Not unreasonable. What is unreasonable is it sounds like they are getting a lot for very little $ - and not having the courtesy to pick up after their horse.
I pay pretty good money for rough board – and we are expected to pick up in the arena – keeps it nice for ALL of us. And like responsible adults, everyone picks up.
Yes, get contracts – and I would start making a stink every time someone leaves poop in the arena. Big signs – email blasts – notes in tack room. Perhaps the “not guilty” one will peer pressure the non poop scooper to do something!
Remind the boarders of the rule. Tell them that he'll lock the arena the next time someone forgets to clean up after themselves. That gives everyone a chance to get it right and warning about the consequences of forgetting.
I don't think it will help to put this into a boarding contract. Who cares if it's in writing? Can you enforce it? Are you going to kick out one of these boarders for that? If you are willing to go there, why not also be willing to lock the ring for, say, 48 hours each time someone screws up? Also, I wouldn't want a solution that caused me as the BO to do any more work than necessary-- reminding, charging the $5 Turd Penalty, or figuring out who done what.
Screw it. They'll remember if the consequences of forgetting are clear and unpleasant.
Eek - BO's must have hated us! I've never been asked to do this, and if it was expected I wasn't aware. Now I feel awful.
It is expected with alot of the modern types of synthetic footing that cost like hades and do not mix well with excessive manure deposits (or pee as discussed in another thread). With the old sand or dirt rings? It looks better if it's picked up and keeps the flies down but some places don't care since it does not hurt anything and they can add more sand pretty cheap.
If you were never asked and it was/is not posted? It's optional.
When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.
Brief meeting: "Our request: Pick up manure your horse leaves in the arena. We enjoy having you here, but we've spent a lot of money for this good footing, and we don't feel as though we need to constantly remind you. Fork and muck bucket by the door. If you LIKE riding in the arena, use it before you leave - EVERY SINGLE TIME. You will get one more chance; the next time we come in and find piles in the arena, the arena doors will be locked."
All the barns I know of have a policy like this. Common courtesy. I would talk to the girls and explain that you like having them around but unless they are going to pick up for themselves there will either be a board increase (to cover hour inconvenience and labor cleaning up after them) or they will be asked to leave. Sounds like they have a pretty sweet deal (this coming from a 22yo college student!).
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Not unreasonable at all, in fact we have to get off and clean up manure immediately, can't even wait until the end of the ride to clean up, as the Travel Rite (or whatever it is called) footing can't have manure mixed up in it (or so we have been told). I would definitely institute a rule and charge a fee for each cleanup, and as others have already said, you should have a boarding contract as well.
I didn't read all the responses, so maybe this has been covered. I would explain precisely why you want it done. I find that people are more willing and happy to go along with rules and regulations when they understand the reasoning behind them.
But, OMG, I am so happy we don't have to do that! I'm good about it in the aisles. But I would HATE to dismount when my mare can poop as many as 5-6 times in a ride! And if it's busy and I've got her in tow, it's just cumbersome. As soon as she's on cross ties, I'm likely to forget.