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BO's, do you charge for having a horse buried on your farm?

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  • BO's, do you charge for having a horse buried on your farm?

    Assuming of course that your city/county allows it, as our does. I have a boarder with a mare that is in chronic pain and the owner feels like it is time to let her go instead of selfishly prolonging her life. I majorly admire that. I told her I would gladly hold the horse for the vet, and handle the burial, since I have seen it done and know it is NOT a pleasant thing to see. She asked me what she could pay me for my help/and having her horse be buried on our farm. (She is paying the backhoe operator and vet, of course). I told her nothing, I was glad to take some of the burden away from her, since she obviously has enough to worry about, emotionally. DH said I should have charged her. I told him to stuff it. Now if it were a non-boarder, I would charge, but I have zero plans to have a graveyard business. So anyway, do you charge, and if so, how much? Just wondering if he is off base, or if I am too nice.
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  • #2
    I think for a long term boarder or horse with an owner that's doing a compassionate thing, I think you're spot on.

    Your kindness won't be forgotten in a sad and stressful time, IMO.
    Semi Feral

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    • #3
      I would not charge..they experienced enough loss and I think it's nice if you have the space to bury her...in my opinion a good 'karma' thing!!
      There's a barn I massage at and a younger mare had to be put to sleep (malignent eye tumor that went to the brain)...the owner's who boarded the mare buried her for the owner...they had the equipment to do so. If the owner of the horse is going to pay for the equipment, I could not charge!
      Edit to add: they put a bunch of hay in the grave to make it more peaceful too! During a sad time, it was a nice touch!
      Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakend. ~Anatole France~
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      • #4
        I run a retirement farm, and so far have only had one boarder die. I did not charge her as it is in a way a similar type of situation and I was very emotionally involved with both the horse and his owner.

        I have let one boarder bring another horse here just to be euthanized as the place the horse was before would not allow burial on the property. In her case I charged $100, plus she paid the backhoe operator.

        I do plan to charge $100 as a rule, for the "use of the farm" so to speak. Between that and the backhoe the horse owner will end up paying something like $200 or $250 for the burial of the horse. The only other option is to try and find a renderer (extremely difficult to do). Renderers charge between $750 - $1,000 to collect the horse.
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        • #5
          I had a boarder that at the previous barn she was at they had to put down a horse, the BM charged her I believe 400.00 to "buy" the piece of land. (the euthanasia and backhoe was in addition to the land "purchase")

          I was shocked, never thought about anything like that. And then come to find out she didn't even own the barn or land, was leasing it!!
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          • #6
            Originally posted by Chardavej View Post
            I had a boarder that at the previous barn she was at they had to put down a horse, the BM charged her I believe 400.00 to "buy" the piece of land. (the euthanasia and backhoe was in addition to the land "purchase")

            I was shocked, never thought about anything like that. And then come to find out she didn't even own the barn or land, was leasing it!!
            Man, if I'm buying land, I want a deed, and I don't mean something printed off a home computer!
            I'm not arguing, I'm just explaining why I'm right
            Violence doesn't end violence. It extends it. Break the cycle.

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            • #7
              I think you're very kind for not charging her, and that this will come back to you in a good way!
              "A horse gallops with his lungs, perseveres with his heart, and wins with his character." - Tesio

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              • #8
                $750-$1000 for carcass removal? Really? It is $170 here in Minnesota, and that is not a rederer, it is a guy who takes the carcasses to a landfill.

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                • #9
                  You are a nice person.
                  I think not charging this person for allowing her horse to be buried there is a wonderful thing for you to do.
                  You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.

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                  • #10
                    I am with everyone else that said they would not charge. Good for you for making this very difficult time for her a bit easier.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Renae View Post
                      $750-$1000 for carcass removal? Really? It is $170 here in Minnesota, and that is not a rederer, it is a guy who takes the carcasses to a landfill.
                      NY? Easily, more the closer you get to NYC. I remember it costing that much 15 years ago, in the suburbs. Heck it cost over $100 for my cat to be cremated. Cremation is required by law in my neck of the woods.

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                      • #12
                        It most likely depends on where you are.

                        I had one of my mares taken away by the renderer several years ago. Time & weather simply weren't compatible at the time to have her buried here. Cost me $300.

                        Last summer lost another very old mare, & paid $500 to have her buried here on the farm. Really nice local guy who came on a record-high-hot-temp Sunday to bury her properly - & deeply. Worth every penny.

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                        • #13
                          How many people chiming in are BO's? I don't mean it in a snarky way at all. It *is* a nice thing to offer free burial on the farm, but I wonder how many burials you all have had? If you only expect one every ten years or so I think not charging makes sense. If they are more frequent I think BOs need to run the farm like a business and I think there needs to be compensation for time and having part of a field torn up.

                          Not to say you should gouge someone at an emotional time, but I do think it is fair to be paid something. Does the vet not charge because it is upsetting, or the backhoe operator?

                          The above may make me sound unsympathetic, but the opposite is true, I am VERY sympathetic. I love the horses here as much as their owners do, and sometimes more. *I* am upset and sad and emotional when one dies. However, I do think it is fair for me to charge for burial.

                          I'd add my trainer who has many more horses at her barn than I do also charges a fee. In our area the $100 fee is nominal, as I said the only alternative is to spend close to $1,000.
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                          • #14
                            We never charged to bury any of the boarders horses that passed or were PTS. The pasture in front of the house became the unofficial horse cemetery. After almost 30 years at that property it was recently sold to developers to be turned into golf courses and condo's. That front pasture is my one regret in selling it. I hate the idea of their final resting place being disturbed.
                            "I would not beleive her if her tongue came notorized"

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                            • #15
                              I have known of burials on three different farms. Two boarders on one, and one boarder on two others. In none of the cases did the owner charge the boarder any 'land use' type fee. In the one case (the one that buried two boarder horses), the boarder owned the tractor/backhoe so no charge. In another, a friend owned the backhoe that was on the property for other work anyway and friend operated for free. In the last case one had to be rented, but the rental and vet fee were paid but no 'land use' type fee.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by SMF11 View Post
                                The above may make me sound unsympathetic, but the opposite is true, I am VERY sympathetic. I love the horses here as much as their owners do, and sometimes more. *I* am upset and sad and emotional when one dies. However, I do think it is fair for me to charge for burial.

                                I'd add my trainer who has many more horses at her barn than I do also charges a fee. In our area the $100 fee is nominal, as I said the only alternative is to spend close to $1,000.
                                I don't believe anyone would think you unsympathetic and if you choose I don't believe it is unfair of you to charge.
                                I just personally think it's a little nicer if you don't.
                                So far nobody has asked to bury their horse here, just a friend who requested a spot for her german shepherd and I was happy that I could do that little thing for her.
                                You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.

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                                • #17
                                  When we buried Duke At 38+ my barn owner got the guy across the street to dig the hole for $50 and he said I'll put him down , no the shot was right where it was supposed to be and he fell down, no thrashin' and both me and my daughter were there I thank that I had these kind of barn owners every day that our other 3 are at this barn.

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                                  • #18
                                    I'm a BO with a small number of boarders. I have one boarder's horse buried on my farm (as well as a couple of my own). I have plenty of space with 138 acres. As long as the boarder pays for the backhoe, I am fine with on-the-farm burials. I don't need extra payment. It's just the right thing to do.
                                    Where Norwegian Fjords Rule
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                                    • #19
                                      As a BO and BM, I was lucky enough to have very large pieces of land available, so we did not charge for horses to be buried. The horse's owner paid for the vet and the backhoe, and the farm manager usually completed the burial with a tractor and front end loader.

                                      One boarder asked if she could do something for the farm manager, as he was out in vile weather on his own time, and I suggested that she buy him a bottle of his favorite liquour as a thank you gift because he wouldn't accept money.

                                      As a boarder on a small place, I have had the owner refuse burial, and I had to have the pony's body transported to a friend's neighboring place to be buried there. (Wonderful friends, who helped with the whole process and wouldn't take any money.) Horrible to have to transport the body.

                                      So I'm in agreement with everyone else. You did the right thing, and a lovely thing for your boarder and I personally would have a problem charging for the service. It is a *very* valuable service, and you could indeed charge for it, but for a long term good client, I wouldn't.
                                      The plural of anecdote is not data.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        As a boarder that just went thru this...I was charged a small nominal fee for the spot. I was new to the farm and I felt a fee was fair for her, and for me. But I do have to say that I think whether you charge or not depends on the relationship between BO and boarder. A long-time boarder that you have a good relationship....maybe no fee, it is really the BO decision.

                                        I am in NW CT and I could not even find a Renderer. It was terrifying to have no options. So to have a farm owner that was willing to help me out was a huge relief. And it is their property so they have a right to charge something.

                                        My feeling is (in the NE) a $100 to $250 fee is very fair.

                                        The BO that charged $400 and did not own the land? Sleezy.

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