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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Right now I am working off my board in full by caring for 4 horses (not including my own) 4 mornings and afternoons a week. This includes feeding, blanketing, turning out, cleaning water buckets, mucking in the morning; then turn-in, taking off blankets/checking feet for ice or snow, and feeding at night. I do this Monday through Thursday morning and afternoon. I am getting an incredible deal for my area, since the facility I am at has an indoor, and the going rate for board is normally $1050/month, and I am getting it all for free. I know this is amazing, and never would have thought I would be entertaining giving it up.

This is before and after my full time job, and the barn is about 30 minutes from my house (but right next to my work). It takes me about 2 hours in the morning and 30 minutes in the afternoon.

I have been toying with the idea of eventually switching to rough board on my street where I live or a few streets over, thinking that taking care of just my horse instead of 5 would be more practical for me with my working hours, and it would be nice to not have to drive 30 minutes to see my horse on weekends or days off.

In my area, I could find rough board (not including any supplies) for about $200-$350 a month - higher range including an indoor ring and very nice facility, or co-op board for around $200-$250/month not including supplies which usually includes 2-3 shifts a week (a shift being either a morning or afternoon).


I am willing to pay a little extra to do less work (or JUST be responsible for MY own horse).

Would love some suggestions from those out there. Do you like rough boarding? What do you do if you ever go on vacation? Do you hire someone to feed and muck for you? Has anyone done co-op boarding? Is it better to have free board 30 minutes from you, or pay a bit more and have your horse on your street?

Thanks in advance!
 

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I think it all depends on you. If you can afford it, and it would be easier for you, go ahead and move your horses! Do what is best for you. I have done both- paying partial ('rough') board and doing all of my own feeding/cleaning/blanketing, and getting discounted board in exchange for caring for other horses. Both worked fine at different stages of my life. There is no way I'd be able to work off the discounted board at the moment though, with school and work. I was feeding 40 head by myself in evenings and it took darned near forever!
 

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If you do rough board there is no one else to fall back on in the care of your horse.
Sick, you go feed & muck, vacation...you better have a person who is responsible in line, no eyes over-seeing technically if your horse is sick and needs medical care and staying put with them till you can get there....
You never have a day off... that animal needs you!! No sleeping in...

I loved rough board, but it is a huge commitment 24/7/365 on your shoulders.

Not knowing but guessing your costs for hay, feed and shavings...you can add on top of the "stall-fee" add another $50 - $75 a month for grain/feed, $100 a month for hay, and $7.00 a bag for shavings x 3 a week = basically another $100 a month...so all told...$350 stall, $75 feed, $100 hay & $100 bedding figuring high side of costs.... $625.00 month, now add in your time.
I have friends that have done that co-op deal...it works if all get along together and no feuding happens between boarders, or it can fail miserably at the horses expense if someone withholds food and water to spite you at the horses expense....
Look carefully, read the small print in the contracts before making any choices and remember you know the kind of people you currently share living spaces with...
Then make some choices...good luck.
:wink:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Horselovinguy- thanks for the advice. There are places near me for less than $625 full board, so I think I might forego rough board at this point. Thanks for the perspective! I was figuring $200 or so for feed, but completely left out shavings in my calculations.

Thanks again.
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To me, the biggest part of boarding is the knowing my horse was in good knowledgeable hands in his care and first aid in case of emergent situations that can and do arise.
My time is valuable and in short supply it always feels like. I love to muck {honest} and putt around the barn, but I also want to spend time being able to enjoy my horse without the demands of "horse-keeping" needing done first and foremost.
I also didn't always have the time to go pick-up or store the food and bring it to the barn...and it can't always be left at the barn without others helping themself to your "stores"....another thing to think about.

Do check carefully any place you are interested in possibly boarding at. Make certain the horses are happy, good food and good clean stalls and safe conditions for turn-out {fencing and grounds} and that the riding areas are well maintained too.
People..well honestly I don't get involved with the people much {my choice} so am happy doing my thing as long as my horse is happy and healthy.
Oh...make sure where ever you think about has a farrier and vet you currently use or you can bring with you, or if you must change it is someone you can trust your horses care to.
:)
 
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