Board Away From Home... & Not Full Care - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 12-17-2011, 03:14 AM Thread Starter
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Location: BC, Canada
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Board Away From Home... & Not Full Care

So around where I live the cost of full horse care is pretty catastrophic. For a less-than-savoury price you will get full care service at a decent barn. If we wanted to pay less we'd have to head out about an hour from where we live - and that would definitely cut into our horse time. Point being, my mom and I are thinking of basically renting a pasture ourselves.

The situation is my mom is older, and has told me she would pay me if we could find a pasture in our town (we had a great situation when I was younger, a whole barn, riding ring etc to ourselves about a block from our house...) she would pay for my horses' living costs if I ran down every morning and night and took care of the horses. She's looking for me to pretty much supply full care away from home, so I'd be doing eeeeverything.

I'm just curious how common this is, and if you do it, how you make it work between your work, social life, schooling etc. I work and go to school but I have a lot of free time in the mornings, nights, and weekends. I'm just curious if this is a completely rediculous idea or if it CAN work - I really hope it can because otherwise I think I'll have to wait another 10 years before I even consider the horse situation.

Thanks for reading!
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post #2 of 10 Old 12-17-2011, 07:47 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2011
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horses dont need twice a day care. Once a day is more than enough, and skipping some days isnt the end of the world.
Hay/ grass, clean water, a mineral block, some basic wind/rain free choice shelter, and a safe secure fencing arrangement and they will be fine.
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post #3 of 10 Old 12-17-2011, 10:21 AM
Join Date: Dec 2011
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I do a self care situation- where I do everything except feed in the morning. Right now I'm half-leasing my horse out- so I only come out half the week.

Before, when I wasn't so busy with college, it was a lot easier to come out every day and I LOVED it! I got a lot closer with my horse then previous horse's I kept at a full-care facility. It's not that much work, especially with just one horse, and if I'm having a busy day I can muck, feed and pick out hooves in less than 30 minutes and be on my way.

It sort of does affect your social life, a lot of my friends didn't understand why I had to run out to the barn in the middle of the afternoon when they all were going to the mall, or why I couldn't always go on weekend road trips because I couldn't find someone to watch after my horse. But it was my responsibility and it came before my own fun. I don't regret it at all.

You just have to remember it's a big responsibility and the horse will be 100% dependent on you! If you need to go on vacation/have some days off be sure to have a back-up person.

I think you'll be able to work :) Good luck with your horse situation!
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Take a ride across the badlands
Feel that freedom on your face - Breathe in all that open space
You'll understand why God made -Those fly over states

Last edited by OuttatheBlue; 12-17-2011 at 10:22 AM. Reason: grammar!
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post #4 of 10 Old 12-17-2011, 11:42 AM
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I keep my horse technically "at home" I guess, she's about 5-10 minutes away, walking.
I've found that feeding her twice a day is really unnecessary. She's a very easy keeper so the amount of "grain" she needs, and the amount of hay is easy for her to take in in one sitting. I also give her free choice grass hay (which she usually doesn't touch) so that she always has something when it suddenly gets cold, or when she gets hungry, or something.

It can be a pain in the neck, but I really find it enjoyable. I love "having" to go hang out with my horse once a day. I haven't had it cut into my social life very much either. There are days when I'm doing something in the afternoon so I feed earlier, or later. Horses are pretty flexible in their feeding schedules so no worries. However, that's another reason why I free choice the grass hay - it facilitates me to feed whenever I want because Lacey always has food in front of her and it's not a "Well, if I feed now she'll have enough hay to get through the coldest part of the night..." sorta thing.
The one kinda bummer is that if you get sick, you still need to go take care of your horse.

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzan gelding

Rest peacefully, Lacey.
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post #5 of 10 Old 12-19-2011, 05:51 PM
Join Date: May 2011
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I do self-care boarding. I pay $200 a month for the facility (stall, personal paddock.field, personal tack/ feed room, shared outdoor arena) and I do all my own chores. I go in the AM to grain and clean his stall and put him in the field and again in the PM to grain again and lock him in his stall or the night turnout depending on weather. My BF knows that I go twice a day everyday and doesn't have a problem with it, he will go with me on his days off. Friends don't care because we only hang out on the weekends. Going away for a few days is ok, because the BO and I will just trade work, she'll feed my horse for me while I'm gone and I'll do the same for her. It works out great, I'd rather have him in the backyard of course, but that isn't possible because the BF and I are renting and apartment. It depends on how much you want actually want to spend with our horse, and how much you're willing to sacrifice for them. I have two jobs right now to be able to keep my horse, and I also take care of the house and go to school online... I manage because I love my horse.
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post #6 of 10 Old 12-20-2011, 12:55 AM
Join Date: Dec 2011
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I also roughboard. For the most part its not so bad because the other rough boarders will feed/turn my horse out in the AM and then I do it in the PM for them. But I know my horse is eating 2x a day and getting what he needs. At his age I want to be sure to see him everyday. There is less drama because we all work so hard to keep our horses and we each depend on eachother for help. As a social life and being a mom and working full time I sill love going down to the barn, and wouldnt trade it for the world.
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post #7 of 10 Old 12-20-2011, 08:10 AM
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I did this for several years. I was using a friend's barn and I fenced in a small pasture. I would drive there before work and feed and fill water buckets. After work I would clean (run in stalls) and anything that would get me dirty or took any amount of time.

Not hard, very doable.
Just remember, you being sick does not matter to your horse(s). So too sick to go to work still means you have to drag yourself out of bed to feed and water.
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post #8 of 10 Old 12-20-2011, 10:57 AM
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It also gives you a reason to get out of bed or off the couch and out of the house everyday, even on your days off or during a vacation. The horses depend on you. I love the time away from home when I'm at the barn, even if it's to muck out Sam's stall or just hang out in the pasture with him. Plus, they can brighten even the worse day because they're always happy to see you.
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post #9 of 10 Old 12-20-2011, 11:17 AM
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Location: East Central Illinois
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For 14 years I drove out 2x/day, 7 miles from home to care for my small herd. For the last 11 years I've walked to the back yard to do so. There is 4X as much winter horse care as in the summer. Mine graze from April-October. In the mild weather I check the water and put out grain. In the winter (NOW) I have to maintain 3 stalls, carry water buckets bc the tank freezes as it will where you live and measure hay, plus buy grain and other supplies, empty it to store, and move manure and soiled bedding. It's not overkill since I've learned that their hooves are healthy when you can dry them out, at least at night.
It's not impossible, but it IS a lot of work. I don't want to discourage you. If you do it, you won't need to work out at the gym this winter! =D
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post #10 of 10 Old 12-20-2011, 11:28 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: pacific northwest
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We also have a self care situation and really enjoy it. We keep our horse in a private, back yard type place about a mile from our house. It is inconvenient sometimes, but for the most part we really enjoy it. My daughter has probably gained the most from it. She is 10 years old and loves the responsibility. We need to leave early every day to feed, water and turnout her horse and go down every evening to do the same and muck the stall. After 2 years she is more enthusiastic than ever and works hard for her horse. Like the other posters said, even when you are sick the chores still need to be done and you need to plan ahead for days when you are away and cannot be at the barn. Other than that it has been great for us!

Good luck!
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