There’s a lot to consider when you build a barn and equine facility. Unfortunately, one of those factors that needs to be on your mind is the potential for theft. Each year horses and tack are stolen, but a few changes in how you build your stable can reduce the risk of theft. Consider these tips as you plan your equine facility.
Locate Your Barn Toward the Back of the Property
When you’re building a horse farm from scratch, you have the advantage of being able to lay out the property in whatever orientation you want. If at all possible, lay out your property so that your stable is positioned toward the back of the property. Anyone accessing the stable should need to drive past your house. This simple design can go a long way toward deterring possible theft, especially of horses.
Avoid Fences and Gates Near Roads
Carefully consider how you fence your horse property. Try to avoid running horse fencing near the road, since it makes it easier for someone to remove horses from the pasture. If you need to run fencing by a road, then opt for a solid type of fencing, like wood fencing, which is more difficult for someone to disassemble or break through.
Definitely avoid locating pasture gates on fence lines that border roads. If gates must be placed where they are potentially accessible by the public, then make sure that they are chained and padlocked when not actively being used.
Build a Locking Tack Room
As you plan your tack room, incorporate a strong door with a lock. Many boarding barns use doors with keypads, so that the access code can be changed as riders move their horses elsewhere and riders don’t have to worry about potentially forgetting their keys.
It is also wise to encourage boarders to use their own measures to protect their tack, such as installing nameplates on saddles and bridles, keeping records of saddle serial numbers, and having microchips implanted in particularly valuable tack.
Install Plenty of Exterior Lighting
As you plan your barn, maximize the exterior lighting around your property. This includes installing floodlights on your barn and other property buildings, and possibly lighting the main access road through your property. The more light that you have, the better, as it is far riskier for someone to attempt to steal from a well-lit property.
Consider Installing Surveillance Cameras
Surveillance cameras are another wise investment if you’re concerned about potential theft on your property. In addition to acting as a robbery deterrent, cameras can help you to monitor the activity on your property for overall security.
The First Steps to Protecting Your Property
Preventing theft in your property starts with the design and layout. Measures such as installing additional lighting and surveillance cameras can reduce the chance of someone attempting to steal from you, but they don’t always prevent it. In addition to carefully designing your property, always exercise other preventative measures, such as keeping an eye out for suspicious activity and not permitting strangers to visit your stables.
This is a great article with great information. Theft is a subject that has come up more than one time in discussions with our customers when we are designing a new barn for them. It is not discussed that much but, at the same time, it is an unfortunate reality for some barn owners.
I thought the mention of location, not near fence and/or roads was a very good point!