A student of mine told me today she is moving to Dallas and I am trying to help her find a barn. The horse won't move until late fall or so, and student said if she doesn't find a place that is perfect she wants to leave the horse with me and she will fly back and visit, but I think she will be happier if she can have her horse in the same state.
Horse is a 25+year old QH mare with no teeth. She eats a mash of alfalfa pellets and senior feed and does quite well on that. Horse is overall a good citizen, but will take advantage of her timid owner, so occasionally needs a tune up from a trainer.
Rider is a woman in her 50s, very sweet and very timid. When she rides consistently so gets braver, but she travels a lot and when she gets back, she gets more nervous again. Her main fears tend to be about cantering, picking the back feet, and being in open areas, but any new situation makes her nervous. She needs a lot of support from a trainer.
Barn wise she needs something with a good group of people. She is still a rather green owner and while she tries and wants to learn, she still relies on the people around her for a lot of support and as such, it would be fairly easy for her to end up in a situation where she was taken advantage of. She needs a patience trainer who is willing to help her through her nervous spells. Discipline doesn’t really matter, she rides in a dressage saddle as that is what she is most comfortable in, but she just wants to have fun with her horse, so any trainer who would help her advance works, she has no desire to jump. If the place had some lesson horses so she could take some lessons in the mean time before moving the horse down and get to know the people and trainer it would be nice.
Any suggestions for barns that would work for the pair?
The Procrastinators Anonymous meeting has been postponed again.
Given the age and condition of the horse having it remain where it is to me the best choice.
We left our horses in Kentucky for two years before bringing them to Ft Worth; mainly because of the type of showing we were doing at the time it was to our advantage to keep them where they were. But it took them a few years to fully adjust once here.
Summers here can be harsh.... It is not uncommon to have extended periods of 100F to 110F days with a few going in toward 115F
North Dallas is a very large area.... In some minds it extends to Oklahoma City (south of I-40 is north Dallas. North of I-40 is OK City) ..... There are barns however the likelihood of one been any closer to the owner than Love Field where she can hop onto a Southwest jet and fly to see her horse is going to to be hard to find, especially one that she can trust for the care of her horse. (The Wright Amendment expires in 2014 so Southwest can then fly direct)
As for the owner.. it took me five or so years to adjust to North Texas as from where I came from there were real trees... here a tree is any bush taller than ten feet.
Winters are easy.... Usually just January 3rd through January 6th... With the Saturday of the Ft Worth Stock show parade being a relapse into subfreezing weather
I'm with Clanter. I'd advise her not to move the horse. At least until she's here long enough to get to know people, and then maybe she can find a private barn willing to board just her horse. The kind of care a senior needs is rarely found in the big barns. I took in 2, 27 and 30yrs. old, last summer that were in horrible shape. They had been at a H/J barn. I know the barn, and it's not a bad place, they just aren't set up to give extra care to horses like this.
These are my only boarders, and they are a lot of work. I feed them 3/day and I'm willing to help with meds if needed. Because their teeth are so bad the feed has to be soaked, and the water trough has to be cleaned every day. They pull up grass, but can't chew it so a lot of it ends up in the water. Anyway, just stuff like that the the big barns won't do because they normally wouldn't have to.
"Everyone will start to cheer, when you put on your sailin shoes"-Lowell George
There is a nice retirement facility in Sanger, north of Denton, called Shadowcreek
Retirement Farm or something like that...they have a web site. My guys were there for several weeks last summer while I was recovering from foot surgery in order to give DH some relief from chores. He probably wished me, the two dogs and 12 cats had gone there. Anyway, the place has huge pastures, set back from the road and decent fencing. The BO's choice of vets is one I avoid like the
plague but she had orders to only use my vet or my backup vet. Don't believe they allow riding but not sure.
Agree with Clanter about the heat thing....we moved here from Colorado. My older guy had to be put down about 4 years later from heat related problems. Am sure he would have toddled around happily for a few more years if we had stayed in Colorado. Summers here truly suck! Each spring, the boys pack their sitcases and gaze longingly to the northwest with signs on their butts saying
Colorado or Bust.
Where is the horse now? If out of state, I'd recommend (as the others have) that the horse remain where she is. The student would have an easier time of finding a good trainer to ride with on some nice lesson horses if she wasn't trying to find facility that caters to both a strong lesson program and retirement/senior horses.
Horse is in Fort Collins right now and has lived in Colorado her entire life. I was hoping that just moving in the winter would give her enought time to adjust to the heat, but I have no experience moving horses to heat like that, so seeing how long it takes for them to adjust, will reccomend horse stays here.
That being said, any reccomendations for lesson barns? Student has said she will try to fly back once a month, but knowing her, if she only rides once a month nerves will start to become a big issue and she won't be able to enjoy herself. She has no lofty ambitions, just wants to w/t/c safely and have fun.
The Procrastinators Anonymous meeting has been postponed again.
Well, there's North Dallas and North of Dallas! LOL In actual North Dallas, the two places that come to my mind with good lesson programs are Park Lane Academy and Las Colinas. Not sure if either have "adult groups" or if mainly kids. I don't think either of them would be good places for her horse as turnout is quite limited as they are more or less "in town."
Off the top of my head, I can't really think of any dressage barns with lesson horses.
Moving further north, there's Prospering Farms (Prosper), Hidden Lakes (Bartonville/Argyle), Flower Mound Equestrian Center (Flower Mound). These all have lesson programs (h/j)
There are tons of different kinds of barns in the Aubrey/Pilot Point area.
Depending on her definition of North Dallas, she could easily be looking at an hour to the barn depending on time of day.
I'm with the others, that she should get settled here first, get her bearings and take some time looking at either a lesson barn or a laid back barn for her mare...don't think they'll be the same place.
This is a really BIG area with LOTS of traffic! A lot depends on her budget...she could be looking at anywhere from maybe $400-$1500 mo for board.
The more specific she can be in what/where she's looking, the more we can try to help!
today was pretty nappy.
90 degrees and humid. very sticky. hard to breath out there!
We have to keep our paint horse up in the springs/summers/falls (April-Oct basically) and under 2 large fans.
2 years ago I found him panting and not sweating. He was in shade and there was a breeze...it's just so darn hot.
I actually have gotten in the habit keeping everyone under the fans since then.