How to Write a Proper Horse Ad

Anyone selling a horse online should have a bare minimum of information in their ad.  If it was laid out in a simple format, so much the better!

Ever read ads and they’re one loooong rambling paragraph?  Ever hear of a hard return?

Please note; if someone is searching online to buy a horse, they are looking for the right horse for them.  They already have a general capability list, age, personality and look/breed (hopefully in that order) in their head.  Well, at least they should!  They want a horse to fit their needs and their lifestyle.  So whether they’re looking for a bomb-proof older been-there-done-that trail horse or a high-end show jumper — they know what they want.

Bare Minimum

  • Breed
    (If you don’t know, it’s a grade horse but “QH-type grade horse” or something similar is acceptable — if it’s a cross-breed, list the breeds — don’t blend two breed names together to make one word — ie. Arapaloosa.)
  • Papers: y/n
    (Do you have the actual registry papers? Can it be registered?)
  • Age
    (Don’t guess.  If you aren’t sure, say approximately XX years old.)
  • Height
    (In hands, measured properly — if you don’t know how, ask your vet the next time he\she’s out — there’s nothing worse than seeing “15.4HH” in an ad!)
  • Professional Training
    (How many months or years, in what discipline — and that’s with a professional trainer!)
  • Discipline
    (List what discipline the horse has done, and/or is suited for.)
  • Shots / Vet
    (When and for what were the horses last vaccination, how it handles being around the vet.)
  • Farrier
    (When last trimmed, does it wear shoes or go barefoot, how it stands for the Farrier.)
  • Shows
    (Has the horse been shown and in what discipline, also this is a great spot for fairs, parades, etc.)
  • Health Issues
    (A simple “no health issues, horse is sound” could suffice, if you’re being honest — if the horse tends to colic, then say that!)
  • Personality
    (Easy to catch, in your pocket type or aloof, mischievous, or what?)
  • Other Info
    (Easy or hard keeper, always manages to hurt itself, etc.)

Extra Help

  • Photos
    (I am a firm believer in uploading a photo.  There are many sites that allow free ads with photos.  Find one.  Also, if you’re asking more than $500.00 for the horse, you’d better have a photo!)
  • Videos
    (If your horse is being sold as an “amazing jumper” or something along that line, and especially if it has been shown — how hard is it to have a friend take a video and upload it to utube and link back to it?  Everyone has this easy ability, and the more you’re asking for the horse, the more people should be able to see of it.)
  • Weanlings
    (If you are selling a weanling, please include photos of the dam and sire — as well as their pertinent information –all the info listed above for each would be nice!)
  • Geldings
    (All male horses should be gelded.  Period.  The only reason the horse shouldn’t be gelded is if the horse is worth more than $5000.00, has shown / raced / whatever and wins consistently, and is a perfect specimen of the breed!)
  • Jumping
    (There is a difference between free-jumping and jumping with a rider — explain what you mean.)

And please, for God’s sake people, USE SPELL CHECK!!!  It’s not that difficult, and if you don’t know how, then get off the Internet and go take some basic computer classes.  Check with your library – they often offer them free or really cheap!

And punctuation.


Just a note, whoever set up the ads for Equine Now have my seal of approval!  And they offer free photo ads!  Come on, does it get any better than that?  For people looking to buy, there’s a fantastic advanced search as well.

Another site, Equestrian Connection, also offers free ads that you can upload a photo, and it’s laid out similarly to Equine Now.

If you would prefer to use a site like Kijiji or Craigslist, I understand – but please lay out your ad similar to these two, or the list above!


This is a living breathing animal.  It is an animal that is very large and expensive to keep.  Don’t lie in your ad to make the animal more appealing.  This only leads to:

  • Buyers getting frustrated when they go any distance to see the horse and it’s not as advertised
  • Buyers being disappointed when you’ve tricked them into buying something that is not right for them
  • Your horse ending up in a home it is not suitable for
  • Your horse possibly ending up in a truck bound for slaughter

The best way to sell a horse is with a contract.  You should be willing to take the horse back if it does not work out.

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