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Managing a job and a horse

This is a discussion on Managing a job and a horse within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

     
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        03-19-2013, 12:29 PM
      #11
    Green Broke
    I work one full time job (M-F, 7-3) then two part time jobs that equal everything out to 55-60 hours a week. I see my horse everyday and on Sundays twice per day. I board but I must clean her stall and feed myself. I work 7 days a week and never sleep in. I also go to school full time with half being online and half in class. This looks to be my life for the next few years at best. I need to get back to working out everyday too. That will be easier once it's warmer and stays light more. Weather permitting I ride about 4-5 days a week, 6 in the summer.

    If you want something bad enough you will find a way to make it work.

    Oh yea and I also have a dog at home to take care of and I need to cook a few nights a week too along with keeping up the house.
         
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        03-19-2013, 01:18 PM
      #12
    Started
    6 months ago I started leasing a horse, after being out of the horse world for 10 years. I work full-time with a long commute, have a fiance, a 7 year old child who has lots of homework, a new puppy to train, and a home to keep up. My lease taught me that 2-4 days a week at the barn is what MY life can handle. Less than that doesn't fulfill me, more than that causes strain on my family dynamic. As others have said, it's all about prioritizing.

    I ended up purchasing my own horse two weeks ago, opting for a full-care boarding facility since we are city dwellers. But even if I had the land available, I'd often be searching for someone to feed & care for my horse since we travel fairly frequently for business & pleasure.
         
        03-19-2013, 01:21 PM
      #13
    Foal
    I'm a SAHM right now, but when I had a full time job I would usually go to the barn after work. I was lucky that the boarding facilities I stayed at did not care if I was out there are 7am or midnight, either was ok, and it was natural for me to stay up late anyway. Some weeks I would work 60 hours a week and even though I was severely lacking in sleep, I still was able to make time to at least visit the barn and groom my horses, even if the only time I found was my designated sleep time.

    Now I have my hands full with an 18 month old and keep my horses at home so I can have more time with them. It may not be actually riding because of the added responsibility of doing chores, grooming, barn and pasture maintenance etc myself, but I am able to spend time every day with them, even if it doesn't include riding or working them.

    Like others have said, if it is something that is very important to you, you will make time for it, even if you are working 2 full time jobs, have a family, and barely enough time for sleep.
         
        03-19-2013, 02:03 PM
      #14
    Trained
    I have done both, board and kept at home. I think the time I spent cleaning the stalls averaged out to about the amount of time I had to drive to the boarding stable, so it was pretty equal time wise. Work wise, well, it WAS nice to know that even if I got stuck for overtime my horse would be fed on time and not 4 hours late, when I boarded. At home, I learned that they will NOT immediately colic and die if dinner is late. My job averaged about 60 hrs/week, sometimes more, so I learned to buzz the chores on the work days, devote 1 day to clean up and maintenance and then the other 2 days to riding for all I was worth. I worked 4 12 hr days with frequent overtime and sometimes court on a day off.

    I found out that you really do get out what you put in. If you want the time to ride, you can find it, if you really don't care you won't.

    I've gone from 1 horse to over 60 and back down to 10 and going down to 4 or 5 now that I'm getting older. Of boarding and home care, I prefer home, I like looking out the window and seeing my horses. As I get older though, I'm leaning back toward boarding because I won't have to do the heavy work when I'm not as strong as I am now. I've been a 'part time horse owner' and then after I retired from my 'real' job, I've gone to full time owner and full time job being the horses. Managing & breeding 60 horses and a full time training and show string took every bit as much time as working full time and being a part time horse owner. It's all really hard work and it's up to you whether you find it worthwhile or not or if you consider the return worth it.
         
        03-19-2013, 03:33 PM
      #15
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Nvr2L8    
    Hi everyone. I really enjoy this forum. I don't have a horse right now. I had to find him a new home when we had to move to an area we could not afford board. My husband is in the military and we had planned on staying where we were but..well life changes. So here I am dreaming of owning a horse again one day.

    I am working a full-time job now. I work from 9am to 5:30pm and usually leave my house at 8am and don't get home until about 6:15pm. I am looking for other horse owners that work full time and what do they do to get time in with their horses. Do you board so you don't have to do a lot of heavy labor or do you keep your horses at home? I am looking at ways on how you balance your work, home, and horse life. I don't want to give up on my dreams of owning a horse again because of lack of time or high board areas where we have to live.

    I am thinking of lease ideas, but I don't have a lot of time to ride and am not too familiar with the benefits of leasing when I could just get a horse of my own. My experience with a lease horse is you really can't do what you want with them or training like a natural horsemanship clinic, etc. unless the owner wants it.

    Love to hear some ideas and opinions.

    Thanks
    Debbie
    I am in a similar position. I had one horse at the local boarding stables (the only one for 200 miles). I had to sell him because of sadistic people and their kids beating him, stealing his food, and letting him out of his stall at night. The police sere useless. The boarding stable is owned by the city, who only cares about the rent money, and not the welfare of the horses. My only options were to make my horse tough it out for another year or to sell him.to a safer home.

    After I sold him, I began to work on getting the issues at the stables fixed (not just the abuse of my horse, but the skinny horses with elf hooves and dangerous shelters). After a six month battle, the stables are now a clean, horsefriendly place to board. Though it was a great victory for the horses, I have made quite a few enemies (mostly the people who are mad that someone is MAKING them take care of their horses)

    Even though the stables are now a good place to board, I don't want my future horse there in fear of retaliation. They treated my horse like crap before I pissed anyone off. I don't want to know what to expect when they are actually mad at me.

    Anyways, I will be moving 200 miles away in 6-8 months, ans have everything planned out. Hopefully I'll be able to get a job at the tack store I want, which only runs 9-5, and the chances are getting it are good.

    I have one of two plans on taking care of the horse. If he is at a boarding stable, I will give him some hay in the morning, hopefully he will be turned out while im at work. After work, I will come see him, ride when I can, then feed him again.

    If he is on my own property, I will turn my horse out in the morning with the grass. When I get off of work I will give him his grain (which will also make him easier to catch, because owner being home doesn't mean work, it means yummy grain). Then I will ride/work him, then put him in his stall.

    Seems like a pretty good schedule to me :P

    With the horse I had to sell, I was working the graveyard shift (11pm -7am), and doing online high school. When I got off work in the morning, Id give him breakfast, clean his stall, and make sure he is set for a few hours. Id go home and sleep, then wake up around 4. I would then either work him or turn him out (no grass available). Id feed him dinner, go home when it got dark, do my schoolwork, then go to work.

    That schedule worked out very nicely. My ownly downfall to it was my siblings that didnt respect that I need sleep for a while after they get out of school.
    Posted via Mobile Device
         
        03-19-2013, 08:44 PM
      #16
    Foal
    Wow you guys are amazing! It sounds like you all do what it takes to make sure you getting your riding time and horsey chores in because that is what means so much to you and "make the time." I have a great husband and my son is 16. I just would have to get past my mental issues with worrying that I would be spending too much time alone. My hubby is really supportive of me and wants me to be happy and if that means making "me" time which would be horse time he would support it.

    Thanks everyone for sharing how you manage to make it all work!
         
        03-19-2013, 09:33 PM
      #17
    Weanling
    Ride Monday evening, Tuesday and Thursday morning, Friday evening, and Saturday morning.

    School Monday until afternoon, all day Wednesday, and until noon Friday.

    Work Tuesday and Thursday evening, Saturday evening, and all day Sunday.

    I keep my horse at home.
    Posted via Mobile Device
         
        03-19-2013, 10:50 PM
      #18
    Weanling
    Where there is a will, there is a way!

    I'm in the military, so I go in to work early and work late some nights. Fortunately my particular job in the army isn't too far off from your regular 9-5 job (well, except for the whole going in early thing ).

    My weekends are busy with volunteering at a stable, riding lessons, dealing with my lease horse, and dealing with my "soon-to-be" first horse. I just manage my time, try to create a schedule, and try to stick with it as much as possible. I ride or visit the barn after work some days which has recently become easier thanks to Daylight Saving's time. Winter has so far been the only time when visiting/riding after work has been an issue.

    It would not be possible without full board. For me it is 100% necessary. In order to enjoy horses (which cost money) I must work and will have to continue to work! Doesn't mean I can't enjoy a life with horses.

    I agree with your opinion on leasing to a degree. Some leases are very restricted; some are more lenient and will allow you to take the lease horse to shows, clinics, etc. It just depends on the lease and the horse's owner. Leasing helped me really get a feeling for ownership and how to manage owning a horse with my lifestyle. But what bothers me about leasing is that in the end, in most cases, the horse will have to go back home and all the time, love, money, blood, pain, joy etc you put into that horse goes with it. I get horribly attached to animals and letting my current lease horse go (after some lovely vet bills that I was of course responsible for too) is not easy.

    Good luck!
         
        03-19-2013, 11:42 PM
      #19
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Houston    
    Where there is a will, there is a way!

    I'm in the military, so I go in to work early and work late some nights. Fortunately my particular job in the army isn't too far off from your regular 9-5 job (well, except for the whole going in early thing ).

    My weekends are busy with volunteering at a stable, riding lessons, dealing with my lease horse, and dealing with my "soon-to-be" first horse. I just manage my time, try to create a schedule, and try to stick with it as much as possible. I ride or visit the barn after work some days which has recently become easier thanks to Daylight Saving's time. Winter has so far been the only time when visiting/riding after work has been an issue.

    It would not be possible without full board. For me it is 100% necessary. In order to enjoy horses (which cost money) I must work and will have to continue to work! Doesn't mean I can't enjoy a life with horses.

    I agree with your opinion on leasing to a degree. Some leases are very restricted; some are more lenient and will allow you to take the lease horse to shows, clinics, etc. It just depends on the lease and the horse's owner. Leasing helped me really get a feeling for ownership and how to manage owning a horse with my lifestyle. But what bothers me about leasing is that in the end, in most cases, the horse will have to go back home and all the time, love, money, blood, pain, joy etc you put into that horse goes with it. I get horribly attached to animals and letting my current lease horse go (after some lovely vet bills that I was of course responsible for too) is not easy.

    Good luck!
    First, thank you for your service to our country! I know it takes a lot of dedication and hard work.
    I totally agree with your comments on putting so much love and work into a lease only to have to let them go. I tell my husband that and we both agree that if I did find the right horse then it would almost be best to buy one again. I definitely know all the costs that go into ownership --besides board since I had my horse at home before -- but I figure by the time you invest so much time, love, and energy ownership might be the best except for that very minor detail --wink--of the military moves. Oh well, a girl can dream of horse ownership.
         
        03-20-2013, 01:27 AM
      #20
    Foal
    I work a straight 8 hour day (8-4), no lunch break. This allows me more time to care for my 4 horses. I rent a barn and do all the chores myself every day. I have a routine that is working for me. I am able to feed twice a day, clean and ride in the p.m. I have 2 young horses and 2 riding horses, no one gets left out. My vet does free barn calls on Fridays for routine vet checks, I meet him at the barn in the p.m. I have the hay guy bring my hay every other Friday in the p.m. Farrier on weekends. Working, having horses, other various pets and a husband is workable and no hour is wasted. A bonus for me is I give free horse lessons to a young girl and her dad helps me repair fences and cut down old trees on the property. The hay guy hauls away free firewood. My friends haul away free compost...and my dream of owning horses lives on!
         

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