Breaking Up with Your Barn
 
 

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Breaking Up with Your Barn

This is a discussion on Breaking Up with Your Barn within the Horse Boarding forums, part of the Barns, Boarding, and Farms category
  • Leaving a good boarding barn
  • Breaking up with your horse trainer

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    11-07-2013, 10:26 AM
  #1
Weanling
Breaking Up with Your Barn

We have been at the same barn for three years and have a great relationship with the Barn Owner.

The care at out current barn is just ok. There is not one thing that I could point to and say, THIS is why we are leaving. Instead, it's a thousand little inconsistencies and irritants that have added up over time.

I almost always talk to the owner when something happens that I'm unhappy with or is a problem. I will say she usually tries to fix it. However, she may be slow to fix it, may talk about fixing it...but never actually does it, or fixes it for awhile before letting things go back to how they were before the fix. It's always different things and when one gets fixed, something else goes wrong.

I'm a very laid back and forgiving person and my horse is an easy keeper too. I have let a lot go over the years, because I love the facility and my horse wasn't "suffering".

But, I'm seeing the quality of care for both the facility and the horses decline. The impacts are small, but I don't want to wait for it to get so bad that my easy keeper is negatively impacted.

The BO tends to take everything personally...and I know she will take it hard when we leave. We are her longest boarder and only one of maybe three that is still there. I will give 30 days notice (per contract) and I want to try and leave on good terms. If care at the facility ever improves, I would love to return.

So, I need advice on what to tell the BO in my notice letter. I feel obligated to explain because of our long relationship.
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    11-07-2013, 10:45 AM
  #2
Yearling
You don't need a reason to leave any facility, and the less said the better many times.

You mentioned wanting to return at some point in time, put that in your letter but leave it open, no date.

I would do....

Dear____,
Due to personal reasons and issues I am finding myself giving you 30 days notice of my vacating your boarding facility.
I have enjoyed my time here and my horse was well taken care of.
I hope someday to be able to return to this place that I hold fond memories of.
My horse and I will be shipping out on _____.

Sincerely,
____ _____

No drama, no false promises... just fact and keep it simple and don't elaborate.
They are also not entitled to know where you are going unless you tell them...
Remember to notify your blacksmith and especially your vet of the change so you can continue with their services as needed.
     
    11-07-2013, 11:09 AM
  #3
Weanling
If this makes any difference (and I forgot to mention it in my initial post)...we are moving our horse to our trainer/coach's barn. Our coach does not have the same amenities (no covered arena), but the care the horses receive is amazing!

This also means our coach will no longer be training at our old barn. We were the last client there for her and she has only stayed because of us. This will give her the excuse to leave for good. :(

I hate drama and I really wish the BO could get things back up to the old standards.
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    11-07-2013, 11:14 AM
  #4
Started
It sounds like other people are leaving or have left your current BO as well, so there has got to be a good reason, right? Don't be so hard on yourself for leaving. You're just doing what's right for you and your horse. I also agree with HorseLovingGuy - keep your notice letter simple and drama free.
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    11-07-2013, 11:46 AM
  #5
Yearling
Your reasons are still personal, period.

The fact your trainer has her own facility and trains out of it, you are very fortunate she still came to you to work with you... so, truly a personal reason for leaving...
You wish to ride with your trainer and she is not "traveling" anymore to other barns...

Do not elaborate, less said the better especially about the care sliding ...
I would not mention that if you wish to leave with a open door to return...
You never know what tomorrow will bring and if you ever need to leave your trainers barn you will need a place to go to... you know what you have here and the care your horse receives...

A simple letter, facts and don't elaborate in the letter or verbally to the BO, period.
The less you say to other boarders, except for a good-bye... do not tell them anything either about your feelings of the care issues, they are personal and yours and others may not see them as such...
Drama...you then would have a mountain of it.

The horse-world talks and has a grapevine of rumors that is incredible...if they have no information to feed the rumors, they usually don't happen...



Best of luck in your move.
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    11-07-2013, 11:48 AM
  #6
Trained
No matter what you say or do, your BO will probably take it personally that you're leaving. It's human nature. So, all you can do is be truthful and to the point, as has been suggested.

When I gave my 30-day notice at my old barn, I had been there for almost two years. I had bought my gelding from the BO (who had had him since he was a weanling...he was almost four when we left) and the BO had started him under saddle for me. When I wrote my notice letter to my BO, all I said was that I needed to move my gelding closer to where I was now living and to somewhere cheaper, as my pay had gone down. I made sure I outlined in the letter that it had nothing to do with him or the care my horse was receiving. He still took it extremely personally. My friend was still boarding there until very recently and she told me on multiple occasions that the BO had completely flown off the handle when my name was mentioned and that he had said that he felt betrayed by me.

When I left, it was like the flood gates opened and at least half the remaining boarders left in the year since I left. The care declined considerably (the BO has been feeding moldy hay, stalls haven't been cleaned, horses will go days without water unless their owners are there every day and fill them), yet the cost of board has gone up quite a bit (full care was $275 when I left last year...now it's $375...I pay $185 where I'm at now for better care and better amenities). Even the BO's own horses (that he uses for dude string rides) have gone seriously downhill.

Anyway, my point is, do what you have to do. Don't worry about how the BO will react, because it'll probably be as bad as you can imagine.
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    11-07-2013, 12:07 PM
  #7
Weanling
You all make very valid points. Thank you!
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    11-07-2013, 12:18 PM
  #8
Weanling
How does this sound?

Dear BO,

This letter is to provide you with 30 days notice as per our boarding contract. We will be moving Barn Name (Registered Name) to a new facility on December 14, 2013 (Saturday).

Our final board payment will be $xxx.xx (prorated for December $xxx / 30 = $xx.xx per day x 14 days in December to complete 30 days notice) paid on 12/1/2013.

November 15 30 = 16 days
December 1 14 = 14 days

Thank you for the care you have provided to our horse and our family over the past three years. We really appreciate all you have done for us.

Sincerely,


HorseMom1025
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    11-07-2013, 12:24 PM
  #9
Trained
That sounds perfect.
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    11-07-2013, 12:40 PM
  #10
Started
Maybe I look at things differently, but it seems like the situation may be easier if you tell the barn owner in person instead of just dropping a letter off for her to find. I'd be a little more upset if a boarder couldn't tell me to my face, and instead wanted to be very impersonal about it. Guess I have a lack of respect for people that hide behind the "formalities" when it comes to stuff like that- there was a mass exodus from my old barn and one lady snuck her horse out when the barn owner was at a show, left a letter, and sent her husband to pick up her tack. Seems kind of low to me. It's not like she won't bring it up in conversation the next time she sees you ;) Maybe consider telling her your intentions to move because you would like to be closer to your trainer and will be moving on this date, and then give her the letter so that it is in writing. I agree that you aren't responsible for her feelings on the matter, but keep in mind that your horse will still be living there for another month. Because of this it's in your best interests to keep things as civil as possible.

Like others have said though, don't bring up the care issues. Moving to your trainer's barn is a perfectly adequate reason, especially if you say that the trainer no longer wishes to travel for only one client. If the new location is closer to your house then perhaps mention so as well, but don't go into any more detail than that. She will probably be offended, but there's nothing you can do to avoid that. I don't know this lady, but if she's the type to fly off the handle then it may be best to talk to the new barn and make sure that the horse can be moved sooner than anticipated if necessary. Better to have the option than be stuck at the old barn for another month if the lady goes completely nuts!
     

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