FYI this is going to be a long RANT that has been a long time coming -
I have a close close friend - like a sister to me - that takes care of someone's 2 horses but this job is taking its toll on her sanity. Now let me just start by saying I know why she stays at this job, she has known this one particular horse for probably 15 years - I mean she remembers him when he stepped off the plane from Europe, knows his past TWO owners and this is a horse that was at the TOP OF HIS GAME - I mean TOP...we are talking showed at Devon, WEF, Indoors, the big deal.
This individual that she works for was also at the top of their game once & rode with one of the elite trainers...BUT NOW it is the direct opposite - has completely "checked out", doesnt ride and I dont think even wants these horses on the farm anymore.
This person has no, I mean ZERO respect for my friend or his horses for that matter. If she was not there this horse would be dead by now and I am not joking.
The horses in the barn are expected to stand on NOTHING, i am talking a dusting of shavings on the floor simialr to you dusting a rolling pin with flour. If my friend dares to add even a 1/2 a bag of shavings to the stall, the next day when she arrives they have taken the shavings out of the stalls. My friend is going and buying the horses feed and feeding them herself and at her cost as her employer expects a bag of pellets to last a month for 2 horses - BIG horses.
I understand to some people taking care of horses/mucking stalls is a "low" job but this employer takes it to an entire different level in that they treat my friend like GARBAGE - but then again she stays because of the horse - she made a promise to him!
Now please keep in mind that this is not a "poor" individual just trying to keep their retired horses. This is a high executive for a very affluent company so its not like they are rubbing pennies together to keep their animals. I can state that based on what is witnessed. They want to spend ZERO on the horses, yet, have no problem going out on weekend excursions and spending $100's if not $1,000's on themselves, and, they also just very recently went out and purchased themselves a VERY expensive dog - I mean VERY expensive.
My latest issue is that my friend has called me three times this week completely breaking down in tears over the lack of respect based on what has occured when she has shown up to work her 3 or 4 hour shift. When they purchsaed this dog the previous owner was still allowed to maintain breeding rights. So the other day my friend is there and the individual that they purchased the dog comes flying in the driveway and says they are there to breed the male dog to another female dog. Luckily she was near then end of the job and was able to get out of there before they started breeding the dogs. My friend returns the next day to work her hours and there is what I imagine is dog semen all over the barn, sticky spots EVERYWHERE, i am talking the aisle, the hay room, the wash stall, everywhere. Now today my friend arrives to begin her shift and they are there AGAIN, not breeding but "collecting".
Now I am a big girl, i understand the little stork doesnt fly down with babies, puppies and kittens and horses - but SERIOUSLY, my friend is there to care for the horses, not sign up for a dog breeding operation. The job only entails 3 or 4 hours, same hours every day, it is not like my friend is there the ENTIRE day.
So if you have listened to me rant my question to you is are these working conditions ridiculous: Care for horses that the owner clearly doesnt want anymore, be treated like you are a piece of garbage that has ZERO feelings, get ZERO respect from the owner and treated like you dont even matter and now have to witness dogs mating when you are there to just care for the horses and trying to do your job becasue this happens to be their latest ENDEAVOR.
The brief 2nd part is what would you say is proper compensation (as what my friend actually makes would make most of you fall on the floor - My friend makes very very VERY little & this has been my issue with staying at this job as well):
Daily Muck 2 stalls, wash/refill water buckets, feed, make breakfast, sweep/blow barn, dust trucks, sweep wash stall, bathroom, tackroom, feedroom, hay room, muck paddocks, wash and refill outside water troughs and weekly keep hay room stocked with hay for week.
Thank You for listening I am not sure if any of you feel the same as I do but to me this is a bit extreme!
OMG, dogs mating, the horror!
Sorry, am I missing something?
It sounds like the job is worth about $10 an hour.
I agree, this kind of care for two horses would pay about $10 an hour.
None of this is your problem, and if your friend doesn't like it there and doesn't approve of the conditions the horses are being kept in, her option is to quit working there. If the conditions are so bad that she thinks it is warranted, then she can call to report animal abuse. Honestly, nothing you posted here screams "deplorable living conditions" to me, though.
Are the horses outside most of the time? If so, the shavings in the stall become far less important.
The dog issues are completely not her business and she has no right to complain about what the owner of the property does on their property. If they want to breed llamas, or geese, or hamsters in the aisle, they are welcome to do so.
1. It's none of her business or yours how he spends his money. He earned it, he keeps/spends it at HIS discretion.
2. Some horses don't need grain. I own one. What's the body score of the horses in question?
3. As far as the dog breeding, how big is the farm? As in, can she go do another chore in another area of the farm while the dogs are canoeing?
My SO bred dogs back in the day. Honestly, it doesn't take that long for the dogs to do their thing. And if she can't handle the sight of dogs breeding, I seriously question her ability to handle other sights she's going to run into at a farm.
4. As far as respect, people treat us as good as we allow them to. She needs to take a stand or take a hike.
- Staying is her choice. I realize she cares for the horse, but he does not belong to her.
- Why does the dog thing matter? It has nothing to do with her.
- If no one cares about the horses or rides anymore, why is she sweeping out tack rooms and wash stalls? And dusting a truck? Huh? If I were getting paid peanuts, the owner would be dusting their own truck.
It's virtually impossible to respect anyone who get unglued for such trivia thing... dog mating... definitely not from any executive who has to deal with crisis on a daily basis. Tell your friend to chill.
WOW - I guess unless you are part of the COTH "click" dont come here to help a friend with an issue - i mean its not like anyone has ever come here to complain about anything...ever!
This is what is wrong with America these days - no one out there gives a damn about each others feelings and that is truly sad!
I will not have to think twice before coming here for help or advice again!
I'm not sure what kind of advice you were expecting? Did you think we would tell you that your friend should pitch a huge fit to her boss because he is allowing dogs to be bred during your friend's 3-4 hour work day? I guess I don't know what you could have possibly expected other than "if your friend finds the conditions unacceptable, her option is to quit the job."
Having collected a male dog before I fail to see how dog semen could be "all over the place". I mean, they don't go off like a fire hose squirting the stuff all over, plus they don't produce that much semen. Second, what's the big deal about breeding the dogs while your friend is there? Sounds like her employers need to rehome the horses and your friend needs a new job.
Well I do feel sorry about the horses. I know, even though I've never worked at a barn for pay or board (just helping out for free), i've become attached to horses who were not taken care of and who were sold or given away to bad homes or worse.
I'd suggest that oP's friend try to get ownership of the horses and move them someplace where she can take care of them. I understand the attachment to the horses.
As for dog breeding, well, I don't like to watch it either. But hey, they can do whatever they want to wherever they want to. Be glad it wasn't people "breeding" in the barn aisle.
I agree with the above posters that said that its a $10.00 a hour job.
Two stalls, some sweeping (in rooms that I am sure hardly get used because no one works the horses) water, hay, picking the paddocks and set up for the next day should only take 2 hours max. Your friend needs to practice some time management.
I am not sure why the dog mating issues got your panties in a twist, but its not your barn or hers so ...really? Chill out.
To the poster that used the word canoeing ....awe-some!!
Although your friend loves this particular horse, he does not belong to her. If the horses are skinny to the point of neglect she should call animal control. If not, she should MHOB. She certainly should stop buying them feed out of her own pocket! You mentioned hay in your post. If they are getting plenty of hay and they are retired, maybe the don't need any grain?
I'm not sure why your friend can't deal with the dog breeding, but it's really none of her business.
I think your friend needs to find a new job.
How rich the owners are is not really relevant. If the horses are retired and healthy why should they spend more money on them? Just because they have it?
Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews. Tack Guru - Expert Reviews of English Tack
You...I mean, your friend, should consider getting another job or maybe even consider doing something totally different than farm work. She will never work for any one with whom she agrees with on every point of care.
As far as the horses go...I remember seeing Seven Wonder standing in a field in So Pines either with or next to a field of cows some years ago, shaggy in his winter coat, but otherwise quite healthy and happy. I don't even know that he had a stall...
Bottom line - if you, I mean, your friend...sorry...are so unhappy & so upset as to suffering mentally from this job, then regardless of any "promises" to "him" (the horse? the owner?) it is high time to hit the road.
wireweiner - thanks for the fire hose visual!! LMAO!
Fine I give up, do it your way: heels up, eyes down!!
Aww, didn't take long for a hissy fit (too bad Highflyer was prepared.)
I'm not sure what you wanted. No one is going to say that she should call animal control based on what the OP said (are they starving? Not every horse needs a ton of grain if they're on hay), or that she should get $20 an hour ($10 is generous IMO for what's described), most of us are animal people and aren't going to be horrified at the idea of breeding dogs, and probably ALL of us have known horses that didn't belong to us where we might have managed them differently. If she's so deeply convinced the horses are being mistreated, call Animal Control. If she just can't stand how they're being managed but it's not mistreatment, she should make an offer--when they're hers she can keep them as she pleases. If she can't/won't do that and feels she's not being paid enough or appreciated or having a dog-breeding operation (that you "imagine" is messy) is so traumatic, she can quit. How much the horses' owners have or spend elsewhere is irrelevant unless the horses are being *criminally* neglected.
What on earth do her "feelings" have to do with a job? No employer is responsible for their employee's feelings. And if you've been on COTH since 2007, you probably are aware, this is rarely the place to come for nothing but "poor sweet baby" when a situation is at most mildly uncomfortable.