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A bit of a boarding disaster..and I'm not sure ANY contract covers this.

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  • #21

    Glad you have a plan B for her. No advice at this stage of the game, but some **hugs**.


    • #22
      This is probably top on my list of why I finally got my own place! When I ran a boarding barn I can remember dragging myself out of a sick bed to make sure the horses had water and everything else they needed. Don't people realize how important this is!!!!
      Groom to trainer: "Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!"


      • #23
        What goes through peoples heads! Seriously? And they call themselves horse lovers? Starving a horse of water is the worst. I hope you find a new barn, I mean a dirty stall is one thing, but if you cannot depend of the basic of life. Rrrrr.


        • #24
          Originally posted by PaintPony View Post
          Move to my barn. I can 100% guarantee that would NEVER happen!
          Same with my barn, I am so OCD about the water!
          I want a signature but I have nothing original to say except: "STHU and RIDE!!!

          Wonderful COTHER's I've met: belleellis, stefffic, snkstacres and janedoe726.


          • #25
            I would ask the BO if there is someone else reliable who can take over the
            care for the next 7 days. Seriously, this 'helper' does her own thing and has
            proven herself unreliable. And the BO keeps bringing her back ?? Is it that hard
            to find someone to care for the horses ? Her @ss should have been dropped-kicked
            out the front gate long ago.

            If there is no backup, then I would offer to contact the other boarders and set up something where you and the other boarders take turns caring for the horses until the BO gets back. Of course with your board adjusted to pay for this work. This way it's not all on you.

            If I were one of the other boarders, I'd want to know about something like this. This is not 'the stall was not cleaned well' gossipy poo-stiring this is 'my horse may die !'

            I don't think you need to worry about breaking your contract, as clearly the BO has
            not been seeing to basic care issues. Water is pretty basic. NO living thing can
            survive for long without it.
            Last edited by Roxyllsk; Jan. 27, 2013, 11:39 AM.


            • #26
              This is where a good BO or BM is priceless! Especially in extreme conditions.
              Luckily, I have a wonderful place for my retired boy. I trust them to take care of my horse properly. I may have quibbles (love that word!) with some of the details, but bottom line - my horse has his needs met. In fact, I got an e-mail yesterday explaining what they were doing during the single-digit weather we have been having. This is especially important now that I am not at the stable so often since he is retired.

              I did leave one stable due to a stable worker issue. Everything was great at first. Then BO/BM started spending the winters in Florida. Problem was, the help she hired was not reliable. Tried to work it out, but ultimately had to move on. BO said she cared, but did not find a solution I could live with.


              • #27
                Just move on and forget about it. There are lots of barns full of people who don't care if the horses have water. I've boarded at a few of them.
                Why must you chastise my brilliant idea with facts and logic? **picks up toys (and wine) and goes home**


                • #28
                  Don't you have another COTHer boarding at your barn?


                  • #29
                    If you need a lead or 2 for a NOVA barn which will NOT let this sort of thing happen, pm me. Where do you live?

                    I'd be outta there asap.
                    www.littlebullrun@aol.com See Little Bull Run's stallions at:
                    "Argosy" - YouTube and "Boleem" - YouTube
                    Boleem @ 1993 National Dressage Symposium - YouTube


                    • #30
                      I moved as well once when I found myself doing that mission impossible thing. I realized how STUPID it was that I had to do that to ensure my horses a basic standard of care. They weren't getting watered, they weren't getting their hay thrown (once I came out and found them locked in their stalls staring at their hay out in the fields, and the BM lied to me about how she had just put them in for a minute. Ok, so why was their morning hay still there?). A horse died under her care from dehydration colic. It was just awful, and she's still in business with her "friends" protecting her. But I'm happily at a self-care barn where the BO is also as careful as I am. We still have some issues with one of the boarders, but I am close enough to be able to stop by twice a day to check on them, at least.

                      Peace of mind is priceless, and I don't understand why those other boarders stayed. They valued friendship (of a sort) above their horses' well-being. I could not be friends with someone who treated my horse that way. I hope your other boarders will step up as well and take care of their own horses.


                      • #31
                        Haven't read responses, but this kept happening at my old barn -horses not getting watered (or properly fed or cleaned).

                        I and one other boarder kept everyone watered - which also meant I had to come out 7 days a week to clean / water / feed despite paying for full care.

                        BO just would NOT acknowledge the importance of providing water. Her horse coliced and died.

                        That was the last straw. 4 of her 6 boarders including me left without 30 day notice. We emailed the two remaining absentee owners about the situation and let them know we would no longer be filling water / feeding when the BO drops the ball.

                        Felt bad for the horses left behind, but I needed to make sure mine was taken of.

                        BO knows that she was in the wrong and did not try to force 30 day notice (I gave 15 day notice).
                        APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman


                        • #32
                          Two words: Hudson Valve.


                          • #33
                            Originally posted by sid View Post
                            If you need a lead or 2 for a NOVA barn which will NOT let this sort of thing happen, pm me. Where do you live?

                            I'd be outta there asap.
                            She lives in Springfield near I-495. It's quite a drive to get to any VA barn from there.
                            Thus do we growl that our big toes have, at this moment, been thrown up from below!


                            • #34
                              Water at all times IMO is part of basic care and is provided and looked after by the BO as part of full board. Regardless the time of the year. Curious, if you don’t mind me asking, how much do you pay for board? I have found you kind of get what you pay for. Personally I would never board at a place that did not have a resident, knowledgeable person living on the property within ear shot of the horses, barn and paddocks/pastures. We know our horses, 40-50 at times and can easily tell when something is not right day or night when their “normal chatter” changes. Pretty much all of the field waters can be seen from our house so when a group is spending more time then usual around their water with the “look” I know something is a miss. When looking at a place to board check out the water situation in the paddocks. Are there hydrants at each, if not what size are the tanks and how far does someone have to drag a hose? In cold climates is there electric running to the paddocks? Are there auto-waters and if so what type. Ask if they are heated. We just had 10 days of single digit temps with lots of wind and some water and heater issues and I was out freezing my butt to 11 at night sorting it out. Before I sorted out frozen pipes in our house the next day. No hot shower that night.
                              We tried “self care” with a few stalls never again. We also offered field board for a short time. May work fine in temperate climates but not with ours. Just not worth the money.
                              Now, and in fairness to the BO having dealt with failed tank heaters it doesn’t take long for an inch or so of ice to form in short order when the temps are in the single to low double digits with wind. There is little to no worry if heaters fail over night horses will do just fine during that time period. But if the tanks are frozen when they are close to full during in late morning or during the day then someone is not doing their job. Especially if they are standing around the tank with the “look”.
                              That being said even if the BO/BM were diligent about keeping water tanks ice free I can tell you for fact that horses will drink a lot more from tanks that have heaters in them keeping the water in the mid 40s.
                              Bottom line, we are not cheap board but we are not expensive either but we do pay attention to ALL of the details small or large. That’s what we are being paid for.
                              Vacations, that’s what our boarders take. But I know what I signed up for and I am good with it most of the time.


                              • #35
                                Originally posted by LexInVA View Post
                                It's pretty normal around here. Most barns in the area are not run by professional staff who are trustworthy or competent. Many are simply backyard affairs operated by local horse-folk or leased to some random stranger, who may or may not know or care much about anything beyond whatever they feel like doing. If you want good, round-the-clock care and supervision, you have a pretty short list of barns to work with and they cost moolah. As for the community, outside of the histrionic drama of the local H/J crowd who try to undermine and sabotage anyone they see as competition in or out of the ring, there's not much in the way of "OMFG, what's going on over there?!" concern and nobody ever gets called out for doing something bad around here.
                                This, 1000x over. When I moved here, I seriously thought, "Oh, this is HORSE COUNTRY...there should be TONS of good places to choose from!" Holy $hit were my eyes opened. I cannot ever get over how many places out in this area, MD & NOVA, that are such CRAP. If it isn't water, it's something else - not enough hay, not enough grain, OVER-graining, places that are mudpits, crummy stalls, no footing, too much footing, not blanketing appropriately, poor stall cleaning, nickel & diming, barn owners who are hoarders, psychopathic boarders/BMs/BOs/trainers, and on and on.

                                The last barn I was at, I did self-care. I provided all hay and grain for my horse, buckets, etc. The BM was the one who did turn-out and brought them in. When they were in during the days in summer, she gave them lunch hay (which I would leave in front of my horse's stall), and supposedly she also went through and watered. Half the time last summer, I would get there at night after work to clean his stall, and he would have little to no water in his buckets. It got to the point that I filled up THREE buckets to put in his stall just to make sure he didn't run out. Other boarders would come out and see that troughs in the fields didn't always have water in them, either. By the time I left, the BM decided that she was no longer going to offer self-care as an option, so one of my friends put her horse on full-care until she could move him to a different barn as she was becoming more and more unhappy with the situation there. My friend's poor horse (in his early 20s) did not get water in his stall or get his stall cleaned for THREE DAYS because the BM "forgot" to tell her staff that he had been switched over to full-care. Needless to say, the horse was moved almost immediately after that incident.

                                OP, I don't really have any advice to offer you, but I think you've already gotten some good feedback. I'm glad you have a place to move your girl to, and I'm in agreement with you - I would also be really worried about the other horses. It isn't their fault that people are incompetent and that their owners are clueless.
                                In a society that profits from your self-doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act.


                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by thatmoody View Post
                                  I moved as well once when I found myself doing that mission impossible thing. I realized how STUPID it was that I had to do that to ensure my horses a basic standard of care. They weren't getting watered, they weren't getting their hay thrown (once I came out and found them locked in their stalls staring at their hay out in the fields, and the BM lied to me about how she had just put them in for a minute. Ok, so why was their morning hay still there?). A horse died under her care from dehydration colic. It was just awful, and she's still in business with her "friends" protecting her. But I'm happily at a self-care barn where the BO is also as careful as I am. We still have some issues with one of the boarders, but I am close enough to be able to stop by twice a day to check on them, at least.

                                  Peace of mind is priceless, and I don't understand why those other boarders stayed. They valued friendship (of a sort) above their horses' well-being. I could not be friends with someone who treated my horse that way. I hope your other boarders will step up as well and take care of their own horses.

                                  Wow, are you SURE you don't board in San Antonio....hmmmm??? I boarded at a barn just NE of SA and it was constant drama. The BM enforced one set of rules for her and her buddies and another for everyone else. Additionally, one summer the BO attempted to instill a 'one water bucket per horse' rule b/c he didn't want to pay a higher water bill. Our summers run 100*+!!! I threw a fit and he backed off but who knows what the other boarders did.
                                  BM allowed starving racing Arabians to be boarded there (owner said she kept them thin so they wouldn't fight being saddled ) When I threw a fit and threatened to turn the BO in to AC(yes, that was a regular occurrence, unfortunately) BM told me people would hesitate to board there...Duh !She finally evicted that owner from the barn. I was so glad to finally be able to buy a place and get my horses out of there. Word through the grapevine is the same crap is still going on,12 years later. No water here is just as serious as no water there. F-ing shame...
                                  It's only when a mosquito lands on your privates that you realize there is always a way to solve problems without using violence. fb meme.


                                  • #37
                                    Well I'm confuzzled. I thought from another thread the OP started 10 days ago, that she was moving her mare back to the great place she used to have her, so problem solved, right? So move the horse, would be my thought.
                                    My warmbloods have actually drunk mulled wine in the past. Not today though. A drunk warmblood is a surly warmblood. - WildandWickedWarmbloods


                                    • #38
                                      Holy cow, BuddyRoo!!! I'd seriously think about contacting whoever you have around there for AC for the other poor horses. I cannot believe anyone would do this but gee, guess I'm naive. What farging iceholes these people are.
                                      What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!


                                      • Original Poster

                                        Haven't read all replies yet. Yesterday was a busy day. Left at 8:00 for the barn, got home around 12:30 and then had house/dog/husband/dinner stuff to do. Danged life cutting into internet time!

                                        I can see your post above though, AmbitiousKate--yes, I'm moving my mare back to MI when we move overseas. But until we move, I want to keep her here with me in VA. We may be moving as soon as September or not until the following year. That's all up in the air. But I'd like to be able to spend time with her/ride until we go.

                                        So here's the update:

                                        Talked to BO on Saturday. She said she would speak to barn helper, yada yada. I told her I'd be heading back out Sunday morning regardless.

                                        On my way out yesterday morning, got a text from BO saying that helper confirmed there's a hole in the tank, that she had changed tanks out and it was all resolved, no need for me to drive all the way out there.

                                        Well, I arrived at 9:30 (wanted to give helper plenty of time to get in and out without me hovering). Tank had not been changed out, was only about an inch of water left in tank but a new heater had been put in that was taking up the majority of the space. I've not seen one like this before. Kind of looks like a home modified deal (nothing wrong with that, just made it hard for horses to get the last bit of water out). I don't believe that helper was even out yesterday morning. She "normally" only does chores once per day. (she does the feedings every afternoon) I know she was out Sat night due to the heater being put in and the hoses not being drained.

                                        I dragged a tank from an unused paddock into the current pasture. Hose didn't get drained the night before and was frozen. So I hand filled both. Took me the better about an hour because the horses were draining the tank as I filled. They just rotated through 2 at a time.

                                        I took pictures of everything and texted the BO with an update and told her I'd be back out today. Also told her that we were supposed to get freezing rain/sleet overnight so hoped that helper would actually bring the horses IN. No response.

                                        I'm heading out there again shortly.

                                        I will be moving my horse today, tomorrow, or Wednesday depending on weather conditions and trailer availability. Working that out right now. It's been in the works for a few weeks, but the timeline just got moved up a bit. That said, I feel like I should continue going to current barn to check water at least until BO gets home this Friday because it's simply not okay to have this many horses on such limited quantities of water.

                                        If I get out there today and there's no water again, I'm not sure what I'm going to do. I'm honestly tempted to put a call in to AC. Maybe a visit would clue these people in to the seriousness of water because it doesn't seem to be registering else I'd think that tank would've been swapped out as promised. I can get my mare out and into a better situation, but what about the rest of the horses? BO assures me that no one else has complained, but I'm not sure if that's because no one else has been out (it's been cold) or because no one checks the water or because they check but don't know it's a big deal or what.

                                        My mom says "It's not your problem, focus on your own horse." But it's not like I'm working. I've got the time to check. Even though it takes about half a day just to get there, do whatever and get back, that's a small price to pay compared to a dead horse.

                                        So. I know my horse is getting out. My only dilemmas now are how to proceed if there's still no water and what exactly I should say to BO when I notify her that I'm moving my horse. The evil side of me wants to NOT tell anyone I'm moving my horse and see if anyone even NOTICES. I honestly don't think the helper would because I don't think she really looks at any of them given how messed up everyones blankets are every. single. time. I go out.

                                        We'll see. Due to the freezing rain/sleet/rain stuff this morning, schools are on a 2 hour delay and many businesses (and the fed. gov't) aren't opening til noon. So I'm going to try to hit a good traffic window by waiting about another hour before I head out. I'll update when I get back.

                                        For now, going to read the rest of the responses.
                                        A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

                                        Might be a reason, never an excuse...


                                        • Original Poster

                                          Originally posted by LauraKY View Post
                                          Don't you have another COTHer boarding at your barn?
                                          No! She was there 2 days (kind of a last minute opportunity to move) and then got her horse into a better situation right away. She has a pretty fancy gelding who was a candidate for a higher end situation at a training/competition barn. WAYYYYYY out of my price range....like by a grand I think. Not to mention they'd probably not allow a grade horse like mine on the property! LOL
                                          A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

                                          Might be a reason, never an excuse...