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post #11 of 18 Old 01-23-2012, 08:49 PM
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Several riding stables I worked at when I was 12 to age 15 were run by teenaged girls. The owners would come by occassionally to pay us and haul in hay & supplies. I thought we did a mighty fine job.
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post #12 of 18 Old 01-24-2012, 05:14 PM
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The barn I was at was pretty much run by 18-19 yr old girls. I found them to be a wealth of information and pretty responsible. That being said...12 is quite a different age. Having taught 12 yr olds for quite a long time I would say a handful are responsible enough to handle such chores but they are still only 12 and to not be supervised with the care of horses could be an entirely different thing.

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post #13 of 18 Old 01-24-2012, 05:41 PM
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I was managing a barn (A warmblood stud and agistment center) most of last year when I was 17 and 18 by the end of the year. While I was easily able to do all the tasks required as well as keeping agisters in line and supervise the other staff, I always felt too young for the job - the other workers were all older then me and at times I felt that the agisters did not respect me because of my age. And it is very hard to fire someone who is nearly 30 years your senior, which made things awkward when I had to do so - I got comments like "What do you know, you are just a teenager" etc. etc.
So for this reason I think that teenagers running a barn can be tricky, there's no doubt they are capable but I definitely know first hand the difficulties of managing people who are older then you are.

Personally I would have no problem with agisting a horse at a barn run by a younger person, so long as they were clearly doing their job properly and reliably. But I am only young myself, so I can see how older people may have an issue with it.
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post #14 of 18 Old 01-25-2012, 11:54 AM
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I started cleaning, feeding and turning out horses at a barn when I was 12. Hard work but good experience.

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post #15 of 18 Old 01-25-2012, 01:10 PM
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I think that that's perfectly okay. Kudos to her for working hard and taking responsibility at a relatively young age!
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post #16 of 18 Old 01-25-2012, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by AlexS View Post
I'd say there is a large difference between being a barn manager and what you are describing, which is basically someone just doing the chores.

For me, as long as those chores are done well, it doesn't really matter how old the person is.
I agree - a world of difference.

Feeding, cleaning and turn out at some of the big show and boarding barns around here is done by non-english speaking employees.
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post #17 of 18 Old 01-26-2012, 06:07 PM
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I started doing basically anything the owner of my barn needed when I was 14. I already knew how to feed, blanket, lead, lunge, shower, and everything in between. So as long as she is expereinced, I would say 12 is the youngest. Just make sure she knows her boundaries..
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post #18 of 18 Old 02-03-2012, 02:42 PM
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I would say "it depends"

One of the things I really pay attention to when I move stables is who will be handling my horse. I have found that age is not so much the issues as personality.

There are a LOT of barns who use teenagers working off part of their horse board for general chores. Kudoes for making that work out.

My point here is that a 30 year old person who is afraid of your horse can screw it up a lot worse than a 12 year old who is not. I have seen many people trying to move a horse from point A to point B with a horse that is too much for them. Although once might not be a problem, daily is a disaster.

My horse will test a person, though he is ALWAYS the favorite horse as a stable because he is pretty and a complete dork fish who will do anything for attention. He is safe to allow toddlers to brush his legs or ride alone on in the arena under supervision - as long as they are happy with where HE wants to go. This does not mean that he is beginner safe and absolutley is terrifed of a man with a harsh attitude. I have actually gotten phone calls at 10pm because the stable owner (mid 30s) was afraid to put him back in his stall.

Without a firm hand, he is a bully, with too strong a hand he is up in the air striking (has only happened twice in 13 years, so I can only guess what they were doing to him when I was not there). He also prefers women to men.

Because he is such a BiPolar critter of bombproof one minute and poke poke the next, we have gone through about ten stables to find one where the manager works well with him. She is in her early 20s, and puts him in and out every day. She will let the kids who are also around put many of the others in and out, but not him or two of the others. However, she is not comfortable with the two year old filly I just bought my daughter, who was only barely halter broke when we got her a few months ago. We will have to see if that deveolps into a problem.

Another thought to watch for, is if the stalls are being cleaned with the horses in them, a lot of people who are afraid will smack the horses with the rack, which for a sensitive horse is pure mental torture.

So... I would be more concerned with watching how the person who puts them in and out interacts with them then how old they are. The reason I bought this horse was because my eight year old did everythign with him - and he was stil a stallon then. It is not age, but love of horses, respect for them, and inherant knowledge when to tell them to knock it off that makes it work or not.

Soggy in Seattle
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