. The prime age for a horse to be ready for serious show-jumping or racing competitions is between 3-4 years old, at which time your thoroughbred or foal has been properly trained and prepared for the demands of the sport. Some horses though naturally fade into retirement for health and genetic reasons, this usually happens when a horse reaches the age of 25 or so.
  • Injuries that can no longer allow a horse to compete. Likewise, recurring or repeated injuries that cause much pain to a horse when forced to compete.
  • Financial woes that cause the owner to withdraw from the competition circuit. Taking care of a horse entails quite a sum, think $800 minimum each month and that’s just for room, lodging, food, and a regular check up from an Equine Doctor.
  • Accidents that prevent the horse from fully recovering.
  • Lack of stable space.

You can help save a retired racehorse’s life by buying one. Here’s how:

  1. Check out the Open Directory on Horse Retirement, which gives you a good number of retirement homes for horses. These places usually let you buy/ adopt a horse beginning at $250 up to $1000 depending on the breed and size. However, you also have the option of adopting one without an adoption fee or by making a small donation so make the most inquiries for best results.
  2. If you are more inclined to buy a racehorse from a rescue shelter, than you might want to check out This non-profit shelter takes care of, feeds, and provides “touch and healing counseling” for horses that have been traumatized by injuries, or had been abandoned or abused by their former owners.
  3. The United States Jockey Club has an excellent program in place for those who are interested in buying retired racehorses. For varying costs starting from $25 to $100 dollars or more if preferred, you can already support the needs of a retired racehorse without adopting or buying one. The program which was launched in 1983 has successfully saved hundred of thoroughbreds with financial support from its members and non-members.
  4. Once you have chosen any of the options presented, you can begin to coordinate and request for information about the racehorse in question. Information like breed, age, health, and Equine doctor clearances are necessary to learning more about your horse.
  5. Finally, give your money freely when you can to save his life. Your ever dependable credit card or check book will go a long way to keep a retired racehorse from being executed for someone else’s diet whims.


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