Homesteading Forum banner

1 - 20 of 38 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I just recently purchased my first homestead. It's a small farm house with a barn on a separate lot across the street from the house. The barn is on almost two and a half acres it has 3 stalls all about 9X10. I'm just looking for some advice. I have never owned a horse but have friends that do. Thank you in advance for all your help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
105 Posts
I considered it once, for about a minute. Decided I didn't want the responsibility, liability and any drama that could be generated by the person boarding. I have kept a couple horses short term for people I know.
You might want to check your local ordinances, 2 1/2 acres is not much, here you have to have 3 acres for the first horse and another 1/2 acres for every additional horse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Ok thanks guys. Where I live the town says my property can support 3 horses. The previous owner said he used to have horses. I am trying to figure out a way to make a little extra money off the property. Any other ideas? The property is hilly and has pretty big rocks around so planting any crop would be difficult. It's really set up for animals. I'm also planing on getting a milking cow in the spring.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,606 Posts
I would check the price of insurance, most people give up when they get prices, and going without can cost you everything you'll ever have. Horses are accident prone and riders often get hurt as well.

If that doesn't scare you off, in most parts of the country the price of feed is high, and hay is hard to find this year. Bedding is expensive as well. Those stalls are pretty small,12 x 12 is normal. Fencing is expensive if it isn't already fenced, if you have barbed wire it isn't safe for horses.

Then there are the people. Some are great, others are a problem. You have to feed the horse even if you don't get paid and borders have been know to just leave the horse. I don't think you will get many borders when you aren't experienced, and you don't want to do self care, too many don't do very good care. I wouldn't want to do it, it can be more trouble than its worth, and you won't make much money, if any.
 

·
Wood Nymph / Toxophilite
Joined
·
1,615 Posts
My mom did.
More accurately the property was a horse farm first and a homestead second.
23 stalls, 12x12 or 12x14.
Large arena and ten acres of pasture fenced in barbed wire.
Full care including: daily turn out, six week hoof care, all vaccinations and worming, we would stand them for the vet if needed.
Fed and watered twice a day including grains and supplements.
Training and daily workouts were available for extra cost.

300/month for the first horse, 250/month for each additional horse.

She didn't make real good money at it, but it kept the mortgage and the feed and care bills for our personal animals paid.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,618 Posts
If you aren't an experienced horseman/woman, I strongly suggest you find other ways to utilize the property. How would you know to watch for colic, to know what is necessary for feed, hay, winter care, injuries, etc? Horses are fragile animals, an untreated colic or choke can be fatal, and injuries are to be expected at even the best facility.

Please don't try boarding, you are asking for a nightmare.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
What would be a good way for me to into horses? I'm young 25. There is lots for me to learn I know. But it sounds like you almost need to be a vet your self I your going to own horses. When I said I wanted to board horses I meant 1. I would like to have 2 horses of my own for a total of 3. Which in my area the town says 3 is ok. I thought it would be good for my other horses to have the companionship. But it seems very intimidating getting even 1 horse. My friends have had horses for 20 years and has only ever had one sever problem with her horse. I thought if I spent lots of time with the horses I would learn their behavior and when something was wrong they would act differently then I would know to call a vet to come check out the horse. Is this wrong for me to think like this?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,205 Posts
If you want to get into horses, I'd find a place where you can take lessons and even lease a horse. That way, you can find out what all is involved in horse ownership B4 you get one so you can see for sure if this is what you really want to do. Many people want a horse, then get one, get all the equipment, tack, trailer, land, etc only to find out in a few years that they don't really want the horse. It's more time, money and responsibility than they want. I heard it said that if you get a horse and are out w/in 7 years, it's just a phase. But if you own them past that, it's a life style. I've had horses for 11 years now, guess that means it's in my blood.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,272 Posts
Self care for people with horses might be an option. Then as you felt more comfortable you could add more options - ie do a feeding or whatever. Boarding is not easy money generally for the amount of work it is. I have a retiree here who helps pay the bills for the horses but I am a life long horse person. To learn about horses take lessons as a starting point. There are also online free courses that are interesting too.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,618 Posts
What would be a good way for me to into horses? I'm young 25. There is lots for me to learn I know. But it sounds like you almost need to be a vet your self I your going to own horses. When I said I wanted to board horses I meant 1. I would like to have 2 horses of my own for a total of 3. Which in my area the town says 3 is ok. I thought it would be good for my other horses to have the companionship. But it seems very intimidating getting even 1 horse. My friends have had horses for 20 years and has only ever had one sever problem with her horse. I thought if I spent lots of time with the horses I would learn their behavior and when something was wrong they would act differently then I would know to call a vet to come check out the horse. Is this wrong for me to think like this?
Here's a good example of why you should not just go get two horses, and then expect to be around them enough to recognize when something is amiss.

Adam is a coming 19 year old Thoroughbred gelding that has been with me for 2.5 years. He is one of the most stoic horses I have ever seen, he has had some serious issues and never turned into a different horse or acted any differently, other than maybe being a little tired at times. Never cranky, nothing. Very solid. But to me, he was just not his USUAL mild self for a couple of weeks. He had something wrong, but nothing I could put my finger on. Then a bit of nasal discharge, which he never has, and I knew enough to get him checked out. Turns out that one of his molars had rotted on the INSIDE, but there wasn't any indication of it when looking at it from the outside with my vet, until we did radiographs and found that his sinus was fully involved and the tooth had rotted up into his gum line and infected that plus his sinus cavity. It was pretty major surgery to removed the tooth, it wouldn't come out by pulling it. 4 days at the vet after surgery, then a big ol sick boy at home for 5 days before taking him back down for one sinus clean out, and now it is watch and medicate for another week before staples come out. And I have had horses for over 40 years and know what to look for, but even I didn't catch the issue right away with that big gelding.

What I am saying is, yes, you can come to know horses, but don't just go get a couple and expect to do it that way. How will you know the difference between gas and a vet needed colic? Go to a good lesson barn, lease a horse for a year or two, go feed it daily, twice a day, groom it, ride it, vet it, get a farrier out every 5-6 weeks or as needed, get used to hauling the horse around and loading/unloading it a lot, then lease it for another year to make sure that is really what you want. Then go get one if you are still interested:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,848 Posts
Is there a difference in the name meaning, boarding and renting a stall, pasture and you do all the care of your horse? When in texas with our first I paid for a stall on a large fenced pasture. But I had to show up am and pm to water feed turn out put in and do all his care. No one was around to do it for me. Had to bring in all his feed hay pine bedding buckets rake pitch folk wheel borrow ect ect ect. that was in the late 80's have things changed?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
953 Posts
I have boarded horses in the past. It really isn't a good way to make money, because the extra insurance you should carry for a boarding horse (versus one you own) is fairly expensive. It covers you in case someone (a boarder) gets hurt on your property and/or horses get off your property and cause damage. Now that I am not boarding horses, I don't carry an equine policy specifically, but have a large umbrella policy. However, there is still an inherent risk to having horses because they can and do get out, and if they do...can be trouble.

That said, I did find boarding as a way to offset my own horse expenses...so while I didn't *make* money, I was able to slightly decrease the monthly expenses that I was spending anyway, because I made a little bit of money. (As I said, the insurance part sort of tips the scale on that one, but in theory, it might help.)

I do agree that people are not going to be very willing to want to board with you if you have no experience caring for horses. Even people that have ridden for years in a lesson program may not know how to recognize a sick horse, or know what to do in an emergency.

Hard to say the best way to jump in -- I just went ahead an bought a farm and bought a horse (had taken a few years of lessons) and a pony. I don't think it's impossible to imagine caring for horses even with only a little experience -- IF you have good support systems -- vet, farrier, friends, trainers, AND you have the money (and are willing) to pay them. I was lucky to find a lot of people nearby and willing to help so it has worked pretty well for me. And, I read everything about horses and horse care I could find to help me learn faster.

In the future, I might consider boarding again; but it would be in very specific situations -- e.g. retirement care or long term layup, for example. I would want to minimize the number of other people (boarders) that could make my life problematic, leave gates open, or just annoy me. :)
 

·
Miniature Horse lover
Joined
·
25,219 Posts
I remember very well my my dad asked me when I moved back to WI after spending 10 years on a huge horse boarding stable in AZ.
He ask me Are you going to start a boarding horses now that you are back in WI?
And my Answer was this:

ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY NO WAY~!!!!

I had a belly full of some people that wanted to have their horses boarded. SOME should not even OWN A HORSE to start with. And it is those few people that spoil it for the sincere, and good horse people, that may have to board their horse for one reason or another.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,618 Posts
Is there a difference in the name meaning, boarding and renting a stall, pasture and you do all the care of your horse? When in texas with our first I paid for a stall on a large fenced pasture. But I had to show up am and pm to water feed turn out put in and do all his care. No one was around to do it for me. Had to bring in all his feed hay pine bedding buckets rake pitch folk wheel borrow ect ect ect. that was in the late 80's have things changed?
Self care is what you did. Full board is when the barn owner does all feeding, feed and hay purchase, maintenance and upkeep, etc.
 

·
Miniature Horse lover
Joined
·
25,219 Posts
Self care is what you did. Full board is when the barn owner does all feeding, feed and hay purchase, maintenance and upkeep, etc.
The stable I worked at and lived on the property had around 125 boarders.
about 100 of them were on Full Board and the others were self care.
But at this stable which was in the middle of the Phoenix Metro in Tempe/Mesa border even those on full care www ONLY provided the Hay made sure the waterers were in. That was all.
So even those on full care still had to Feed their Own supplements IF their horse got them, came and blanketed their horse, and even had to do the cleaning of their stalls.
We Did No Cleaning of stalls, even if they were on full care. I sort of liked that. LOL
I fed all the full care horses before I went to work and after I got back, and then if I had the time I played and worked some with my Shetland pony I had brought from WI.
While in AZ I trained him to pull a cart that way I could have fun with a pony while others had horses.
I did lease a Arabian mare for two years from a friend, so I could go on rides. Now this mare was mine years before, so I had fun riding her once again and in the mountains.
And BTW the horse pictured in my avatar is that same mare at 7 months old in my house. LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,085 Posts
I did for a few years and then decided that it wasn't worth it. Most boarders are a pain. Also, I agree that if you don't know horses then you don't need to take on the responsibility of caring for other people's horses. I would highly suggest volunteering your labor at a barn so that you can learn everything you possibly can about horses and horse management. When I was a teen, couldn't afford lessons, so I worked for them. The knowledge I gained was invaluable. Blessings, Kat
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,714 Posts
We call full self care "rough board" and that is how the horse that I help with is boarded. We have 7 stalls and so each horse represents one day a week. That day of the week that you sign up for is the day you go and feed all of the horses (owners put the grain in a bucket on the door the night before) and then put them out in their paddocks where the owners have already put out hay and water. This makes it nice because then you just need to go down once a day and you can go at the end of the day, ride, do your stall, any other chores that need doing and then put your horse up for the night. The owners of the property know nothing of horses so they make sure one of the boarders is the barn manager and it works out really well. Just an idea.
 
1 - 20 of 38 Posts
Top