This is the third post in a series of posts especially for the new horse-owners and leasers at our barn. Being that you're new to horse ownership, you're probably also new to boarding. ;)
Let me start by saying that we love having you and your horse with us–our barn is a much more lively, friendly and fun place with you there. Your business is important to us, so please don't hesitate to voice any concerns or needs you may have. Callae and David are always striving to make sure the barn feels like a second home where we all can be safe and comfortable while we enjoy our horses.
At Sioux River Stables, your horse is fed and watered daily by Callae. Callae and David live right there on the farm, so the horses are really never alone, are checked on daily, and are in excellent hands. Even so, your horse's well-being is your responsibility also. Being a responsible horse owner and boarder means following certain protocols and being involved in the care of your horse. Here are a few guidelines for boarders at our facility:
- Please pay your board bill on time (on the first of every month).
- Check the farrier schedule (hanging on the feed room door) for the date your horse is getting trimmed every month. Ideally, on the day of the appointment, you should be there to bring your horse in and discuss with the farrier any important information regarding the state of your horse's hooves. If you can't be there, let Callae know ahead of time so that she can arrange to bring your horse in for you. You may leave cash or a check for the farrier in the office drawer with a note. If there is no payment provided for your horse, they will be skipped that day.
- If you do not pay for indoor board but you used a stall before or after riding, please clean the stall when you are done with it. Indoor boarders may use their horse's stall at any time and leave it dirty...daily stall cleanings for indoor horses are done by David.
- Picking up any poop your horse left in the cross-ties or indoor arena keeps flies down in the summer, so please do your part and don't leave a mess for the next person to deal with.
- Helping to keep the tack room clean is very appreciated. Tack can get lost or dirty if we don't all take time once in a while to tidy up and organize that shared space.
- Callae administers de-wormer to each pasture in a specific way, so please buy de-wormer, write your horse's name on it and leave it in the office drawer whenever you're asked to do so. Being prompt about this is important for your horse and his/her pasture-mates' health.
- Please turn off all lights if you're the last person in the barn.
- Mud is an issue in the spring and after a hard rain. Please do your best to keep your vehicle off the grass areas to avoid creating muddy ruts. David usually puts traffic cones up to indicate where to drive/park during the muddiest times.
- If you choose to blanket your horse, it is important that you come out weekly to remove the blanket and groom them. Blankets can rub and create sores, as well as trap moisture against the skin and cause skin problems if left on for weeks. This goes for winter turnouts as well as fly and rain sheets.
- If you bring a friend or family member out to ride with you, please make sure they have signed the liability waiver in the office drawer prior to mounting and that they wear a helmet. Minors must have the signature of a parent or legal guardian and must be supervised by an adult.
- Horses can fluctuate in body condition throughout the year, depending on how much or little they are exercising, weather conditions like extreme cold, running away from flies, etc. Please be responsible about observing your horse and consulting with Callae and your vet immediately about any changes that might be necessary in your horse's feed. Weight changes can sometimes mean serious issues like Lyme's disease, worms, or teeth that need floating. Catching the problem early is key.
- Do your best to be present when the equine dentist comes, when the vet comes to do spring vaccines and coggins, and any other such appointments for your horse. Callae arranges for these services to be done yearly for the whole barn, so that each individual boarder doesn't have to pay for the barn-call alone or hassle with making the appointments.
- Please help us to keep the barn safe by keeping an eye out for anything out of the ordinary or potentially dangerous like a down fence or a nail sticking out in a stall, and let Callae or David know about the problem immediately.
Don't be afraid to ask questions and discuss your ideas or concerns with us! You and your horse are important to us. Thank you for choosing Sioux River as your horse's home-sweet-home. :)