One thing is sure before buying a horse you need to think very well of your skills level. It would be dangerous, both for you and for your future polo pony if the later was trained for a level a lot higher than yours. In addition, having to control a horse that is too fast or too complicated for you will not allow you to have a good time and enjoy fully your polo sessions.
When you decided on a horse, call your vet : the horse must meet the requirement as far as all pony must when you are going to buy one. Then, the veterinary should :
– Check the ID card of the horse and make sure the pony’s vaccinations are up to date.
– Make a chek-up of : the morphology, the appearance, the breathing apparatus and the heart, mouth, eyes.
– Check if there are none of the unacceptable defects : immobility, pulmonary emphysema, that the horse limps, tic, equine infectious anaemia, chronic cornage and phthisis. A blood test might be necessary to check that the pony does not suffer from infectious anaemia.
• Polo pony requires also particular abilities :
– The pony must be alert with bright eyes. He must see clearly with his two eyes because one-eyed horse cannot play polo. The veterinary will especially take a look at the heart and the legs of the pony. You might also test how sensitive is the pony when you swing a mallet next to him, especially if the pony had never played polo before.
– A legs X-ray can help the veterinary to check if the horse suffers from bones or joint issues.
– You can decide to make a lot of other medical examinations according to the price and the interest you got to the pony. These medical examinations are necessary in particular when the pony already played polo and he might have an irreversible injury following a game, a mallet blow, etc.
The veterinary can write a certification unveiling the pony health in order to know and prove if is able or not to play polo. Remember that the veterinary can only make you now the actual health of the horse but he cannot tell you how the horse will be in the future.