If you buy a horse in Skyrim, is it possible to lose it?

If so, what are the scenarios for loss? (can it killed? If you leave it somewhere and lose it, do you have to go find it, will it ever "despawn", etc).

I'm trying to decide if it's worth the 1000 gold.

  • I spent my hard-earned gold on a horse. A few minutes later, a dragon shows up, so in order for me to fight the thing I have to get off the horse. After killing the dragon, my horse is nowhere to be found. Won't re-spawn on fast travel either. And I'm still 1000 gold worse off. Yes, that was a waste of money. – user14286 Nov 14 '11 at 14:00
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    Wow yes it's worth it. Mine just killed a dragon for me! 5 fire breaths to the face and two bites and I still rode back to town. My horse is practically a party member by now! – user14330 Nov 14 '11 at 21:22
  • If you're on the PC, it's times like this that player.additem 0000000f 1000 is REALLY handy – Basic Nov 15 '11 at 0:16
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    @Driggly That's one bad ass horse. – Wipqozn Nov 15 '11 at 11:26
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    My horses just tend to get themselves killed while getting in the way. :\ – Andrew Lambert Nov 15 '11 at 20:26

The horse can't "disappear" permanently, just like your companions can't. If you somehow lose track of your horse, you simply need to fast travel somewhere, and the horse will show up there, too.

If you fast travel inside a city, the horse will usually be teleported to a stable outside the city or to some other location around there if the city doesn't have one.

However, horses in this game are particularly proud (they're nord horses after all), so what might happen is that your horse runs away, gets attacked by something and tries to defend itself, dying in the process. Sadly, the "fast travel" trick won't work if the horse is dead.

There is also a random stray horse, free to take without stealing in between Valtheim Towers and Ivarstead

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    Also, horses are not immune to fall damage. Found that one out the hard way. – Tom Grochowicz Nov 13 '11 at 13:58
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    True. Want me to add it to the answer? – heishe Nov 13 '11 at 14:18
  • I've lost a horse, since I purchased two (I thought my first one died). The first one showed up again when I did a fast travel but the second one I purchased is nowhere to be found. – l I Nov 14 '11 at 14:10
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    Horses also take fall damage into water. I now have a horse with broken legs floating about in the sea. – The Communist Duck Nov 17 '11 at 20:46

Horses are worth it as it allows you to carry more stuff back to sell. Load yourself up until you can't run then stagger to your horse. Their a pain as you have to get off to fight or even just cast a spell. As others say fast travel will usually reunite you with your steed if they are still alive. They do like to fight but only if you get off them. They can cover steeper terrain than you on your own and can outrun bears and most other dangers. If you fall from a hight your horse will die but you will probably survive this can be a useful escape if you haven't saved in a long time.

  • You no longer have to get off to use melee weapons or shoot with a bow (although seeing how difficult it is to hit anything this may not be that useful) – Joe the Person Jan 2 '14 at 5:31

I'm not sure about if it can be "lost" (I assume it would just teleport to you when you enter a new area and it was lost, much like NPCs).

But yes, it can be killed. And horses... tend to attack enemies.

  • I read somewhere that your horse will come back to the stables after fast travel if it dies... has anyone confirmed this? – TM. Nov 13 '11 at 8:24
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    I think your horse will be at the stables if it gets lost, but if it dies it stays dead from what I've heard. – Zeno Nov 13 '11 at 8:26
  • My horse has disappeared and then he was waiting at the stables. – benregn Nov 13 '11 at 8:37
  • Early in my current run(1st on Legendary), my first horse died in battle. So, I bit the bullet and bought another. Later I happened across the stable where I bought the first horse(bought the second at a different stable) and my first horse was standing there like nothing happened. – Jtenorj3 Mar 17 '17 at 16:36

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