Build Your Horse Facility Before You Buy
More From "7 Tips You Must Consider Before You Buy A Horse"!
Build Your Facility Before You Buy
In the last two articles we discussed knowing the value of the horse, costs associated with owning a horse, the importance of doing a vet check prior to purchase, and having riding goals in mind when selecting a horse. Today lets talk about facilities.
Your options for housing your horse are owning your facility, leasing
land, or boarding. If you are in a situation where you live on land, it
is important that you build your facility, with the basic needs for
your horse, before you purchase. I have made the mistake of having
horses on my property before my facility was ready. Doing this not only
made it difficult to deal with my horses from feeding to handling, but
also made it very tough to actually build our facility.
Basic needs in a facility include: A fence to keep your horse safe and
secure on your property; Shelter to keep your horse out of the
elements; A feed room to keep your feed/hay dry and easy to handle; An
area under cover where you can store your tack, groom, saddle, doctor
and care for your horse. You will also need to set up for power and
running water convenient to your facility.
Fencing: There are many options of fencing for you to choose from when
building your facility. With many choices come an array of costs. Work
within your budget to build the safest fence you can for your horse.
What is most important in building your fence is using a material that
cannot cut, scrape, or trap your horse in any way. Gates should swing
easily, be free of anything that can hook a hip or shoulder, and be wide
enough to comfortably lead a horse through.
Shelter: Most effective horse shelters are two sided, with a roof. I
like to see shelters twice as long as they are deep (i.e. 20'wide X
10'deep). The height should offer comfortable clearance for the horse
at its lowest point. This type of set up keeps the horse from feeling
confined, while sheltered from the elements. It is also important to
have safe walls on your shelter. If the walls are metal, you will need
to line the walls with wood to prevent a potential hazard for the horse.
Feed Room: A good feed room offers enough space to store feed during
all seasons in a safe, dry environment. Be sure to have enough room to
store hay, as well as, feed if utilizing the same space.
Covered Area: It is important to have an area where you can store your
tack, groom, saddle, and care for your horse. This set up can be a
free standing building or within a barn. Regardless of the setting, be
sure to offer plenty of room for multiple horses and build in a way
which allows you to expand in the future.
Water and Power: Be sure to think through your water and power set up.
Use an installation plan that is safe and convenient for you and your
Regardless of how simple or elaborate your plan is for a facility, what
is most important is safety for horses and people. Keep in mind, the
more room you can allow in your plan the safer the facility will be for
you and your horse. You cannot have too much space.
*If you lease the land your horse lives on, all of the above should
apply. Work with the land owner to provide the safest environment
possible for yourself, and your horse.
For more detailed information I have writen a book which is available now.