Barn Drama, is it rare or a common occurrence? - Page 6 - The Horse Forum
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post #51 of 60 Old 02-19-2013, 05:17 PM
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: On the golden coast of Michigan
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The only drama at my barn is, "Were the horses let out today? Yes? Okay."
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post #52 of 60 Old 02-20-2013, 02:51 PM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,432
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No drama at my barn :)

I'm sure there is some type of drama there. My BO has a ton of boarders. But I don't associate myself with the other boarders. I greet them, ask how they're doing, and then go about my work. The only thing stored at the barn is my horse, and she's way out in the field where no other boarder really goes. My tack is stored in the trunk of my car. The only person I really ever talk to is the BO and thats usually about business. I've went on a couple group trail rides but never stayed connected with the other boarders afterwords.

So, drama free riding for me. The more people you let into your personal life, the more drama there will be.

And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music
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post #53 of 60 Old 02-21-2013, 08:02 PM
Join Date: Feb 2013
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I used to board at my university. I got the last stall with a run (they were not desirable by anyone else, really). Unfortunately it was on the end, and they hadn't fixed the gutter system, so every time it rained, it flooded my horse's run. He had this tiny little corner in his (dirt floor) stall to stand in. I did a lot of fixing up, but since I was afraid of him getting hoof rot, I asked if I could let him have access to the small turnout area next to his stall. There was a grandstand in there. It wasn't very big, but it would help keep his feet dry. This was actually a stipulation of being able to board there, and part of our verbal contract.

Boy oh boy did the other girls have a hay day with that one! I was, and still am, quite shy, don't voice my opinions very often, and have never, ever been in the middle of any drama whatsoever, even in high school! I always try to be polite and nice to everyone, even if I cannot stand them. So when they brought up the "unfairness" of it all at a barn meeting, I set them straight. A week later, I found that the gate between his stall and the turnout had been closed, and padlocked. I called the guy in charge of the stables, and he acted indignant that I even asked. He said that "some of the other girls had seen my horse cribbing on the grandstand." Believe me, I looked high and low for any crib marks (a habit that my horse had never, ever indulged in), but couldn't find any. I decided that I couldn't do much about it, and let it go.
Then I came out there a day or two later, and they had tied my horse up (with a slip-knot) in his stall, and chatted the stall, but left the gate wide open. He was standing there, almost asleep, so I knew he'd been there for a while. Since he can untie a slip-knot in -0.3 seconds flat, and since the property wasn't fenced in, and by a major road, I was ppppp-ooooo'ed!!
I was so p-o'ed that we left that week, with enough credit for another month. Thankfully we were only paying $40 a month for the stupid stall!

The best advice I can give anyone who is looking at places to board is to:

1.) Look at the age and experience of the barn owner and manager.
I boarded at a place where the barn manager (they were leasing the property) was a year older than me (I was 21 at the time). She caused every bit of drama in that barn, and was as dumb as a box of rocks! My horse had been colicking horribly all day- which they noticed numerous times!- and she just thought that "she had an attitude." She was one of those "cowgirl wannabe" types, and manhandle everyone's horse, including her own.

2.) See what condition the horses are in. Ignore the fancy schmancy "human amenities" like a heated indoor observation deck, or automatic waterers. Look at the horses. Are their stalls messy? Do they look depressed or wound up, like they haven't been out in a while? Do they have enough water? Do they get enough food?

3.) Watch how the boarders there interact with their horses. That will tell you a lot about them as a person. As they say, "Horses are the windows to our soul."

Thankfully the barn that I board at now is run by a little old woman, and she is as picky as all get out! She will call you at 2 a.m. if you left something unlatched, or didn't close something, or etc. She's OCD to the MAX, but she only has room for 8 boarders, and all of our horses are well taken care of. She was also the only one in this area with any pasture left after last summer's drought. She achieved this by regulating the hours that pairs of horses went out. When she took a tumble off of a horse a while back, we were all afraid that she'd close the barn. We begged her not to, and picked up the slack with chores. Thankfully she's recovered, and we're still boarding there.

Last edited by TurkishVan; 02-21-2013 at 08:05 PM.
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post #54 of 60 Old 02-22-2013, 02:30 PM
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Powhatan, Virginia
Posts: 877
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I'm at a drama free barn, and I'll never move due to lack of "beautiful facilities" and no indoor. I mean, we've got a port-a-pottee! It's such a sweet and welcoming place, all boarders get a key to the locked tack room, boarders are just pleasant to be around, and BO goes above and beyond to make people happy.I've left my grooming box around to come back to everything in place. It may not be the most aesthetically pleasing, but it sure beats the A-rated facilities with people bickering, snooty BO's and theft!
My horse gets the exact care he would get if I were there 24/7.
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post #55 of 60 Old 02-22-2013, 04:43 PM
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: A small town in NY
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None at mine, but luckily mine is super small - the BO is also the instructor and doesn't board. The only place problems could crop up are group lessons and the show team.
That's not to say I didn't have to search for a drama-free area. Originally I was going to ride at a barn two streets over, but the place is a hellhole. BO is a total perv. He lures a bunch of teenagers in with the promise of free board and discounted horses for sale, then will kick you off or sell them right out from under your nose. He also claims to 'rescue' PMUs, but really transfers them from one crappy place to the next. They were so overrun at one point that the horses weren't getting even basic care. The whole place is falling apart, he rarely actually pays for hay shipment, and vets and farriers refuse to set foot on the place. None of these are eSo I didn't end up going there...
I volunteer at another barn and help with therapeutic riding, and there is a bit of drama there that I try hard to stay out of. But beggars can't be choosers as far as volunteers, and unless they do something really awful then you can't really do anything.
So it depends on the barn. The drama is often caused by the BOs more than anything.

A horse is a mirror to your soul. And sometimes you may not like what you see. - Buck Brannaman
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post #56 of 60 Old 02-22-2013, 10:45 PM
Join Date: Feb 2013
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Lol I'm the only teen at my barn... I hate drama... At the old barn I was at people decided to take my horse and use her for lessons without my girl stole my horse and I saw her riding her down the street using my tack on my way to the stables... I ripped her off my saddle and beat the snot out of her... And we'll that was the end of the drama at that barn.... I decided that was the last straw.
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post #57 of 60 Old 02-23-2013, 12:48 AM
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Pennsylvania
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Originally Posted by Eclipse93 View Post
Lol I'm the only teen at my barn... I hate drama... At the old barn I was at people decided to take my horse and use her for lessons without my girl stole my horse and I saw her riding her down the street using my tack on my way to the stables... I ripped her off my saddle and beat the snot out of her... And we'll that was the end of the drama at that barn.... I decided that was the last straw.
For someone who hates drama, you sure went about that situation pretty dramatically, immaturely and rather inappropriately.
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post #58 of 60 Old 02-23-2013, 09:41 AM
Join Date: Sep 2011
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The only "drama" I've ever really experienced is simply from BO perspective, in situations where boarders demand more than what they're contracted for and don't understand why they'd have to pay more for "extra", or when for whatever reason boarders think it is ok to leave horses without paying...

My spouse has told me that he had a lot of Boarder drama when he used to have a group of teenage girls boarding... they'd steal each other's things, and mock each other or just do nasty bully-girl things :/ Thankfully, I've only ever heard stories. One of those girls ended up coming back as an adult, and she ended up being one of the boarders that was demanding extra (hay, in her instance), and became irate when we said "Ok... hold on a sec... [doing calculations] - okay, that will be $42.50 extra/month - you can pay us tomorrow if you'd like..."

I think if you have a barn full of respectful adults or parents who are VERY INVOLVED (i.e. KNOW something about horse ownership/horses), there won't be much drama. I think, like HS, teenage girls tend to get catty in groups :/ Not saying that applies to all teenage girls, especially if it is just one or two in a given location...
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post #59 of 60 Old 02-23-2013, 10:14 AM
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: North Texas
Posts: 637
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I despise drama. While I love the barn we're at (been there over two years), I work hard to stay out of drama. Unfortunately, recently there has been a LOT of drama between our trainer, another trainer, the BO, and a border. Everyone wants to drag me in (because I'm friendly with all of them), but I refuse to get involved. I will listen, but I don't repeat and I usually recommend they talk to each other.
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post #60 of 60 Old 02-23-2013, 11:41 AM
Join Date: Jan 2013
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I feel like my barn would have drama if we had more riders in the same age. We have three 12-16 year olds, three 16-20 year olds (including myself), a handful of younger adults, and a lot of 30+. The younger girls have always stuck together, finding my 18 year old self too old to hang out with. The adults still treat me like a child, and don't hang out with me much. I'm just stuck in the middle and talk most with the older adults. Even with the older adults, there is a few who like the drama. Since most of the older adults could care less about the drama, and the ones who care are all involved in it with each other, they end up talking to me about each other.

If you don't want to deal with barn drama, just tell whoever is talking to you about other boarders that you personally don't have the same experience with the person and don't want to talk about them behind their back.

I'm sure there is a lot more barn drama than I know of, but I don't go to the barn to do much socializing, just to spend time with my horse.

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