Operating a Boarding Stable - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 44 Old 05-16-2009, 02:36 PM Thread Starter
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Operating a Boarding Stable

Ok, so this is one of my dreams/goals. I want to own and operate my own boarding stable. This won't be for many years, but I'm a planner. I have tons of papers laying around on plans for a dog kennel I am also planning, and that has been going on for at least 10 years now. I just recently added the horses boarding idea in the past few years.

Anyhow, is there anything that would make you pick one stable over another, all other things being equal?
Are there any books you would reccomend?
Any other tips/tricks for running this type of business? About any aspect of it.

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post #2 of 44 Old 05-16-2009, 02:45 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Mar 2009
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I'm a planner too; love to draw out pictures and keep them all together in note book.

Anyway, I can answer your first question. Here are the things I look for in a boarding stable:
  1. Clean; doesn't smell and junk isn't spread all over the place. I can't stand places like that.
  2. Nice pasture and stalls; pastures green and stables clean
  3. An owner who is there at least part of the day so that I could talk with them; this is very imporant. I love it when the stable owner really cares about you and your horse and is willing to take suggestions. Also, they are willing to do something special with yout horse, like feed special suppliment or move them to a different pasture because its getting beat up.
  4. Good places to ride; trails, jumps, a good round pen or two are all very, very nice.
  5. Clean tack room; this is a pet peeve of mine. I dont want someone's dusty tack room ruining my stuff.
  6. Smart people; if all the staff are idiots, count me out.
These are my basic requirements of a boaring stable; most perfect match wins.
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post #3 of 44 Old 05-16-2009, 04:06 PM
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If it's anywhere super cold, add indoor to BrightEyes list for me.
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post #4 of 44 Old 05-16-2009, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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So far I'm planning on all that at least. I also want the tack rooms to have lockers for pads, bridles, ect. Also a hotwalker and maybe even a few stalls with runs attatched. Oh and at CARD, they had an elevator for the shavings. You just dumped everything into a hole and it moved it out and up into a bin. The only maintenence was to flatten the pile. Although thats not really a boarders worry, it's still a consideration for the employees.

Anything else? I'm brainstorming, so I'll listen to anything.
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post #5 of 44 Old 05-16-2009, 04:11 PM Thread Starter
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Oh, yes it is cold in the winter, so there will be an indoor arena for sure! The outdoor one will likely just be an extra paddock in the winter.
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post #6 of 44 Old 05-16-2009, 09:54 PM
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The very best advice I can give you is to treat the boarders horses like you would your own and be courteous and listen to the wishes of your boarders. This sums up all the problems I have had with BO's in the past. If you do those two things you will excel as a BO.
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post #7 of 44 Old 05-17-2009, 12:47 AM
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I think smaller is better. I like an intimate setting when i board. Nice wash rack with hot and cold water. daily turnout for all horses and night turn out for those who want that. i also like a barn that will have the vet and farrier out for all the horses. like ok friday is farrier day if you want your horse to be seen leave a check kind of thing. i like someone on site 24h/day. blanketing in winter for free i mean seriously it really irks me for a barn to charge for that. a heated/cooled break room of sorts for the boarders with a fridge for snacks and drinks. full and partial board. so many places are only doing full board now. i partial boarded in a place that did am feedings which was nice if you wanted them to. all you had to do was getthe feed ready the night before. Oh and no nickle and diming to death which goes back to the blanket thing. different horses have different needs. so what if you have to put a scoop of electrolytes on feed or whatever.
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post #8 of 44 Old 05-17-2009, 01:17 AM Thread Starter
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I know what you mean about the nickel and diming. I was checking out some sites and I would never want to board at those places. Besides, its gotta be a hassle to keep track of it all as a barn manager or owner.
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post #9 of 44 Old 05-17-2009, 07:42 AM
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Have an efficient layout. Make sure that all the most commonly used areas are close by each other. With the exception of hay storage which should be seperate for fire hazzard reasons, however still easy to access.

Have a system for collection and disposal of manure, even from paddocks. This is helpful in maintaining grass quality and also parasite prevention.

Keep everything clean and in good repair. Have good quality fencing and stay away from barbed wire. Keep pastures clear of junk and undergrowth.

Have each boarder have their own personal tack area/ locker. And have a comfortable (doesnt need to be large) common area with refrigeration, kettle and possably microwave. Also, restrooms and possibly even a shower.
And make the place welcoming for your boarders. Help them to feel at home.

Wash racks with access to warm water, and make sure it drains well so the area doesnt become muddy. Also have a safe area for tacking up that is easy to access from the tack room.

Keep cars and horses seperate whenever possible, and have a dedicated parking area and when planning road ways think about large feed delivery truck or goosenecks,a nd how they will be able to manuvour in the areas you have set.

Plan a sacrifice paddock, to prevent other pastures becoming run down, muddy, weed ridden ect.

There is sooo much more. Any questions, just ask me.
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post #10 of 44 Old 05-17-2009, 01:48 PM Thread Starter
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Thats some awesome advice Miss Katie! Lots I didn't think of like the parking lot and trailering issue.

Should there be aisles between paddocks? Or Not? I've seen both, and I have no idea what difference it makes.
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