Friday is day one of the Black Hills Stock Show and Rodeo, and it kicked off with a horse sale preview. But buyers are wary of how the drought might affect their decisions when it comes to buying more animals.
Denise Maher currently has three horses and is in the market for a fourth. She says the drought has changed the way she thinks about buying a horse. With three horses Maher uses about one and a half large round bales of hay a month; which cost her about $150 each.
She says having another mouth to feed won't be cheap especially if the drought continues, but the dry conditions and high feed and hay prices aren't stopping her from buying completely. "I think as a horse owner you're much more selective now that you can't afford to have horses on your property that aren't producing for you so in my opinion I think it's made the buyer a little pickier as to what their looking for," said Maher.
Gilbert Lutter, a rancher from Redfield, South Dakota came to the stock show to sell one of his horses, and he says he's not too worried about heading home with an empty wallet. "The droughts bound to have a little effect on it, it sure made for high priced feed and it's bound to have a little effect on it alright, but I think people still buy the good horses," said Lutter.
The First Interstate Bank Horse Sale starts at 2:00 p.m. in the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center Friday afternoon and continues Saturday.