How often do you visit the barn - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 08-11-2019, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: AZ
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How often do you visit the barn

Sorry, wasnt sure where I should post this one, but I was just wondering if anyone ever feels guilty about not going to visit or ride their horse for those of us who board. Newton is boarded at my friends he has an amazing pasture he is in 24/7 with grass and we installed a shade for him too, I added a picture. I know he is happy there, but sometimes I get a super icky feeling if I don't go spend time with him. I am usually there at least 4-5 days a week. I will ride after work around 6ish every other day because it is so warm out right now. I'm also up at 530 on the weekend to get out there to clean up his pasture or groom, ride or hang out. I know he maybe likes my company, but probably doesn't care all that much, lol. So today I was tired and ended up not going to see him and then I get an overwhelming feeling like I'm not appreciating him. I'm still new to horse ownership. I've had him since Feb and we had a bumpy road getting to know each other. We have worked hard and finally are getting into a good partnership, but I'm trying to figure out a good balance so I stop feeling like I'm just wasting him when I dont end up going to the barn. I know it is really silly since I make him a priority most of the time and I tend to over think this kind of thing, but anyone ever get those feelings?
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post #2 of 26 Old 08-11-2019, 11:15 PM
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We go usually 3-4 times a week. It's a 25-minute drive each way, and i have work, family, and other obligations. I have gone more frequently if one of them needs daily medical care. At 4-5 days a week, I don't think you should feel guilty at all. There are people at my barn that only see their horses on the weekends. If you feel like you're starting to get into a good place in your relationship, then that tells me you are spending the right amount of time with him.
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post #3 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 12:15 AM
Join Date: Jul 2015
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I feel bad only when she is stalled overnight (she has days where she's turned out 24/7). But if she's stalled staff leave before 6pm and it means she'll be in her own filth for too long for my liking. So even if I'm dog tired and can't do anything I do the bare minimum which is skip out, top up waters and groom. But usually I always end up doing something coz she cute :P I will say it took a solid year before I could say she was properly mine and knew I was hers BECAUSE I boarded. At first she preferred the yard manager 100% and wouldn't even glance my way. It takes longer but it will happen.

Anyway you're doing well. I know some ppl that board and see their horse once a month if that.
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post #4 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 12:17 AM
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Canada
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I go to the barn twice a day, every day.
Main reason for this is because it's completely self board so I feed and tend to my horses 100% of the time. Some days I only have time to stop by to feed them, but most days, I manage to get at least a bit of time squeezed in for the horses. In the past things were different and it was harder to do, but it makes me appreicate how things are now since it means I see my horses every day and they're the ones to always give me a smile each day. It sounds like you have a good situation for your horses as well since they're able to run about instead of being stuck in a stall while you're not around.
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post #5 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 11:26 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: AZ
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Thanks everyone. The nice thing about his current pasture is it is technically full board, I only feed when my friend is out of town or if I am around I will always help so that is part of the reason I dont need to go everyday. It is only about 15 min away from my house and even better in the winter once I can go right after work is about 5 min from my office. I was thinking of moving him to a self board place, since I do have the schedule to be there in the morning and in the evening to feed, but her place is pretty convenient right now and Newt seems to be happy there. He is super sweet and will callout when he sees me and trot up for some loving (tbh it is mostly to look for food, but Ill take it) I think that I still need to get use to the fact that I "own" a horse which is something I thought I would ease into right away, hoping now that we are working together well and aren't as stressed those overwhelming feelings of you're wasting this horse if you dont work with him everyday will decrease.
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post #6 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 01:16 PM
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Normally, I'd go 3-4 times a week, maybe 4-5 days If I'm in competition. The last few months I've been going at least once daily, but that has been for an injury. Now I'm trying to go every 2-3rd day and honestly I've been feeling guilty too, but I know my horses are well cared for and I need a break too.

Usually after going so often, I get really burnt out! It becomes a chore after a while and actually, I've been putting off riding recently despite having quite a few available to ride. Honestly, most horses don't need to be ridden/ worked with 5-6 days/week. The exceptions would be If you are expecting to show, ride at a certain level and If you have a hot horse. Then, there is a fitness level a horse should be kept at to reduce risk of injury.

Right now, It sounds as If you are pushing yourself to go to the barn as often as possible? I'd advise you not to because It can quickly suck the fun out of having a horse. Take a break when you need to and maybe change things up every now and then.
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post #7 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 01:27 PM
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Back when I boarded mine I tried to go everyday. I am not good at letting other people care for my animals. I worry too much - even when I know they are being provided with excellent care so they are now at my house. Obviously I go down a minimum of twice a day and sometimes I go down just to sit or read a book....

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post #8 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 02:05 PM
Join Date: Feb 2019
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As long as you're making sure your horse is taken care of I don't feel like there's any reason to feel bad about not being able to go see them a certain number of days a week when you're doing a full board and care, everyone has their own situation.

Currently I usually see my mare once or twice a week; I would like to go more often and I also sometimes get a feeling of "not doing enough", but in reality I am not reasonably at the point yet hat I can ride her without supervision. The family I board with encourages me to come out any time, I pay them for board and some extra for her training (they very graciously included any riding lessons I need into her board fee.) But, they are still working on getting their business up and running and property upkeep, the wife works outside the home and has to travel quite a bit, and they've recently had some damage to the property and problems with some neighbors that I know make it difficult for them to just drop everything when I come out for a lesson.

As I work toward being able to feel comfortable alone in the round pen or on a trail, I plan to spend more time with her. I'm still at the point of taking weekly to bi-weekly lessons and improving my knowledge and skill level. I just don't want them to feel like they have to stop and tend to me every time I show up. They've been extremely helpful and I just don't want it to feel like I'm taking advantage of them either. Also, because they've been working on a tune-up with her training that was desperately needed, I didn't necessarily want to be handling her all the time, possibly enforcing any bad habits they might be working to correct with my lack of experience. Once I'm able to ride solo I definitely plan on spending more time at the barn. I long for the day that I can leave work and just go ride. Right now between my schedule and theirs it just isn't ideal for me to be there more than I already am.
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post #9 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 02:55 PM
Join Date: May 2017
Location: NW Connecticut
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Each and every day. Family is not an issue as my wife and I go together. She plays with the minis, I play with Hamlet. I tend to actually ride him no more than twice a week, for 1.5 - 2 hours, in very hilly terrain. He looks buff, and he has no repetitive-stress injuries. All other times, activities include brushing, grazing, liberty work, or sitting in the pasture in a lawn chair next to their dinner hay and sipping a cold one. The sunsets at that barn are amazing, plus it's located in a bit of a valley, so I always feel like I'm in the Hobbit Shire - especially when nobody's running any gardening or farming machinery.
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post #10 of 26 Old 08-12-2019, 03:50 PM
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I struggle with this a lot actually. I know he is being very well cared for - he's on pasture 24/7 minus a few hours for breakfast and dinner when they are brought in. If there was something wrong with him I know the BO would contact me immediately, and our vet is just down the road. I think he likes seeing me and knows I'm his person, but I know that he is also happy out with his little herd just being a horse. But even though I know all of this I still feel bad when I don't see him.

Between work, the long drive to the barn, and oppressive heat, lately I've been getting out there about twice to three times a week, and riding maybe two of those times. Hopefully this will change in fall when temps are more bearable.
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