What is a Foal Contract?
When you purchase a foal contract, you are simply arranging to buy a foal which has not been born yet. Foal contracts from Shady Grove offer an inexpensive opportunity to buy into some of the top Haflinger families in the World. When your new foal is born, we call you and add beautiful pictures to our website so you can see your new baby immediately. We also invite you to visit the foal as often as you would like to participate in its early training. Then, when the foal is about 5 months old, it is weaned, health checked, and ready to go to its new home. Every birth at our little farm is a special time, and it is very important to us that we make it a special time for the foal's new owner as well.
Why would I purchase a Foal Contract?
Horses are like people. Their most formative years for training are when they are very young. We believe baby foals should be handled and led daily. Unfortunately, many people will try to sell you horses that have had little to no handling when they were young. We really enjoy raising and training foals. It is extremely rewarding and its a fun activity the whole family can enjoy. Some of our customers decide that they want to get their horse as a baby. They also find that it can be very rewarding to see their baby grow up.
What is the financial benefit?
We see the foal contract as a win-win proposition for us and for our customers, but it takes a special customer. We know that most buyers want to buy an adult horse that has had a lot of training. But for the buyer with the patience and interest to train a young horse, this is a terrific opportunity. As we continue to improve our breeding program, we have been getting a very strong interest from buyers who want offspring from our best brood mares. We have limited room on our small farm, so we only have the space to raise and train a few young horses. When we know we have a buyer willing to train one of our foals, we reduce our costs and have room to train another horse. This why we offer attractive prices on the foal contracts. The other benefit for the buyer is the fact that they get first choice on the foals from their favorite mare.
How do I choose the right mare?
That's the fun part. Our mares all share one common trait. They've all been selected to have sweet, lovable personalities. They are calm and easy to train. We know that temperament is largely genetic, so that is always our first focus. After that, we can give you some great choices depending on what you'd like to see in your horse. Our mares are different sizes and have different strengths. We love discussing our mares and would be glad to help you choose.
What does the contract say?
We always like to keep things simple. We're fairly flexible and we want to be clear and fair. We sit down with the buyer and clearly write out an agreement in simple language. We discuss payments, delivery timing and options, what happens if there is an issue with the foal's health (our foals are guaranteed to be healthy). Occasionally, buyers are interested in only males or females. We will consider these options as well as other customer requests.
Can I really raise my own horse?
That's a good question. If you've never raised a young horse, you'll have to do an honest assessment of yourself. Do you have the "do it yourself" mentality? Are you patient? You will have to study some horse training techniques. There are many resources which can teach you these techniques. Some of them include online training videos, articles, books, and training DVDs. Many of these resources are specific to training foals and would help greatly in raising a foal. Of course, we're always available to help as well and we're glad to share our training techniques. We actually use some very simple methods to train our foals. You might be shocked at how simple it is once you get the hang of it. You may also decide that a young horse isn't a good fit for you. Give us a call if you have any questions.
Prices for our Foal Contracts
All foals for 2019 are currently contracted. There is one remaining foal contract available for 2020 for a foal out of Floridian AFH and Windstar Van De Ooste.