Like most equine prices, Clydesdale horse price is like a science experiment’s result – change one condition, and it varies.
Known for their insanely beautiful build, these large-bodied horses hailing from Clydesdale, Scotland, are among the best-known draft horse breeds given their versatile performance. This article is about finding:
- Its approximate price (market-value);
- How its price varies with various factors;
- And additional costs associated with its purchase.
Additionally, you’ll be learning a lot of Clydesdales in general that you might not have already known – make sure to stick till the end. Let’s get started!
Estimated Cost of a Clydesdale Horse
Giving a solid figure would be unjust as not all Clydesdales are born equal – but we’re looking at a range of $1,500 to $5,000, from a decent farm horse to one with a good show record training, respectively. Unlike more expensive breeds like Friesians, which start from $7,000 and cost up to millions, Clydesdale horses rarely go beyond the $10,000 mark.
Horses, especially draft-horses like Clydesdales, don’t cost much, but they sure are an on-going expenditure (apart from one-time purchase) – more on associated expenses later.
The exact price is a question of several variables. Factors like their breed, training level, show records, age, and appearance affect the Clydesdale horse cost. Let’s break it down a bit further.
Factors Affecting the Price of a Clydesdale Horse
These factors below directly and indirectly affect the cost of a Clydesdale horse.
A significant concern among experienced horse buyers is the breed quality. If you’re buying a rare breed like Clydesdale, there’s a good chance that you’ll find a purebred with a decent price tag as most owners ensure breed quality themselves.
A purebred and pedigreed Clydesdale costs more. However, if it’s crossbred with another rare breed, it’s likely to be more expensive than a purebred.
An example could be a Dales pony, an intricate, beautiful, and rare horse breed with Clydesdale, Friesian, Norfolk, and Thoroughbred blood. These usually start from $7,000 and go way above.
The training level is a crucial Clydesdale horse price determinant. Draft horses like Clydesdales require a lot of training to carry out tasks such as driving sleds. You can have a beautiful, untrained Clydesdale in its prime to cost less than a young, trained colt.
Sometimes, specific training (like dressage or jumping) can hike up the prices more than usual. Expect to be paying up to $1,500 for trained Clydesdales.
As Clydesdales are famous for showing, the one you’re going to buy likely has a showing history to show off.
Although showing history is expected, a successful one is rare. In the case of an exceptionally successful stallion, you’ll be paying more – usually above $8,000 ($1,000 to $3,000 extra). If you play it smart, you can make this money back by taking your Clydesdale to competitions.
Age & Appearance
Average Clydesdales’ age is 20–25 years, which puts years 7 till 16 their prime performance years. Such Clydesdale horses cost more than younger foals and senior horses by $750 to $1,500. So, if you find a purebred foal for about $3,000, an adult would cost you $5,000.
Just like age, appearance matters, too, which changes over time. Usually, ones with Budweiser Clydesdale’s description costs more: white stockings, white blaze, bay color.
While these factors affect the price, there are a few other expenses of keeping a Clydesdale, too.
Additional Costs of a Clydesdale Horse
You might think these additional costs are ‘optional’, but these are maintenance and on-going expenses that come with a Clydesdale’s purchase. However, you can control them with proper budgeting.
Just like professional athletes eat nothing much different yet consume more of the regular food we eat, Clydesdale horses are machines that take about 2-3% of their body weight worth of hay and grains regularly – about 36 to 40 lbs. (1800 to 2000 lbs.).
In areas where hay and grains are abundantly available, the costs are likely to be about $90 to $100 monthly. In more distinct locations, you might have to pay more than $200.
Purchasing a Clydesdale is only 50% of the problem – the rest 50% lies in accommodating it. Unless you’re a farm owner with a readily available barn, you’re looking at $500 – $1,000 monthly boarding fees.
Depending on the various packages available, this fee could be either all-inclusive or merely a room fee for the month. It’s better to do some research, call some local barns, and have the exact figures on the table.
Medical costs can prove to be a game-changer for you. If you’re an equine lover with a tight budget for your future Clydesdale, we suggest against purchasing one. Horses, especially of such rare breeds, require regular medical attention.
Bi-annual appointments with your vet plus accidental/emergency fund require you to set aside about $3,000 to $5,000 or more if you can manage.
With this in mind, a Clydesdale can cost you about $26,400 annually (food, boarding, medicine, tack, and grooming) atop its purchasing cost of $5,000 (avg.). This cost can massively vary depending on your location and choices.
Other (Tack, Grooming, etc.)
The only costs that you can genuinely control are grooming and tack costs. Expensive horse breeds, especially Clydesdales, which have feathery hooves, require regular care using dedicated horse grooming equipment.
Plus, you can’t ride a horse without a tack, can you? Bridles and saddles for horses of the size of Clydesdales can add $1,000 to your purchase costs.
FAQs Related to Clydesdale Horse Price
The following questions answer some specifics about Clydesdale horses.
How much can a Clydesdale horse pull?
On average, Clydesdales can pull about 1–4 US tons (2000–8000 pounds) over reasonable distances. The exact length depends on the number of Clydesdale horses in the team and the coaster’s weight.
Interestingly, pulling weight is a measurement of their power, which is yet another minor cost affecting factor. More powerful Clydesdales are preferred, and they cost more. However, only equestrians planning to buy them for showing or heavy farmwork would pay more.
If you’re buying it to add beauty and diversity to your stable and pleasure-riding, you won’t be much concerned with its power.
Are Clydesdales gentle?
Clydesdales are gentle with a knack for befriending not only their owners but almost everyone who rides them. A purebred Clydesdale horse is always calm, though you might bump into a crossbred one with unconventional traits.
Clydesdale’s temperament is one key factor that makes them excellent draft horses, other than their size. Their intelligence and forgiveness minimize any risks your children, or you might be exposed to during farm work.
Along with other characteristics, interested buyers often pay more for Clydesdale horses known for their friendly temperament.
Are Clydesdales good for beginners?
Generally, Clydesdales can be excellent for beginners given their accepting and kind temperament – a desirable feature for a newbie rider. Beginners tend to make many mistakes, and a Clydesdale’s coldblooded nature makes it hard to offend them; they’re broadly safe for all.
However, given that Clydesdales are typically enormous, if the beginner is a child, it just might not be the safest decision. Feel free to read our guide for beginners’ horses for a better idea on this matter.
How much is a Budweiser Clydesdale horse worth?
Budweiser Clydesdales are worth $5,000 to $15,000, depending on their age, performance, and speciality (if any). Budweiser sells their Clydesdales when they’re no longer helpful to the company’s marketing campaigns or cannot profit in other ways.
The brewing giant is very selective about the horses they include in their lot. Unless the Clydesdale in question isn’t bay and does not have a white blaze with four white stockings, it’s of no use to Budweiser.
If you’re interested, you can watch this video on how Budweiser Clydesdales are brought up:
Can Clydesdales do dressage?
Equestrians don’t usually prefer Clydesdales that can do dressage due to their coldblooded nature. They’re heavy (unlike most warmblooded horse breeds) and able-bodied for more demanding tasks other than dressage.
However, since Clydesdale is a famous horse breed (thanks to its unique looks and Budweiser’s promotion), people often enjoy their dressage. If you’re looking to buy dressage-trained Clydesdale, though low in supply and demand, it’s likely to cost more due to training.
Can Clydesdales run fast?
Clydesdales can run up to 20 mph, while a professional racehorse runs about 37 mph (avg.) – clearly not designed for racing, but exceptional stallions can still put up a serious competition.
They are better off as draft horses and have a reputation for pulling the heaviest of loads.
What are the different colors of Clydesdales?
Apart from the typical white markings on their faces, Clydesdales are usually bay and brown. Some variants can be as dark brown as black; however, they’re rare. Along with white face markings, they also have white hoof feathers, another unique and distinct Clydesdale feature.
Clydesdale horse price varies depending on multiple factors such as breed, training, appearance, and performance history. However, these aren’t the only determinants. While the horse itself can cost you around $5,000, annual maintenance costs can be approximately $25,000.
Bear in mind that price isn’t the only cost for Clydesdale horses. You may have to pay extra for vaccines or riding lessons. Also, horses require your time, love, and effort to groom and perform. Before purchasing one, ensure that you have everything to make it happy.
As always, happy reading, happy riding!