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View Full Version : For those of you who board horses,



Tiki
May. 30, 2011, 09:32 AM
Is it customary to charge the boarder (actually seems to be at least double the cost) of a gate damaged by one of your boarded horses? or is it part of the cost of doing business?

AliCat518
May. 30, 2011, 09:51 AM
Ive seen both. When I stall boarded my gelding at school(in 12, out 12), he kicked down part of the wooden walls....mulitple times. They fixed it, didnt charge me. (he did this around feeding time...grump)

When he was on stall REST at my last barn, he would kick the walls when his neighbor was in...ended up kicking a hole in the cement block after a few weeks of kicking. BO asked that I pay for it or fix it. Well, luckily my dad had the tools/knowledge, so we fixed it right up!

I dont know what the norm is...but good luck!

tasia
May. 30, 2011, 10:00 AM
I haven't had to charge anyone, yet. Damage to a gate, I probably would. They might be charging extra for the cost of installation if they have to hire someone to hang the gate.

pj
May. 30, 2011, 10:01 AM
As the horse owner I would want to pay for anything my horse damaged.

As the barn owner I would probably let the first thing or two go but after that would expect the horse owner to pay or repair themself.
It gets old having a destructive horse at your barn.

GoForAGallop
May. 30, 2011, 12:31 PM
I fix boards here and there and replace a smooshed bucket every so often with not a thought of charging the owner for it--that's normal horse wear and tear.

If I watch a horse destroy a gate, however, you can sure bet that that owner is going to be getting a bill. Gates are too expensive to "let go" (you seem to think the cost is expensive...have you actually priced out gates? They're NOT cheap) and are NOT regular wear and tear, as evidenced by the fact that my property has regularly-used gates that are upwards of 50 years old now.

Same with any other regular destruction of buckets/fencing/stall walls/other horse's blankets/etc. Either the owner needs to be responsible, or they don't need to be in my barn.

morganpony86
May. 30, 2011, 12:33 PM
IME, it depends on what happened. If it's the first time, I've never heard of a BO charging. Especially if it was an accident. It happens and is part of running a barn with unpredictable horses.
If it's a horse that continuously pushes on fences/gates, then I think the owner should be charged, but the BO's I know have always nipped it in the bud by either booting the horse out of the barn or put them in a situation where they can't destroy gate/fences (e.g. hotwire protection, stall board only, whatever).

SevenDogs
May. 30, 2011, 12:47 PM
As the horse owner I would want to pay for anything my horse damaged.



This! I have only ever been the horse owner (you couldn't pay me enough to own a boarding facility).

Why would you think that you shouldn't pay for damage your horse inflicts? Damage to a gate is NOT normal wear/tear.

Coanteen
May. 30, 2011, 12:53 PM
My mare pulled a board off the paddock when she finally had enough of eye drops, but the BM repaired it himself. Another boarding barn basically built her a really tiny medical paddock (essentially stall-sized but outside; their existing ones allowed too much movement) when she needed one, again for free.

That said, I wouldn't be surprised at being charged for something my horse damaged, especially something expensive and/or something the barn staff wouldn't be able to fix themselves.

Equibrit
May. 30, 2011, 01:02 PM
I have a boarder whose horse is impatient and likes to paw fences before being brought in. He routinely volunteers to help me fix the damage his horse has done.

SAcres
May. 30, 2011, 01:07 PM
I think it depends on the circumstances if I would charge them for something their horse did. For instance, if the horses were out playing and somebody crashed into a gate or fence, damaging it, I wouldn't even think about charging them for it.
But if a horse was pawing at the gate all the time, I told the boarder about it, and they did nothing, kept letting the horse paw, and the horse ended up damaging the gate, I think I would ask for money for the gate. Probably half the cost. Of course idk exactly what the horse owner could do about their horse pawing at the gate, but I always have hay or grass available, so I don't anticipate this happening anyway.
My general rule is that if it seems to be a freak, one time type thing, then no, don't charge them. But if the horse is badly behaved, the owner knows about it, and the horse damages something, then the owner should man up and help pay for the damage.

minuspride
May. 31, 2011, 09:58 AM
At our barn, it's kind of like a few strikes before you pay. Horse rips hay holder off wall, but doesn't break it, and can be reused...doesn't have to pay.
Basically if it's low cost and isn't in a "communal" area, the owner doesn't have to pay...a gate on a pasture or paddock...pay up! :) Regarding this particular situation...I hope the barn owner would charge me.

Mtn trails
May. 31, 2011, 01:39 PM
Not to hijack but quick question:

What if a lesson student tied school horse to a gate instead of on the cross ties to hose down, horse freaks out, yanks gate off hinges, goes running down the street with the gate banging him in the legs, horse has multiple injuries requiring ongoing vet care and being laid up for months. Who pays the vet bills?

On this, I'd probably pay half the cost to replace gate.

CHSatwork
May. 31, 2011, 01:53 PM
Isn't the "lesson/student" paying for instruction? Where was the instructor when this happened? If student was there for a usual lesson then the instructor is at fault.

Personal Champ
May. 31, 2011, 03:27 PM
If student is a lessoner, does not own horse - then instructor.

If student owns horse - would think student would be responsible. I would never expect my trainer to pay for my horse's vet bills that were caused by my stupidity.

RE: OP - when I ran a barn, if it was a repeat offense that I could tie to a particular horse, then owner paid. If a random/freak thing, cost of doing business.

Mtn trails
May. 31, 2011, 03:33 PM
School horse was owned by the barn. The lesson was over and instructor was teaching another while student hosed horse which she had done multiple times without a hitch.

Equibrit
May. 31, 2011, 03:55 PM
B/O should have established VERY CLEAR do's and dont's, one of which would be "Don't tie horses to gates". (because it's a dumb thing to do)

PhoenixFarm
May. 31, 2011, 06:03 PM
We had a horse here who seemed to be bent on world destruction. I had been warned about this by his previous barn, but since we were doubling his turnout time, I thought it would get better.

No such luck. He kicked the stall doors off the hinges, ripped the auto-waterer off the wall twice, and broke countless fence boards, gates, etc.

So when I came out one morning and found another gate torn from the hinges, two fence posts broken, and the offending animal's shoes in the TOP of the gate, I'd finally had enough. I informed the owner that henceforth, she would need to cover 100% of the materials and 50% of the manhours to repair damage done by her horse. She wasn't happy, but what could she say? She'd had to leave other facilities because he was such a destructo, so it couldn't have been a surprise.

She did eventually move on, and I hear he's continuing his barn demolition services. I feel bad for the owner because I know she can't "help it." So generally, for a one-off, I'll just eat it, but a consistent destroyer's owners will eventually start getting bills.

CHT
May. 31, 2011, 06:14 PM
My contract states that boarders are not liable for regular wear and tear, just as the barn isn't liable for something happening to their horse, tack or blankets. If a horse caused one time big damage we likely wouldn't bill either, but if he was a PITA and causing more than normal damages, then I would either work out a system for charging for the damages...or ask them to look for a new boarding facility.

I have only really had one super destructive horse, but the owner was willing to help out as needed (such as feeding when I was away at a show) so that made up for the damages and special needs of her horse.

mvp
Jun. 1, 2011, 05:21 PM
Not to hijack but quick question:

What if a lesson student tied school horse to a gate instead of on the cross ties to hose down, horse freaks out, yanks gate off hinges, goes running down the street with the gate banging him in the legs, horse has multiple injuries requiring ongoing vet care and being laid up for months. Who pays the vet bills?

On this, I'd probably pay half the cost to replace gate.


School horse was owned by the barn. The lesson was over and instructor was teaching another while student hosed horse which she had done multiple times without a hitch.

I think the barn needs to eat the cost. I'd say the instructor was at fault for thinking she had taught the kid enough to *not tie a horse to a gate!*. But if the instructor works for the barn, doesn't get paid a lot and you all would like to keep the business relationship good, then I can't see handing a big bill to the instructor. If she isn't "reformed" and chagrined enough already by the whole fiasco, the BM certainly would be within her rights to have a sit-down with the instructor.

spacytracy
Jun. 2, 2011, 08:15 PM
Sounds like its similar to renting and apartment. Normal age-related things or expected wear and tear, facility owners responsibility. Things out of the ordinary that require replacement (gates, fence boards, etc) if they are directly related to a particular horse - horse owner's fault.

Crooked Horse
Jun. 2, 2011, 08:31 PM
Well, my generally non-destructive gelding ran right through a section of three board fence once.

It never occured to me not to fix it myself. Well actually, Mr. Crooked Horse fixed it ;)

We just did it, never even had a discussion with the BO about it. Don't know about rules but that's just the way I do business.

baysngreys
Jun. 4, 2011, 01:15 PM
There's normal wear and tear that "happens" at a barn. I just spent $$$ to have all the fence lines regraded/leveled and stones added to gateways. That's wear and tear.
I've had to replace boards, re-paint, re-hang gates. That's normal wear and tear.
I supply feed and water tubs and expect that around horses they will eventually "wear out".

A horse that kicks thru the walls, or charges thru gates is not "normal" in my opinion and I would be discussing repair/replacement costs with the owner.

I have a clause in my agreement that gives me the right to demand an owner remove their horse if, within 2 weeks of moving in, I deem the horse "dangerous or destructive".

I haven't had to use this clause but I do ask A Lot of questions regarding the horses disposition, vices, etc., before accepting new boarders.

Basically, it comes down to "My Farm, My Rules." :)

carp
Jun. 4, 2011, 07:05 PM
As a boarder, I've tended to pay for damage my horse causes, repair the damage myself, or tackle some other barn chore so my barn owner gets some relief from never-ending maintenance. I know that horse boarding is a high hassle/low profit business. I don't want my horse being the final straw that causes the barn owner to sell out to a housing developer.

That being said, my charity for the barn owner tends to run a little thin when management issues are contributing to my horse's misbehavior. For instance, one barn owner had my gelding sharing a fence line with another horse he detested. Surprise, surprise, the fence boards between the two paddocks got trashed.

MyssMyst
Jun. 4, 2011, 11:51 PM
As the horse owner I would want to pay for anything my horse damaged.

As the barn owner I would probably let the first thing or two go but after that would expect the horse owner to pay or repair themself.
It gets old having a destructive horse at your barn.

This!

Rabtfarm
Jun. 6, 2011, 09:22 AM
We are BO's and have been boarders. When my daughter's horse trashed the gate at the barn she was boarding at, we paid for a new gate. When a clinic rider at our farm broke a jump panel, we did not charge her. When our boarder's horse spooked and pulled out a post at the wash station we fixed it. When my daughter's horse broke a flag on cross country we were not billed.

Depends upon the situation but I would hope that fairness and commonsense would prevail. I agree with Carp...if our care/horse management error causes the issues that create damage, then the BO should pay for repairs. But as Baysangrays observes, abnormal destruction by the boarder's horse should be billable and could lead to eviction.

bizbachfan
Jun. 6, 2011, 09:31 AM
Is it customary to charge the boarder (actually seems to be at least double the cost) of a gate damaged by one of your boarded horses? or is it part of the cost of doing business?

I don't think its wrong to charge for the gate if it was a deliberate act by a particular horse, however why do you think they are charging you double? I do know the last gate that was trashed at our barn the BO had to pay the feed store guy to deliver and hang the gate so I am sure there was additional cost to have it delivered and hung. (this is because BO was unavailable) I would think it strange for the BO to make a substantial profit off this. (unless they might be trying to get you to leave):)

Schatzi09
Jun. 6, 2011, 10:33 AM
I had a situation when I sent my 2 yr old out for some training. I warned the BM that he was herd bound and would go under, over, or through whatever to get with the herd. He was fine there until one day when she was bringing in the horses she left him out until last. Before she could get to him he bent the gate. She left him in this field with the bent gate for another week before repairing the gate and sent me a bill. I was peeved at receiving this bill since the gate was still in use - so not destroyed - and the only reason it was bent was due to her negligence.

I did pay the bill but promptly removed my horse as well.

oldenmare
Jun. 6, 2011, 10:41 AM
My horse was chased through the fence by the barn owner's dogs.

I did NOT pay to repair any damage and the twit didn't pay for any of the vet bills. Oh - did I mention he severed an artery and almost died????

Fortunately, I was able to cite a clause in her contract back at her, moved horse immediately and told her she could forget 30 days notice. I just wish she had followed through on her threat to take me to court.

johnnysauntie
Jun. 6, 2011, 10:45 AM
I'm a boarder. In my mind, there's wear and tear on facilities that's to be expected, and then, on the other hand, there stupid things above and beyond that for which I feel responsible. Like when my gelding was unhappy about being in individual turnouts while his pasture was being rested, and he took nine boards out of the fence. BO got a check to cover the cost of the lumber and a few bottles of her favorite wine. It's the right thing to do in my mind, and I love the care she gives my horse. I want to be an awesome boarder.

sophie
Jun. 6, 2011, 01:15 PM
I've been a boarder for years.
I've never been asked to pay for any damage my horse(s) have done.
On one occasion my mare was spooked by xc skiers and went through 2 wooden fences. BM fixed them. On another instance my other mare kicked and bent a metal beam in her stall (and split her hoof in the process). BO fixed it.

Don't boarding barns have insurance for this type of problems anyway?


I have, however, replaced buckets and water troughs that my mare destroys. She loves to jump in and paw in the water. Not many water buckets/troughs can take that. So far the cast iron bathtub currently in her paddock is holding...;)

superD
Jun. 6, 2011, 01:20 PM
I have always only been a boarder but if my horse destroys anything at all I have always offered to replace it. I don't even want to know how many halters I have replaced in my lifetime!! Thankfully my boy now will only ruin halters due to his enjoyment of a good game of halter tag :yes:.

This winter he did figure out that he could lead his BFF around by the front of his blankets :yes: ( they no longer wear halters in turnout!)

mrsbradbury
Jun. 6, 2011, 02:27 PM
Don't boarding barns have insurance for this type of problems anyway?
)



To quickly answer this ^ um... NO!

As an BO/ trainer, there are circumstances, and we are all different, and I do my best to resolve situations, and prevent damage.

For example, I had to big geldings talled next to each other, they removed the wall, roke two posts and split the header 20 feet across. This was all custom cut hickory and 2" thick. I repaired it, didn't charge anyone and switched one of the horses with a different horse. Prolem resolved. Now, had either horse done the same thing in the new location I would billed the owner.

I had a different boarder, who's horse routine smashed stall gates, climbed the pasture gates like they were ladders. This is routine damage done by the animal. She had to pay.

So, in OP case, I would say it depends. Has you horse broken items before? Has it broken fence boards? stall doors? etc, and you this is the first time you've been billed?

It is not just the cost of the item, there is delivery, whether I go, one of my staff goes, or it's shipped. Then there's the labor to correct it, the loss of use on the structure/ or paddock until it's fixed. All of that needs to be taken in consideration... including... are you a good boarder, pay on time? clean up after yourself? are friendly with other boarders? participate in the program? Honestly, this can sometimes make a difference too.

anna's girl
Jun. 7, 2011, 01:33 AM
When I first got my mare, she was new and being bothered by her neighbor. Mare kicked a board in the stall and it came loose. Easily fixed by nailing it back in. This was her first offense. They didn't charge me but proceeded to throw her out in a dry lot and say she can never be in a stall there again. We left within the week.

SanJacMonument
Jun. 8, 2011, 10:46 AM
I've always offered to pay and repair damages my horse has done but I know not every pasture and barn is 'safe' for certain horses.

To the OP, I'd lean on the barn taking the bill but changing the situation, training, and let the horse owner know, the next bill is his for damage to anything - trough, fence, etc if it's a distructive horse.

Another paddock with gate not facing barn, or one that has hot wire might be the trick.

All horses are distructive, some are more distructive than others.

Had a horse that picked up a thorn in his eye from one of several mesquite tree that should have been trimmed. I didn't ask the BO to pay for the vet bill, but I did ask that all the trees be trimmed so it didn't happen again or to another horse.

It goes both ways.

jetsmom
Jun. 8, 2011, 01:41 PM
Not to hijack but quick question:

What if a lesson student tied school horse to a gate instead of on the cross ties to hose down, horse freaks out, yanks gate off hinges, goes running down the street with the gate banging him in the legs, horse has multiple injuries requiring ongoing vet care and being laid up for months. Who pays the vet bills?

On this, I'd probably pay half the cost to replace gate.

The instructor who was responsible for supervising them.