(Hacking today at Poplar Place)
Here’s some tips to make your stabling experience run as smoothly as possible.
-Request all related horses to be near each other. Usually when you fill out the entry form there’s a “stable with” section. Put the names of all the horses you’re going to be riding, coaching, grooming for, etc. This will help to keep everyone together.
-Bring extra everything. If you’re going to need six bales of hay, bring seven. Bring more than one pitchfork and anything else you can think of. Never forget an extra halter, just in case. Even if you don’t need it, your neighbor may have forgotten something. Be prepared for anything!
-Keep your area tidy. There’s nothing I hate more than when I’m stabled, and the person next to me has stuff everywhere. Not only is it annoying for all of us around you, but it makes it so much harder for you to find things you need.
-Racks and Hooks are a good idea. Those bridle hooks that you can hang on the stall door, perfect for halters and bridles. Bring a saddle rack so yours doesn’t have to sit on the ground or so you don’t have to walk to the trailer all the time. They even make saddle racks that can hang from the stall!
-Low stress. Horses already don’t like being away from their home and herd. So when you’re running around and yelling constantly, it stresses the horse out. Try to stay as quiet and normal as you can. Also, if your horse isn’t acting normal, don’t freak out right away. We have one horse that doesn’t eat all his breakfast right away when we’re stabled, he saves it and eats it throughout the day. Some horses just act differently when there’s so much going on.
-Stretch time. These horses are stuck in a stall for the whole day, and then expected to perform well. I believe that you should either hack or walk your horse so that he doesn’t get stiff. It’s also a good time for them to just relax and look at everything.
-Friendliness. Don’t be that person in the barn that everyone’s avoiding. Be nice to everyone just incase you or they need help. Who knows? You might just meet a new bestie!