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That's it- we're leaving! Why did you move your horse?

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  • That's it- we're leaving! Why did you move your horse?

    As some of you may be aware, my horse has recently been relocated. She is doing very well in her quarantine paddock at the moment and has taken everything in her stride, and I've been pretty encouraged as I've already started getting email updates about upcoming field maintenance that will be occurring on the main yard, when, where etc. so I feel confident about the new management. Quite excited for the future really .

    As you may be aware from my previous posts I was struggling with the previous yard as the turn out situation was dire. My mare had been moved from single sex to mixed grazing and back again and I was literally being run down by a rotten, rude and bargy fieldmate. I started looking for a new home then. But the kicker was the feral children on the yard, mainly the incident where a small child ran up behind my mare and SCREAMED, causing both me and my poor horse to jump- the little girl was so lucky not to be kicked. I felt so anxious and uncomfortable whenever I was there as there were so many children behaving like this and it made me realise that I couldn't cope with the risks... so I began pushing for harder for a new home, found one and left.

    I've moved a few times and my previous reasons were:
    Yard A- had to move as mixed grazing only and my horse had a terrible influence on the geldings, so they were mounting her and even beating eachother up to stick with her... relocation for safety.
    Yard B- turnout for mares was just a tiny field that was very boggy and became unusable in winter. My horse doesn't cope standing in so when I was having to stable her 24/7 for weeks at a time I had to move on.

    Why did you relocate the last time you did? What would you consider unacceptable on a yard for you and your horse?


    Horse Selling Hell
    My Writing
    People who think they know everything about horses know nothing

  • #2
    Horses have been at home for several years now, but I think my biggest and most consistent "we're outta here" complaint from boarding was ALWAYS that the barn wasn't feeding my horse enough hay.


    • #3
      The final straw was when the BO fired our barn guy with no warning and hired someone "new" that we were "sure to like" but wouldn't tell us any information about who it was.

      Our barn guy was awesome, kept close eye on the horses. It was just the last straw, especially since he's the only one who lived on site.


      • #4
        My last straw was very slow...
        Over time my guy started losing weight and I asked them for more hay (that I Would gladly pay for) and they promised me that they would. Instead they started upping his grain and lowering his hay further. They kept telling me they were feeding him correctly and I didn't learn the truth until I spoke to the owner of my horse's neighbor. All told he lost near 200 lbs and ended up getting a mysterious infection, kept blowing abscesses, and colicked.

        In addition to all that I was being nickel and dimed for everything including stall shavings every time he had to be inside the barn (which was bad weather, etc) with my "full stall/care" board.

        When I got him to my current barn the BO casually asked me if I liked his current weight. She looked relieved when I told her that I was appalled at his condition and wanted to do whatever is necessary to get him back to his fat and happy self.

        I can laugh about it now that he's okay and it's been about 2 years, but I find it hard to forgive myself for putting him there in the first place.
        Last edited by LawsofMurph; Apr. 19, 2017, 12:11 PM. Reason: ETA: Extra info


        • #5
          Changed feed from hay to pellets with no notice and no transition.

          Insufficient feed and shavings.

          Inconsistent management communication regarding clinics with outside trainers (yes, I followed their instructions every.single.time the problem was that the resident dressage "trainer" was unhappy despite the fact that nobody who rode in the clinics ever rode with her)


          • #6
            Mine have been at home for 13yrs now, but moving from boarding barns in the past was initiated by:

            #1- money-hungry BO/Trainer nickel & diming me to death when I took my (winning) TB off the "Show Team"
            Including having DH install a pay telephone & wire her arena for sound with the promise of payment for the work in her paying his show fees. Mysteriously this was never communicated to the office of that show, we ended up footing the bill & never receiving full payment for his work.

            #2- showplace of a farm where BO spent $$$ on Pretty & next to nothing on Useful. He then instituted a charge for weekly lessons which neither DH nor I wanted or needed. BO told us to consider it like Greens Fees at a Golf Club.

            #3 - access to trails which former landowner had allowed us to ride on purchased by an asshat who wanted to hunt deer - from a tree stand - and did not want us scaring off his venison

            #4 - Asshat of BO who went straight against my vet's orders for a very sick horse, including proclaiming on the barn's dry-erase board that I had to move my horses ASAP < no call or other communication to me. Of course this was done on a weekend when Wife of Asshat (the Good BO) was out of town. I spent a hellish weekend trying to find a place that could accomodate the sick one (needed a large stall to lie down) then wife got back & called to tell me I did NOT have to move. Asshat also was happy to tell me I'd never be able to care for my own horses on my own farm.
            Which is where I moved them when I left his place.
            *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
            Steppin' Out 1988-2004
            Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
            Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


            • #7
              Most recently relocated due to a number of reasons.

              1) I responded to that other thread about kids at the barn, and that was definitely a factor. The stress from that alone was too much.

              2) There were lots of people doing unsafe things with their horses. Not saying I'm perfect or never mess up and of course there's always inherent risk of something going terribly wrong with horses, but I felt like there were too many situations that made me uncomfortable and it was a matter of time until I witnessed something.

              3) The turnouts didn't drain and it was very problematic for my guy's hooves

              4) Felt like high school

              Those were the main reasons. My barn now is opposite in basically every respect and I am now kicking myself for not moving sooner! Oh well, live and learn


              • #8
                insane trainer.
                Auventera Two:Some women would eat their own offspring if they had some dipping sauce.
                Serious Leigh: it sounds like her drama llama should be an old schoolmaster by now.


                • #9
                  We had a dry year and there was no pasture and horses were out 24/7 except to be brought in for grain. My horse was chewing on tree branches and BO didn't feed ANY hay, although I was allowed to give her extra grain. Horse was losing weight so I moved.


                  • #10
                    Not the last time I moved, but I once had to move my horse from an awesome self-care situation because the roof blew off the barn (luckily it landed in the woods behind the barn, and not in my horse's pasture)!


                    • #11
                      One barn left the midweight blankets on when the day was 60 degrees. i took it off him and started looking for a new farm that day.

                      One place gave my horses each 2 buckets for water, but I came up early one day and found only DUST in both buckets of each horse. I carried all 4 buckets to the house of the BO and i told her why i was upset. She called the help and yelled at him, but i was already gone. If i have to worry about my horses getting WATER, i am not staying.

                      Many places told me they had trails for riding. Oh Sure then i get there and discover their version of trails are 5 minutes of walking. Finally found the place i am at about 9yrs ago. Love it. it's not perfect, but i doubt i would ever find perfection.


                      • #12
                        Mine are home now, for which I am very grateful. While we were finishing up the horse area, I pasture boarded my gelding at a local place with a good reputation. I checked on my horse every single day, and I am glad that I did. I discovered that the BO/BM kept forgetting to water the gelding paddock (but the paddocks that contained her horses always had full watering troughs). And this was during the height of the drought that we had a few years back, when the temperatures regularly reached 113-117 degrees F.
                        PA Hi-Ly Visible [PA Hi-Noon (by Magnum Psyche) x Takara Padrona (by *Padron)]

                        Proud member of the Snort and Blow Clique


                        • #13
                          I'm OCD about my horses care and really only trust myself. I'm also an introvert and love nothing better than being in the barn ALONE with my horses....we bought 20 acres and moved everyone home. Best decision ever!

                          I usually have a young horse at my trainers farm a few months out of the year, so I get to have just a little "barn time" with other boarders and that seems to be a perfect mix


                          • #14
                            Hmm, it's been a long time (hooray for 10+ years with my current trainer/BM!)...

                            First move was for lack of food - both quality and amount. My horse was always thin. He also had thrush constantly, as neither the paddocks nor the stalls were ever very clean. There was also a lot of drama at the barn as it was mostly a kid/teenager lesson barn, and even at 14 I was so over the drama.

                            Second move was essentially for drama, but it was actually affecting my horse and making him nervous/jumpy! Lots of yelling by the owner...

                            Third move was mostly due to the distance. Beautiful facility, horse was in good shape, had great turnout all day, but driving 30 minutes one way seemed unnecessary.

                            So I moved to a place 5 minutes from my house where a few horse friends boarded and my then-trainer was "managing"... at least when I was added to the wait list. When a spot opened up, it was being run by my now current trainer, but my friends were still there and confirmed that the care was good, so I moved in. It's ended up working out quite well!

                            Haven't switched management since then, though my trainer has been at a few facilities in 10+ years. And for her, I've readily driven 30 minutes one way without even considering ever leaving. The care is unmatched in the area (unlimited hay, whole food diet, amazing attention to detail, demanding of her staff to ensure horses are well cared for), she's a phenomenal trainer, and she refuses to allow drama in the barn - even those of us who aren't friends still get along well enough! I'll only ever "leave" if I stop riding or she leaves the business.


                            • #15
                              The only dramatic departure was a situation where the barn manager was leasing the facility, had some sort of dispute with the property owner, and the property owner put a general eviction notice on the board and said after three days they would lock the gates and tell the SPCA to come pick up any remaining "abandoned" horses. Several boarders were calling lawyers to discuss options, but I think everyone decided there was just too much crazy involved and split that weekend. I was out the next day.

                              Otherwise, it's generally for boring reasons (e.g. horse reached a level of training where I wanted access to a dedicated Dressage ring). And there haven't been many of those types of moves, either.
                              She Gets Lost


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by RockinHorse View Post
                                insane trainer.
                                Insane drunk junky "trainer" barn manager with a gun, shooting guns off in the parking lot, you know, toward my house.

                                Oh and the drug dealing transvestite with weapons charges she had hiding in my yard when I came home one night.

                                I call that "the day I had to call the police five times." I would have to dig up the lovely photos of sheriffs with shotguns.

                                And that was just the last couple days. Can you imagine all the crazy shite I put up with for seven years?

                                Let me apologize in advance.


                                • #17
                                  I've been pretty lucky. I've always been at barns that are run really well and have only moved twice for reasons other than moving from the area. The first was when I was a kid and had outgrown my trainer. I was the only boarder in a barn of lesson horses so they weren't too happy to see me go but I just wasn't progressing in my riding anymore. And the one other time I moved was because that barn closed at 7 and so it wasn't possible to ride after work.

                                  Now that I've got my boys home I'd never want to go back to boarding. I know they are getting the best care possible and am much more in tune to what my horse needs and wants. He also has thrived on the ability to be outside all day and still go in his stall if he wants. At our previous boarding barn he started jumping the fence and walking himself back to his stall whenever he felt like it...
                                  Hudson Valley's Premier Tack Shop www.argentoeq.com/

                                  Life is happening for us not to us


                                  • #18
                                    Usually I'd move for not enough hay and/or not enough turnout (both of which are always promised in higher quantities before move-in).

                                    Paying for more hay and literally watching them throw your horse half the correct amount at dinner every night, and saying something every time, is really annoying.

                                    I've also moved because of intolerable other boarders (rude, invasive, using my stuff, etc.)

                                    One time I moved because the BO thought they knew everything about feeding and could not follow directions to save their life. My horse needed weight, they kept telling me to buy Purina Ultium for him, but they were not willing to also increase his hay in coordination with the grain increase - even with my paying for it. Well, to appease him, I bought the Ultium, which did absolutely nothing for my horse. Then, I started buying him alfalfa cubes and canola oil. I left specific yet EASY instructions to follow for easing him onto the oil (1/4 cup these dates, 1/2 cup these dates, etc.). Like, I even included the actual calendar dates so they didn't have to keep track of how many days they fed what amount. My gallon of oil, that should have lasted 34 days, was gone after 6 days. What?

                                    SMH I can't.
                                    "The best of any breed is the thoroughbred horse..." - GHM


                                    • #19
                                      I have mine at home for 7+ years now. The only downside is that I can't see ever boarding again. Hope I don't ever have to.

                                      I left barn A because of moldy hay, overbreeding was using all BO's resources (money) and boarded horses were paying the price.

                                      I left barn B because the BO quit buying shavings and hay for "financial reasons" even though we were all still paying full board.

                                      Both of these situations were not in existence when I moved my horses to these two barns. Places change and conditions you find at first may not last.

                                      I left barn C only because I brought my horses home. It remains an awesome place.


                                      • #20
                                        (ETA: Before #1, the first few months I had her, I was basically "holding stalls" for people who weren't quite ready to move. So we were at barn A -- same as #1 here -- for about a month, then barn B, which I'd go back to but, we were only there for about 6 weeks as stall-holders, barn C was the backyard barn of Barn B's BO, and was also a good place with 24/7 turnout, and then I sent the horse off to eventing camp with the daughter of barn B/C's BO, because I was having issues with the horse and thinking about selling her, and needed some space to think.)

                                        #1 was to put horse into full training -- I wanted to give us a chance. Glad I did! We were there for about 15 months.

                                        #2: when I moved from #1, it had nothing to do with the care. I just needed a change, and had found a place with great amenities and trails access without riding on a road, and #2 was also much closer to home. It is a big, busy barn which has its plusses and minuses... I was there for about 4 1/2 years, during which the mare had suspensory surgery and went through a long rehab, and the barn was fabulous for this.

                                        #3: was to get the mare into a 24/7 turnout situation, and also care that was (at the time) better than #2 (and #2 was mostly fine) Amenities and trails turned out to be slightly less than #2, but it was a great barn in terms of the people... Over time, the facilities and care have not kept up, and good trails access became more important to me. I also discovered that my horse's living situation was great for her physically, but less good for her mentally as she aged. She spent too much time "watching for bears" and worrying. I was there almost 3 years.

                                        So we are now at barn #4, and after less than 2 weeks I'm still happy. My horse doesn't get 24/7 turnout but she has a roomy paddock. She is much more relaxed now. The facilities are lovely, the trails will be great (closed due to flooding and mud right now), care seems excellent. It's still an adjustment of course and undoubtedly there will be things I don't like.

                                        The biggest issue has been balancing amenities for me with amenities for the mare. When I retire her, amenities for me will not be such an issue, and what she needs will change. I hope it doesn't happen for a while.
                                        Last edited by quietann; Apr. 22, 2017, 09:07 AM.
                                        You have to have experiences to gain experience.

                                        1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"