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Is this a firing offense? Opinions sought

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  • #81
    Yeah, have been through the feed nightmare and it is my one true pet peeve. My point is only that while it may not have been a big deal this time, it could ahve been, and this girl needs to be aware of that possibility. In that sense I find it to be a serious matter that recquires discussion with said employee. I would not simply brush it off as no biggie.

    I like having my horse at a self care place so that yes, I can regulate his feed myself.
    You know, if you took this jello, put it in a mold and froze it, you could be like look....an emerald. Dude, I'd kick some guys ass he ever tried to give me a jello ring.

    Comment


    • #82
      My worst mistake was driving a pony on a five hour trip home in a bumper pull trailer with the ball latch not latched. It makes my heart pound to this day, thinking about it. I didn't get fired, but I certainly could have and would have understood if I had been.

      Others...
      Forgot the conformation horse needed to bed on straw instead of shavings.

      Left a lesson horse tacked up all night.

      And others too numerous to mention. Most of the mistakes I have made in the past 25+ years were due to the age old problem of too much to do and not enough time to do it, but others, like the hitch, were just plain ole instances of not paying attention.

      I remember doing a blister on the vets instructions, which were something to the effect of change the wraps every 12 hours. Either he wasn't clear or I miusunderstood the instructions, because the blister was supposed to be on for 12 and off for 12. I took changing to be just that, changing. Blister took on a whole new meaning. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif[/img]

      The mistake made by my help that is my favorite was the girl who brought in three lesson horses tied together, then tied with a single rope to the wall. 99% of the time, the lesson horses could have come in and tied themselves, but of course on this occasion, decided to have a disagreement and ended up running down the driveway tied together.

      I can laugh about it now...

      ****
      Just because you're not paranoid, doesn't mean they're not out to get you.
      *****
      You will not rise to the occasion, you will default to your level of training.

      Comment


      • #83
        Too funny! Gives new meaning to the phrase "string of lesson horses!" Maybe she had a polo background. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]

        Perhaps you've hit on the acid test for deciding whether or not to fire someone: Can you imagine laughing about the mistake later?

        Comment


        • #84
          Left a lesson horse tacked up all night, that's a good one!! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img] I have personally done plenty of stupid things in my life around horses -- mostly because I never had the opportunity to grow up with them. Horses are pretty darn overwhelming, especially if you start caring for them as an adult or even a teen.

          Atypical, I admire your conviction of character. As you mature into an adult (a highly responsible and reliable one, I'd wager! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img] ) you will learn that forgiving mistakes, pointing them out gently, and in the end laughing at them will earn you more friends and better, more reliable, barn help.

          More importantly, by gently helping someone recognize their mistake will enable you to laugh at it later . . . could you laugh at such a minor error if the result were that the worker was fired? [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_confused.gif[/img]

          FlightCheck, you know the girl. If you believe that she will work out despite this mistake, then by all means keep her on. If you don't think that she will work out, then use this as an excuse to fire her. But the determination cannot possible be made on a single circumstance, can it?

          Good luck with your decision! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

          "If you feel you had a bad ride, how do you think your horse feels?"
          \"If you feel you had a bad ride, how do you think your horse feels?\"

          Comment


          • #85
            I'm inclined to agree with Fairweather about being too harsh about vet school. Its ok to want something and to work towards it... I think its totally extreme to make such a presumption based on one moment in time in this girls' life.

            That said, I'm in my first year of university, hoping to get to vet school, and I can't imagine making a mistake like that. With horse, when in doubt, consult someone.
            If she had said, sorry I though I might have been confused but didn't want to bother you. I probably would have made it clear, that she should contact me in such a case.

            However, this girl didn't seem to have an incling that she had made any mistakes. That makes me wonder about either her level of caring or her level of understanding. She seems to not have understood the information communicated. That would worry me. What happens when you change something and ask her to give a horse some meds, will the horse get the right dose? Will the right horse get the dose? Those would be my concerns.

            I do have one question for you though, did she take notes when being shown around? Even when things are clearly written down, I often find it useful to make my own notes (I am a temp during the summer which can mean numerous jobs and workplaces in a short period of time, my notebook is my savior.). Perhaps in the future, you could provide a notebook for the person's use.

            In the future, if your wondering, 'Crime, boy...' is when I decided to kick your ass. - President Bartlett, The West Wing

            Comment


            • #86
              You are making me laugh!! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

              The image of those 3 horses running down the driveway tied together reminded me of an instance a 100 years ago where some of my trainer's students decided it was a good idea to hitch one of the ponies to a little pony cart. Unfortunately this pony had NEVER been put to any cart and certainly didn't drive. Good bye pony and pony cart. They finally found the pony by following the trail of cart pieces for about 1.5 miles.

              My biggest mistake was bringing in too many horses at once and being unable to get stall doors shut quickly enough. One mare spooked and bolted, 2 other mares followed her and by the time I found them a mile away, every volunteer fireman in the area was on site and had caught the mares who were standing quietly grazing on a beautifully manicured lawn. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif[/img] Now that would get you fired.

              Even with the color coding, etc., firing this girl this early in her "career" would not be too fair, IMHO, and I'm probably one of the most anal retentive people on this BB. Doing barn chores effectively and efficiently comes from repetition and she's only there a couple days a week as it is. Give her some time and DO ask her if she got confused, didn't understand, or whatever. You do have an opportunity to make an impression on this kid - I'd make the most out of trying to teach her something. We all learn from mistakes - that's how we can call ourselves experienced.

              ____________________________

              What're you doin' on the ground? I thought you said you could ride?!

              Well, I was ridin' when I fell off!!!

              Comment


              • #87
                <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by MB Stark:
                <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Atypical: My horse, who has a tendency to choke on Equine Senior, placed in the wrong stall with the wrong feed could have disatrous consequences. Almost anything other than this and I would have said forgive her, but I can't see taking the risk. Feed is just to important.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                Give me a #@*ing break. I am in my 40's have worked with horses My whole life and this is the most ridiculous thing I have heard. YOUR horse is not going to know the difference between regular grain and Equine Senior. And Unless the stall is way too small for the 17 hand horse Nothing is going to happen. Show horses are in different stalls every week.. No wonder so many of you have a hard time finding good help.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                You can have worked with horses 100 years, doesn't mean you know how EVERY horse reacts to a type of feed!! Every horse is different, and having worked with rescued horses since about '93, I can tell you I've seen more horses choke on Equine Sr than any other type of feed. I've never had a vet who didn't warn me to soak it because of choke risk. Of course, we are feeding some O.L.D. horses (up to 47 years old!) and they are way more prone to choke anyway!!

                ******************************
                ~Chestnut Mare Extraordinaire~

                My Equines:::
                Flower: http://www.eqbydesign.com/flower.htm
                Quin: http://www.eqbydesign.com/quin.htm
                Half Magic: http://www.teamwindchase.com/Half_Magic.htm

                Comment


                • #88
                  [QUOTE]Originally posted by FreedomsBlue:
                  Pellets and senior feed are different consistancy, aren't they? (ie, a grain vs. a pellet...) Could a change like that on a horses stomach cause colic? I've always heard that a sudden change in feed can wreck havoc on a horses gut.... Is that true? I know that the colic would probably be in extreme situations, but is it possible??
                  Also- could the hay mixup (I know alfalfa is a lot more concentrated then a lot of hays) cause gut problems as well?
                  (I hope that question made sense.....)QUOTE]

                  Pellets and sr. feed ARE different consistancy, sr. feed is MUCH more dense, heavier. A horse eating a pound of pellets (for example) would get about 3/4 pound of sr feed, switched over slowly. And the hay can be a big problem too, my Morgan would founder on alfalfa...

                  I don't think that you should be satisfied with 'well, nothing happened.' Just because nothing happened doesn't mean it wasn't wrong (but you know that, since you are thinking of firing her) it just means you were lucky. However, like I said before, I think you should look back at her reaction and determine if she was upset, and won't let it happen again, or shrugged it off and didn't care.

                  ******************************
                  ~Chestnut Mare Extraordinaire~

                  My Equines:::
                  Flower: http://www.eqbydesign.com/flower.htm
                  Quin: http://www.eqbydesign.com/quin.htm
                  Half Magic: http://www.teamwindchase.com/Half_Magic.htm

                  Comment


                  • #89
                    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by FreedomsBlue:
                    Pellets and senior feed are different consistancy, aren't they? (ie, a grain vs. a pellet...) Could a change like that on a horses stomach cause colic? I've always heard that a sudden change in feed can wreck havoc on a horses gut.... Is that true? I know that the colic would probably be in extreme situations, but is it possible??
                    Also- could the hay mixup (I know alfalfa is a lot more concentrated then a lot of hays) cause gut problems as well?
                    (I hope that question made sense.....)


                    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                    Yes, a change in feed can be upsetting to the horse's system. Horses have good bacteria in their gut that help digest what the horse eats. The bacteria become accustomed to what the horse regularly eats. If the horse suddenly eats a large amount of something totally different, these sensitive bacteria react by dying. The massive killing off of the beneficial bacteria can cause colic, and can even cause founder/laminitis b/c the dead/dying bacteria release endotoxins which alter the pH of the horse's system. Thats why changes in the horse's diet should be made over about 10 days- it allows the good bacteria to acclimate.

                    Does that answer your question? [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                    Comment


                    • #90
                      I haven't read this entire thread, so this may have already been said 20 or 30 times.

                      I KNOW how difficult it is to find good barn help - believe me I know.

                      However, I currently have a girl who knew all but two of the 20+ horses within the first week and those were two fillies who I have to look closely at to tell the difference and they're both three year olds that I foaled and have had ever since. So, these girls are out there, I just had to go through a dozen that didn't work out before I found one that did.

                      Unfortunately, she will probably grow up and get a real job and make more than I can afford to pay her and I will have to start the search all over again. I can always hope she goes to a local college in the meantime though [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

                      www.meandercreekstable.com
                      www.meandercreek.com

                      Comment


                      • #91
                        <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Duramax:
                        <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by FreedomsBlue:
                        Pellets and senior feed are different consistancy, aren't they? (ie, a grain vs. a pellet...) Could a change like that on a horses stomach cause colic? I've always heard that a sudden change in feed can wreck havoc on a horses gut.... Is that true? I know that the colic would probably be in extreme situations, but is it possible??
                        Also- could the hay mixup (I know alfalfa is a lot more concentrated then a lot of hays) cause gut problems as well?
                        (I hope that question made sense.....)


                        <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                        Yes, a change in feed can be upsetting to the horse's system. Horses have good bacteria in their gut that help digest what the horse eats. The bacteria become accustomed to what the horse regularly eats. If the horse suddenly eats a large amount of something totally different, these sensitive bacteria react by dying. The massive killing off of the beneficial bacteria can cause colic, and can even cause founder/laminitis b/c the dead/dying bacteria release endotoxins which alter the pH of the horse's system. Thats why changes in the horse's diet should be made over about 10 days- it allows the good bacteria to acclimate.

                        Does that answer your question? [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                        Yes. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img] Very well. Thank you.
                        I wanted to get something worthwhile out of the post, and you helped me do it. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                        Sarah

                        "Half the failures in life arise from pulling in one's horse as he is leaping."~ Julius Hare
                        ________
                        Sarah
                        formerly known as Alohamora
                        \"Half the failures in life arise from pulling in one\'s horse as he is leaping.\"~ Julius Hare

                        Comment


                        • #92
                          SO I had a suggestion for Flightcheck! At my barn - we have 40 horses. They each get something TOTALLY different in their feed. We have about 10 different types of grain to mix and match and every horse has his own bag of specially concocted (by the owner) supplements. Each horse has his feed made up in a small bucket which is clearly labeled with its horse and contents (you could even color code it!) and it matches the label on the horse's door.

                          When it's time to feed, basically, the person feeding just makes sure the bucket label matches the stall door label and dumps it in. The people who make up the buckets are "old timers" who are utterly reliable (this could be you, Flightcheck!). This wouldn't help if your person mixes up horses, but its one step closer to controlfreak perfection! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                          Do you know that some horses have allergies to things like bute? Certain supplements? Certain drugs? Did you consider if one of Flightcheck's horses got bute or something else that can cause an allergic reaction that the misfed horse might have suffered extremely serious consequences? There are two horses in my barn with such allergies to specific "supplements".

                          I like control freak barns like flightcheck's. You minimize your colics/accidents/injuries/illnesses. While they may ALWAYS be lurking with those horses that are prone - flightcheck will see far fewer than some barn managers who consider these things "no big deal".

                          So maybe because this didn't up badly - this situation can be written off as "no big deal". I would prefer to say it "*is* a big deal" but luckily it ended up alright. Whether she stays or goes is up to Flightcheck's peace of mind.

                          There are control freak 16 yr old just as surely as there are corner-cutting 40 year olds. This is not a teenage thing (with some exception as to maturity of responsibility)... this is a matter of personal work ethics in a barn.

                          If it were too dark to see the halter colors, i would have checked and double checked the horse - called the manager to help, scrambled to be SURE before I left the for the night - there really isn't a good excuse for such a mistake other than being careless.

                          Good luck Flightcheck!

                          martha

                          "We are ready for any unforeseen event that may or may not occur." -- Vice President Al Gore, 9/22/97
                          Proud member of the * Hoof Fetish & the NervousNellieWorryWart* cliques!

                          Comment


                          • #93
                            How about braiding a lock of mane on each horse, with beads spelling out the horse's name? [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                            Practical, and oh so cute! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]

                            Comment


                            • #94
                              don't take over the job he/she is supposed to do correctly. go back a step and supervise him/her doing it.
                              correct mistakes. improve identification, maybe a photo of each horse on the stall. but if after retraining the error rate doesn't go down, replace!
                              more hay, less grain

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #95
                                feed is already made up for the evening by me, in, you guessed it, color coded feed buckets with the horse's name on it!

                                What I think I'll do is have her come out on Monday (we're gone all weekend at Canterbury), sit down and talk about it, and ask HER for suggestions - and go from there. I've asked the boarders who were here, and all of them say that she cheerfully thanked them for their offers of help while insisting that she was fine. Maybe she's nervous about admitting a mistake, or maybe she is just careless - who knows?

                                Call me whatever, but I believe there is a BIG difference in a handfull of 14% Senior Feed with 2 flakes of alfalfa and a LARGE scoop of 10%pellets with 2 flakes of coastal hay.

                                Comment


                                • #96
                                  <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by crocket:
                                  As the owner of a horse with special needs I am VERY anal about her care and for my mare the wrong turn-out or improper feed could very well create a life-threatening situation. My girl has foundered and she is not allowed any grass. Turn-out in a lush paddock could very well cause a laminitic episode.
                                  .<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                                  yea, but would you have kids taking care of her in exchange for lessons?

                                  Little surprises around every corner, but nothing dangerous!
                                  FairWeather
                                  CANTER West Virginia

                                  Comment


                                  • #97
                                    Lol farfel that made me laugh. great udea.

                                    Thanks Spunky, I appreciate that. Conviction of Character? Is that the polite way to tell me I'm stubborn as all heck????? LOL [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]

                                    I think McmIV vocalized my concerns more effectively than I did. This has, at the very least, been a very interesting thread! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img]
                                    You know, if you took this jello, put it in a mold and froze it, you could be like look....an emerald. Dude, I'd kick some guys ass he ever tried to give me a jello ring.

                                    Comment


                                    • #98
                                      Quote: Yea, but would you have kids taking care of her in exchange for lessons?
                                      ________________________________________________

                                      Fairweather, you've really made me think about this. My mare is cared for by an extremely knowledgeable adult at all times. But, even so mistakes can happen -- as it did in my case.

                                      I have met very responsible teens who know and understand their jobs completely and are happy to work for "lessons". Before my girl had health issues, she was well cared for by young girls whoworked off their board or received lessons.

                                      But now, quite frankly, I would be hesitant to put my horse's care into the hands of a young person because I'm not sure what the level of commitment to my horse would be.

                                      It's not just turn-out and diet we are talking about here. But, she also requires a daily medication and Aeromask treatments. These things cannot be put off or forgotten about. I need to feel that my horse's needs are top-of-mind for the caregiver.

                                      For me, the issues raised in this thread ARE life-threatening to my horse and if I had any further concerns I would be looking for board elsewhere.

                                      Comment


                                      • #99
                                        Atypical, don't lose your enthusiasm!! But you'll probably mellow out. I always liked to think that I was idealistic. I got pretty mad once -- I was about your age -- when someone told me I wasn't "idealistic", I was "naive". [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_mad.gif[/img]

                                        It took me about 10 years to discover that he was probably right! (A shocker to no-one but myself I suspect! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif[/img] ) I still always look for the best -- but I don't expect it to be everywhere!! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_razz.gif[/img]

                                        Having conviction and being stubborn are similarly related -- the difference is knowing which battles to fight and which ones to walk away from. Not everyone is born with that knowledge; I for one had to develop it! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif[/img]

                                        I couldn't say where you fall on the scale, but it's probably worth some introspection every once in a while. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                                        "If you feel you had a bad ride, how do you think your horse feels?"
                                        \"If you feel you had a bad ride, how do you think your horse feels?\"

                                        Comment


                                        • I'll try not to bore you with this, but when Mr. Flash was an assistant trainer to a nationally ranked trainer, he was the only one allowed to set up the feed. Not even the groom who had been there for 10 years was allowed to do this. In addition, he had to be there for every single vet treatment, even if it meant he had to sit in the barn waiting for 6 hours. Why? because people make mistakes. Feed gets mixed up, vets treat the wrong horse or treat with the wrong stuff. Maybe the horse is fine, but what if the horse is supposed to race in 2 days and was accidentally given a banned substance?

                                          You get what you pay for. If you have minimum wage workers, or kids working off lessons, you can't expect the attention to detail and work ethic of a mature adult who earns high 5 figures in real life. Do the crucial stuff yourself, or find someone who is capable and make it worth their while to do it.

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