We’ve enjoyed the breathtaking scenery and wildlife from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim since 2011. Now, with the Anniversary Update, players are re-entering this open-world fantasy game to live as the Dragonborn.
While it’s true that you can move around via fast travel, many players like to rely on in-game transportation methods to get from point A to B.
Horses improve your movement speed, and you’re able to perform mounted combat while riding them.
They have their own stamina and carry weight, making them the perfect companion for your adventures. But is there a way to call your horse on command?
There is no way to call your horse in Skyrim. However, your horse will automatically teleport next to you if you fast travel to another location.
Your horse can also teleport to the nearest stable available. Mods are available to overhaul the system and include horse calls.
How Do You Get a Horse in Skyrim?
You can either purchase a horse or unlock it through specific quests. You can also steal a horse, however, once you dismount, the horse will automatically leave and return to its original owner.
Option 1: Buy a Horse
To buy a horse, you need to approach any stable in the main cities around Skyrim and talk to the hostler in charge. All horses will cost you 1000 gold, and their in-game tags will be “your character name’s horse.”
The locations where you can buy a horse in Skyrim:
- Markarth Stables, talk to Cedran
- Riften Stables, talk to Hofgrir Horse-Crusher
- Whiterun Stables, talk to Skulvar Sable-Hilt
- Solitude Stables, talk to Gemiund
- Windhelm Stables, talk to Ulundil
At Windstad Manor, Helkarchen Hall, and Lakeview Manor homes, talk to your personal steward.
Option 2: Complete Quests for Unique Horses
Alternatively, you can also unlock a horse by completing certain quests. Even if this game has already been out for 10 years, some spoilers are ahead!
This horse is a reward for completing the Black Brotherhood’s Cure for Madness quest. Astrid will summon Shadowmere for you to chase Cicero with it, although it’s not mandatory to use this horse to complete the mission. Shadowmere has higher health, fast health regeneration, and much higher stamina compared to regular horses.
During the quest Promises to Keep in Riften, you’ll have to steal Frost from Black-Briar Lodge. You can have it as your horse, depending on how to finish the quest.
Even though the game won’t show Frost as a horse you own, it will behave just like one. It shares the same stats as other horses. However, it can gallop for the same amount of time as Shadowmere.
This mount is only available with the Dawnguard DLC. Unlike other horses in Skyrim, you learn a spell to summon Arvak after retrieving their skull in the Soul Carin. He won’t despawn when riding him, but the countdown to the spell’s effect starts when you dismount him. However, you won’t be able to summon it inside walled cities or when you’re at the Forgotten Vale.
Option 3: Find a Horse in the Wild
In Skyrim, you can have random encounters to obtain a horse while going through the outdoors.
For instance, you can take a stray horse located between Ivarstead and Valtheim Tower. Riding this horse will not count as stealing. Another random encounter will spawn a dead bandit next to a horse. You can ride the horse in both cases, and it won’t count as stealing. However, they will behave as a stolen horse and leave once you dismount.
In the Anniversary Upgrade, you will find the Wild Horses Creation addon. It will introduce wild horses that you can tame all around Skyrim. You will have to chase the wild horse down and mount them. You need to try again if you are thrown off until it’s tamed. After that, you can rename them and add a saddle to your new horse.
Option 4: Borrow a Horse From an NPC
In two scenarios, you can befriend an NPC, and you’ll unlock the ability to use their horse. Mounting it will not count as stealing, but as soon as you dismount the horse, it will return to its owner just like a stolen horse would do.
Riften Stables: You can either win a brawl against Hofgrir or complete the Stabilized quest. Paying or persuading Sapphire to clear the debt will lead to the same result.
Katla’s Farm, Solitude: Sell wheat to Katla to befriend her and use the horses available on the property.
What Mods Can I Use for Skyrim Horses?
Before the Creation Club and Anniversary Upgrade, the Skyrim fan community has created several mods addressing horses and mounts in the game.
Some of the mods available at NexusMods for Special Edition are:
- Convenient Horses: role-playing mod that adds extra mounted interactions, horse whistle and calling, and tweaks your interactions with your mount.
- Horses for Followers: this mod adds a second horse for sale that you can buy for your follower. Horses for Followers adds other minor changes for players who don’t want a massive overhaul in the system.
- Horse Armors SSE: you can purchase Armored Horses from the city’s stables. Frost and Shadowmere will have unique custom armors.
- Immersive Horses: a complete overhaul that adds new commands, a new follower system, and other tweaks to Skyrim mounts.
To install these mods, you will need to follow this beginner’s guide from Reddit’s r/skyrimmods. Don’t forget to back up your files before messing around with mods!
How Many Horses Can I Have In Skyrim?
There’s no limit on how many horses you can own in Skyrim. However, the last horse you rode will travel with you, and the other horses will return to their stables or original homes. You can switch your active horse by mounting them.
What Happens if I Leave My Horse in Skyrim?
If you dismount a horse you own, it will remain in its position. If the horse gets attacked by hostile mobs, your horse will either attack or run away. If you don’t own the horse, it will automatically return to its original stable or owner once you dismount it.
Your owned horse will teleport next to you whenever you fast travel to an outdoor location. If you have a home with a stable with the Hearthstone DLC, any other horses you’ve purchased or obtained will go back to your main house.
Can You Put a Horse in a Stable in Skyrim?
If you have the Hearthstone DLC, you can build a home and include a horse stable. Here’s where your other horses will stay when not active.
If a horse dies, you can wait one day in-game and go to the original stable to find another horse available for sale or borrow. If Shadowmere or other unique mounts die, you will have to wait 10 days in-game for them to respawn.