Finally bought the farm--need Lexington KY contacts now
Hi everyone! We finally bought a farm. We'll be relocating from Pennsylvania to just northwest of Lexington, Kentucky in Cynthiana, Kentucky. I know it's a very horse orientated area (and I will check all the Lexington threads on COTH).
So I'm hoping you all can help me with some names and contacts. We need hay suppliers, non-wheat straw suppliers (because of my allergies we can only use rye, barley, or oat straw), a horse dentist, a horse vet that does farm calls, a horse reproduction specialist, a horse chiropractor, manure removers, etc. We have 18 horses currently (breed TBs for race plus I like to do project horses) so I'm hoping to find several different suppliers for hay especially.
Also looking for who you would recommend for lessons, either positive, or "stay away from xxxx" types. I can haul to them. I don't lesson every week, so I'm looking for trainers who are content to help me with what they see, and give me things to work on. Then schedule again, when I'm ready for the next step or if I'm having trouble with something.
I'm looking for a dressage instructor, classical or french classical preferred, that can help me with at least 2nd level through 4th level. Must be professional in their attitude. I don't care what they have to teach me, if they get rude or mean during lesson time, I won't tolerate that.
I would also like to get back into jumpers with one of my horses, so would like someone to help me with that. I'm not super advanced over fences though, so even GOOD LNT suggestions are welcome.
I'm going to cross post into the dressage, hunter/jumper, and eventing forums too, to hopefully get some trainer suggestions.
Thanks everyone! PMs are welcome if you prefer to not post here.
Not sure about non wheat straw dealers, but you might check with Standlee Hay company here in Lex.
As far as a vet goes, Chris Newton from rood and riddle is fabulous, but quite busy. He's a fabulous sport horse vet, treats plenty of race horses as well, and is a repro guru. He's also very good with acupuncture and chiropractic. He'll do dentals as well. He's pretty much great at everything you're looking for.
Erika Wireman of Bluegrass Equine Dentistry is one of Dr Newtons former interns, and she is wonderful, thorough, and lovely to deal with. Would highly recommend her for dental work.
Creech does the majority of manure removal around here. They are based at the Thoroughbred Training Center on Paris Pike.
Jenn O'Neill at Antebellum is wonderful and positive for lessons. And I know that she uses a local dressage instructor herself, as well as a jumper trainer. She could direct you to them.
Hope this helps, and welcome to the area! It's great here!!
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I'm about 35 minutes north of the Kentucky Horse Park, about 20 minutes from Turfway Park.
Either Haygard Davis or Rood and Riddle are top notch veterinary centers.
There is a farm supply center in Lexington off US 25 that has fabulous hay, name starts with a "G" I think, I'll have to look it up tomorrow when I get to the office. Maybe Giles Farm Equipment?
Good luck finding a good dressage trainer, perhaps Lexington has better ones than Northern Kentucky, you'd think there would be several, but no one really stands out. Sorry if that offends anyone, just don't seem to be any old school, classical trainers. The young ones don't seem to return calls.
Rood and Riddle has a fabulous farrier dept, they do recommend people.
Our farm is right off the Dry Ridge exit, but we're right on I-75, so you'll see us if you are going north toward Cincinnati.
Rob Spencer or Eric Parsons for farrier (not sure if they're taking new clients.) They are a bit on the pricey side but they really know their stuff. If your looking for someone less expensive but still good, just send me a PM.
Yes, 2ndrygal, it's Giles Equipment in Georgetown for hay. Pretty decent quality, but don't make sure you stock up in the fall....things get a bit sketchy on the quality in the spring.
If you're looking for top quality alfalfa and are willing to pick up south of Lexington, just send me a PM. My hay guy has the best looking alfalfa I've ever seen.
Rood & Riddle or Hagyard for vet, both very good. I use Travis McVey or Travis Burns at Park and they are excellent as well. I've heard not great things about Park's farrier, and I think if I were doing surgery, I would use R&R or Hagyard.
There's Wise Choice Tack in Georgetown for tack, KBC in Lexington off Leestown Rd. for supplies and limited tack. Wise Choice has a consignment shop in the basement as well.
Almost forgot...Clark Mandel for chiropractor. He's awesome.
Regarding Jenn O'Neill- I have not been able to train with her, but I visited Antebellum, spoke to her, and watched her ride, and from that would highly recommend her. She has a patient, kind way about her with the horses and seems genuinely interested in understanding each as an individual. Plus she's super friendly, which is always nice. Sometimes good horse people aren't good people people.
Welcome to Lexington! Here are some other suggestions!
Vet - Equine Medical Associates - They do mostly Thoroughbreds (breeding and racing) and have all of the major TB farms around here as their clients. They do not have their own clinic, but can operate out of surrounding clinic
I second Reese Koffler for dressage. Super positive and excellent teacher. Also located very close to you at her new farm.
Couple more jump trainer options:
Lindsey Oaks - Red Letter Eventing
Ashley Brien Watts - Lift Off Equestrian Center
Elaine Schott - River Mountain Farm
Whitney Morris - Morris Farm Eventing
Southern States has stores in Cynthiana, Paris and Georgetown, as does Tractor Supply. I live equidistant to Cynthiana and Georgetown and prefer the Georgetown SS. They have just about everything you can want from a good cheap leather halter through to an attic full of every sort of bucket. Cynthiana SS is more oriented to the cattle and corn farmer. Paris didn't carry Flax seed oil or Linseed oil.
Hallway Feeds is in North Lexington at the Farmers Feed Mill. Hilander Feeds is in Georgetown, and there is a feed mill I can't remember the right name of in Winchester. It might be Mcrae's, I know we buy a low end sweet feed made by them at Hilander.
Both R&R and Hagyard have every facet of veterinary practice covered in house, BUT, we only have two horses and where we live is considered BFE. We are 27 whole miles from the furthest of the two big vet practices and they won't come out. Even when I told them I commuted right past their door every farking day and it was the easiest commute I'd ever had, too bad so sad. "But we could haul to them!"
Our best method has been to get together with our neighbors to get the trimmer and the vet out and to buy hay. Our hay guy lost his leases and we now purchase from a guy who works at Toyota and hays on the side. So far so good. SS and Hilander also carry hay for that 20 bale purchase and maybe even for 200. We never have tried Giles.
You might want to check out Victory Haven Training Center on Russell Cave, and the Training Center on Paris Pike just to see what you can see. They may have names for reliable hay and straw vendors, they sure use enough of it. Victory has a huge manure composting operation - from what I see here it either gets spread daily or composted and sold.
KY is very horsey, no doubt about that, but it can be hard to find places. My Saddlebred trainer has the crappiest website you've ever seen and plenty of other horse related businesses are the same, if they even have one at all. They still operate by word of mouth and wonder why they don't get much new business. Scheffelridge Farm does have a website, they do H/J and if you google it you'll get a bunch of "also searched for" links that might be in the general area. I know my DD's friend rides there as it is convenient to Georgetown and not too hard to get to Cynthiana or back to BFE.
Well, good luck. One of the things I was most worried about when I moved here was finding all those contacts that you spent years cultivating at the old place - the best parts place, the hole in the wall lumber place, the really good mechanic, all the stuff you've asked about. They are here.
Hay: Lots of options, large variation in price and quality, and whether you want it delivered/stacked or want to pick it up. Creech is extremely high quality, but pricey. The local sellers are smart enough that they save the best for regular customers, especially in years when hay is scarce in other parts of the country. It's better to develop a relationship, than skip around based on price especially with 18 or so horses.
Grain: The best, frestest are in Lex. Options depend on what you want. I'd start with Hallway & Woodford Feeds.
There are several very high quality farriers. You may need to keep in mind that Cynthiana's a bit off the beaten track, so you may have a hard time getting a top farrier out there for one or two if the rest are just trims. I'd ask the trainers you decide to go with who they like.
Another very good event trainer, who lives in Paris, KY, is Alexandra Knowles (formerly Slusher). She is a good instructor and has a very nice facility. I rode in a Sinead Halpin clinic there.
When my horse is sound, I ride over at Cathy Weischhoff's place. She has a huge covered arena and cross country jumps for every level.
I have heard good things about Reese, but have not had a lesson with her, yet. Susan Posner is another upper level dressage instructor, but she is a bit South of Lexington.
I board my mare at a private barn and we use Dr. Rocky Mason, who is a traveling Vet from Hagyard Equine. He gets very busy in the Spring with foaling issues at TB farms. He is a very nice, caring Vet., who understands difficult horses. I am not certain if he goes up your way though.