Stable Owners

      7 Comments on Stable Owners

You may recall the Bad Eventer’s take on Instructors, & Riding Students…..

If you missed those, you should definitely check them out.

I’ve been thinking a lot about barn owners lately. I started my own stable 2 months after my 18th birthday. And having run my very own kingdom stable for more than a bazillion a few fortnights, I’ve gotten used to caring for my horses…………..well…………….any way I see fit.

I’ve been considering what it would mean if I had to board my horses somewhere else.

On one hand, the idea of paying someone else to keep my horse…..for this control freak……is somewhat terrifying. On the other hand, I’ve spent many – a GREAT MANY – more hours fixing fences, scrubbing water tanks, replacing hoses, and dragging arenas than I ever have riding.

The thought of showing up to ride without having to repair anything first, is a novel and hugely appealing concept.

But then it comes back to that teensy problem of someone else calling the shots.

I’ve met a lot of other stable owners over the years and I have to say they come in a large variety of flavors. For some reason those flavors tend to run more on the fruit loopy, rocky road type……….. than the dependable or do-what-they-say variety.

Here are a few of the Stable Owners Bad Eventer has crossed paths with.

 1. Ms. Nohpee Ahlowed

I had a horse on stall rest at another farm after a minor injury. I had gone to meet the farrier there one day.

Miss Nohpee is the stable owner who dragged my horse from the barn aisle screaming and hitting him because he was ………relieving himself.

The barn aisle was concrete. If he’d succeeded in urinating on the aisle we’d have tossed some shavings on it, scooped it up & 5 minutes later there would have been no evidence. Heck, there was even a hose nearby we could’ve just given it a little spritz.

But when she saw him dangling out the boy parts she started smacking them, yes THEM, grabbing his halter and jerking and beating him down the aisle until she got to the grass outside the barn. Then she refused to let him back in the aisle for 30 minutes because she was sure he “wasn’t done yet”!! She had snatched him up so fast I couldn’t really intervene on his behalf short of a full body tackle.

I think my poor pony has had some post traumatic stress about urination ever since. 

After that example of the care my horse was receiving I promptly removed him from the premises.

2. Ms. Nofootprintzevr

This is the stable owner who refused to turn horses out in pastures or paddocks if it was soft enough to make footprints. As if that wasn’t bad enough, when it was soft enough to make footprints she also padlocked, yes PADLOCKED the riding arena so that no one could ride in it.

Hhhmmmmm, no turnout, no riding………………….

The fact that every horse on the property was weaving, cribbing and going nuts after 6 weeks in their stalls thanks to lots of rain, meant nothing to her.

She was proud, HER footing was still perfect. Never mind that no one ever got to use it.  When some of her boarders defected to my farm where the horses get turn out regardless of the weather I got a very interesting email from her asking me exactly what all-weather footing was, and “where can I buy some?”

3. Miss Nahtmybiznis

This stable owner tells you that you’re using the wrong saddle pad, the wrong bit, your instructor isn’t qualified, you shouldn’t have done that exercise with your horse……. This is the owner that has a running commentary on every single thing you ever do with your horse from your choice of flyspray to the shoes your farrier put on him…………… and you’re always doing something wrong.  

You leave the stable everyday wanting to either punch her or cry. Or you strategically ride only when you’re certain she isn’t there.

4. Miss Liarliarpantsonfire

I had my horse in training to be sold. He was supposed to be ridden every day, and was reportedly doing well. I arrived one day to show him to a nice couple looking for a trail horse. I brought him up and he looked decidedly jello-like……………….

I couldn’t find a muscle on him anywhere.

When I tossed the saddle on him, his eyes became as large as dinner plates and he let me know in no uncertain terms he had not even SEEN a saddle in a long……………….

long time.

After the bucking subsided, the stable owner assured me she had ridden him daily and she had no idea what had just happened.

A 12 year old riding student let me know as soon as the owner walked away that the horse had not even been brushed in 6 weeks…….. let alone ridden.

What flavor of stable owners have you crossed paths with?

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7 thoughts on “Stable Owners

  1. Jess

    My favorite (least favorite) was the lady who fed all the horses coastal hay from round bales, which I think is gross to begin with. The barn workers were to fork it into wheelbarrows and dump those wheelbarrows into stalls. So "a wheelbarrow full" varied WIDELY according to how industrious the worker was. It also meant that the dirt aisle, which was never ever ever raked, was full of hay that had fallen out of the wheelbarrows. Then one day, after I'd been around for a good eight months and never seen the aisle raked (buying my own square bales for my mare), I watched the barn owner rake up all that hay in the aisle–which by this point was full of cat pee, chicken poop, thrush buster, god knows what, EPM-laden racoon droppings, etc.–and feed it to the horses. And then instruct the barn workers not to give any of the horses new hay until they had eaten that absolute garbage. I let her have it. My girlfriend's horse was also at that barn, and he didn't have his own hay so he was given that disgusting hay. It turns out that she also didn't like paying for bedding. Her broodmares and babies (she's a "breeder") weren't given bedding because "they're horses." So they all dug big holes in their stalls that they had to then stand in. I'm kind of shocked that her horses got vaccinated, to be honest.

  2. Michelle Myers

    Mr Nutriking
    His hay is the best hay ever created, so there is no possible way your horse will need more than four small flakes a day, even if you're willing to pay for more. Just give your horse more grain for weight.

  3. TeresaA

    And this is why my horses are home. I have had experience with the
    1. OCD Barn owner.. Which sounds great but you get a lecture if the broom is 6 inches from where it is supposed to be and heaven help you if the horses track a bit of shaving on to the grass.
    2. the passive aggressive BO: you know the one that says everything is fine and then leaves hysterical notes about how everyone is taking advantage and she's just not gonna take it anymore.
    3. Fatal Attraction: the one who takes falls in love with your horse (in a weird way) and tells you how the horse loves them, not you and starts looking at you out of the corner of her eye in a way that makes you nervous about starting your car.
    4. the one with the creepy boyfriend who hangs out 'watching' a lot and makes you start carrying pepper spray.
    5. the dietitian- who sets a feed program in place and ignores your wishes, thoughts, inputs and how your horse is deteriorating. Even when you offer to buy the feed that you want, nope not gonna happen. she knows what to feed.

    god, I didn't realize how many there were. I could go on and on…..

  4. KmRessler

    The barn I got my horse at had an owner with good intentions but with absolutely no idea how to feed or bed horses. They ALL got the same amount of hay, whether it was a pony, or a 16.3 hh horse. THey got two flakes, twice a day and a scoop of grain twice a day. That was it.My horse was a rescue and was on a weight builder but when she decided he was "fat enough" she took him off the weight builder. She was also bad about turning out. They didn't go out in mud, they didn't go out in the rain, they didn't go out when it was hot….you see a pattern? They also didn't go out in groups bigger than 3. She was also horrible about bedding! She didn't see the benefit of putting enough bedding in the stalls for the horse to lay down if they wanted to. It was enough to "dust" the bottom and then to be stripped out the next day. We went through…so…much…bedding there because it was all getting thrown out the door. I'm at a great barn now where they have deep bedding that is always dry and they get as much hay as they want, and each horse has their own diet of grain depending on what they need. They also all go out in a herd, all 10 horses in one giant field. Never leaving my current barn.

  5. Finding Serenity

    I'm so grateful I've found the place my boy and I are at. The owners are well informed, willing to learn if something new comes up and are the most flexible hard workers who love horses. Plus they charge a decent rate and go out of their way to make my horse comfortable and happy. I'm slightly worried if I have to move for a job change that I won't find a place like theirs anywhere else!

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