Thinking of moving barns, but some doubts
 
 

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Thinking of moving barns, but some doubts

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        08-16-2014, 05:28 PM
      #1
    Green Broke
    Thinking of moving barns, but some doubts

    I went to go look at a barn today and it seems like it's more or less exactly what I'm looking for. The big thing is turnout- my horse currently only gets maybe 3 hours of turnout each day, and the new place has them out for about 12 hours each day plus each stall has a 42' run attached.

    I'm concerned about two things, though. First, they have a fair amount of open stalls. I would expect a barn with its level of amenities and price to be full or close to it. They're about the same price as my current barn, which rarely has any open stalls. They do cater to a different audience in that my current barn has several trainers (but is not heavily show oriented) whereas the new place only offers beginner lessons and is not particularly focused on that (it sounds like the owner only gives a few lessons on Saturday mornings) I found a handful of reviews online, all positive, and I plan on asking my vet if she knows of the place/has ever been called out there.

    The other thing is that it's a lot quieter than what I'm used to. There are only 6 other boarders, and it doesn't sound like they actually ride that much. On one hand it will be nice to have the arenas all to myself, but on the other hand I don't know if I'll miss having other people around or not. My horse has been acting up with other horses in the arena lately and I've been going out to my barn when I know other people will be there so I can school him on the issue; I'm kind of afraid that if I don't ride around other horses then he'll get worse and I won't know about it until the warm up arena at a show O_o

    Any advice on how to make sure a barn is good before moving there?

    Any advice/stories about moving from a large, busy barn to a small, quiet one?
         
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        08-16-2014, 05:36 PM
      #2
    Green Broke
    Why are you moving ? If you want a show barn and lessons that go with that venue, then you need to look at show barns, which will cost more.
         
        08-16-2014, 05:41 PM
      #3
    Started
    Do you know of anyone that has moved from that stable? If so, ask them why. It could be something as simple as finances or wanting to train under a different trainer, or you could hear about some issues the place has. Ask around to other horse folks you know and see if they have heard anything negative. Perhaps even consider asking the barn owner herself why the stalls aren't filled. Some folks look at running a boarding stable as a hobby and not as a business, so they aren't determined to fill every stall. I would also try to talk to the current boarders if possible to see how they feel about the place as well as what they may dislike about it.

    When I was in high school I boarded at a mid sized dressage barn that had both casual riders and some really into lessons and showing. During undergrad I was at that barn during the summer, and I was at a really big barn with tons of horses and riders during the rest of the year. After graduating I moved back home, but I started keeping my horses at a much smaller barn than I've ever been at before. There were only a handful of people that actually rode, and I loved it out there. I ended up moving because of some care issues and drama caused by the barn owner's daughter, but I really liked having the space to myself. Another lady moved out of this barn around the same time I moved in. She was actually moving out because no one was out there, let alone riding. She wasn't comfortable riding by herself, so she moved elsewhere. It all depends on what you want in a boarding stable.
         
        08-16-2014, 10:07 PM
      #4
    Weanling
    It sounds like you already made up your mind. The other barn sounds quite nice, but you have a comfort level that you naturally hate to give up. I also think the comraderie may be a bigger issue than you say. Valid concern.

    I agree it's worth checking out, but you simply need to ask yourself where you would be happier. Relax and give it some thought.

    My best to you.
         
        08-17-2014, 12:30 AM
      #5
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by stevenson    
    why are you moving ? If you want a show barn and lessons that go with that venue, then you need to look at show barns, which will cost more.
    My primary motivation is for my horse's health. I want him to get more turnout time and movement. Yesterday he colicked for the 3rd time in the past 12 months, and while I can't say for certain that more turnout will prevent future colic, I do know that movement is a crucial element in horse health. This last colic seemed more severe than the previous two (though he responded well to banamine paste and I didn't need to call the vet out). It was pretty scary and was the kick in the pants I needed to rekindle my search for a new barn.

    I only show a few times per year and already trailer out to lessons, so I'm not concerned with whether or not the barn is geared towards showing.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DuckDodgers    
    Do you know of anyone that has moved from that stable? If so, ask them why. It could be something as simple as finances or wanting to train under a different trainer, or you could hear about some issues the place has. Ask around to other horse folks you know and see if they have heard anything negative. Perhaps even consider asking the barn owner herself why the stalls aren't filled. Some folks look at running a boarding stable as a hobby and not as a business, so they aren't determined to fill every stall. I would also try to talk to the current boarders if possible to see how they feel about the place as well as what they may dislike about it.
    I don't know anyone who has been there. It certainly doesn't seem like they advertise heavily, since I was looking for quite a while before their name ever came up, which I guess supports the theory that they are doing it more as a hobby than a strict business. The BO did give that vibe, but didn't specifically say anything along that vein. They currently have 15 horses there, 7 of which belong to the BO/her family, and they do all the work themselves/don't have hired help.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bkylem    
    It sounds like you already made up your mind. The other barn sounds quite nice, but you have a comfort level that you naturally hate to give up. I also think the comraderie may be a bigger issue than you say. Valid concern.

    I agree it's worth checking out, but you simply need to ask yourself where you would be happier. Relax and give it some thought.

    My best to you.
    I really haven't made up my mind I've been at my current barn for nearly 7 years (almost all of the time that I've been riding, and the whole time that I've lived in this area)- first taking lessons, then leasing, then boarding a leased horse, and now boarding my own. It's not a perfect barn, but I know it. I'm kind of torn between the uncertainty of a new place (wondering if it's too good to be true!) and knowing that I need to do something to get my horse more turnout.
    bkylem likes this.
         
        08-17-2014, 03:47 AM
      #6
    Green Broke
    Yes having room for movement is good. Have you given the horse any psyllium ? You should for a least a week. Has the Vet shown you how to check for sand ? I added electrolytes a small amount to sr feed mash with the psyllium after colics to encourage drinking more water.
    Also if you use a barrel vs auto water you can tell how much the horse is drinking. Not enough water is another cause of repeated colics. Also have a blood panel run to check his kidney and liver. Many times kidney and liver problems look like colics. ( found that out the hard way ) . When was the last time his teeth were floated? I would get the blood test done asap and be feeding some psyllium.
    bkylem likes this.
         
        08-17-2014, 08:01 AM
      #7
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by stevenson    
    yes having room for movement is good. Have you given the horse any psyllium ? You should for a least a week. Has the Vet shown you how to check for sand ? I added electrolytes a small amount to sr feed mash with the psyllium after colics to encourage drinking more water.
    Also if you use a barrel vs auto water you can tell how much the horse is drinking. Not enough water is another cause of repeated colics. Also have a blood panel run to check his kidney and liver. Many times kidney and liver problems look like colics. ( found that out the hard way ) . When was the last time his teeth were floated? I would get the blood test done asap and be feeding some psyllium.
    This is good advice- thanks for sharing!

    Sand colic is not common in this area, but I've seen the YouTube demonstrations on how to check for sand in the manure and I don't think there are any negative side effects of feeding some psyllium just in case. He does have an automatic waterer, so I don't have a good sense for whether or not he's been drinking much. I did do a skin pinch test and he didn't seem dehydrated based on that, but he still could be perhaps not drinking quite as much as ideal.

    I'll talk to my vet about getting blood work done as well. Given the "chronic" colics it can't hurt to cover all my bases. He didn't colic for the first year and a half that I had him, it's all been in the past 12 months, so definitely could be something like that going on.

    ETA- his teeth were just floated in mid-June
    stevenson likes this.
         
        08-18-2014, 06:47 AM
      #8
    Weanling
    Barn friendships can be great but with a smaller, quieter barn there will be a whole lot less barn drama. Also, being half empty doesn't always indicate a problem. With only 6 other boarders they may have had someone move out that owned several horses. At the 30 stall barn where I board there has only been 1 summer when the barn was half empty. No particular reason, it just happened.

    Personally I'd jump at a chance for a quieter barn with less people. That's my "down time" and I get extremely tired of the constant feuding and drama going on.

    Maybe ask the new barn owners why the turnout is so restrictive. If they have the pastures available and the horses don't destroy them it doesn't seem to make sense. Maybe they will consider loosening their rules up a bit.

    Is the new place closer to where you live? That could be a major consideration in the choice. It seems you probably aren't 100% happy with your current barn or you wouldn't be thinking about moving?
         
        08-18-2014, 08:26 AM
      #9
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by verona1016    
    My primary motivation is for my horse's health. I want him to get more turnout time and movement. Yesterday he colicked for the 3rd time in the past 12 months, and while I can't say for certain that more turnout will prevent future colic, I do know that movement is a crucial element in horse health. This last colic seemed more severe than the previous two (though he responded well to banamine paste and I didn't need to call the vet out). It was pretty scary and was the kick in the pants I needed to rekindle my search for a new barn.

    I only show a few times per year and already trailer out to lessons, so I'm not concerned with whether or not the barn is geared towards showing.



    I don't know anyone who has been there. It certainly doesn't seem like they advertise heavily, since I was looking for quite a while before their name ever came up, which I guess supports the theory that they are doing it more as a hobby than a strict business. The BO did give that vibe, but didn't specifically say anything along that vein. They currently have 15 horses there, 7 of which belong to the BO/her family, and they do all the work themselves/don't have hired help.



    I really haven't made up my mind I've been at my current barn for nearly 7 years (almost all of the time that I've been riding, and the whole time that I've lived in this area)- first taking lessons, then leasing, then boarding a leased horse, and now boarding my own. It's not a perfect barn, but I know it. I'm kind of torn between the uncertainty of a new place (wondering if it's too good to be true!) and knowing that I need to do something to get my horse more turnout.
    I think the bigger question is "why the colic?"
    Have you asked your vet? Good hay would be my 1st thing to check and that he isnt getting periodic bad hay. I would also give him a daily pro biotic. If your in a sandy area you would do sand clear routinely.
         
        08-18-2014, 08:45 AM
      #10
    Started
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Chasin Ponies    
    Barn friendships can be great but with a smaller, quieter barn there will be a whole lot less barn drama. Also, being half empty doesn't always indicate a problem. With only 6 other boarders they may have had someone move out that owned several horses. At the 30 stall barn where I board there has only been 1 summer when the barn was half empty. No particular reason, it just happened.

    Personally I'd jump at a chance for a quieter barn with less people. That's my "down time" and I get extremely tired of the constant feuding and drama going on.

    Maybe ask the new barn owners why the turnout is so restrictive. If they have the pastures available and the horses don't destroy them it doesn't seem to make sense. Maybe they will consider loosening their rules up a bit.

    Is the new place closer to where you live? That could be a major consideration in the choice. It seems you probably aren't 100% happy with your current barn or you wouldn't be thinking about moving?
    On the smaller barn being less drama... Not necessarily. I was never once involved in any sort of drama during the four years that I spent at a huge barn. I'm sure there was some, but I came, rode, and left. I was polite to the people there, but I didn't go out to make friends. It wasn't until I moved to the tiny barn that I experienced intense drama. I guess since it was so much smaller it was hard to avoid altogether. That said, it completely depends on the barn. If you find a way to go when no one is there then it's hard to get in a fight with yourself!
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    Chasin Ponies likes this.
         

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