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  • #41
    I agree with those that say all the little things add up. You stay, because like OP stated, she has good friends there and her trainer. So maybe the good lessened the bad. But then the craziness of the having to leave just made everything boil over. So I'm sure OP is angry. I get that. Yes, I do agree that some of the issues in the original post happen everywhere. OP, maybe your friends and trainer will leave now, too. Hope you found a nice place.
    “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
    ¯ Oscar Wilde

    Comment


    • #42
      Still Ridge

      I too boarded at Still Ridge for a time. OP is not exaggerating. Appears to be a lovely facility from the outside, but the BO lacks REAL experience...despite all the claims to the contrary. Two friends and I left voluntarily when things got too crazy. Practically, the horses were not fed enough hay and NO ONE was allowed to touch the supply. Any inquiries or complaints resulting in the BO getting VERY defensive. The claim of excessive urination by the horses is common, albeit weird. While there was no abuse of the animals, the care was less than stellar. If you like a barn with curtains and doilies, this is your place, but it's not a RIDER'S barn. These folks are western oriented and worry more about how the place LOOKS...like the fact the jumps needed to be put away after every use, stacked up neatly against the fence. I don't think OP is exhibiting sour grapes. She, like many others before her, had a bad experience. So many nice places in our area to board, that should be considered first.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #43
        I took my post down, but I want you all to know I am not outside of the scope of my legal rights as I have consulted with several of my attorney friends before posting here. Secondly, no, not all of these things happened at once. What kind of horse owner would I be to keep my horse at a facility like that? Reading the post, I know it sounds crazy and or unrealistic. I don't really care if you believe me. Like several posters said, it was more the accumulation of events that broke that camel's back. I waited "so long" because my trainer was looking for her own place, which unfortunately never came through. In the meantime, my trainer was at this place, and my horse (at the time) wasn't in any danger. It was more annoyance at certain occurrences that were ongoing. This has nothing to do with my age (which you have no knowledge of), but concern for horses and fellow horse people in general. If I can spare one person from boarding there, it is worth it to me. I'm not looking to start drama. I know COTH is a high-volume discussion board. I posted here FOR that reason. I have also explored/am exploring other avenues to deal with this that I am not going to talk about on an internet forum.

        I have lived in the Richmond area for a while, and the boarding options for competitive h/j riders are pretty deplorable if you are not looking to ride at a backyard barn. I am extremely satisfied with where I am now so far. Riding is supposed to be fun, not a constant waiting game for the other shoe to drop. But like I said, if I can spare one person from boarding there, it is worth it to me.

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #44
          double post

          Comment


          • #45
            Originally posted by Timminator View Post
            I too boarded at Still Ridge for a time. OP is not exaggerating. Appears to be a lovely facility from the outside, but the BO lacks REAL experience...despite all the claims to the contrary. Two friends and I left voluntarily when things got too crazy. Practically, the horses were not fed enough hay and NO ONE was allowed to touch the supply. Any inquiries or complaints resulting in the BO getting VERY defensive. The claim of excessive urination by the horses is common, albeit weird. While there was no abuse of the animals, the care was less than stellar. If you like a barn with curtains and doilies, this is your place, but it's not a RIDER'S barn. These folks are western oriented and worry more about how the place LOOKS...like the fact the jumps needed to be put away after every use, stacked up neatly against the fence. I don't think OP is exhibiting sour grapes. She, like many others before her, had a bad experience. So many nice places in our area to board, that should be considered first.
            Ugh, this actually sounds similar to the place I mentioned where I boarded for 8 months. The owners had no clue, but thought they did. I always described it to other people like this: On any given issue involving horses, there is a range of reasonable views/responses, call them options A-C. The owners of the barn I boarded at routinely selected option Q in response to situations - the option that is so randomly terrible and out there that you never would have even THOUGHT of it as a thing to worry about until they actually did it.

            It was horrible. I hope the OP enjoys the new barn!

            Comment


            • #46
              Well, it sounds now there are others on this board who have personal ties to the place and can verify. However, I still find it weird/odd of posting on a global horse board warning off others. How many other barns out there have whack-jobs as BO's or BM's? Can you warn people of all of them? Just seems...unseemly.

              I still think "Pam" should be made aware of this and give her side. The one time I boarded at a public stable, it was the BM who was the stable, normal one and it was some middle-aged female boarders who were nuts to the nth degree. These women made it miserable for everyone not in their clique. Since I'm a big rig driver and don't put up with dipsh*ts very well, they left me alone for the most part but I did see them drive the BM out of her job and the barn lose some nice people. So, yeah, it can happen.

              But, OP, next time, I'd say to go generic on your posts and if folks want to know, they can pm you and then you can fill them in on details.
              GR24's Musing #19 - Save the tatas!!

              Comment


              • #47
                I boarded at a barn close to my home. I knew the owners were clueless (they inherited 7 acres, decided to either open a barn or a nursing home. Unfortunately, they chose the barn). It was a lovely new barn and very close to town. All they had to do was to dump breakfast for my 3 horses and turn them out. That was all. In the 2 months I was there, they nearly killed their own horse (feeding him immediately after he tore around the pasture for a good 20 minutes) and 2 boarders horses, by putting 2 geldings together after being told not to...think two wild stallions going at it....I had to intervene and break them apart, but both horses suffered injuries. The owner who told them not to put her gelding out with another gelding was kicked out when she got upset with the BO. At that point, I started looking for a new barn.
                Eventually, I was kicked out and given one week notice when I showed up at noon and realized none of the horses had been fed breakfast and were still in their stalls. When the BO saw me, he grabbed the feed buckets and started dumping feed. He started to dump my then 1 year old's feed in my TB mare, upper level eventer's stall....they got 2 different feed. I corrected him and proceeded to finish feeding and taking care of my horses. Then I left, before I lost my temper. When I returned 2 hours later, there was an eviction notice on the bulletin board. They said I had ä bad attitude!"
                I moved the next day.
                What a nightmare, but I learned a valuable lesson.
                They evicted more boarders after that and never had more than 1 or 2 horses. It is a shame as it is a lovely facility and very close in.
                Lori T
                www.calypsofarmeventers.blogspot.com
                www.facebook.com/LoriTankelPhotography
                www.facebook.com/LTEquine for product updates on the lines I rep

                Comment


                • #48
                  I gave my notice and left w/in the 30 days- didn't ask for any money back bc I didn't see the need (I left like 3 days before the 30 days was up). I don't remember the circumstances exactly but I definitely remember the BO at Still Ridge refusing to give my friend her money back when they threw her out with little/no notice until we cleared our jumps (which we made since they had very few there) out of the ring... this was in the pouring rain. So we went over immediately, grabbed the jumps and her money back and left for good.

                  It doesn't seem like a big thing to even mention but it was just so vindictive and trifling that I couldn't believe it! We were just waiting for a day when it wasn't storming to get the jumps... oh well! Live and learn, I guess. I'm very happy where I am now. Glad to be at a place where I feel welcome and my horse is WELL CARED FOR.

                  Oh, and not only are they not experienced horse people... and I cannot stress this enough- the BO/BM are CRAZY.

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    Originally posted by Gestalt View Post
                    Being told to leave immediately is harsh. Finding someplace to put your horse at a moments notice is not as easy as some make it out to be.

                    Question to some of you folks that boarded there and where told to leave before the 30 days was up, has anyone tried taking the BO to court over lost board?
                    I agree - being told to leave immediately is harsh. I don't know about this place but I do have first-hand knowledge of another situation where the BO decided to retroactively charge clients for services. One day, she simply posted a list of services and their new fees (she didn't verbally or electronically inform anyone, she quietly posted the list) and then handed some clients bills that dated back in some cases 5 months. Needless to say, people made plans to leave shortly afterwards. My one friend consulted her lawyer over her sudden $1200 bill. While she was able to negotiate it down to something like $850 with the barn owner, her lawyer advised her that it would likely cost more in legal fees and hassle than just paying the BO and getting out of there. Unhappily, that's what my friend did, and so did others who left before their 30 day notice was up.
                    Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation

                    Comment


                    • #50
                      Originally posted by goneriding24 View Post
                      However, I still find it weird/odd of posting on a global horse board warning off others. How many other barns out there have whack-jobs as BO's or BM's? Can you warn people of all of them? Just seems...unseemly.
                      I agree. Should we all start listing all of the barns & BO's that we have deemed "crazy"? I have three barns in my own experience where the BO/BMs had "unreasonable" rules as deemed by me. In one of them, the drunk BO threatened me and my horse, and ordered us off the property that night. Another, the BO padlocked horses into their stalls because a boarder was 2 weeks late on board. The third, boarders who boarded in the fields weren't allowed to bring their horses into the barns at all (even for vet/farrier visits), as use of the barns was "reserved" for those who paid stall board. But obviously others agree with the BOs as 2 of the 3 barns are still doing business. I think they are completely unreasonable & unsafe barns, and I will say that to people who ask, but it's not my place to run around spewing uninvited opinions.

                      Comment


                      • #51
                        Eek.

                        OP, crappy barn or not, a rant works better if you leave off the no big deal stuff and stick to the real issues.
                        Like so many have said, the footing in the rings could not have been near so dreadful if you were willing to stay there with your friends and your trainer.
                        (Or maybe your horse's well being did not matter as much to as being with your friends.)

                        I do not find the BO not allowing boarders to touch the hay and grain as a red flag. Having boarded with people who insist Dobbin needs constant hay when Dobbin beds himself in it and wastes half of what he is given I can totally see why BO's make rules like that.

                        OP, hope your horse is happy in the new barn. Hopefully the barn owner being an idiot and kicking you out gave you the nudge you needed to move your horse to a better place.

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          Originally posted by Roxyllsk View Post
                          Meh, sometimes the issues crop up one at a time, and each one alone
                          isn't a deal breaker. But when you look back and realize just how many
                          issues there are ... then you think Holy Crap.

                          This is what's happening where I've been for the last 7 years. And the
                          last incident is the deal breaker, and so I'm looking for a new place.
                          Yeah, this DOES happen.

                          Me, and oh, 4 other boarders (8 out of the 11 horses boarded) all jumped ship at once. It was one little thing after another – things I was VERY unhappy about, but kept putting up with as it was the ONLY place with 12 hour turn out on grass (they just do not have that in CA!).

                          Anyway, once we got the hell out of there – the other boarders and myself went through a big “what was I thinking?!?!? Why did we put up with that?!?!” The new barn has been like heaven compared to the last one…. Oh why did I stay at the last place for 18 months!?

                          (and FYI - one of the boarders DID get told to leave that MOMENT after she gave notice - BO was pissed we were all leaving)
                          APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            If posters in Ashland are still looking, Coventry farm is very close to 95, (like 3 minutes from the exit), the care is great and the barn is nice. The BO is normal, and the other boarders are sane. I am not going to link to the barn website but a 2 minute google search is your friend. They have a home show series, 2 outdoor rings and an indoor. Nice people and we only left because we moved DD's pony when her trainer moved to her own facility that was closer to our home.
                            If you love me let me go....

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              I think that COTH is perhaps not the best place for this kind of expose, but I have to say that when I was looking for a new place to board my two I WISH that I had come across reviews of any kind, bad or good. I have been at a series of barns in the last few years and two of them were so bad that I cannot believe I found nothing about either on Yelp, or anywhere else. It was not until after I had moved that people came out of the woodwork to tell me the bad stories- in fact, one person told me all of the horrible things her friend had gone through the day I was moving. Thanks! Not helpful! Moving two horses is hard work in my area when you also need an indoor and certain other amenities.

                              So, after I left both places I posted reviews on Yelp. They aren't positive reviews, but they detail the issues I had at each barn. While people may have different standards and needs than me, if I can help give anyone a heads up about Crazy Acres 1 or Crazy Acres 2, I am going to damn well do it!

                              I know it can go both ways, and crazy BOs are matched by equally crazy boarders, but the harm that can be done by a BO is exponentially greater, in most circumstances, than a single boarder. It's crappy that people are unwilling to speak up about bad practices. I lost money, had injured horses, and spent a lot of my own time and labor trying to deal with the problems both these barns caused me and my horses.
                              You can take a line and say it isn't straight- but that won't change its shape. Jets to Brazil

                              Comment


                              • #55
                                I am not going to argue with the OP's orginial complaints, but I am perplexed by her response. I'm very familiar with the Richmond area and can think of at least 3, I'd say as many as 5, possible boarding options for hunters or jumpers in the area that I would consider, the three top options in question are certainly not "backyard." I've also never heard of this Still Ridge facility and have boarded and ridden in the Goochland/Ashland vicinity for close to 20 years, so who knows.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  Originally posted by FineAlready View Post
                                  Ugh, this actually sounds similar to the place I mentioned where I boarded for 8 months. The owners had no clue, but thought they did. I always described it to other people like this: On any given issue involving horses, there is a range of reasonable views/responses, call them options A-C. The owners of the barn I boarded at routinely selected option Q in response to situations - the option that is so randomly terrible and out there that you never would have even THOUGHT of it as a thing to worry about until they actually did it.

                                  It was horrible. I hope the OP enjoys the new barn!
                                  This post made my day because it is such an awesome and completely perfect description of how some horse people act.

                                  I am filing it away for future use and will probably see cause to whip it back out in fairly short order.
                                  The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
                                  Jinxyhttp://tiny.cc/PIC798&http://tiny.cc/jinx364
                                  Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
                                  The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    Originally posted by shadesofbay3 View Post
                                    I have lived in the Richmond area for a while, and the boarding options for competitive h/j riders are pretty deplorable if you are not looking to ride at a backyard barn.
                                    Wow. OP, stop while you're somewhat ahead. The area is small and you will make a name for yourself.
                                    Last edited by Lucy17; Mar. 22, 2013, 02:36 PM. Reason: typo

                                    Comment


                                    • #58
                                      Originally posted by Gestalt View Post
                                      Being told to leave immediately is harsh. Finding someplace to put your horse at a moments notice is not as easy as some make it out to be.
                                      Yes, it's harsh, but it happens. And it's not always a fall-out with the BO that triggers a sudden move. A fire, flood, etc, can put a horse owner in the same boat. Ideally, people should have a mental list of barns they can call in an emergency (and a plan to get there). They don't have to be barns you'd stay at forever, just someplace that can take in the horse for a few days until you figure out a better long-term solution.

                                      Question to some of you folks that boarded there and where told to leave before the 30 days was up, has anyone tried taking the BO to court over lost board?
                                      Several of us consulted lawyers and there was some talk about forcing the BO/BM to honor the 30 days' notice through legal channels, but in the end I believe everyone just left. I'm not sure if anyone else pursued getting their money back. I trusted the BM's word longer than I should have and by the time I realized I needed to take it in my own hands, I had too much else going on and it wasn't worth the added time/effort, even for small claims. I have no doubt I would have won in court. I do have doubts about whether I would have ever been able to collect.

                                      Comment


                                      • #59
                                        Originally posted by Samantha37 View Post
                                        I can back up everything she said, unfortunately... I boarded there a few years ago and it was a great day when I left!

                                        My friend's horse had to be moved to a "lesser" stall because it, too, urinated too much. They refused to feed my horse adequate hay even after he was scoped and found to have ulcers and the VET said he had to have access to hay constantly. I bought a hay net and it was always empty. And boarders were not allowed to touch the hay or grain under any circumstances.

                                        I wholeheartedly agree with everything you've said OP...
                                        I have to say, here, that this barn may be a barn that has a limit on how much hay is fed on a daily basis. I would think most barns do, I certainly do. I do offer the option of the boarder paying me extra based on how much hay they want fed at current market cost, or they can supply, store, and feed hay that they buy. If everyone in my barn was on free choice hay without paying extra, I'd be in the poor house fast! If the vet told the owner that the horse needed free choice hay 24/7, it is up to the owner to approach the BO and politely discuss the options available. Now, if the BO says no problem and does not follow through, that is a different matter...

                                        I do not allow boarders to touch feed or hay either. I have no way of knowing when someone will randomly decide that their horse needs "extra" feed, or hay, or whatever. Aside from what it costs me every time that happens, Suppose Suzie decided Dobbin needed more grain, so she started feeding him extra, herself, without communicating that to me, the BO. Now suppose that I thought that Dobbin needed more grain. I don't know that Suzie has been feeding Dobbin extra. Now Dobbin is getting way more than he used to, and even though I am careful to increase rations slowly, maybe Suzie isn't, and maybe Dobbin ends up colicing, or God forbid, foundering, because Suzie decided to take matters into her own hands? Food for thought. Rules are rules for a reason, usually. Also, if the horses are inside and a boarder goes into the feed room, of course the whole barn starts begging for grain, walking stalls, etc...even if they have hay. Every horse knows grain is waaay yummier than hay...
                                        http://www.facebook.com/pages/Fentre...24774504235082

                                        http://fentressfieldsequestriancenter.com/

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          And then there are barns, like one we moved to briefly, where the owners require boarders to buy their own grain from the feed store, and to buy their hay bales from the owner. Sounded like the perfect solution.

                                          Except that BO was taking our hay and feeding her horses with it. Moved from there fast. Oh yes, she was also using our grain for other horses when their owners ran out of grain. And ours was the expensive grain.

                                          While some boarders do want to give their horses too much, it should be understood how many pounds of feed and hay are to be given to each horse. Then the boarder can pay extra. We paid extra. And still got screwed at most of the many barns in our area. And why pay for a stall when a BO wants 24/7 turnout? How much profit does a BO want off of us?

                                          And the worst part is that when you check out of one bad barn, sometimes the next one, where the owner promises everything, is even worse.

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