Boarder Ettiquette - The No-Nonsense Guide to being a Responsible Horse Owner - Page 2
 
 

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Boarder Ettiquette - The No-Nonsense Guide to being a Responsible Horse Owner

This is a discussion on Boarder Ettiquette - The No-Nonsense Guide to being a Responsible Horse Owner within the Horse Boarding forums, part of the Barns, Boarding, and Farms category
  • When you board a horse who is responceable for the care and well being
  • Being a horse boarder

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    12-20-2012, 06:34 PM
  #11
Green Broke
Addition to Chapter 3- Weather

Weather & pastures: No, the horses don't go out in pasture after a heavy rain. They will tear up the grass & leave deep holes when they run around. Pasture management is time consuming & expensive. We don't have 100's of acres for pasture so must maintain what we have.
All that is green is not gold, the lack of weeds does not happen by chance.
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    12-20-2012, 09:07 PM
  #12
Green Broke
I like the Drama queen comment.. keep that at home. Not yours don't touch.
Make a mess clean it. Your horse craps on the wash rack, aisle way, Clean it.
And Geez people.. if it rains it gets muddy.. bitch to rainmaker. ;)
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    12-20-2012, 09:21 PM
  #13
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by natisha    
Addition to Chapter 3- Weather

Weather & pastures: No, the horses don't go out in pasture after a heavy rain. They will tear up the grass & leave deep holes when they run around. Pasture management is time consuming & expensive. We don't have 100's of acres for pasture so must maintain what we have.
All that is green is not gold, the lack of weeds does not happen by chance.
Oh mah gawshh, YESSSSSS! This, totally!
     
    12-26-2012, 11:45 AM
  #14
Weanling
Chapter 5: Holidays

  • Consider giving a generous holiday gift to your barn owner/barn employees.
  • Acknowledge their sacrifices during the holidays (all of them).
  • Remember these sacrafices before complaining about something benign.

In case you were wondering, your barn owner probably keeps their prices low enough that they make pennies on the dollar for the work provided. Especially on Holidays. Horses don't understand "Holiday" and "sick day", etc... to them, a day is a day, and they need feed.

So... while you go about your Merry Christmas or Happy New Year Celebrations - remember, your barn owner is interrupting his/her much needed family time to go out and take care of your horse.

Please consider getting your BO a decent gift or a nice monetary tip (or gift card to the local farm supply or lumber yard), especially if you are aware that their prices are lower than the local going rate. We are lucky and have always seemed to have a pretty generous "primary" group of boarders.

I guess this is up to individual Barn Owner's perspectives, but being a Barn Owner is a service job. You should find out (if your BO is willing to disclose) how much money they actually make per hour worked... if it is less than minimum wage, and you do the math and realize that you couldn't afford it if they raised board to reflect paying themselves AT LEAST minimum wage, really, truly consider that. I know that, as we go around feeding the horses on Christmas Eve/Day after prematurely leaving a family gathering, or showing up late for the umpteenth time (our families resent this and make comments all of the time, btw... they just don't get it), it really does make a difference to know that we are appreciated.

In years past, some of the best gifts that we've gotten from conscientous boarders include: industrial barn aisle fans (boarders got together and contributed to these larger gifts), metal hose reel (best gift EVER), a $100.00 gift card to the local farm store... etc. Someone actually restored an old farm implement for us, once - it was amazing! It is OK to get a gift that will likely also be a gift to/for your horse in some way or another, lol. Or, you could be personal and get your barn owner a gift card to a salon for a massage, a trip to the movies, etc... something to get them off the farm and out and about :)

P.S. If your barn owner raises board through the holidays (I've never heard of this, btw), then ignore the "gift" advice entirely :) Also - if you are having trouble figuring out how much of a deal you are getting, call the local doggie kennel or day-care and find out how much a month would cost you (you provide your own food/snacks/etc, and your dog likely doesn't stay the night).

Merry Belated Christmas, Everyone!

P.S.S. I'd love other Barn Owner's input
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    12-26-2012, 01:03 PM
  #15
Green Broke
Where to start, where to start.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by sillyhorses    
While the "Rules" vary from barn to barn, it is a good idea to keep in mind that at most, you should have one saddle per horse/discipline in the tackroom. The tackroom is NOT your personal storage space for all things horse related - it is for storage of items that you and your horse routinely use.
WRONG!!!

The tackroom is for storage. Part of what you PAY in board is for the use of said space. I currently have 1 horse, 3 saddles, at least 5 blankets, 3 tack trunks, 5 helmets and go only knows whatelse... As a boarder my space is marked off in the tackroom and I can store whatever I would like. I could tricycles, chain saws or Christmas decorations for all my BO would care. As long as I pay my board and keep my things in my provided storage area....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annanoel    

As a full time student and employee I do not have time to go catch your horse after she jumped a stall wall and is now letting others out. This is unacceptable and starts my day off horribly.

Trashing the BO because a branch broke off on the trail and little things like that are not necessary. Pick up a fork or a hammer, maybe an ax if you know what that is and help out.
What you do with your life or why your day is busy is NOT my problem! I PAY to have my horse boarded and cared for. It is irrelevant to me if you are a student or have 50 part-time jobs. If my horse decides to jump out of it's stall, that IS your problem and yes, YOU get to catch and put him back. I have a stall jumper, he jumped out exactly once. My BO called and said doofus jumped out so he's going into "jail" AKA a stall with walls that nobody can jump out of. Ok, problem solved!

Trashing the BO no, but if a board in my stall is broken, a tree limb needs to be removed as it smacks me in the head while using the arena or I feel any other maintenance is required NO I will not be finding a hammer, an axe, a chainsaw and whatever.... once again, I PAY to have the facilities maintained!! How many BO's are going to be livid if I hate the tree next to the arena so I just chop it down one day?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cebee    
Remember that, most of the time, your horse is not the a)only or b)most important horse in the barn. If you are concerned that your horse is too fat on round bales, and prefer to have them fed twice a day, remember that the other horses who share the pasture may be perfectly happy with the round bales. And may not WANT to change to twice a day feeding to accommodate your horse. Likewise, you may want your horse pastured with your BFFs... don't just go asking the BO to move horses to accommodate you.
Once again, I am PAYING to have my horse cared for and if my horse is too fat, I shouldn't HAVE TO ASK. The BO should be saying hey your tubbykins over there is going to be moved to a non-roundbale pasture before he founders.

If I want my horse to be pastured with his BFF, there's is absolutely nothing wrong with making that request. The BO can then say sure we can accommodate that, or we can do that if you'd like to pay $xxx extra for a a private turnout or no, we can't because of XXX.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sillyhorses    
In fact, perhaps you'd like to grab a pitch fork while you're there and clean up your horse's stall a bit. Being inside always creates more work for the barn owner, even if they seem to be getting a "day off" because of the crappy weather. Chances are pretty good you aren't being charged extra for having your horse inside, even though it is more work, wastes bedding and likely requires multiple water-bucket checks/fills throughout the day.
I PAY to have my horse cleaned up after. I am sorry you don't feel like doing it but it's YOUR JOB. Don't like cleaning up after horses? Don't take the job!

If the work provided doesn't equal the board charge, the BO needs to raise the rate charged, not whine, moan and groan on a MB about needing help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Annanoel    
I don't want to be tearing around the farm at 3am with 40mph winds in a BLIZZARD to find your horses cribbing collar when you are safe and snuggly in your bed. I mean yes you pay for board, but you get a **** good deal for no work. Granted I'm barn staff and the BO gets the say but if you were in my barn in a case like this you'd be booted for not helping...
A **** good deal for no work? Excuse me!!?? I am PAYING to not have to work. If I want to work, I can haul my horse home (yes, I have property and shelter at my house). Don't want to haul butt around in a blizzard.... FIND A DIFFERENT JOB!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sillyhorses    
In case you were wondering, your barn owner probably keeps their prices low enough that they make pennies on the dollar for the work provided. Especially on Holidays. Horses don't understand "Holiday" and "sick day", etc... to them, a day is a day, and they need feed.

So... while you go about your Merry Christmas or Happy New Year Celebrations - remember, your barn owner is interrupting his/her much needed family time to go out and take care of your horse.

Please consider getting your BO a decent gift or a nice monetary tip (or gift card to the local farm supply or lumber yard), especially if you are aware that their prices are lower than the local going rate. We are lucky and have always seemed to have a pretty generous "primary" group of boarders.

I guess this is up to individual Barn Owner's perspectives, but being a Barn Owner is a service job. You should find out (if your BO is willing to disclose) how much money they actually make per hour worked... if it is less than minimum wage, and you do the math and realize that you couldn't afford it if they raised board to reflect paying themselves AT LEAST minimum wage, really, truly consider that. I know that, as we go around feeding the horses on Christmas Eve/Day after prematurely leaving a family gathering, or showing up late for the umpteenth time (our families resent this and make comments all of the time, btw... they just don't get it), it really does make a difference to know that we are appreciated.

In years past, some of the best gifts that we've gotten from conscientous boarders include: industrial barn aisle fans (boarders got together and contributed to these larger gifts), metal hose reel (best gift EVER), a $100.00 gift card to the local farm store... etc. Someone actually restored an old farm implement for us, once - it was amazing! It is OK to get a gift that will likely also be a gift to/for your horse in some way or another, lol. Or, you could be personal and get your barn owner a gift card to a salon for a massage, a trip to the movies, etc... something to get them off the farm and out and about :)

P.S. If your barn owner raises board through the holidays (I've never heard of this, btw), then ignore the "gift" advice entirely :) Also - if you are having trouble figuring out how much of a deal you are getting, call the local doggie kennel or day-care and find out how much a month would cost you (you provide your own food/snacks/etc, and your dog likely doesn't stay the night).
If you don't like the pay, FIND A DIFFERENT JOB. I do not set the rate I pay for boarding, the BO does. The BO knows d*mn well when they open a boarding facility that horse need to be fed/watered/cleaned up after on Christmas and every other holiday. I am under no obligation to inquire as to how much $$$ someone makes and it's really d*amn rude to do so! Unless my boarding contract states that I am required to provide gifts, I am under absolutely no obligation to do so.


And before you think I am clueless.... I not only board horses at my place, I also do 90% of the work where I board (to work off my board). Rain, sleet, snow, sunshine, whatever... I am there feeding and cleaning stalls. Horses escape? I sigh, catch them and attempt to ensure that they are unable to do so again. Wrecked gates and everyone milling around in the barn while a ginormous blizzard is brewing outside? Catch everyone, repair gates, clean barn and take pictures of the guilty parties for the owners to giggle at. Horse decides to mangle itself? Groan to myself, call kids and tell them Mom won't be home any time soon and call the Vet. It's my JOB! You name the catastrophe, I've been there and cleaned up the mess. I know each and every horse and how best to handle them. I know who is fine having a blanket flung over them and who needs to have their blanket slowly introduced and gently put on them. My JOB is to ensure each and every horse is properly cared for irregardless of if their owner ever even sets foot in the barn or even has a clue that I personally exist and care for their horse.
     
    12-26-2012, 01:39 PM
  #16
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by sillyhorses    
Chapter 5: Holidays

  • Consider giving a generous holiday gift to your barn owner/barn employees.
  • Acknowledge their sacrifices during the holidays (all of them).
  • Remember these sacrafices before complaining about something benign.
I'll be swinging by my trainer's house either today or tomorrow with some fresh eggs and home made bread loaves.

I feel under no obligation to give anything, much less the types of presents you seem to feel are obligatory, but I like him, his wife, his kids and how he trains my horses, so out of appreciation for an all around nice guy and great atmosphere at his barn, I'll make up a nice present and give it to him.

He doesn't make a lot on each individual boarder/training horse but he loves his work and is one of the hardest working people I've ever known. He will be very pleased and grateful for anything I give him, but certainly doesn't expect anything.

Sacrifices? I have boarded outside horses for years and I don't consider a single thing I've done a "sacrifice". I go out to the barn at midnight and check on the horses because I LIKE to and I like my alone time with them, I like listening to them crunching hay and I love the feel of their warm breath on my cheek when I give them a kiss on the nose.

If you have a complaint, voice it, how can a barn owner fix something if they don't know it exists? "Something Benign" is the thing that comes under the category of "The Straw That Broke The Camel's Back" in my book. If there are issues that are bothering a client, I vastly prefer to find out what they are so we can either find a fix, or sometimes, talk about it and discover it's not fixable. But not discussed, it can lead to someone deciding to change barns and THAT is going to negatively impact my pocket book.

As my boarders sold off their horses when the drought hit and times got very tough around here, I have not brought outside boarders back in and won't until I have reliable hay supplies again. I'd love to have some outside boarders again, I think they're fun to have around, but I don't want them if I can't be sure I can feed them properly.

I don't think a Barn Owner has a right to expect a thing except a board check each month. Presents? Help cleaning stalls? Clients fixing maintenance issues? WHAT? That's what they're paying the barn for, to NOT have to do any of that kind of thing themselves. Most of the boarders I had, worked very hard and long hours to be able to afford a nice place for their horses and had very little time for play. In order to have the time to play with their friends, family and horses, they boarded out instead of keeping them at home or a self care barn. Their leisure time was precious to them, and they paid well for the privilege of having their horses in a nice, safe place.
     
    12-26-2012, 01:44 PM
  #17
Yearling
A **** good deal for no work? Excuse me!!?? I am PAYING to not have to work. If I want to work, I can haul my horse home (yes, I have property and shelter at my house). Don't want to haul butt around in a blizzard.... FIND A DIFFERENT JOB!

Defina- Can't quote I'm on my phone sorry! My posts are more or less a rant about one boarder. She should be kicked out! BUT, it's not my desicion. I'm sure you DO work and get care for what you pay for. I do agree if you pay for something you should get it. Our contract includes working for part of board, which she / said boarders tend not to do. Again, this is the BO's decision with what happends and it's not up to me. I work at the barn for board, but still expect what you do. My horse should be taken care of if I pay for it. It's just frustrating when you have a boarder who trys to "desensitize" her horse and she ends up rearing, bolting, kicking and scared of anything that merely moves, hence the stall jumping.
IF you're a responsible boarder / owner FINE, if you're not then some / most of what we're saying is what we feel and how things should be. Depends on the barn, the situation and the person.

What you do with your life or why your day is busy is NOT my problem! I PAY to have my horse boarded and cared for. It is irrelevant to me if you are a student or have 50 part-time jobs. If my horse decides to jump out of it's stall, that IS your problem and yes, YOU get to catch and put him back. I have a stall jumper, he jumped out exactly once. My BO called and said doofus jumped out so he's going into "jail" AKA a stall with walls that nobody can jump out of. Ok, problem solved!

Trashing the BO no, but if a board in my stall is broken, a tree limb needs to be removed as it smacks me in the head while using the arena or I feel any other maintenance is required NO I will not be finding a hammer, an axe, a chainsaw and whatever.... once again, I PAY to have the facilities maintained!! How many BO's are going to be livid if I hate the tree next to the arena so I just chop it down one day?

Again, if you PAY for the work / board FINE no problem, that's my job. If not and you're supposed to work and maintain things then do it. Obviously said chapters turned into a rant about a boarder that should leave, but it's not my place. I totally agree with everything you're saying to! No arguement there. Good boarders, good BO and great staff = a happy barn. Put one "nut" in and it can go any which way.

Complaining about a stick that's literally smaller than your arm, a twig more a less on the ground is not BO or staff responsibilty it's nature! I mean a limb, a stump that's different. OUR responsibilty then. This boarder is not out in the barn or "country" much. Mud, grime, rain, anything that can ruin her hair or nails is not her thing.

NOT trying to really go off just saying that's who the rant is about. I'm sure you REALLY DO deserve everything you pay for.

Again, I do really agree with you. If you pay full board then you **** well better get what you deserve! Depends on the situation at the barn and the contract signed. IF you're a good boarder and responsible, abide by barn rules and pay for "full care" it's then MY JOB to do it no matter what. No complaining, no ranting nothing. Said boarder that these chapters are mostly pertaining to would be kicked out of my barn

SORRY to take away from the thread. Didn't mean to come off so snide and snooty either. I LOVE what I do and don't hesitate to do it. I do it for the love of horses, NOT their owners. It doesn't bother me to have to work, it bothers me when someone doesn't care for their horse. BO's and staff work hard, as I'm sure many others do to care for their horses and work off board. There can be so many different situations surrounding board/contract/work it's hard to say one thing and have it apply to everything. I do my part no matter what, sometimes I may not be the happiest about an irresponsible owner, but the horses and their care come first no matter what.
     
    12-26-2012, 03:05 PM
  #18
Weanling
Delfina: Wow! I definitely get what you are saying: I guess the point I'm trying to get across is to be conscientious and acknowledge what your BO does for you and your horse. I'm not saying those gifts are necessary - those are just examples that our boarders have gone together on. We have also had a few people bring us really thoughtful things, such as home baked goods.

Re: inquiring about pay - It is not rude at allllll to inquire about how your board rate is calculated. As a matter of fact, an astute boarder would probably already know (from obvious calculations you could perform based on your board contract). Point is: be conscientious! If your barn is the best you can afford, you should be aware of the other options in your area, and appreciate your BO if they give you a great deal! We have great people we love here who don't gift... The point is "be conscientious!"

My perspective is from experience: we charge a little more than other local farms, but offer better service, better facility (cleaner, more amenities, etc)... The people we have here recognize that. Any people we have had become "a problem" are the ones who think they are paying for beyond what our contract says, and act like we owe them something. They allllll end up leaving here and ending up in crummy pasture board (not allllll pasture board is crummy - just their known local options), with less service, etc. I have a feeling they burn many bridges as they barn hop themselves into the mud pits. I guess the best, most important piece of advice is just to be aware, to educate yourself and be polite and kind... Regarding not just the BO but your fellow boarders.

I think a boarder such as yourself would not be welcome at my barn... I hope you are friends with your BO and TRULY know them. You sound like a clueless, demanding individual who does whatever without thinking about it from any perspective other than "oh, they won't say anything" (as in: you KNOW your action is obnoxious/annoying/unwelcome but get by on the polite nature of others, thinking they won't speak up). Where do I get this idea? Your argumentive nature, and the fact that you completely disregarded the "depends on the barn, BUT..." assertion about tack room to telllllllme allllll about it being equivalent to a mini storage location. The point, which you CLEARLY missed, was to find out what your BO is ok with/expects there, and if you don't know, minimal junk is best.
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    12-26-2012, 03:13 PM
  #19
Weanling
Boarding Barns are mini communities and you should be aware of your role within that community. Do your part, fulfill your responsibilities, be good and kind to others. Make sure you do your part before you demand/complain, etc. KNOW your contract before you demand/complain...
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    12-26-2012, 03:46 PM
  #20
Green Broke
Hmm... well lets see... a couple months ago I brought my horse to my place and 2 weeks later found him with his foot sliced open. Called the Vet and texted pictures to my old BO for her opinion. As the Vet was stitching him closed, I looked up to see her pulling up with her horse trailer. She knew from the pictures that doofus would need stall rest, her trailer would be much easier to load an injured horse in and my place only has pastures w/run-in sheds.

Obviously she can't dislike me too much to drop what she was doing, call her husband to come home, watch the baby and prepare a stall for me while she drove over to get my guy.

Oh and I work off my board even though technically nobody at the barn is allowed to. My BO gave birth to a child who became ill and I took over the care of everyone (because there is no way a mother with a sick infant should leave it's side to go feed/clean stalls) and when her child recovered, she laughingly told me that since the barn was cleaner than when she was doing it all, I was no longer allowed to pay board!

Prior to my working there, I requested anything I wanted and she said yes or no because of XXX. I never cleaned stalls, filled water buckets, trimmed trees, dragged arenas or anything of the sort because I was PAYING her to do it!

And YES it most certainly is rude to ask how board is calculated! I've had boarders at my place (yes, I board horses here while mine is elsewhere... ) and I would tell them it's absolutely none of their business if they asked. Board fee is X Services provided are Y, take it or go elsewhere! Besides, it's irrelevant if you make $2 an hour or $200 if my contract says that you will sing my horse a beddy-bye song every night, then you darn well better be in his stall and singing if I show up to check on him.
     

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