Turning a run-in shelter into stalls? Is this a good idea?
Okay, well I'm really not sure if this is the right place to post this, but this section seems to get a lot of attention, so I thought I would give it a try. I am seriously considering turning our run in shelter into two stalls, and need some advice from older and wiser minds.
I keep my two mares on my own property. They have a run in shelter that is 12 feet by 20 feet. My dad designed and built it, so we know exactly where all of the braces are, etc. and could easily divide it in half.
My question is, should we divide the shelter into two stalls? One of my mares is an ex-broodmare, so I'd assume that she was kept in a stall while she was foaling. The previous owner of my other mare seemed to imply that she had kept her in a stall for awhile. The thing is, these stalls would not have aisles- the horses would be able to look out and kind of see what is going on in their paddock.
The reason that we are considering doing this is for their safety, and for our peace of mind. The last couple of days and nights have been great weather wise, but really windy, so they were spooky. Last night I had to run outside 4 or 5 times to calm them down. At one point, they were running laps. I finally fell asleep around 1:30 am, as I had been laying awake worrying. But if I were to stall them when it's windy (and they are prone to being spooky) would they be more or less scared?
I would also probably stall them when it gets extremely hot- there is a fan inside the shelter on one side, and I have another, just need to put it up. Or when it is pouring, and one (or both) of them are standing there getting soaked.
I know that this would settle my highly-strung nerves, but I am afraid that one of them could be hurt if startled.
How high should the divide between stalls be? Door type (should they be able to stick their heads over it or should there be bars)? How would I acclimate them to being closed up? Have any of you tried this?
Wow. Thank you for getting through this very, very long (and kind of rambling) post! I really appreciate it!!