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The Equine Economy in the 21st Century

Survey Details Horse Owner Demographics and Lifestyles

John Volk, senior consultant with Brakke Consulting in Chicago, said his company's marketing survey gave his clients in the animal health and nutrition industry more information than they'd ever had before.

"Our Equine Megamarket Study was designed for commercial planning for our clients," he said. The survey included 1,000 horse owners who were the primary decision maker on the care of the horses they own.

Respondents were grouped into three cohorts -

"We found that horse owners are more involved in their vocation than just about any other group," Volk said. "Horse ownership defines them They spend an average of 22 hours a week with their horses. They read equine publications, they use the web, and they are impulse buyers. It is a community."

The average horse owner is a married female, age 35-54, with kids between the ages of 12 and 17. They also enjoy country music, hiking and outdoor activities, read lots of publications, and own cats and dogs.

The majority own multiple horses. Fourteen percent own one, twelve percent own 10 or more and the other 74 percent lie in between. Two thirds keep their horses on their own property. "They own property because they own horses," Volk said. Twenty percent board their horses elsewhere.

Heavy media consumers, horse owners spend five or more hours a week reading horse publications. The Intense Enthusiast category relies on horse publications as their number one source of information.

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