I find myself in a conundrum once again, sigh. For starters, I don't own the barn, my parents do. But I'm the resident voice of experience. My parents are the definition of backyard, and will 95% of the time listen to my suggestions. My issue is with their boarders. They are very nice, pay on time, help with chores everyday, basically the ideal boarders. BUT they have very limited experience, especially in dealing with the care & nutrition end of horses. And this has caused an issue a few times already.
After a few times of making suggestions I got the impression they don't like being told there are other more tried & true methods. So unless I think that it's something serious enough to warrant a comment, I try REALLY hard to stay out of it. However, there is now a situation that not only has me frustrated and upset, but is starting to get to my parents (who won't say anything).
A few months ago, their horse was diagnosed with laminitis by a vet specializing in lameness. Two directions were given. 1. Get a new farrier, 2. Give a special supplement instead of what they were feeding.
1. The farrier. They are not willing to switch or decrease the amount of time between trims. Reasoning being there is no one cheaper. The feet are horrendous now, but even after a trim they look like crap. I'll try & get pics tonight or tomorrow. The farrier we use (& have for over a decade) is willing to take them on and is a barefoot trimmer. He's worked miracles on some of the rescues my mom has brought home. He is $10 more for a trim, and they didn't want to switch.
2. The supplement. The horse doesn't like the taste and won't eat it. So they give it to their other horse. Rather than finding a way to feed it to the horse that needs it or finding something else she will eat, she gets nothing.
As far as the supplement thing, that's their choice. I don't like it, it pisses me off, but not my horse. The feet however, I told my dad that either he says something or I do. Not only would I be embarrassed, but the thought of a horse in that much pain on their property when there is a "simple" way to ease it....
My parents (well my mom) have spent more money and hours caring and rehabilitating horses, for something like this to be occurring on their property. My dad didn't realize how serious laminitis can be or how poor the feet are, and after talking with him agrees that maybe I should say something. He doesn't think coming from him or my mom will do anything since they are only slightly more experienced than the boarders. And since he honestly thinks they just don't know any better, they aren't taking things as seriously as they should.
Part of the problem with me talking to them is that they are there and gone before I get there most times. And since I don't see them that often, I don't want to go about it the wrong way. I'm notorious for being quite blunt, I try to soften it as much as I can (most of the time without a lot of success). We all want them to stay, but they have to take better care of ALL parts of their horses.
Ugghhhh. This sucks!