View horses for sale in Ireland

If you are thinking of buying a horse in Ireland, don’t go anywhere until you have read our experts’ tips.

Try before you buy: “The best thing is to visit Ireland and go hunting to try the horse out,” says Charlie Gundry. “Remember, big yards will always take the horse back.”

Lost in translation: “Don’t assume you’ll duplicate what you saw in Ireland with a horse,” cautions English horse dealer Sally Wrigley. “Irish riders are very good – they can hide all sorts of problems.”

Go pro: “Go straight to a professional, like Vere Phillipps,” advises Oliver Townend. “You’ll pay more, but it takes mileage, time and dodgy dealers out of the equation.”

Thorough checks: “More and more horses are being given calmers,” suggests Irishman Oliver Walsh, an international sports horse dealer. “Get the horse on trial and get a vet to check the blood.”

Think about feeding: “Watch out when your Irish horse tastes English grub for the first time, as they often go doolally,” says Jane Hall.

Over the water: by paying cash and being flexible about the delivery date, it’s possible to cut shipping costs from £1,050 to £250.

Passports: all Irish horses need them – visit www.horsepassportagency.ie

For more expert advice on buying Irish horses don’t miss Horse & Hound’s special feature in the current issue (17 April, ’08), on sale now.

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Buying a new horse? Compare insurance prices at horseandhound.co.uk/insurance