Join Date: May 2009
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
It takes extreme dedication.
For many family people, often keeping the horses at home can help with time management, but then you're also stuck doing ALL the chores, so you have to weigh the pros and cons.
The average time it takes to properly ride and visit your horse per day at a boarding barn would probably be about 1.5 to 2 hours. If you're wanting to ride for an hour, you can easily tack and untack within half an hour with proper time for good grooming. A few tips:
1. Board as close to home as possible - waste as little time as possible on the drive. I personally keep my horses 20 minutes away, and I live in the city. So I automatically waste almost an hour in driving time, but I have no other responsibilities outside of work.
2. Use the slow cooker on days you're riding! It's still a home cooked meal, and you won't be riding every day, so it balances itself out nicely.
3. Nobody should have to clean every single day - set aside 3-4 days a week for horses and keep the rest for your house cleaning, errands and other things.
4. Consider part board - having a good relationship with someone you trust can be perfect for two people on a time crunch who only have time to ride once or twice a week.
5. You don't HAVE to ride your horse 3-4 times a week. A lot of people are just weekend riders - it rules out any showing, and you can't ride hard, but plenty of horses with the right temperment are perfectly capable of doing rides only on weekends. Heck, my schedule gets so busy sometimes, I often do it myself! My horses survive!
In the end, when you keep your horse at a boarding barn, it's very beneficial to people on a time crunch. You ensure your horse is getting human interaction, even if you can't ride as often as you want. And you learn to adapt pretty quickly - if you work a 9-5 job, taking 2 hours in total for your horse means you're home by 7 - if you've thrown your meal in the slow cooker, dinner is waiting for you and house work was done yesterday, so you STILL have plenty of time to do dishes and tidy up before going to bed!
I personally am at the barn every single day - again, I don't have a husband or kids, so my schedule is open but I AM an insomniac that has to take sleeping pills, so it restricts my schedule. I'm off work at 4:30 and home from the barn by about 7:30.
I hope God tells her to smash her computer with a sledgehammer.