Covid 19, Boarding Barn access - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Covid 19, Boarding Barn access

So I can understand the horse industry insurance companies would like to minimize the risks of persons contracting covid19 because persons are not adopting the current behaviours of social distancing. But...

My boarding barn has announced we should (and I agree) wash our hands before and after arriving at the barn, remain at social distancing spaces, spend no imore than 2 hours with our animals, and sanitize whenever possible.

Now I hear the BM/BO is wanting to suggest a 2 boarder limit at a time over the course of a day. This is a barn with 38 horses-- 18 boarders and 20 lesson horses. Some boarders are retired, others work. Well, may not now unless they are essential services.

I am getting pretty agitated because I am on day 12 of self isolation having come back from Disneyland a couple weeks ago and things at the barn are already strained.

How is your barn being affected (only people who board please comment).
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post #2 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 06:17 PM
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Serbia: ours is closed as per government orders. We can sort of still come because the barn is very secluded but we all agreed that it is a bad idea because we might unintentionally infect the staff who live there - and who would feed the horses then?
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post #3 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 06:38 PM
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Ours is still open and running normally, despite us being under "shelter in place" and "no more than two people in a group" orders. The barn owner isn't the best at handling things like this. As far as I have heard, the only guidance she has issued is "don't share stuff."

As a precaution, I am washing hands before and after, and someone else had the suggestion of wiping down gates. Our horses live in the pasture, although they have reserved stalls. There are multiple barns on the property, and no one else uses the barn we use. We don't share horses or tack with anyone anyway. Our only point of contact with others is the gate.

Someone else on HF who boarded mention a two boarder at a time limit as well. But to me, since we have a very large (30+ acres) place, and we sort of have our own barn, this wouldn't really make sense. I hope we don't get to that. Going to see our horses is like our mental relaxation place.

I guess, though, that two boarders at a time is better than being closed altogether.

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post #4 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 06:52 PM
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As of right now I am still able to go to the barn, though we have a shelter in place order as well. Our barn is just super small, only personal horses of the BO and fam, and then two boarders including myself. I usually don't see or interact with anyone while I'm out there. I haven't heard from BO if they are wanting us to stay away or not, I will need to ask.

That said, I am hesitant to go just because the BO is older and I would hate to be the one who brought the virus to her barn, leaving it on a gate or something (I had not even thought of wiping down gates or stall doors). Not only that, but I also worry about what would happen should I get into a wreck on my way out there, ending up in a hospital that is already stretching to it's limit with people who are sick? Not to mention things like getting hurt while riding or at the barn. It's unlikely but I know it could happen, and I just can't justify that. There is no reason for me to do anything extra that could put me at risk for injury when we know we are low on medical resources.

I haven't been out since Monday, and I don't know when I will go again. Thankfully I know Nav is being well cared for but it is very hard as he is super important to my mental health. :(
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post #5 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 08:52 PM
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I'm lucky in the fact that I board at a private property (owners home). I go feed my girls, hang out with them a bit and leave. B/O was home today and we chatted but weren't on top of each other so to speak. Her elderly mom lives there too and she is sequestered to the cottage as B/O and her hubby are both ER nurses. Normally I love talking to her but lately we just yell hi and wave from across the property. There is one other boarder there but I normally never see her anyway as we come at different times and days.

I swear I'm going to wash the skin off of my hands and I keep my hands out of my face. Finally got my hands on some alcohol based wipes so I use those too.

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post #6 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 10:13 PM
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I've been apart from my horses for nearly a month - they are nine hours away. This weekend, I was supposed to move them to be 30 minutes away from me. The barn I am moving to closed to outside visitors and non-essential staff until atleast mid-April under state order. My horses moving to the new barn is postponed.

Am I sad? Of course.

But is this necessary? Of course it is.

I value the elderly community, the immuno-compromised community, and of course the under-insured community more than seeing my horses often as I would like. This is only temporary, where as the loss of life is not.

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post #7 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 11:30 PM
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Mine was unaffected since I also board on a private property, but I've still been taking precautions. Recently, I've only been going down to fill up on feed bags (we make up our own instead of the BO having to put together the feed). I've also made sure that everything is there and written down in case I can't make it down anymore. However, I ride 2 horses regularly at another larger barn and they have taken measures to limit people. They have attempted to limit numbers at one time and everyone is required to wash hands before and after arriving.

For a barn of 18, I can certainly respect that your barn manager is thinking of limiting boarders during this time, although I can also understand your frustration.
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post #8 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 11:49 PM
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Like @LoriF , I am fortunate enough to board on a private property with only two other boarder horses and the barn owner's horse. The BO and one boarder rarely ride their horses, so I don't need to worry about them. As for the boarder that does ride, she is almost always never there when I am there. Since we do not share anything, all I have to worry about is the gates and barn door handles I touch.

The only actual protocol the BO has announced is that we please all buy one extra bag of feed for our horses in case the feed stores close, or one of us gets sick and has to self-quarantine and can't buy their feed. It was a more of a "FYI, I'm not responsible if your horse runs out of feed" than it was "I'm panicking and need you guys to buy out the feed store."
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post #9 of 38 Old 03-25-2020, 11:50 PM
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Whoops, multi-post.
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post #10 of 38 Old 03-26-2020, 09:53 AM
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I keep my three at a medium sized show barn. A few weeks ago the head trainer closed down the entire lesson program and only boarders are allowed entry. We are to use only our things, and to not touch communal fly spray, grooming products, crops, etc.
Two of the boarders were out of the country prior to all of this hitting the states, so their trunks and tack were moved to one of the trailers and they have to tack up there.
This is all so we can stay open as long as humanly possible.
My non-horse work is closed for the foreseeable future so I am helping out and riding lesson horses to keep them in shape. We are doing low impact gymnastics and cavelletti to get all of the show herd as beefed up as possible in case we are put on a lockdown and are not allowed to remain open.

The guys have been bleaching everything whenever they aren't doing another chore. Cross ties, floors, handles, hoses, bathroom, doors.... everything gets sprayed with bleach from a roundup weed-killer sprayer. I feel confident and comfortable going to the barn right now with how many precautions we're taking to keep everyone healthy as well as keep our horses in shape!
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