Opinions needed as soon as possible! Severe boarding problems! - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 12:49 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: May 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BugZapper89 View Post
None of this drama is needed! If you don't like the service simply move your horse and this time pick a higher quality place. Any place that allows boarders to work off board or doesn't have a clean neat professional staffed barn is a
Red flag right there.
That is completely false. There are a number of high quality places that allow boarders to work off board. It can be great for someone who can't afford other options for horse care and for the BO to not have to do all the work herself or hire outside employees.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Horseychick87 View Post
Call AC, SPCA, and any other animal welfare group in your area, even equine rescues.

Show them your photo's and if you have them text or email records of conversations, maybe record conversations if you can.

Take pictures of the locked up feed, empty buckets, nets, feeders. Of the horses eating wood and manure. Actually video recordings are better if you can get them.

Try whatever you can to make a difference. If AC, SPCA etc refuse to do anything call a local news station, make it hard on the BO, to the point they have to properly care for the animals or the bad press will put them out of business,
All of this. Before you move the horses take photos of EVERYTHING. Grain locked up, with undisturbed dust on the lock if possible, empty feed and water buckets. Filthy stalls if possible. Photos of ALL of the horses from multiple angles showing the degree of starvation. Photos and videos of the starving horses eating their own manure. Try to be sneaky about it so that she doesn't know what you're doing. You don't want her to take things out on your own horses. It's been known to happen. Once your horses are out of harm's way, bring all of the evidence to whoever is in charge of animal welfare in your area. Bring photos of your horses before you moved them there to show them in good condition if possible. There is a chance that they won't be able to do much based on the fact that there's food on the property, but that'll depend on your area. Hopefully the near death horses will be enough to take action.

Try to contact all of the owners that you can, especially the ones that rarely see their horses. Print out multiple copies of body condition scoring charts (preferably with pictures) to show owners and information about the harm which can come from prolonged starvation. Try to convince them that their horse is NOT ok, and encourage them to move to a new stable.

You won't sway all of the owners, but some may be convinced by the BO that their horse is alright. I've seen it happen by well meaning horse people. Heck, it happened to a very well meaning close friend of mine. She began leasing a TB owned by a couple that moved out of the country. This couple left the horse under the care of a trainer, and the trainer starved the horses to near death. My friend was young at the time (15 or so?) and remembered the horse from her youth and wanted to help him. The trainer claimed that the previous owners had stopped paying and she couldn't afford to feed him properly or some lame excuse, and that my friend could lease him and pay for the feed to fatten him back up. The horse was NOWHERE near ready to be ridden (ribs and backbone still showing) but the trainer convinced her that it was ok so she could get the lesson money. She's long moved on from that trainer but still has that horse and having been around horses much longer feels horrible for making that horse work in the condition he was in. He looked much better than he did, but looking back at pictures he was still awful. Had someone other than the trainer been around to talk some sense into her it could have saved the poor horse a lot of uncomfortable riding.

I would also consider bringing legal action upon this person and I WOULD without fail bring legal action if she tries to hold you to giving a 30 day notice. I hope that you have photos of your animals before moving them to the property. That'll help show that the horses were previously in good (or fat) condition and didn't arrive skinny. Since this is the kind of person to neglect horses with a smile on her face I would be moving my horses ASAP and not tell her until the horses are on the trailer and ALL of your belongings are loaded up/off the property. It's the first of the month, so NOW would be the perfect time to split for the sake of your horses. Bad things may very well happen to the other horses, but you unfortunately have almost no say in their situation. Contact the local authorities and anyone else you can, but your responsibility is not to them. It is to your horses. They are your animals under your care, so you need to do what is best for them and get them out ASAP. It'll be hard to leave the starving ones, but you need to look out for your own first and foremost.

Moral of the story: Move your horses TODAY if possible to a new barn. Try to do a thorough job investigating the owner of the new place this time and evaluate the current boarders' condition, but more importantly get your horse out of there. If possible, gather evidence and bring it to animal control. Most importantly, ttake care of YOUR horses above worrying about the other horses. Your guys depend on you!
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post #12 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 01:11 PM
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please understand, also, that all this stuff you are posting about her on the internet, and all, is public, and thus available to her, too.
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post #13 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 02:35 PM
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Step number one should be securing a better situation for your own horses. From there, I think your best option would be to call the authorities or animal control. Getting involved with the other owners of horses in ways that can be documented (texts, e-mails, etcetera) can be used for fodder with the argument of "slander." Just be careful...

The sensitivity of the internet baffles me.
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post #14 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 03:43 PM
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Please get your own horses off the property ASAP and don't call anyone until yours are safe. Take lots of pictures, preferably with a date stamp on them before you leave for the last time.

You may have to pester every agency you can think of. If the local humane society won't or can't do anything, call your sheriff's department. Send your pictures and story to the closest TV station. See if you can find out some of the names of former boarders who have left because of the conditions.

Sadly, too many times people (including those who profess to love horses) will turn a blind eye to these situations and that's exactly why there are so many hidden places with starving horses behind closed doors.
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post #15 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 04:33 PM
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In my area, calling AC wouldn't do any good except possibly scaring the BO into changing her ways. They will not do anything unless the animals are within 3 days of dying and if there is food on the property then nothing will be done even then.

I would document everything and do it anyway though, just in case and for my own state of mind. I might also stick a large poster with pictures of proper body weights up when I left the barn, because I'm just passive aggressive enough for that.
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post #16 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 05:45 PM
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I'm not really sure there's anything you could do in this situation. Get your horses out of there and contact the owners of the horses that don't see their horses often if you can.

If you're really adamant about doing something to give the BO a wake up call and you have the evidence you mentioned, you could take the BO to court and sue for some or all the board you paid her while you were boarding there (breech of contract). Keep in mind, though, that the horse community is small and word travels fast. Even if this place has a poor reputation other barns may be hesitant to take in someone who has sued their previous barn.

“The horse is a mirror to your soul. Sometimes you might not like what you see. Sometimes you will.” - Buck Brannaman
"Nothing forced can ever be beautiful." - Xenophon
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post #17 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 09:16 PM
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Make sure you document any and everything she says, take photos, and weigh your horses when you leave.

Weigh the underweight mare also and document it with photos.

Contact the ASPCA or whatever animal control you have and let them know what's going down. The least you can do is try and get a hold of them.
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post #18 of 29 Old 10-01-2014, 10:05 PM
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Document what you can, move your horses and start contacting the proper authorities.

If the authorities won't or can't do anything so be it. Ultimently it's up to the horses owners to know what's best for their horses and get them out of a crappy situation. Even new horses should realize something's wrong when hips and spines are protruding. Sounds more like they don't care.

I understand where your coming from, about two years ago I moved my horses from a somewhat simular situation. The BOs horses were thin but as they always had a crappy round bale and water AC wouldn't do anything. I had grown attached to several of them, one gelding more then the rest but when it boiled down to it I needed to do what was best for my own animals. Unfortunately you can't save them all as much as we would like to.
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post #19 of 29 Old 10-06-2014, 12:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UnwindingDream View Post
The pastures are empty of anything but dirt, mud, and rocks.
This alone is a red flag not to board at that place because it is a sign of severe overcrowding of horses on the property...yes there will be mud in some high traffic areas but pasture areas should have GRASS and little to no mud, allowing for change of seasons and weather... Duck Dodgers said all of the rest of what I would've said so Im seconding all of that post...a picture says a thousand words and a video a million...it cannot be argued with...
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post #20 of 29 Old 02-12-2015, 10:19 PM Thread Starter
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Here's an update: Things got significantly worse. Two horses died, the barn owner got caught forging vet papers, etc. I tried taking over morning feed, and it did nothing. The horses were still dropping weight. Needless to say, we moved as soon as we were financially able. All kinds of drama ensued. She claimed I owed her money, stole my own horse from her, etc. Basically, she was ****ed. I took my horses without advanced warning. However, I didn't believe it safe to give her warning. In the end, animal control did get called. I don't believe any horses were taken from her though, or that anything was done. Animal control wasn't even concerned by or interested in the pictures, which disturbed me greatly. The barn owner had all of the horses hidden out of sight and locked away most of the time, so it's impossible to tell if the ones that needed help got it when I drive by. All of my horses gained the weight they'd lost, and are currently healthy as can be. It's REALLY nice. I totally take care of them now, to ensure that they get everything they need, and it's MUCH cheaper. I also KNOW everything that's done now, and feel more secure. I worry about the other horses still, but ultimately the responsibility rests on their owners' shoulders. Hopefully, they all stop buying her lies now that I'm not that to ensure the horses are fed at least once a day, and do the right thing for their horses and shut her down.
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animal control , animal cruelty , boarding horses , neglect , underweight horse

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