Introducing horses to our just-built stable - The Horse Forum
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  • 1 Post By AnneChovy
  • 2 Post By CLaPorte432
 
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post #1 of 9 Old 01-14-2012, 12:50 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Oregon
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Introducing horses to our just-built stable

Hello, all: We have adopted a neighbor's horse and mule since she could no longer care for them. They have been outside for five years, with only a run-in shed that turns into a mud-bog all winter. Husband and I built two very nice stalls in our old dairy barn and are finally ready (after months of work!) to let them in.
My question for all you experts (we're new at this) is how best to introduce them to their new digs. We are considering just opening the gate and letting them explore at their own comfort level - letting them see us bring hay into each stall but otherwise leave them be. They are friendly and inquisitive and like to be where we are. We do have the mats down but no bedding - they won't be kept in for any length of time at this point.
So - does this sound like a good plan? And is there any danger to letting them both wander in to a wide aisle with two 12x12 stalls?
Thanks for any advice!
Anne
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post #2 of 9 Old 01-14-2012, 01:03 AM
Trained
 
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Location: Michigan
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You could lead them in. But IMO I see no harm in just opening the door and letting them explore themselves. I'm sure they'll love the new digs. :)

"The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with
him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too."

-Samuel Butler
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post #3 of 9 Old 01-14-2012, 10:34 AM
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Sound like a good plan to me! Maybe feed them in the stalls, as well as groom them there to.
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post #4 of 9 Old 01-14-2012, 10:43 AM
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Let them see you put food in the stalls, their bellies will do the rest.
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post #5 of 9 Old 01-14-2012, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Oregon
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Wish us luck

Thanks, all - we will be opening the gate today armed with carrots and hay and nose rubs. I'll let you know how it goes!
Anne
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post #6 of 9 Old 01-14-2012, 10:28 PM Thread Starter
Foal
 
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Location: Oregon
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Success

Thanks to all for advice! Our big boy, Kirby (a Paint built like a semi) lumbered right in, lots of snorting and looking for food. Sally, the mule, was more timid but they settled down after awhile. Kirby had no problem going into his stall for the evening hay, but Sally wouldn't. She'll figure out she has to if she wants to eat - Kirby is the dominant one so they'll work it out.
When we were building the stalls, we were thinking "this one's Sally's, this one's Kirby's..." and of course they chose the opposite.
So far so good. Appreciate you were all here.
Anne
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post #7 of 9 Old 01-15-2012, 08:28 PM
Weanling
 
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Glad you asked this. I'll be doing the same thing as soon as the ground thaws!
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post #8 of 9 Old 01-15-2012, 09:24 PM
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Pictures?!?!?!?!

"The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with
him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too."

-Samuel Butler
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post #9 of 9 Old 01-16-2012, 12:04 AM
Foal
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
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I would walk them in slowly and let them look around. You should do this for about no longer than 5 mins because they need to get comfortable. then I would let them go inside and let them wonder around but stay with them. Good luck
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