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View Full Version : Any genius barn management ideas...



JumpinBean17
May. 28, 2010, 08:00 PM
This is kind of a spin off from the post about how instructors displayed their lesson and horse schedules on white boards...
Does anyone have anything that is part of their barn routine that they think is just great? Something you do differently at one barn that you never did at a previous one? Or any genius ideas a barn manager had (ie I know most barns do it but the whole white board for horse schedules is a fantastic organizational idea)
...just brainstorming here!

netg
May. 28, 2010, 08:13 PM
My barn has about 120 horses. 60 of those are outdoor corrals. They all have a gap the width of a tractor scoop between them and a railroad tie out the back. The pens get cleaned into that gap, then a tractor is driven around to scoop it up. Saves massive amounts of time compared to manually wheeling manure somewhere.

JumpinBean17
May. 29, 2010, 03:32 PM
that's pretty clever actually, anyone else?

mvp
May. 29, 2010, 10:37 PM
Never seen this done before. Used for horses turned out in groups. My BO mixes up each horse's grain (with soaked hay cubes so like a dryish mash), and puts it in a generously sized mesh muzzle. She can then strap these on each horse and be sure he is getting his grain without having to baby sit or separate horses. No one screws with anyone else because the food is always right there. They each get into their own private zone and don't bother to wonder what their turnout buddies are doing.

The horses put their heads down to put the bottom of the feedbacks on solid ground. I haven't noticed dirt getting in or grain getting out. You can rinse the nylon bad boys out when they get nasty.

Smart horses come to the gate when they're done and ready to have the contraption taken off. Annoying ones (mine) dip the whole thing in his water bucket and dirties that up when he wants a chaser. Stupid ones (mine) try to eat their hay with it on and wonder why it isn't working.

netg
May. 30, 2010, 02:07 AM
Stupid ones (mine) try to eat their hay with it one and wonder why it isn't working.

:lol:

One which is probably not too uncommon:

Because of the number of horses at the barn, the BO/employees can't keep track themselves of which horses are losing/gaining weight. I'd only been at small barns in the past, where the BOs watched and adjusted as needed. Each horse has a laminated page on its pen with space indicating morning, noon and night feeding quantities, as well as owner/farrier/vet information. The needed info is written on in grease pens so it can be updated as needed. Meals are fed from the back of a golf cart, truck or tractor, and there is a scale on it. Hay is weighed for each horse, so if the horse owner (or their trainer) sees a change is needed even by one pound, they indicate it on the sign and the change is made.

Polydor
May. 30, 2010, 03:43 AM
:lol:

One which is probably not too uncommon:

Because of the number of horses at the barn, the BO/employees can't keep track themselves of which horses are losing/gaining weight. I'd only been at small barns in the past, where the BOs watched and adjusted as needed. Each horse has a laminated page on its pen with space indicating morning, noon and night feeding quantities, as well as owner/farrier/vet information. The needed info is written on in grease pens so it can be updated as needed. Meals are fed from the back of a golf cart, truck or tractor, and there is a scale on it. Hay is weighed for each horse, so if the horse owner (or their trainer) sees a change is needed even by one pound, they indicate it on the sign and the change is made.


I like this one. Specially with the scale right there to weigh everything.

P.

alteringwego
May. 30, 2010, 10:20 AM
I use 'day sheets' to keep track of what each horse has done for the day and then use them to input charges into the computer as time allows.

gottagrey
May. 30, 2010, 11:23 AM
Some ideas depend on the size of the barn. One thing our BM does (and is voluntary). We have a somewhat limited sized boarder's tackroom - 1 average sized trunk, saddle rack and 1 or 2 bridle hooks. Twice a year BM purchases barn supplies -variety of grooming supplies, fly spray, cut/wound ointments; brushes, leather care products/sponges, etc. All the supplies are there for everyone's use so it keeps down on clutter, no one complains of someone "using" all their fly spray. As mentioned it's voluntary but most of us participate its just so much easier. This works because our barn is small - about 20 stalls - I don't imagine it would be a good thing at a much larger barn.

showmom68
May. 30, 2010, 07:40 PM
I don't think this is necessarily genius on my part, but certainly genius on the creators of the "Show Barn Manager" computer program. I use it at two different facilities...One a 20 horse show barn and the other a large show barn/lesson facility (approx 70) horses. The program keeps track of all shoeing, dental, coggins, vet work, vaccinations, meds/feed, USEF info, billing info, contact info. Reports are easily generated if you send a horse off for lease or sale with all of the info in a very neat and professional format. It's also very helpful when I've had to send a horse off to the hospital...one click and all of the info/history I need to give them is right there. It takes a little bit to originally load in, but...once all of the info is there, it's so easy to keep track of all due dates. It definitely makes my life as barn manager much easier, and the customers, barn owner, trainers and vets/farriers appreciate such precise records.

JumpinBean17
May. 30, 2010, 09:57 PM
that sounds awesome... im looking that program up right now!

showmom68
May. 31, 2010, 12:05 AM
that sounds awesome... im looking that program up right now!

You'll love it! Let me know if you have a hard time finding it! It's amazing! :)

Miss Motivation
May. 31, 2010, 12:35 AM
Two words: tack lockers.

The Best Thing We Ever Did- stop the madness of hoggy boarders and allegedly stolen stuff (that they left on the wash racks.) Plenty of room in each locker for a feed trash can, saddle, 6 bridle hoods, saddle pads, grooming supplies, shelves on the door for bottles, etc. The locks have three keys: two for boarders and one for us to keep for when they forget their key!

Plenty of room for all the stuff needed on a weekly basis, and certainly NOT enough room to store all the things that belong in the boarder's garage. Steel, 3 x 3' x 8' tall with a 3 x 3 shelf at 6' high. Love 'em.

Another thing that works well: we do a monthly groom's list for turnouts/feed/horse concerns and visit with our staff first Monday of every month. Weekly, I make a chore list for them that lists the daily must-do's, then in prioritized order (high priority first) I list all the extra stuff I expect them to do for each week. For example, dragging arenas 6 days a week goes on the must-do top part of the list, but adding a stall gate for a new horse (high) and washing said lockers (lower on list as it is not very time sensitive) would be weekly things we discuss on Monday mornings.

Doing the monthly groom's list and weekly chore list is also a great time for our helpers to tell me they need toilet paper for the barn potty, gloves for themselves, and that it's time to call for the tractor's oil change. It's a planned meeting time to go over all the small details that need to be addressed but sometimes slip away if you don't make a regular time to think about them.

I do both lists on Excel, and revise and print a new groom's list one for the guys to keep all month after we review horse concerns together. Our staff are better than I am at seeing a weight problem, horse not cleaning up rations, change in manure, etc. We have The Best helpers and meeting with them in a professional way helps us show our respect for their contributions.

PennyChrome
Jul. 11, 2010, 03:23 PM
This is more for trainer's, but it's related to barn management. Each horse at the barn I'm at now has it's own: curry comb and body brush, saddle pad, and bath towel. The bath towel goes underneath the girth to prevent girth itch, then it gets laundered regularly like the saddle pads. Works great to prevent girth itch etc!

findeight
Jul. 11, 2010, 03:50 PM
Two things...well, maybe three.

First, designing the barn aisle wide enough for a small tractor to make mucking less time consuming and getting a good spreader and place to spread it away from the barn to keep the flies and odor down.

Second is an in barn laundry and heavy duty washer/dryer. Barn charges a little more but provides white baby pads for all and they get washed daily. Not an option in a lower end boarding only barn but a huge help in a training/teaching barn or one with sale horses.

And the third I'd add is enough adult, professional help to make it run smoothly with a Barn Manager dedicated to managing staff, scheduals and individual horse care needs with enough time to keep written track of the above.

Cannot explain what a godsend being able to look and see when horsey was bumped up to 2 scoops or the brand of feed was changed. If a client cannot be there 24/7/365, it's a wonderful service.

Jaideux
Jul. 11, 2010, 03:53 PM
One smallish barn (20 horses or so) I was at had a stash of lead ropes in the barn's colors hung (OCD neatly) by the front entrance. For turn in/turn out, the staff just used those lead ropes. Boarders were welcome to use them, too. No lead ropes ever went missing, and there was always one handy to grab.

Another barn did the opposite and leaves each boarder's individually-purchased lead rope hanging on the gate to walk the horse to and fro. Makes it easy to know how many are left in the big field without doing a squinty head-count. However, the ropes do take a beating, and somehow still go missing.

Another place has a current turnout schedule posted on the cork board by the entrance. It has listed who goes in which pasture and how much hay that pasture gets. Makes it very easy to locate a horse if you're not sure where it goes out, and also makes it very easy for anyone to jump in and help with morning chores if the BO is not doing it that day for whatever emergent reason. It's probably pretty common the part where feed amounts are kept listed on a white board in the feed rooms.

Peggy
Jul. 11, 2010, 09:36 PM
Whiteboard with a map of the facility showing which horses in the trainer's program are stabled where. The facility has horses belonging to clients of three different trainers plus an assortment of other horses so this is quite helpful for shoers, vets, etc. Nothing like trying to find a horse in the dark when you don't know where it lives.

Boot cubby for horse boots. Each horse has an assigned mail slot sort of thing. They are in alphabetical order. There is enough extra room to stash a tube or jar of meds or a roll of VetRap for your horse. If your horse happens to be on layup, you can put all of the extra supplies in there b/c, after all, it won't be needing boots. There are doors on the front of the whole thing so the rain doesn't get it and it's lockable.

Trainer has a set of plastic drawers (like the larger size that SmartPak provides) in the tackroom, again in alphabetical order by horse name, for a set of standing wraps for each horse.