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General horse care question from a horse newbie

6 replies

arfishy · 09/02/2009 11:24

We've just started riding and are completely clueless really, so bear with me.

At the stables at the weekend it occurred to me for the first time that actually stables are very small (I know, I just hasn't really thought about it before) and wondered what happens to horses that are stabled there most of the time. Do they spend all of their times in their pens? What's the general feeling about it? Do they prefer wide open spaces or are comfortable and safe with other horses in stables?

DP was murmuring vaguely about getting DD a pony at some point in the future if she enjoys riding, but we obviously don't have a field (mum does, but she's in the UK and we're in Sydney, so not perfect really ). If we paid for boarding a pony/horse, would we have to make a huge commitment to be at the stables every day to ensure it had time to exercise/get out/be with people? How do people do that with full time jobs?

We're not planning on getting one btw, all these thoughts just occurred to me when DP was mumbling about horses (at which point I said I couldn't see how we could possibly manage a horse on top of everything else).

OP posts:
alicecrail · 09/02/2009 11:32

I have a dd who is 15mo and 2 horses i have on diy livery (basically just rent the facilities)It is difficult and time consuming but many people do horse share, one person does mornings and the other does afternoons and have allocated days for riding. It can work very well if you get on.
As for your question about stables, some horses prefer living in and some out. I have 2 thoroughbreds that live in at night and go out during the day. If the weather is not very nice or the field too muddy i try to make sure they are exercised so not stuck in the stable for 24hrs. In the summer when its hot and flies are bad, the horses stay out at night and come in during the day.
I hope this helps at all

frostyfingers · 09/02/2009 11:52

Standard size for a stable is 12'x12' which is quite small if you have your horse in all the time. My tb goes bananas if he's stabled so he lives out with access to a shelter and I keep them in the yard which has woodchip base and stable when the weather is extremely wet or snowy. Most ponies are better kept outside - their temperament is such that a small pony stabled 24hrs might not be the happiest and therefore easiest thing to be around. They are well equipped to live out in all weathers, as long as they have access to shade/windbreak/shelter.... I've never done a livery, but I think you can also have an arrangement with some places that they use your pony some of the time which means that you don't have to be in sole charge of it - there will be others who no more. Personally, I'm not in favour of 24 hour stabling, it's not a natural way of living for a horse and rugs and things make it so easy to make sure they are warm/dry/clean etc.

arfishy · 09/02/2009 20:14

OK, thanks all. So it is better to keep them somewhere with a paddock and stables. I did wonder.

Also I see that it is time-consuming. I've already pointed out to DP that getting a horse for DD wouldn't just be about the cost, that a horse is a big animal to manage and needs a lot of time. We have a (rescued) parrot who is VERY time consuming. Who would have thought eh? He has the intelligence of a 5 year old and needs a lot of stimulation. Also 5 cats. DP really wants to live out on a big properly surrounded by loads of animals. I think a horse fits into his grand masterplan. Alas getting the cash to buy said house doesn't

I hadn't thought about horse/pony sharing either. It's a strange new world.

There are quite a lot of stables near us and I know the one we're riding at has dual facilities, the stables with a couple of huge arenas plus large paddocks at another site. I wonder if you have to have a horsebox to use the other location for the paddocks. Good lord this horse business is complicated!

Thanks all.

OP posts:
chloeb2002 · 09/02/2009 21:50

Hi arfishy its a bit different in aus.. Im in bris but also worked in sydeny.. renting a stable etc here is called aggistment and commonly horses are not stabled but have yards with shade shedsin them or just aggist in a big padock and there wil be a round yard for your daughter to tack up etc.. if you get to the ponit where you want one for dd then let me know I still have a few contacts in sydney.... not sure of sydney prices but before we moved onto acreage we paid$20 a week for aggsistment.

Butkin · 10/02/2009 12:37

Horses are a huge committment. In Winter ours are stabled at night and out in the day and out all the time in Summer.

At this time of year we get them in around 6pm, change rugs, hay, water and feed - takes about an hour for 4.

In the mornings once of us gets up at 6.30am whilst the other does reading/breakfast/school clothes with DD.

The morning stable person has to change rugs, turn out, muck out and rebed plus soak the hays. This has to happen whatever the weather.

I look after Australian racehorses when they come over and I know their trainers love them to be turned out as much as possible.

MitchyInge · 14/02/2009 08:41

did you look into any loan/share arrangements arfishy? there seem to be a few more than usual advertised just lately

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