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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am new to boarding. I've only ever had my horses on my own property or on my grandparent's farm when I lived elsewhere. And several horses that I was competing on would stay at my hauling partners ranch for convenience as they had the big indoor arena, etc. etc. Anyway, after a break I've gotten some horses again. We started with just my 4 year old quarter horse mare, and recently we added an 8 year old TWH mare from a rescue. The BO came out right after the TWH mare had been delivered and right after she had cut her pastern on metal that he has lined the back of the mare motel area with. We notified him that she had cut her leg and indicated that we would like to remove that metal. He refused, which is fine, because it's his barn. Then he proceeded to inform us of what a mistake we had made in obtaining this mare because she came from a rescue. (She was relinquished to the rescue as the previous owners were frightened of her after they fell off - completely other story!) The mare is registered so we have age verification and actually sweet as pie, incredibly well mannered both on the ground and under saddle. When I looked up her registered name it seems as though she has done some competitive trail, and I got to see some videos of her doing really good things (like walking on a see-saw, and going through weird tarps and stuff). Anyway, my boyfriend really had fallen in love with this horse, and it's the first horse he has ever owned although he has ridden and worked at a boarding facility during high school.

The BO was just really condescending about both of our horses. He has also said things about our choice of tack including going so far as to change the reins on my bridle because he didn't approve of my reins. The price is really great even though we have to clean our own stalls and provide our own hay which he feeds twice daily. Which is another thing, we delivered 10 bales of alfalfa to the barn on Saturday afternoon. There was still one bale in our hay storage area. Since there are only two boarders it's not difficult to know which belongs to who since they are in separate locations. Well we went over tonight to check on the horses and make sure there was no heat or swelling in her cuts as well as clean it and we noticed that we have 9 bales left and two flakes out of one. That means our two horses were either fed nearly two bales for five feedings or someone "borrowed" some of it.

I love the location although since the other boarder constantly puts two of her horses in the arena and the other in the round pen I have to play musical horses to use either of them, and her horses do not have good manners. But there is access to nice trails, and our horses are in 20 x 20 areas so that's bigger than most places around me.

I guess I just wonder if paying a slightly higher price for a more business like place would be worth it. Or I wanted advice on how to approach the guy. I feel as though since I typically just listen as he talks and tells me how to do everything then do it my way anyway that he feels like he has the right to continue this behavior. But the overfeeding of the horses cannot continue. Nor can him changing my tack around!
 

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So what did he do with your reins after changing them? Maybe he said that he didn't approve of them but really he liked them. Where did the reins that he put on come from? This situation doesn't sound like I could live with it for very long. I would keep tack at home or in the trailer if you have one.

Personally, I think that no matter where you board, there is going to be something. It's just a matter of whether that something is something that you can live with, get over or just address yourself. This person seems to be under the impression that because the horses are on his property that the horses are his to make all decisions for them. I would have a huge problem with things being around for horses to get injured on. If he were paying vet bills he would probably remove the injury causing thing. I would also have a huge problem with someone messing with my tack without permission.

As far as the hay goes, are they two string or three? Two string are usually 40 to 60 lbs. A horse is going to eat about 20 lbs a day so that would be 1 bale per day with maybe some left over depending on what they weigh. If they are three string approximately 100 lbs, then yeah, way over feeding or someone else is taking it.

One of my favorite sayings is "What you think of me is none of my business". That would include my stuff and my horses. But, if I had to listen to condescending remarks continuously every time I went out there, I would probably leave because it just gets old. Just tell him the next time he makes a negative remark about the horses "I didn't buy these horses for you, I bought them for me". Every remark after that would get the answer "Remember who I bought these horses for?? and just laugh.

Where I board at, there have been plenty of problems. I've become friends with these people because in spite of their flaws, they are pretty good people and in spite of my flaws I'm a pretty decent person.

There have been little irritants that I just fixed myself. There have been things that I had to say something about and there have been things that I got chewed out for (forgetting to turn the water off) that I apologized for and didn't do it again.

Only you can decide what you can live with and what you can't.
 

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It's been a while since I fed straight alfalfa. But if you're saying that he fed a typical 100+ lb. bale of hay between 2 horses since Sat., if they get nothing else to eat, no grass hay, no concentrates and, unless you're in a more temperate area of AZ than I ever was, no grazing, then I don't find the amount to be totally over the top. Maybe supplement with some grass hay that they can eat 24/7 and cut back on the alfalfa.

The reins thing would bug me and, since I pretty much have lost what few filters I ever had over the years, I would have told him I didn't care what he thought of my reins and I wanted them back right now, not 10 mins from now. Now, if they're old and fraying and getting dangerous, you might want to change them out on your own but if he just didn't care for them, it's none of his business.

Horses get hurt. ALL. THE. TIME. So without pics of what caused the injury, I don't know if I'd be upset enough over the injury to a) insist he remove the thing that hurt her or b) move the horse to at least another paddock or stall or c) take all the irritants and move the horses off that property forthwith.

As for his condescending comments, if the really bugged me, I'd tell him to stop every time he opened his mouth and I'd remind him it's not good business to insult other people's horses. That's something most horse folks learn very early on, if you don't like someone's horse for some little reason, then just shut up and move on. Unless the horse is doing something dangerous, you just don't go around insulting or talking down about other folks horses, that's a good way to start a very ugly fight.

I don't know what self care is going for in AZ these days, or in your area of AZ, but I think I'd be looking for more amenable circumstances. Having to fetch the other boarder's horses out of the arena or round pen so you can use them is another inconvenience and based on everything you've said is going on, I'd probably be looking to move. Now, if he's cheaper than cheap and right next door to you, it might be worth it. I suspect even cheap self care these days is pretty expensive out there, so I'd be wanting some peace for my $$$. That's what you got horses for and you're being deprived of it.
 

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You have a dilemma...
Either ignore comments made and tell the B/O your tack is yours and what you have, period.
Bashing of horses and breeds or where they came from happens everywhere....ignore it or challenge him on it but do have a backup plan on where you're going cause it will be out the door.


As for your hay missing....
Only way to deal with that is remove it and leave only 1 days worth to be fed to yours...
To expensive and not your responsibility to feed others animals...
Again, only you know what you'll take or not in comment and missing feed or anything else and for how long.
Me, doesn't sound the best deal to me when stalls have metal that can and already did harm your new horse, now intrusion on your tack and a attack on your horse {verbal} would have me leaving ASAP a new place was found...
I would be actively looking at this point!
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Just to expand on why I don't feel the feeding amounts are excessive, IF they not fed anything else. Each horse will eat 20+ lbs/day/horse. So, Sat = 40 lbs, Sun = 40 lbs and Mon = 40 lbs, that comes up to 120 lbs total between 2 horses, so 1 bale plus about 1/5 of a 2nd bale assuming a 100 lb bale, and don't for get waste. It drops on the floor, horses take it out and throw it around and it lands on the ground and then they pee & poo in it. So, I don't find what the BO fed to be a huge amount of hay. I probably would add in a grass hay of some kind, so they could eat about 10 lbs alfalfa and 10+ grass, that way they could keep something in front of them 24/7.
 

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A lot of horse people have big opinions and bigger mouths. You're just as likely to get people looking down on your horses anywhere else, honestly.

The reins thing would bother me, and I would ask him to not do that again. Other people have suggested that maybe the hay was all fed to your horses. It's hard to know. WRT the other boarder leaving her horses in the arenas, you might need to have a discussion with her and the barn owner about it. At least with only one other boarder you only have one other person to have conflicts with.

Very few people seem to be in a perfect boarding situation, and I can pretty much promise that anywhere you go there will be something that bothers you. Your choices are (1) address it, (2) be quiet and just accept it, or (3) move. If you move, I would just be aware that your next place will have a whole other set of problems. If it were me, I'd go with option (1) or (2). At the very least, it can't hurt to address the issue. If it doesn't get resolved, then you could try (1) or (3).

I guess I just see the reins thing as a straightforward thing to fix ("Please don't alter my tack"). Hay thing is maybe OK. So really the only issue is the other boarder. I'd rather deal with that than take my chances on the next place.
 
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What I read was almost two bales between five feedings. If they are 100 lb bales, that is about 19 lbs per feeding for each horse. That is way too much, almost 40 lbs per day for each horse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
They are 100 pound bales. There are also built in hay feeders which eliminates waste. So whatever is given to them is eaten by them. It is cheaper than cheap and it's only temporary until we move when our current lease is up which will then be to a property where we can keep our own horses, so less than a year. It's in our contract that we have to provide 8 bales per horse per month, and we follow the letter of what was outlined for us. I am going to ask if he fed our horses extra for some reason. Maybe when he broke open the bales they were lighter than what we had been providing. I'm going to assume there was some reason for that and just verify.

Fortunately the vet did not charge us much to come look at the mare's cuts. She just came out to look and make sure no stitches were necessary then gave us an action plan and told us to call her if certain things happened (which they haven't). She did tell the BO that the metal was not safe for horses. He told her he'd had his show arabians in there for years and that arabians are just smarter than these breeds so they never got hurt. She and I just shared a look.

I am going to address the tack issue. He just took my reins off and put the leather split reins back on. It was all my tack, but the leather reins are not ones that I really use. He told me "those reins you had on were too dangerous." I honestly think he is confused about my not being a beginner with horses. He has made several statements about me and my mare "growing together and learning together." As well as he's asked me how my riding lessons are going. It's my 8 year old that is taking riding lessons and just learning about horses. I honestly think he has us confused.

I like the idea of saying "well I bought them for me so guess as long as I like them" then shrugging.

Thanks everyone for the replies. I think just talking it out helps. I appreciate you all.
 
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