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  1. #1
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    Angry Do horse people put up with an insane amount of cr*p from suppliers? Example story...

    Is is just me or do horse owners put up with the kind of treatment by supposed business people (their providers/suppliers) that would be unacceptable in other walks of life?

    If an electrician or plumber turned up really late without a word of apology or a call to let us know they'd be late most people would fly off the handle, yet we seem to tolerate it from farriers! Similarly if a fitness instructor ran our performance down in every class we probably wouldn't go back, yet certain riding instructors seem to get away with being borderline abusive! Then there's a specific proportion of stable owners. They manage to treat employees and boarders like something they scrape off the sole of their shoe- and we all stand for it?!

    I am VERY lucky. My horse is boarded at a friend's small yard, there's hardly anyone there and everyone is lovely. But here is an experience I saw shared on another forum which horrifies me, is symbolic of what I have mentioned above, and what's even worse, other horse people seem to think it's acceptable!!

    The person in question has signed a livery contract which requires owners to be off the yard by 9.30 pm. Because she works, she and a friend have been exercising their horses in the evenings. She has had the owner of the premises approaching her once or twice and urging her to be off the yard by 9, so mindful of this (tho a bit perplexed given the rules) of late they were bringing their horse in around 8ish but always leaving well before 9:30.

    The poster admits that on very rare occasions they have been kept late at work, on which days they texted the other owner of the stables (his wife) apologising to which they have received the reply "it's fine just so long as you lock the gates right". She is careful, always locks the gates correctly and switches all the lights off. Nonetheless the yard owner has continued to approach the two owners telling them to get off by 9pm.

    Then on this particular evening, at quarter to nine, the yard owner approached the poster and her friend/other horse owner with their mare on this yard and told her it was unacceptable that she was still on the yard at this time and asked her what possible reason she could have to be there. She explained that she had work and didn't finish until 8:30pm to which he replied "well you'll have to make other arrangements and get someone else to bring your horses in".

    He then said she could not keep her horses out past eight and her being on the yard at this time was disturbing the other horses. If this was an issue for them they should all move their horses. The conversation then became quite personal with the comment made: "I've owned horses for over 30 years and I've never seen anything as ridiculous as you two". The final comment was: "You both have till Friday to either find another stables or start bringing in earlier. That means you'll have to find 3 horses new homes". He threatened them that if they were not off the yard by 9pm they would be kicked off there and then- neither had time to do their horses properly and one was reduced to tears- they did the bare minimum and left in a complete panic.

    The poster herself is the younger of the two owners (only about 20), got the most face to face comments and when she arrived home crying her mother was of course very upset. Since she pays the bills she got in touch with the owner of the stables to ask what had happened. She was met with equally short shrift over the telephone and was told:

    He wanted ALL horses in by SEVEN o clock.
    The two owners could stay on the yard till nine but the horses must be in by 7.
    That their behavior is ridiculous, that the older owner was a bad influence on the younger and that the lady calling him needed to discipline her daughter!
    That the younger owner was rude to him when he spoke to her (which they deny absolutely as they were in tears at the time and said nothing).
    That his ideal solution is for them to leave as he has a long waiting list and doesn't value their custom.
    That the daughter had been leaving all the lights on and all the doors unlocked (which again they deny).
    That the yard rules say 9 o clock shutting time- the owners in question have re-read them and rule seventeen says 9:30pm.

    In the end when she disputed this he hung up on the bill-payer!

    Even worse, the daughter has since been told by another owner on the same yard that the chap told her the reason he was that angry was that he thinks she had been having sex with her boyfriend on the yard in the tea room and that this is another reason he doesn't like her being on the yard so late. The guy's in his fifties, such talk seems wholly appropriate without proof, and again she refutes this in full.

    What further amazed was other people on this forum rushing to the stable owner's defence!! Comments have included:

    laugh it off, a lot of older guys talk like that.
    Most stables don't let you on that late so you're lucky.
    Just put your head down and deal with it.
    I wouldn't like people being around my house that late either.

    I don't understand the late comments- I used to work at riding schools offering full livery to horse owners- they always came to ride in the evenings, we just asked that they told us so we didn't feed their horse. They had full time jobs and were often at the office late! Anyway if it's an issue his yard rules should just be changed to reflect it.

    Do we just put up and shut up as a group because we feel like we have to?!
    Last edited by Cancara; Feb. 22, 2013 at 04:56 AM.
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  2. #2
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    If the horse owner does not like the new rules at that facility the horse owner is free to move their horse to a facility that does not have these rules. I miss the reason to get all upset.

    The start of your rant made me scratch my head and wonder if you have not experienced much of life yet.
    Ever waited for the Cable guy or the washer repair guy, the doctor, the dentist or heck, even your mechanic. Though yes it is not what most would call professional, not being on time and not giving an excuse is not something only farriers do. It is a pretty common issue in many aspects of life.

    You not liking a trainer that yells is fine, then you do not hire one. Because you do not like it does not mean others do not like it. Some people even like their fitness trainer to push them that way (your example was a fitness instructor). Thankfully their are many types of trainers (barn owners, mechanics, etc) out there so everyone can pick which situation works best for them.


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  3. #3
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    Please understand the rules have not been changed- they are pinned up in the communal tea room as they always have been and all liveries have the same contract so they are not 'new rules' as you have mentioned- the yard owner has just started chasing them off by nine for some reason known only to himself.
    Horse Selling Hell
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  4. #4
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    You are a third party in this story and only have one side of the story.
    What if those two owners aren't telling all the truth. What if they were rude to the BO. What if they were having sex on the premise?

    Just because she went crying to her mother doesn't mean she's an angel of virtue.

    There is always two sides to a story.

    And if the BO is that crazy, she should obviously move her horses from there.

    ETA: And I don't mind waiting for a good farrier/vet/doctor/trainer/whatever because I can understand they are taking all the time they need to do the best job possible and they do it for everyone.


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  5. #5
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    I agree with the other posters. I once had to live with no kitchen as my contractor took to weeks off for deer hunting season... I don't think the problem lies with them staying until 9:30. The problem seems to be that the BO wants the horses in by 7:00, and they cant do that sometimes because of work. Either get someone to bring in the horses or move them to a place that fits better with the owners schedule.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by alibi_18 View Post
    You are a third party in this story and only have one side of the story.
    Yup, exactly. The dispute about closing time for the facility: a BO has the right to set a closing time and even a right to be inflexible about it, as long as they treat everyone the same way and are upfront about it in the contract. I wouldn't sign a contract requiring me to be off the premises by 9 because I know that would make it really difficult to ride some nights, but I wouldn't blame someone for setting those rules if they want to. I just wouldn't choose to board there. The details about 9 vs. 9:30; lights left on vs. turned off -- that's classic he-said, she-said. And as for the alleged canoodling in the tea room: if it happened, that's icky and I don't blame the BO for being peeved about it. If it didn't happen, the BO is creepy and/or listens too much to idle gossip, in which case the boarders are better off out of there. I don't think it signals a general breakdown of professional manners in the horse industry, nor is it a "horror story".

    However, as the mother of an almost-20 year old daughter, I will add: if my daughter came to my crying about an unpleasant interaction with an employer or a service provider, I would listen to her, give her advice but I would NEVER pick up the phone and make a call on her behalf. She's an adult, for crying out loud.


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  7. #7
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    You see, the replies indicate that we do accept this as normal! If you went to a shop that was advertised as being open to a set time and someone chased you out aggressively before then, then you'd be upset and rightly so!

    Because it's a stables, everyone is blaming the owner of the horse who was only caring for her animal at a time that she is contractually allowed to.

    It just mystifies me.
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  8. #8
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    Cancara, I agree with you, and I think the only way to address this when it occurs is for us to vote with our feet. The difficulty is that there is a scarcity of wellrun places to keep ones horses, which far too often puts us in the position of being supplicants instead of customers. It sounds like regardless of when horses come in (and why does this matter?), if the contracts and rules say 9:30, but he is enforcing whatever the f$$$ all he feels like that day, that is a problem. Time to move.

    But I don't think it's ok. And I agree that horse people put up with some serious craziness. It's all because we don't all own land. I know that I am going to get a shitstorm of 'boarders are satan', but it is hard and expensive to be a boarder, full of unfun choices that landowners don't have to make on the same terms.
    I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
    I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09



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  9. #9
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    Keep in mind that when you're waiting for your vet or farrier, it's almost always the CUSTOMERS that are responsible for them being late. Farrier shows up on time for his first appointment but his client is late, or adds another horse, or has to go catch the horse first and takes them an hour. All it takes is one bad client to mess up the farriers schedule for the day.

    I don't see the problem either. The BO probably set up those rules thinking everybody would be respectful being out there late. It's possible that a couple young friends at the barn together are giggly, loud, obnoxious, disrespectful of the fact that the BO needs to be up early to take care of their horses, and no, probably doesn't want just one horse left out by itself for several hours, then the owners coming in and making noise, getting all the horses riled up. A 20 something that has mommy paying her pony's bills and then calling the BO to complain doesn't sound like somebody who would be respectful, and I'm betting her mom wasn't very nice on the phone either.

    I don't think this situation really has anything to do with us "putting up with bad service" in the horse industry. If they don't want to put up with it, then they should leave and find a different barn, they same way you wouldn't revisit an establishment that you weren't happy with the service. If this is something you consider a "horror story" then you obviously haven't had much experience in the horse world or the real world.
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  10. #10
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    If I sign a contract that says a service is going to be available until X time, and I show up to use it at X-2 hours, you know what I don't expect? I don't expect to be scolded and yelled at like a naughty child. I can't believe how hard everyone here is willing to work to come down on the side of telling the the boarder they are wrong. Wow.
    I tolerate all kinds of animal idiosyncrasies.
    I've found that I don't tolerate people idiosyncrasies as well. - Casey09



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  11. #11
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    No, I don't think anyone is saying "bad service is acceptable in the horse industry". I don't patronize businesses whose hours of operation are inconvenient to me, and would be particularly annoyed if I went to a shop and it was closed half an hour before the posted closing time. It may seem that we "put up with more" in the horse industry because there are so many factors that go into selecting a boarding barn vs. selecting a hardware store, for example. I might put up with some weird rules if the care and the riding facilities are good, and my horse seems happy. When there are so many dimensions to be considered (e.g., size, location, amenities, access to trainers, type of feed, feed schedule, turnout, footing, etc. etc. etc.), there are bound to be compromises.

    There are enough ambiguities in the OPs story (the wife said they could be there after hours sometimes, then the owner blew up - why? Maybe the boarders really did do something to tick them off) that it is impossible to figure out what is really going on. The OP is a 3rd party, so who knows the "real" story. If the BO is a jerk -- then vote with your feet.


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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cancara View Post
    You see, the replies indicate that we do accept this as normal! If you went to a shop that was advertised as being open to a set time and someone chased you out aggressively before then, then you'd be upset and rightly so!
    Our replies indicate that we are no fool and that we don't take for granted a one sided story.

    If I was being silly and obnoxious in a shop late at night, I bet I would be kicked out before the closure time. And it would be well deserved.

    People don't get kicked out of places for no reason. Maybe, MAYBE, the BO is crazy but I wouldn't bet on it.

    As for me, this story doesn't make much sense.

    Because it's a stables, everyone is blaming the owner of the horse who was only caring for her animal at a time that she is contractually allowed to.
    It just mystifies me.
    How do you know? She came sobbing over your shoulder too? You were there?

    You don't know the BO. You don't know the boarder. You don't know the situation.

    Like Dr. House would say : Everyone is lying.

    And why are you so upset about this situation? Are you involved in any way?


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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lori B View Post
    I can't believe how hard everyone here is willing to work to come down on the side of telling the the boarder they are wrong. Wow.
    I do not see where anyone is truly saying the boarder is wrong. People are saying:
    1. There are two sides to this story and since this side seems a little far fetched we think we are missing something.
    2. If you do not like this, leave and find a place you like.

    Neither is saying the boarder is wrong.

    The OP is the one who tossed out farriers being on time in the equation. To me that is a different topic and not something specific to the horse world, even though the OP seems to want to twist it to be.



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cancara View Post
    The poster admits that on very rare occasions they have been kept late at work, on which days they texted the other owner of the stables (his wife) apologising to which they have received the reply "it's fine just so long as you lock the gates right". She is careful, always locks the gates correctly and switches all the lights off..... when she arrived home crying her mother was of course very upset. Since she pays the bills she got in touch with the owner of the stables to ask what had happened. She was met with equally short shrift over the telephone and was told: ....That the daughter had been leaving all the lights on and all the doors unlocked (which again they deny).
    Seems that the yard owners were initially pretty flexible about late hours. What is more credible -- that the yard owner suddenly, for no reason, decides they are going to become completely inflexible about late hours, or that they got fed up with the girls' behaviour after hours? I'm sorry; a girl whose mother has to fight her battles for her does not sound like a completely reliable witness for her own level of responsibility regarding lights and gates.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cancara View Post
    Then on this particular evening, at quarter to nine, the yard owner approached the poster and her friend/other horse owner with their mare on this yard and told her it was unacceptable that she was still on the yard at this time and asked her what possible reason she could have to be there. She explained that she had work and didn't finish until 8:30pm to which he replied "well you'll have to make other arrangements and get someone else to bring your horses in".
    If she worked till 8:30, she was probably just arriving at quarter to 9, which makes it unlikely that she would be finished by 9:30.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cancara View Post
    Even worse, the daughter has since been told by another owner on the same yard that the chap told her the reason he was that angry was that he thinks she had been having sex with her boyfriend on the yard in the tea room and that this is another reason he doesn't like her being on the yard so late.
    This is a bizarre accusation. If this is baseless, the yard owner is a creep and I sure as heck wouldn't want to put up with this kind of gossip-mongering. If it's true, no wonder he wants them gone. I doubt the angry "mother who pays the bills" would be getting the full story if it is in fact true.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cancara View Post
    The conversation then became quite personal with the comment made: "I've owned horses for over 30 years and I've never seen anything as ridiculous as you two"...... In the end when she disputed this he hung up on the bill-payer!
    Either we've got a couple of immature rule-breakers with a helicopter mommy who have frayed the last nerve of a long-suffering yard owner. Or, a couple of hard-working horse-loving girls getting jerked around by a rule-changing yard owner with a creepy interest in their sex lives. Or, something in the middle. I don't think we'll be able to sort out the true story from the facts provided, but either way, I don't think it indicates a crisis in the horse industry.



  15. #15
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    A bit of a tempest in a teacup maybe.
    The thread has 9 pages and every single person seems to agree with the OP, only 3 questioned if there may be more to the story. And that was many pages in, nobody rushed to anything.

    http://www.equine-world.co.uk/horse-...ad.php?t=36644

    Seems there is a rule that says not to leave a few horses out after the rest of the turnout field has been brought in as it disrupts things and upsets horses too. At least the OP mentioned that in another thread on there, moving the turnouts around.

    It does sound, from the story, that the BO was angry and reacting in an unprofessional manner.
    It also sounds as if this boarder has had multiple problems and can be a bit dramatic.
    Both may be right or both may be wrong...but the reality is probably somewhere in the middle.
    Cancara, let your friend and the BO work it out. Or the mom of your friend and the BO. But I wouldn't add to the drama, just in case. It seems the barn and your friend just aren't a good fit. And the BO may or may not be a tad nuts. Either way, best for them to move somewhere else for their own peace of mind.
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  16. #16
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    The horror...
    A friend told me I was delusional. I almost fell off my unicorn.


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  17. #17
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    Gotta love when the original thread surfaces. This should make for an interesting read.



  18. #18

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    So you came to an American horse board, to stir the pot about a possible sex scandal in the UK? Uhm, okay, I guess that makes sense.
    Closest thing to a sauna around here would be tarping over a few cows, hold a bucket of water & light a match.



  19. #19
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    His barn, his rules.

    The difference between this situation and a shop is that the barn is also his HOME, right?

    Try showing up at the shop owner's house whenever you feel like it.



  20. #20
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    Yes you can get bad service in every walk of life- but the real extremes I can reel off the top of my head are from the horsey side of life.

    I've worked in over 3 yards as a groom; I remember the girl who was reduced to tears in a lesson by her instructor because she couldn't get her horse to canter- a paying client! The 25 yr old trainee who received a loud, rude tongue lashing from the same trainer for not getting the hell out of the way of another rider when she'd finally managed to pull up a horse that was essentially running off with her. The farrier who rolled up 2.5 hrs late and said nothing but 'where's my tea?'. The yard owner who screamed at a livery to her face then abused her to anyone who would listen every time her back was turned for doing nothing more than asking POLITELY to move fields. I was there, a passer by/same lesson/mucking a stable etc., and that's without mentioning some of the stuff I have actually been involved personally.

    It's lunacy and it happens all the time! I am a lucky person. I have a nice trainer, a good home for my horse, a great farrier and a good vet. I can't understand why we accept such behaviour from adults, as I have myself in the past, and I think it's supply and demand as you say- they do it cos they can get some other mug in your place just as easily.

    Yeah I brought it here because I was amazed that some would so quickly defend the YO- I deliberately didn't link the original because I was curious as to how a whole different audience would respond- I wondered do we all just put up with that, are we so willing to excuse these people?

    I kinda think yes and I think I know why- as someone said, the trade offs, and the fact that if you don't like it 'there's plenty more where that came from'.
    Last edited by Cancara; Feb. 22, 2013 at 06:23 AM.
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