A Barn Dilemma
So I have been at my barn for seven years. I have never really liked it but it is the only boarding facility in my area. Next Thursday there is a barn meeting and word in the aisles is that they are wanting to increase our board by about 100 dollars. They will start including indoor hay and grain. We will still be responsible for round bales out side, mucking of the stalls, turn out and general care, but they will feed the horses twice a day. This does not bother me. What bothers me is that they will be limiting our turnout time. Right now I have my horse out 24/7 because he is very colic prone, and generally does better outdoors. He also tends to stock up in the stall, if he's been in there a while his ankles swell up really bad. They usually go down after a little bit of exercise but its still disturbing to see them swelled up so much. Anyway, until the meeting I won't really know how much turn out time we will be allowed, but last I heard the Barn Manager talking about it he said around 6-8 hours a day. I really feel like this would be detrimental to my horse. But I can't find any other barns in my area. I have done an internet search and I can't find anything else in this area. I am going to ask around and see what I can find but I am scared I might be stuck here in a situation that is far from ideal for my horse. Does anyone have any advice on making stall living healthier if I can't find another place?
hmmmm, 6-8 hours a day isnt much especially if your horse doesnt do well in a stable. many horses get depressed in stables and just stand there doing nothing. breaks my heart to see that.
the only things i can think of is are you able to get to your barn a couple of times a day and take him out for walks etc? or maybe getting him a stall toy that he can play with and move around more might help. there are those balls with handles that they can pick up and play with. ive seen some horses go to town on those lol they flick it up and go after it and all kinds.
sorry i cant offer more but thats all i got :)
I am not sure you can do much without having been to the meeting. Knowledge is power. Since you know your horse does not do well inside, then I would be sure to bring that up in the meeting if they are limiting turnout time. What a bummer that they are the only barn in your area.... does this mean there is a lot of land around you- if so, could you buy your own spot for your horses?
There are lots of lots around but I am not really in a position to buy right now. I am defiantly gonna try to fight for pasture time at the meeting, and hopefully it will go well. But my barn manager has this idea in his head about how expensive it is to seed the pastures. But if I was paying an extra hundred dollars a month, and using less hay and bedding than everyone else, I feel like it probably evens out in the end.
Here in Northern CA, a grass pasture is a major luxury! Our horses have to make do with hard dirt in the dry season and wet mud in the wet season -- and they do just fine. So, does your pasture actually have to be seeded?
My horse also stocks up in stall, btw. He also can become dangerous to handle. I have him in pasture during the day and a stall/paddock at night. Good luck about making this work for you and your baby.
Will you be happy while your horse is not allowed on it at all while they fertilize and let the new seed take hold?
Things that the average boarder think is no big deal are usually actually far more work than they imagine.
Also, probably no reason to get yourself all worked up until you know the facts.
Pastures do need to be seeded. My dad was obsessive about making sure the pastures were good, so I know how much care they can need.
Seed, rotate, lime, cut, rest, etc...but all the care we did certainly paid off!
You should definitely talk to your BM and see what can be done. Maybe you can work out some arrangement where your horse will stay outside all the time, but it will be rotated through the pastures that way some of the pastures can still rest.
Also, about your BM thinking it's expensive to seed- he should be seeding the grass whether the horses are out all the time or in half the time. He should ALWAYS be seeding the pastures on a regular basis. The only thing he'd need to do is seed a pasture, and then let it rest a few days so the horses won't go through and eat all the grass seed.
I know seeding pastures costs money. But if my board is going up when I will not be using the hay and bedding that are part of the costs, then why can't my money go toward seeding the pasture. He never rotates the pastures, thats why they get in such bad shape. The guy who ran the barn before him was really good at pasture management and the pastures looked great. I miss him.
Sophie, again, why get yourself worked up about something at this point that is only a rumor?
Think about it this way - I would guess every boarder has something they wish their board money would go towards. That boarder whose horse eats less wishes the extra amount they pay would go for something that does not interest you, etc. The BO has to do what they think is best with their money. If it does not make you happy then please find another barn.
As far as other facilities - post a wanted ad. Feed store, pet store, even the grocery store.
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