So, things have been "strange" at my barn recently. The girl who takes care of all the horses works only for free board. The problem is that she works 7 days a week, about 6-10 hours a day taking care of everything around the barn and all 18 horses at the farm. My BO comes out of the house to give lessons, and that's it. The caretaker is back in school for the Spring semester and there have been several issues popping up. Most recently, is that I found out that none of the horses were fed Monday night when the caretaker has class. She also has class on Wednesdays, and when I asked her who is taking care of them Monday & Wednesday nights, she told me that the BO won't do Mondays since it's her designated "day off" and won't do Wednesdays because she teaches a lesson from 4:30 - 5:30. Apparently, it's on this girl to find a fill in person to feed Mondays & Wednesdays. The BO is taking no responsibility for it. The poor girl is already working about 50 hours a week for $300 a month worth of pasture board! I see it as the BOs responsibility to find someone to take care of the horses as she is well aware that this girl is in school during fall and spring semesters. I went out Wednesday night to feed everyone, worried that it wouldn't otherwise get done. The BO had every intention of going back into the house when she finished giving her lesson at 5:30 and leaving me, her boarder, to feed all of the horses! After about 20 minutes of giving her the look of death, she finally said, "oh, I'll help." Gee, thanks.
Several small things have happened lately where it seems as though the BO just doesn't care about the horses. A few weeks ago, one of the older free leased lesson horses choked during his dinner. The girl taking care of them didn't know what to do and called the BO, who was at the movies. The BO told her to put him in the indoor and watch him, and wait til she got back. The BO didn't bother coming back for three hours. When I got to the barn that night, I stayed with the horse til the BO got back so the caretaker could leave since it was two hours past her time to go home. During the last bad winter storm, the caretaker called the BO to tell her that she couldn't get there. The horses were left inside due to the bad weather, and the BO never bothered to clean any of the stalls for two days during the storm. Over the past weekend, one of the horses who in blind in her left eye has a huge gash through her lower eyelid. When I saw it, I thought it should really been seen by a vet and be stitched up. The caretaker tried calling the BO several times to come out and look at it, but the BO wouldn't get out of bed for another half hour. Later that same day, I got to the end of the driveway and found a pony grazing by the road after he broke the fence. I called up to the barn as I grabbed him and put him in a paddock. Apparently, the BO had seen the pony out when she came up the driveway a half hour earlier and laughed when I called about it because she didn't think it was a big deal. Also, my horse is supposed to be getting a half cup of oil in his grain every feeding to prevent colicing. I can tell from the amount of oil left that he is only getting it when the caretaker feeds him, not when the BO feeds or anyone else. All of the boarder's horses are supposed to be getting free choice hay. I know Danny has only been getting 2 flakes in the am and 2 flakes in the pm. She told the caretaker that she is only allowed to go through 5 bales of hay per day for all 18 horses. All the horses on pasture board are getting hay am only, but there is NO grass at all in the pastures.
I know that in themselves these are not HUGE issues, but I'm just being left with the overall impression that the BO does not care what happens to the horses. She has made comments to the caretaker that "she's done her years of grunt work and shouldn't have to clean stalls or feed, water, etc." Ummm, not when its your farm! I kinda feel like I have a contract with the BO and am paying her each month. I don't really care if she wants to do things or not, its her responsiblity to make sure they get done, one way or another. I don't want to lay in bed every night worrying if my boy is being taken care of, or if he's standing in his stall wondering where his dinner is.
Lastly, she is in the middle of a lawsuit with her former employer for breech of contract. I have a strong feeling that she will lose and owe a large settlement. If that happens, the farm will go under immediately. I suspect anxiety over this may be partially the reason that she wants to hide out in the house all the time, but although I hate to sound mean, its not my problem. And, I certainly don't want to end up in a situation where I have three days to move my horse because she's going under.
Am I overreacting or should I start looking for a new facility?
COOKIES TO ANYONE THAT READ THIS WHOLE THING!!!