Ask an expert what a stabled horse is often lacking, and you’ll probably hear the words “fresh air.” Ventilation in barns is of utmost importance; a horse’s sensitive respiratory system is susceptible to mold, fungus, the fumes from ammonia in their soiled bedding, and dust floating through the air. Even in summertime, with all the windows flung open, a barn can be a place of still, unmoving air, which exacerbates heat problems as well.
All sorts of fans exist to help out with still stable air, from massive ceiling fans to discount-store box fans. Which fan is […]
Spring is here, and everything’s turning green. Take a cue from Mother Nature and add a little green to your farm routine. If you’re running a farm or visiting a boarding stable on the regular, you’re participating in an important conservation effort, whether you knew it or not. Farmland conservation promotes green-space in rapidly developing areas, supporting animal and plant life which would otherwise be threatened by new construction.
So just by participating in the farm lifestyle, you’re making a difference. What’s next? Here are a few ways to add environmentally friendly practices to […]
When we think about designing our dream stable, our minds often go first to the stalls. With good reason — our horses spend a decent percentage of time in their stalls, so we want them to be roomy, safe, and comfortable. Then we think about our tack room, our wash-racks, our amenities — all the extras that make the stable comfortable for us, the humans in the equation. But we might actually spend the most time of all in our stable aisle, getting from place to place, grooming horses, or just plain hanging out and having a chat with friends. It […]
Horse theft seems to be as popular these days as it was back in the Wild West. We may not call them rustlers any more, but we still have to be on high alert to protect our horses from thieves who might appear on foot or with a trailer, ready to open our gates, break into our barns, and take our horses from us. In a recent article, we talked about simple strategies to improve security around the barn. Now, let’s look at a few simple ways to mark your horses as your property.
Microchips: Microchipping horses […]
No hoof, no horse. We all know the saying, and we all know how maddeningly true it is. You walk into the barn, midway through a great training week, and your horse greets you with a naked hoof where there ought to be a shoe. Or worse, a half-naked hoof, with a shoe hanging on by a few loose nails.
Every equestrian needs a home hoofcare kit, something that can help you sort out minor hoof problems until your farrier can visit your farm. Whether it’s pulling off a loose shoe, or smoothing down a rough clinch, you […]
Change up your reins! It’s hard to oversell how important your reins are. Whether you’re riding or driving, your reins are your direction connection to your horse’s oh-so-sensitive mouth. In a lot of ways, they’re also your first line of defense in emergency situations, when you need to stop or turn as soon as possible. When they’re wet, though, traditional leather reins can do anything but offer a quick, soft touch to a horse’s mouth.
So why are you still using those old laced reins that came with your bridle years ago […]
In an ideal world, the only thing between your horse and your saddle would be a simple cotton cloth — the better to keep your saddle from getting too sweaty and dirty.
In the real world, no horse is built the same, and no saddle can fit every horse, which makes the vast universe of gel pads, half pads, therapeutic pads, keyhole pads, and every other sort of saddle pad imaginable such a profitable enterprise. It’s a rare tack room that isn’t stocked with at least a dozen different saddle pads. So what’s the best way to choose […]
Ready to get a little more work out of your phone? It’s good for more than Facebook and Instagram. With apps to help you organize your business, memorize your dressage tests, and even pack your trailer before a show, your smartphone can step up from fun device to functional helper — even in the most traditional of barns.
Recordkeeping: Keeping records straight around the barn can be challenging. A stable full of horses with different needs can require a constant whirlwind of visits from doctors, dentists, farriers, masseuses… you get the idea. Broodmares need their own set of […]