So, long story short, there is a warmblood filly for sale in Florida who has really caught my eye. I like the sire and l love the dam. The filly is conformationally very nice and harmonious, with lovely straight legs, a good neck set, and a body that fits the thirds rule. Currently she’s about 1.5 months old; I’ve seen pictures (including decent side and front conformation shots) and I am awaiting a video of her moving w/t/c.
So, my questions:
First, I am not comfortable handing over her entire purchase price before she is weaned and about to start her journey to me. Is it reasonable to give a deposit, with the remainder to be paid once she is weaned and vetted, and before she is shipped? What would a reasonable deposit be? She is for sale in the low 5 figures. I would, of course, ask for a written contract before I sent any money.
Second, what is the best way to ship a weanling? I’m in western Canada, and she’s in Florida. I’m guessing her own box stall on a professional transport would be best? What would the ballpark cost be for that? If anyone has a glowing recommendation for a transport company that I could contact, I would really appreciate it! The only person I know whose horse has recently made the trip from Florida to where I am had her horse arrive over a week late, with a massive gash that had been left untreated so I’m a bit nervous about unknown transport companies.
Third, what do people recommend for vetting weanlings? I’d have a vet out to at least do a basic eye/lung/heart check, but are there other things people would recommend? I’ve considered stifle, hock, and fetlock X-rays, but in a filly that young I’m not sure there would be much to find?
Fourth, is there anything else I should ask about/for? I know I’d like to ask about a million questions, but the filly has garnered some interest and the owner isn’t dead set on selling her, so I don’t want to tick her off with endless or unreasonable requests.
I’ve never bought (or considered buying!!) a horse sight unseen, and I’ve never bought a horse this young before, so I am very nervous, but also excited, at the prospect (though I’m trying to keep my enthusiasm in check!).
Thank you in advance!