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Boarding Expectations

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    #21
    Wouldn't like sharing a stall in case of emergency as others have stated. If I liked the barn well enough, I could maybe put up with it but the stall would have to be well cleaned between horses. I do not stand for wet stalls.

    Getting notified over small cuts/equipment is somewhere in the middle for me. It's nice to know that they're being looked at and paid attention to, but I don't expect others to do that to the same degree that I do. Heck, I got annoyed at how a BO mended a fly mask for me once. I know she was doing me a favor, but I didn't like how it was done. I guess just an antidote evidence that it can be annoying the other way too. Definitely didn't complain or leave the barn over that.

    Minors feeding and doing chores doesn't bother me at all. Minors without supervision could be ok if they're really good and have been working at the barn for a long enough time to know they're responsible. Same goes with giving oral/topical meds.

    Teens riding my horse instead of a training ride would be a no-go for me. But as long as the trainer doesn't go against you not wanting that, should be ok.


    I can tell you that the stall thing would have been enough to make me want to leave. And then I would have started noticing other small things that weren't really issues. I know once I felt the quality of care wasn't quite what it used to be at a farm I boarded at in the past I started getting annoyed with every little thing. Decided it was time to shop for a new barn. Sometimes that will lead to a better scenario, sometimes it will make you appreciate your barn more. If you really like her instruction, but not quality of care--could you haul in for lessons or have her come out to a different barn?

    Comment


      #22
      "... In the afternoon, stalls are picked clean of manure, but not much else unless a wet spot is obvious, and no new bedding is added, and buckets aren't scrubbed again. So my mare goes into a half cleaned stall for the next 12+ hours. She smells like urine in the morning since she lays down at night. When it's humid her skin definitely gets irritated to the point of a bad rash that requires medical treatment, and so I have begged the BO to keep her stall open to stay dry and air out."

      I have to ask: do most people not mind if their horse smells of urine or develops a skin condition from occupying a stall that has not been cleaned properly? I would not tolerate that at all. And it is directly related to the stall-sharing setup. Not acceptable at any rate of board.
      No matter where you go, there you are

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        #23
        I would not board there, especially for that amount of money. I would not want to share a stall ever, if other's are okay with it that's fine but if I were paying what you are no, I wouldn't be, especially since the stall isn't cleaned and freshly bedded for each horse. While I probably wouldn't expect m horse to be looked over everyday for cuts, I would at least hope the staff to notice if they are off, not eating, etc. Kids doing barn help is okay if supervised, especially if doing meds, personally I would not be comfortable with them dosing meds. I don't consider the trainer wanting kids to ride your horse good training (though there are times when working students riding horses under the supervision of the trainer is okay, just not sure this is the right situation), your right to be concerned about liability.

        There is a lot of things about this situation I would not like. look for a better boarding facility for your horse.

        Comment


          #24
          In my area, $1,000 goes pretty darn far for board without training. In your area, it could be that $1,000 for stall board and access to a good in house trainer is a really tough combination.

          At the end of the day, I love a text about cuts/bumps and damaged equipment but I definitely wouldn't leave solely over this. Stall rotating isn't something I've seen done but if during inclement weather my horse had a stall, I'd probably roll with it. Teens doing chores wouldn't really bother me as long as they are experienced enough to know what things mandate an immediate vet call. I've been at barns with reaaallly incompetent and lazy adult help. Energetic and detail-oriented teens would be much preferred to someone who can't be bothered to do a job well.

          With all of those things stacked, I'd probably leave if there was a better alternative but I wouldn't leave if it meant sacrificing things like quality of feed, turnout, footing, etc.

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            #25
            I would move.

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              #26
              start looking for a new barn. This is just too much stress.

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                #27
                I'd move. There's just too much that I wouldn't put up with, starting with no personal stall and ending with teens riding my horse instead of the trainer. That was the straw that broke the camel's back at my other barn. Trainer was using my horse in lessons, charging student for lesson AND charging me for training ride. I got the h@ll out of there.
                I loff my Quarter horse clique

                I kill threads dead!

                Comment


                  #28
                  If you board and are not happy with the service to the point its stressing you out? You really need to consider doing the one thing you do have control over and move. Boarding is always a compromise, pros and cons, never perfect. But you need to keep in mind its their property and their business thus their decision how to operate. And they operate based on staying in business within their budget generated by what boarders are willing to pay. They will not change long-standing procedures for you, hire more adult staff, bed deeper or feed better and more as they cant afford to.

                  Might want to investigate other boarding barns in your area and price them, thats a terribly expensive area in general and you might be stuck if you cant pay more and you did say your horse is in good condition.

                  Good point to remind everybody who boards if things start to slip, it generally indicates a deeper problem. Generally financial. If the barn operator doesn't actually own the property and pays rent or lease fees? They might be behind, been through that several times, when you look back, the signs were gradually deteriorating care for some time. Whoever is running the barn wont share that with anybody until they get evicted or the property sold. ALWAYS have a plan B barn situation in mind.
                  When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                  The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                  Comment


                    #29
                    I don't care that much about the age of the people providing services at the barn. I do care about their skill level and responsibility. IME there are plenty of 16 year olds who would be well able to handle the feeding as you describe. If the kids are younger than that without supervision that's more concerning. I would also be wondering how easily they can contact someone if there's a problem over their head.

                    Similarly, the issue of other people riding your horse. If you're paying for a trainer, you should get rides from the trainer. If you're paying a monthly fee to get your horse ridden, and there are really great teen riders better than you doing some (not all) of the riding, that could still be acceptable to me. The age of the rider is not that important to me. The horse will tell you if this plan is working. You also have to consider your alternatives - more for trainer only? Half-leasing to another capable rider? Getting to the barn more often?

                    The shared stalls as a daily practice is something I've never seen and like others I'd worry about a situation where all the horses need to be in - are there simply too many horses on the property? But the way I'd handle it is, your horse does not have a clean stall and is getting skin irritation from it, as a horse who prefers to lie down. If that's happening, that's the problem. Alternately, it could be a ventilation problem which affects all horses whether they lie down or not. This is a situation that also might be cured with more money - more shavings, a higher fee to reserve the stall for just your horse, whatever, if you decide you want to stay.

                    The cuts and scraps or tears to your equipment - I've never had a barn owner contact me about that kind of stuff and I wouldn't expect it, unless it required immediate action.

                    I agree with the comments that it may be wise to consider your alternatives, both to remind yourself that this is maybe the best possible option or also to find one that's better. I also think that if the barn owner finds you high maintenance that you probably need to figure out either how to be more mellow from her point of view or move on - not because you're wrong, but because those situations create stress for both of you that is not productive and will lead to problems.

                    If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                    Comment


                      #30
                      Nine stalls and 12 or 13 horses (did I read that correctly?) is a huge difference from a barn with 25 stalls and 50 horses on the property. I'm imagining this handful of horses that comes in during the day probably belongs to the barn owner, trainer and maybe the kids who do the feeding? Are you the only one who objects to the system? can they use another boarder's stall instead? I wouldn't be thrilled with this, and I wouldn't be thrilled with the idea of the handful of rough board/night turnout/whatever horses hanging in the aisle in bad weather if there are sheds available (did I read that correctly?) outside. But we don't have ice storms like you do. Anyway.

                      I think a thoughtful and careful teenager can absolutely manage a 9-13 horse operation at turn in time if the systems are good and the horses generally behave themselves. I'm curious how the turnover is handled, if there are horses being brought in from paddocks at the same time others are turned back out in the same spaces. Hope there are two or 3 people working together! As far as meds - the one thing I would not want teens handling is Regumate, but pergolide or equiox or other common "drop the pill in the feed" type things shouldn't be a big deal. It's all about the systems, and if the barn owner has created a good system for whoever is feeding, it should go smoothly. If it's generally chaotic, it won't matter if the person feeding is 15 or 50.

                      And without hearing the conversation, I would wonder if the trainer is offering to have the teens ride the OP's horse because it's summer, the kids are around, the OP said she has a really tough work schedule, and maybe the horse would benefit from more work. it doesn't sound like the OP interpreted it that way. If it were me, I'd probably let one kid ride in a lesson with the trainer and start there. OP pays nothing, receives nothing, trainer gets the lesson fee from the kid, horse gets ridden an extra time that week in a supervised setting. Win, win, win. Allowing a kids to exercise the horse in a "lessons only" situation is totally different from someone providing a schooling ride.



                      Comment


                        #31


                        Not enough stalls for every horse? Yeah, no. Horses in the aisle at night with hay? Yeah, no. Shared stalls ???? HELL NO. Start looking for a new barn.
                        Proud member of Appendix QH clique

                        Comment


                          #32
                          Originally posted by peedin View Post

                          Not enough stalls for every horse? Yeah, no. Horses in the aisle at night with hay? Yeah, no. Shared stalls ???? HELL NO. Start looking for a new barn.
                          Not sure why the not enough stalls for every horse is a problem in the summer. I have enough stalls but filled 3 of them with hay (because bountiful hay is the most important thing!)....the horses stay out most of the time and if one needs to be in, I put it in one of the open stalls. They'll eat the hay down and open up stalls by ice season. All the horses on "stall board" have a stall, but I just use them when the weather is bad anyway.

                          That said, what is untenable about this situation, IMO, is the lack of stall cleaning. Putting a horse in a dirty stall is just yuck. I don't rotate them like this barn does, but if I did I would put the incoming horse on crossties and clean the stall before it went in. Lying in another horse's pee = nasty nasty nasty. or any pee really but another horse's? ew.

                          OP, if this is the only option I'd ask to have my horse left out 24/7 instead of in the stall at all. That's usually my preference in general, but especially in this situation. I understand what it's like to board at a lower-end-for-market facility, though -- when I boarded in Boston I had to be very flexible based on my budgetary constraints. You can kind of make up for it by being there daily, but still it won't be perfect. I know a lot of people are thinking "OMG $1k!" but they probably don't realize how expensive board is in the NE.

                          Comment


                            #33
                            Ima no to stall sharing and kids doing meds. The trainer did ask about students riding and you said no so if that was honored, scratch that off the list but a big "hell no" first to stall sharing and kids giving meds.
                            "Punch him in the wiener. Then leave." AffirmedHope

                            Comment


                              #34
                              It doesn't matter whether you or anyone else likes the policies and procedures- if that is how that barn is run and you don't like it, it's on you to leave. Obviously it's working for someone. Most of those wouldn't bother me, well other than the other people riding my horse.

                              On another note, even when I had my horses at my house I've never had stalls. Right now where I board I have access to two stalls that are shared by 7 horses. If I had more than one that needed to be in, I'd just board that one else where. Field board is pretty common here
                              No mourners, no funerals

                              Comment


                                #35
                                1k might sound high but its more then just a little below the going rate in that area for average board and less then half of
                                full service barns even without including training. Its a tough choice but one you have to make balancing what you want and what you can afford.

                                Bottom line here is OP says the mare is healthy and doing well on their program. If that were not so, that would change things. And if that changes, OP should just move. As it is, it can be tolerated. IMO based on my experience and observation. Not ideal but if its what you can afford, you can work with it.
                                When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

                                Comment


                                  #36
                                  As someone who operates a boarding facility offering full board near the CT shoreline at a lower price point, none of that is really acceptable. I would be bothered by horses sharing stalls, not super sanitary in the first place, never mind if the stall isn't getting cleaned properly. I also would not be comfortable with teenagers caring for horses unattended, and have been in boarding situations myself in the past where that was an issue and I was never comfortable with letting kids handle my horse. I have teenagers that help clean stalls on the weekends but I am always there to supervise when that is the case. I would also absolutely never ask a boarder if my students could ride their horse without interest being expressed by the boarder first. That puts people in a really uncomfortable position.

                                  I would also never tell a boarder that I would do something I had no intention of doing. I don't say yes to every request but if I don't plan on doing something I will tell the boarder why I can't fulfill what they want me to do. I'd be uncomfortable with a BO lying to me after saying yes to a request they had no intention of holding up. For the price you're paying, I would hope that your stall that you're paying for should be reserved for only your horse and your BO should at least be upfront about it if their daily schedule won't allow for that.

                                  Comment


                                    #37
                                    Just the shared stall situation would make me move. That’s a no-way-Jose thing for me! The not catching dings and wrecked equipment? Meh. Teens feeding? Ok, but not meds. Someone other than the trainer, who is being PAID to to ride said horse, riding more than occasionally? Another no. Call me spoiled but I’m not a guest, I’m a paying customer!
                                    Trump lies, people die.

                                    Comment


                                      #38
                                      just wondering what does your boarding contract say? What was supposed to be included?.... the lack of a stall of your horse's own should have been spelled out in the contract.

                                      We do not board nor do we have more horses than stalls, period. This is the wild west but we do not have a herd of mustangs nor unlimited acreage with valleys and wooded hills for protection

                                      In the afternoon, stalls are picked clean of manure, but not much else unless a wet spot is obvious, and no new bedding is added, and buckets aren't scrubbed again. So my mare goes into a half cleaned stall for the next 12+ hours. She smells like urine
                                      and you are paying $1000.00 a month for THAT?

                                      Comment


                                        #39
                                        I don’t think you necessarily need a reality check but I think it’s very important to remember that full care DOES NOT equal custom care. “Full care” means you are paying for whatever that particular facility deems as full care, not what you or I deem as full care. When you are a boarder and you are deciding on a facility, you have to figure out if their definition of “full care” matches yours closely enough.

                                        I think if people understood this it would eliminate 90% of boarder related drama with management. I see people all the time go off about how “I’m paying for full care and my boarding barn won’t put my horse’s fly mask, fly boots, fly sheet, bell boots and whatever else on and off every day!!!” That May be what YOU would be doing every day, and that may fit YOUR definition of “full care” but if they’re not already doing that stuff regularly when you tour the facility, don’t expect them to start because that’s how you’d like things. Same thing with the half cleaned stalls and rotations stalls. That’s just how it is at that facility and if it’s not up to your standards it’s perfectly understandable to leave.

                                        But people run into trouble when they think that because they pay “x” amount of money, that means barn management should be expected to raise their standards. It NEVER works like that. If you pay 200 bucks a month for pasture board and none of the horses get blanketed at that barn because all the other horses are stock breeds, don’t expect to roll up with a fresh off the track TB, and expect a custom blanket service. I see people on here all the time say stuff like “oh well you can get the vet involved to explain to the owner how this horse needs xyz and Bla bla bla” .... ugh NO. Not how it works people.

                                        And there are definitely times when something happens and a horse might require some temporary modifications or special treatment. If someone’s colicing, or lame, or whatever, Yea management should work with you when they can within reason. But other than that? You really do have to kind of get with the program or get out.

                                        (Ok, now for fun watch all the angry replies and guess who the boarders are versus the barn managers 🤣)

                                        Comment


                                          #40
                                          Originally posted by Equkelly View Post
                                          I don’t think you necessarily need a reality check but I think it’s very important to remember that full care DOES NOT equal custom care. “Full care” means you are paying for whatever that particular facility deems as full care, not what you or I deem as full care. When you are a boarder and you are deciding on a facility, you have to figure out if their definition of “full care” matches yours closely enough.

                                          I think if people understood this it would eliminate 90% of boarder related drama with management. I see people all the time go off about how “I’m paying for full care and my boarding barn won’t put my horse’s fly mask, fly boots, fly sheet, bell boots and whatever else on and off every day!!!” That May be what YOU would be doing every day, and that may fit YOUR definition of “full care” but if they’re not already doing that stuff regularly when you tour the facility, don’t expect them to start because that’s how you’d like things. Same thing with the half cleaned stalls and rotations stalls. That’s just how it is at that facility and if it’s not up to your standards it’s perfectly understandable to leave.

                                          But people run into trouble when they think that because they pay “x” amount of money, that means barn management should be expected to raise their standards. It NEVER works like that. If you pay 200 bucks a month for pasture board and none of the horses get blanketed at that barn because all the other horses are stock breeds, don’t expect to roll up with a fresh off the track TB, and expect a custom blanket service. I see people on here all the time say stuff like “oh well you can get the vet involved to explain to the owner how this horse needs xyz and Bla bla bla” .... ugh NO. Not how it works people.

                                          And there are definitely times when something happens and a horse might require some temporary modifications or special treatment. If someone’s colicing, or lame, or whatever, Yea management should work with you when they can within reason. But other than that? You really do have to kind of get with the program or get out.

                                          (Ok, now for fun watch all the angry replies and guess who the boarders are versus the barn managers 🤣)
                                          well that is why there is Normally or Should be a boarding agreement contract which spells out what is expected of both sides... boarder pays for what they agreed upon and farm provides agreed upon service... nothing is questioned then...

                                          If contract says horse will smell of urine because we do not clean the shared stall and than that was agreed upon, so be it but I have never seen such as expectation of normal care


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