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I'm sorta afraid to write about it, don't want to jinks it but I need advise


So the place we've found in CO is just about perfect, if I don't think about the price tag. They are also ready for a quick close.

One of the deals of this place is that they will sell it 15xxx cheaper to us if we agree to take care of thier horses for 2 years. I think they have 2 (I'll find out more tomorrow) horses. It's 10 acres of pasture, with irrigation and cross fencing so I suppose there's grass but havn't seen it. I would not be responsible for feed, or care. I think you call it pasture boarding?

How much will it stress my property to keep 2 horses on 10 acres? Could I keep then drylotted most of the time and only use hay + grain? I will have sheep just don't know what kind or how many yet. Leaning towards wool this time. (that just sounds so wonderful after being without for 7 months)

I am also considering the thought of trying to find 1 or even 2 if it's doable, more horses to board to off set the monthly payment. Again, I don't want to take up all my pasture with horses but I was thinking if I have 2 what's 1 more, if it makes my place more affordable.

What might I expect for boarding fees, with being about 15 minutes to the closest major town and that's right next to Aspen, it's a total yuppy place so I figure that's worth a bit more!


ideas anyone??


I'm getting pretty parnoid, we have to be out of here by the 18 of March. Unless the place I described above comes through we won't have a place yet. I can't believe how expensive it is to buy out there but we also figured out that renting was even more expensive. Besides we haven't had any luck of finding a place that will take 4+ dogs. So this little farm might be the deal we have to take. Thank doG it's a nice one!


I'm so excited and nervous I should be losing weight! To bad I don't seem to be but sleep is not finding me anymore.


The most exciting thing right now is the people who are buying this place are in a real hurry, I agreed to let them start bringing stuff down now for convience. I heard last night through their realestate guy that they were going to offer us 15xxx to help us move right away and the realestate company told them they couldn't do it, or they didn't know how to do it. I say...just write the check and I'm out of here. What do you think if for that extra money I was gone next week and closing won't be till March 18. Like they'd be renting the place till then. Scary but damnnn I could sure use the extra money. Gonna get the story from them tomorrow. They'll be here tonight! They are 8 hours away so they'll be staying in town for a few days.


OK....I'll keep you posted and if anyone has any idea about the horse thing, please let me know!

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It is hard to give advice on somethin like this, because I cannot see your pasture or how your land holds up, our how good the pasture is and what is growing there.


Best bet is call the county agent and ask them about this.


Boarding depends on the area and what the care will be.


It could be anywhere from $200 to $800 per month. To check that out call your local barns. Usually under horses in the yellow pages.

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Where in CO? That will make a big difference. I agree with Tea about checking the local NRCS office or county ag outreach.


I don't know all the ins and outs of horses but one difference about CO from AR, is that you usually need several acres per head of cow or horse - in the area I worked I heard 15-18 ac/head or cow/calf pair quoted as a pretty good rate but there are wetter areas than where I was. If there is a lot of yucca in the 10-ac pasture (which is a nice native but seems to take over overgrazed horse pastures on the front range) you know that the pasture has been used too hard for too long at some point in the past.


Also from what I've seen, a lot of people in CO keep their horses in too-small pastures and obviously rely heavily on supplemental feed, esp. in winter.


I'm so excited for you! It's finally happening! Keep us updated.

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Don't know anything about the horse aspect, but your realtor should be able to advise you on the ins and outs of moving out before closing and letting your buyers rent the property from you until the closing date. I know in California that that is done, but it should be in writing, signed, as part of the sales contract. If your realtor says they don't know how to do it, I'd be a bit surprised, and I'd be looking for a real estate attorney to go over the contract with you. It would be worth the bucks to make sure you understand exactly what you can expect.


Good luck! I know this has been a long hard road for you and your family, I hope it goes smoothly from here.



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Hi Kristen, I have an 18 acre, 11 horse boarding stable, 3 horses of my own, and can give some advice. Feel free to email me private at mcburniefarm@msn.com anytime. I would tell you anything or send you copies of my info. Yes 2 horses on 10 acres will work if you plan on feeding hay. Grain and water ( who supplies that?), you MUST have a boarding contact even if the fee is free, provide a shelter/run in shed...many details to work out with the owners. I'd say yes to them, but keep it out of the purchase of the house. Keep it seperate so both parties can have a opt-out. They may just need the peace of mind that they don't have to move their horses right away. Don't even think about adding more horses until you are well into your home and see how you feel about the huge work load vs small payoff. It's a huge responsibility, horses are fragile animals despite their size, so the risks you take on are huge too. Prices for pasture board are typically $125-250 month per horse, depending on care level and region, that includes you provide hay, shelter, fresh water, insurance, safe and secure fencing, emergency management, and daily oversight of general health and well being.

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I would not venture into that with the horses if you don't know anything about horses. That is a huge chore. Whether you pay for the feed or not, you have to feed them? Schedule their vet care, blacksmith, emergency situations? You have to be there to let these people in? How would you feel if one died on your watch? My husband was out of town last week and we had a sick horse. The barn boy didn't know enough about horses to know that one was sick. I had to give two shots and wait for the vet. If I hadn't checked them, he would have been dead from colic by morning. Plus you say "pasture board" then ask if you can dry lot them and just toss them feed? Then even say you are wondering if a 3rd or 4th is a good idea? You know nothing about horses and are going to advertise a place to board? Your thoughts are just shadey. What a shame.

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Kristen, as everyone has said it's hard to give advice when I have no knowledge of the property. On an established pasture in Georgia it would be no problem to pasture board two horses. The reason is our growing season and weather. However I know in some areas out west the requirement is much larger. As previously said it would help if you contact the county agriculture agent responsible for the area you want to move to. They should be able to advise you how many acres is needing to support a horse in that area.


Be sure to factor in the sheep you want to keep when figuring what the land will support. Also have a boarding agreement that spells out resposibilities. Who provides supplemental feed (hay, grain,etc.), who is resposible for general care (bathing, farrier, worming, vacinations), and who is responsible for emergency vet care. In my boarding contracts I always have a clause where if in my opinion the horse needs vet care and I can not contact the owners I can call in a vet and the owner is resposible for the bill.


Good luck and I hope it works out.

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By the way you describe it I'm assuming that the $15k reduction in price is in exchange for free board? That's probably a big incentive for you, but as others have said, if you are not used to caring for horses, it really is a lot more labor intensive in general than caring for sheep (and horses are much more delicate--moldy hay that sheep could tolerate could kill a horse, etc.). If you really want to do this, as others have said make sure you have a written contract with the horses' owners that clearly spells out who is responsible for what. If you're providing feed and vet care, make sure to do the math and see if you really are gaining anything by this. Also make sure that both parties agree on an acceptable standard of care (kinds and amounts of feed, frequency of farrier visits, routine vet care, etc.) and that this is in writing as well. One person's idea of pasture board isn't necessarily another's, and you don't want to get caught up in a legal mess if you and the owners end up disagreeing over care issues.


Horses can be much harder on pasture than other livestock, so how many sheep you'll be able to keep will relate directly to how many horses you're keeping as well.



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Your thoughts are just shadey. What a shame.


I sure appreciate the advise....but what the heck? I'm a shady thinker? That's a shame? :rolleyes:


I would call it looking for advise, not shady! Also offsetting the price of a place like that in CO with one extra boarding horse would be a miracle. I wouldn't be counting on it but it sure would help. Of course I wouldn't do anything till I was there and feeling comfortable with my surroundings, I didn't think I had to write that part, I thought it was obvious. I'm pretty sure it was. Ad far as how I'd feel if anything died on my watch. Bummed but it's a fact of life. Own enough live animals and you are going to suffer some death along the way. Sad but a fact of life, unless you are a poor caregiver and something would die for lack of management. That would NOT be my situation.


So I do know about horses a bit. I grew up with them, but was never aware of rules and the pricing of boarding them. I've owned various farm animals including a couple horses when I was young (but all I did was ride, my uncle did all the routine stuff) and now do routine vet care myself, so I don't think that would be an issue. I'd be feeding my own sheep and anything else I choose to have so the time it would take to feed is not that much different than what it would normally be. I can recognize a sick animal, just about any animal except a bird or reptile, I'm not fond of owning either.


It's a great idea to contact the county agent on livestocking rates. I'm sure it's pretty rough out there. It's a desert without water there. This is a gravity fed irrigation system. On the satellite pics is looks green. But I'm thrilled with the knowledge about yucca, I'll let DH know that before he goes to see the place. (all we've seen are pictures which can be deceiving)


My thoughts are leaning to....no way would this "pasture" be able to support anything for any amount of time without heavy supplemental feeding. So I need to see what they are doing now. My thoughts are also to only add 5 sheep till I see what the land can support even with supplementing and that's just my thoughts now, wouldn't do anything till I got there and had the lay of the land.


I kinda thought that I was seeing over grazed land all over CO. I think everyone there is feeding something else. I just can't imagine that with all my green here. Even in MO it was green. It's a big desert out there.


I also figured that if we kept them, the owners would have to pay the hay and grain prices. That alone would kill me. Or so I hear.

The owners are not moving away, only into town. So in my mind I'm thinking that they will be doing somekind of daily or weekly care. I don't mind feeding but don't want to pay for their feed. The type person I am, I couldn't leave anything stuck in a drylot or stall, I'd be letting them out for exercise. but that's just me. Of course I'd be in charge of emergency care, but they would be responsible for the pay of such care. the blacksmithing and regular vetting would be on them, unless we worked something out.


I think boarding fees are way higher there than just about anywhere, but I don't know what that would include. Now I have some ideas.


Thanks for all the advise, I'm leaning towards agreeing to at least keeping their 2 as 15k is a pretty good chunk of change. We'll see about anything else.


From the satellite pics, the barn and shed look pretty nice. The prop looks cross fenced and nicely maintained, can't wait to see what DH says it really looks like.


So thanks again for the advise. I'll try not to be shady Erin.

MCburniefarm, I'll probably be emailing you. Thanks for your offer of info. I'll be needing paper info on how to word our deal. Keeping it out of the house contract would be the best way to go. It would really help to see how others word their contracts.


I'll keep y'all posted.

BTW....the new owners here don't have an extra 15k just wanted to give us that much upfront to help us get on the way. It won't help if I'm homeless and that is unethical in the realestate world anyway but they were sweet to offer. I met with them last night, they are very nice, the rescue horses so they were quite helpful with my own situation. one more BTW....the new owners said they've been looking for a place for almost 6 months. Mine was the only one she thought was "staged". She loves my color pallet. How cool, I was thinking that my house needed something else to sell, nice to know, I'm not crazy, people really like what I've done here!

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From the sounds of your first post you are near Aspen correct? I lived in Vail for a year and had my horse and two dogs w/ me during the summer. One thing I would definately speak to them about is winter weather. If the horses are going to have outside access during the winter w/ shoes on there is a chance of ice balls forming under the shoes which can put the horse on stilts and be super dangerous. If the horses are going to be locked in during the winter who is going to be responsible for their pens being cleaned. If they are responsible are you going to have it in writing how often the pens need to be cleaned? Also who is in charge of bedding and is it feasible to have a truck load of shavings delivered? You may have different standards for your facility and animals than they do and this could cause tension. Also is there electricity in the barn and do the pipes tend to freeze during the winter? If there is electricity you may want to look into getting de-icers so that the horses have access to water and you are not having to break ice. If the pipes freeze in the barn then are you going to be prepared to carry buckets or have your boarders walking through your home to carry buckets. Just bringing up these issues b/c these are all things we have to deal w/ here in the NW and the weather here is a lot more mild.

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I think in the long run this would not be worth it. Even if they provided food what happens if they "forget" or if Something happens such as an illness to anyone. Who would be responsible for their care. If it was the Horse owners you would be responsible for getting the feed having to wait to be reimbursed. How about the time and labor it will take to bring in hay. Plus your losing your space in your farm for their hay your animals.


It seems good now becuase it's upfront but, right off the bat at 250 a horse and 2 years your talking 12 grand they would have to pay someone so no real savings to you.


Are they leaving behind all their supplies like rakes, wheelbarrows, muck baskets. Are they expecting to be able to ride their horses? Will you have to store their supplies? What happens if your dogs get kicked by their horse and seriously hurt. How about if you get kicked and break something.



I know all of this because we used to board horses and I worked in stables as a teen everything happened I mentioned.


I wouldnt do it.

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Email me anytime. Probably belongs private anyway? (not BC?) I think you have gotten a good rounded set of advice here. On the shady...myself included, horse professionals do not want to encourage ANYONE without horse knowledge to take on horse care. Especially if it could be just for the money. (it does NOT pay unless you are in the top 10%) There is a deluge of inferior care out there, and like the BC rescue professionals, we feel very strongly about it. We deal with the repercussions daily. We want to shout "what were you thinking??!!" or "You don't deserve that horse!!" I don't think this was where you were coming from, but like I said, we take issue with the problem. This is a serious responsibility, and a stupid amount of work. No matter how easy it may have been presented to you by the horse owners, and not one to go into with your eyes half closed. So having said that, I still offer to help you consider your options, and can help you with or direct you to some resources. To help make sure your eyes are open and educated. You can do it, I'd advice temporarilly, with caveats. Honest to a fault and opinionated, off my soapbox now, Susan :-)

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Thanks for all the great advise. I'll keep it all in mind when figuring out what we're gonna do.

Jumpin Boots, yes it is close to Aspen. I've been worrying about how you weather animals out there, Thanks for the heads up on the shoe issues. That's one I'd have never even thought of. I was more worried about them being able to get out of the weather.

DH says that we'd actually be on the rifle flats rather than in the mountains, he says Glenwood Springs (where he works) gets way more snow that rifle or silt, where we are looking. Hard for me to understand being only 20-30 minutes from GS. These are all things I'll need to figure out once I get there, you just can't prepare totally till you're living there. But all the advise is of great help.


Sheryl I've been wondering all you mentioned too. Same with here. I hate leaving all my barn supplies here but I hate to pay to haul them out there. The new folks here are going to appreciate what I leave. They are already admiring our fencing. Something I never thought anyone other than us would appreciate. They said we were the only place in our price range that had nice fencing. Yes...it took over 2 years to get there!


At least things are happening now. I'm scared to death with all the changes but trying to be ready and keep positive.


I'm still considering the horses but at least I have my blinders semi-off. Thanks.


I understand about repercussions of bad management, but I've never been called shady in all my life. So that was hard to understand where it was coming from. Maybe just a poor choice of word or my take on the word. But I did need to hear what Susan wrote about inferior care. It would be for lack of knowledge, not lack of trying. Strange how it feels when the shoe might be on the other foot. I will choose words carefully next time I'm dealing with someone with less knowledge, as anger or hurt feelings sure do muck things up and keep you from dealing with the real issues.

Thanks again

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DH says that we'd actually be on the rifle flats rather than in the mountains, he says Glenwood Springs (where he works) gets way more snow that rifle or silt, where we are looking. Hard for me to understand being only 20-30 minutes from GS. These are all things I'll need to figure out once I get there, you just can't prepare totally till you're living there. But all the advise is of great help.


Oh, you'll be on the western slope! Just west of GS, it does get a lot drier and there is a nice wide valley there, maybe 5500 ft? Yucca may not be as good of an indicator there as thistles and knapweeds would be. Sooooo pretty, though. When you see the burn scars outside of Glenwood, give a thought to Ooky - I was almost caught in the fire of 2002 - it was crazy! I was headed out to the field for a month-long mule-train trip to sample vegetation, so we couldn't wait when the roads closed. But then we drove south out of the city (70 was closed) to get out and get to Utah. It was some of the most beautiful stuff I'd ever seen. Do explore south of GS when you get the chance!

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Exactly Susan!!! Kristen, you are looking to take lives into your hands for finanicial gain (off set). That makes me sick. As a horse professional, as someone that bends over backwards for my horses and their comfort, I am truely sickened. What will your ad even read? "Pasture board-every horse for itself" Horses aren't cattle. You have to actually care for them daily. Shadey? You want to know where that comes from? "Pasture board...can I just dry lot them?"

Like Susan was saying, it hits a nerve just as it would for someone to say they are opening a rescue that would be funded by cooperate sponsors, you will get more for each dog kept. How big does the cage have to be to stuff a BC in and how high can I stack them?

I sure hope you reconsider your plan. I don't think you know what you are in for, and that is a shame for those horses already there and anyone that entrusts you to care for any of theirs.

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Exactly Susan!!! Kristen, you are looking to take lives into your hands for finanicial gain (off set). That makes me sick. As a horse professional, as someone that bends over backwards for my horses and their comfort, I am truely sickened. What will your ad even read? "Pasture board-every horse for itself" Horses aren't cattle. You have to actually care for them daily. Shadey? You want to know where that comes from? "Pasture board...can I just dry lot them?"

Like Susan was saying, it hits a nerve just as it would for someone to say they are opening a rescue that would be funded by cooperate sponsors, you will get more for each dog kept. How big does the cage have to be to stuff a BC in and how high can I stack them?

I sure hope you reconsider your plan. I don't think you know what you are in for, and that is a shame for those horses already there and anyone that entrusts you to care for any of theirs.

Good Lord! Horses are NOT that hard to keep. And yes, lots of folks keep them in exchange for money! Filthy money!


We bought a couple of horses last spring, having never owned horses before. I hadn't ridden in 25 years, and my wife had never ridden. So naturally, we got a couple of Arabian mares, one of whom had never been ridden and one of whom hadn't been ridden for a year. I hate to think what the horse professionals here would think about a couple of neophytes getting horses, but we've muddled through. Both horses are now ridable. They're a couple of sweethearts, although they are still big enough and strong enough to hurt you without meaning to...I still have swelling from coming off one a month ago. But after I did, Mia came running back to me...


Yes, we've watched a ton of videos, read a lot of books and spent a ton of time out with them. We've hired help when needed, and learned a lot on our own. But it is silly to think a reasonably intelligent person with good intentions can't own a horse successfully. I don't know if the 'horse professionals' would approve of my getting horses, nor do I care. Frankly, Mia & Lilly seem pretty content with us. That is all the approval I need.


It is kind of like when the Border Collie rescue decided we could only handle a 'low drive' mixed breed dog. It would come as a big shock to the 6 1/2 month old Aussie & 4 1/2 month old Border Collie happily running around the house right now.

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Hello all,


As a Realtor, I can tell you that allowing buyers to move in early is fraught with peril. If you were my client, I would strongly urge you not to do it for any amount of money. What if they move in, trash the place, then don't close? What if you spend time and money moving and for whatever reason, they don't close? What if they move in then for some reason can't get their loan and the deal falls through? Never a good plan.


As a lifelong horseman, I think it's very odd that anyone would want to leave their horses at the home of someone with no experience caring for them. I can't imagine moving and leaving my horses behind. They go where I go.


My recommendation would be to stay put until you close and require that the sellers of your new place take their horses with them. If you want to board horses someday, buy one of your own, preferably something old, well trained and gentle, and learn how and what it takes to care for one before you go into the boarding business. I've done it and it's a lot of work with little reward.


Cheers all

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I tried to quote a passage of yours that I could answer. But the whole thing is sorta out there. Let me clear some things up for you or anyone else that might be misunderstanding my intentions, I'm stressed so maybe something was lost in my writing or questions, but I was really only looking for ideas, not nastiness. With the other advise given, I must be getting my issues out there or they wouldn't have me thinking about it.


I will also mention that what Susan writes is so much easier to stomach than anything you have said. I lost your meaning with Shame on me. I'm not new to these boards and I'm not unused to harsh realities but what's the deal, what do you have...your ugly glasses on?


Taking any lives in my hands means that the animal that I would be taking in my hands would receive the best care that I can give. Like doing research on and learning how that animal is best kept, what is common in that area, how best would the animal benefit? Not jumping in blindfolded saying what the hell...I can make a few bucks. Otherwise why would I be asking?


Off setting a house payment can be done along with the caring of an animal if you work at it, I've done it and nothing has suffered, only thrived. I offset my own life with my farm. Does that mean my animals don't get cared for? The saving is not that great but it does help me afford my dream life.

I think you've read my posts long enough that you know I'm not full of crap and am always up for learning more.

That's why I asked. I would sure not be expecting to make any profits, maybe it would be the dif in me being able to keep my dream alive. But I would never sacrifice the lives of anything I touched for the sake of keeping my dream alive. NEVER. This is no breeder thing here, no keep animals alive by the skin of their teeth. It's putting all my energy into seeing that my animals or ones in my care are living their dream life too. Even my sheep live a wonderful life while they are here. I may eat them but it's not with out respect and care. If I can't offer that then I'll quit or won't take something on.

Why would I ask if a horse can be kept in a drylot if it didn't matter to me? I see it all the time but I wanted more information than what I can see out there. These are questions of learning, wanting knowledge.


I bend over backwards for ALL my animals, even those that I am caring for that might not be my own. Not because of money but because I respect life and would do so for any living being placed in my hands. I would never place an ad for anything, unless it could benefit all involved including an animal. If I couldn't do something right I wouldn't do it.

Only someone by word of mouth would know about me, I'd have to pass their own tests for animal care, and them mine. I wouldn't take on an animal that their owner didn't feel the same way about good quality care unless I would call it a rescue. Then I'd be taking that animal from it's former bad situation and improving it. Not putting it in worse or bad care.


Horses aren't cattle? What...life is only worth it if you are a chosen animal? Sorry, my cattle live a nice life too. AND they aren't mine. I make no money off them, I have them because I choose to have them and care for them, not for profit. They will go home fat and healthy when it's time.

I don't place value on what species an animal is, I place value on life. It is all valuable.


So I'll get off my defensive soapbox and if you don't mind, just skip responding to my posts, I don't want to argue my values with your negative attitude, I got way to much to think about and do. Other's have offered up great advise, I'll be thinking about it all while making my decisions, Your advise got lost in it's delivery, so I probably missed it.

Thanks anyway


Amelia, I have quickly decided just what you said about letting the new people in early. To many what if's for me. I do know they are cash buyers so that's a bit of comfort on worrying about the banking issues at this time. It's me I'm more worried about when I get out west. I'm not a totaly cash buyer. So I have to stay in the mortgage game at this time.


Today my DH has met the people with the horses and hobby farm. He said she is a worrier like I am and she's not sold on anyone caring for her animals but her. So it's all still in the planning stages. I've decided to push her for short term lease or short term rent to let me "try" CO on before I make that huge commitment to the money and so far away from the rest of my family. We'll just wait at see. That might not be an option for her but I will at least put it out there. She has just made the decision to leave/sell her farm and move recently, the place is not on the market, it's word of mouth. I don't think she knows exactly what she wants to do.


One minute at a time is how I'm working right now, but sure trying to keep making good decisions. It did comfort me to know she was worried about her horses. One is 30. DH says he'd never have guessed. The other one is a young ridable gelding that was very sweet according to DH. She is talking of living a few minutes away and coming by 2x per day. Still it's all talk, and I won't be comfortable till I know it's the right choice for me. Thanks for the professional realesatate advise. You are spot on.

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Sorry Kristen, I must have TOTALLY missed something.

You know nothing about horses,

"I wouldn't be responsible for feed or care"---so who is?

Best of the care being to make their area smaller, add more horses and dry lot them. Sounds great!

No, horses aren't cattle, non horse people do not realize how sensitive a horse is. Cattle are much hardier.

You aren't in it to make $$---it should offset your monthly payment

Since it is totally a yuppy place, I am sure you are right and can make some serious bank.


I do not think you are the devil out to let things die. I trust that you will feed them (even though you say that is not your job-I have yet to find one that feeds itself) but not knowing the early signs of illness, is neglectful. Death happens, but it shouldn't be from ignorance. You should take a more responsible approach and get some equine education. Someone else talked about their own trial and error process. These are not your animals to trial and error. I totally think you would be doing it for the wrong reason and that is how people and animals get hurt.

As with a lot of people on here when they don't get cheers and roses, they close their ears.

I have had feedback on here that wasn't positive, but you know what it makes me think. So like it or not, I hope it makes you think, and makes you make a smart choice either way.

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...I trust that you will feed them (even though you say that is not your job-I have yet to find one that feeds itself) but not knowing the early signs of illness, is neglectful. Death happens, but it shouldn't be from ignorance. You should take a more responsible approach and get some equine education. Someone else talked about their own trial and error process. These are not your animals to trial and error. I totally think you would be doing it for the wrong reason and that is how people and animals get hurt...

1 - I've seen arrangements before where the horse was pastured, and the owner came by daily to feed hay. Depends on what the horse owner and pasture owner work out between them. Also depends on the quality of the pasture.


2 - Early signs of illness are worth reading about. Colic seems to be the most likely concern - things like cuts, broken bones, etc don't have warning signs. There are good websites and books about colic. I got my first lesson after we had a vet come out at 11PM. It was a 40 min drive, and the horse was visibly better by the time the vet arrived. Our $400 bill included a discussion about colic signs that indicate a night visit was worthwhile, or not. In the end it is the owner's call - so she could always call the owner out. Or have a contract that allows for mistakes to be made. But I've met 30 year horse owners that guessed wrong with colic, so there are no guarantees. Even the vet, after our lecture, said he would much rather come out for disappearing colic than come out to finish off a horse that was beyond saving.


3 - Don't know Kristen...she could eat puppies for breakfast, or be a he for all I know. BUT from reading a number of her posts, she SEEMS like a reasonable person who would take care of any animals she had responsibility for to the best of her ability. And if the owner of the horses is willing to chance it after meeting her, that makes the owner responsible.


4 - Money isn't a good reason, simply because the work probably outweighs the benefit. However, profit isn't evil. Vets work for money, and I'm glad they do. I spent 25 years in the US Air Force - not just for the money, but I sure didn't do it for free. Good people work for money, but give more than required for the sake of pride & passion. I would never recommend boarding someone's horses for money, but only because the money/work ratio is too small.

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This conservation between Erin and I reminds me of listening to Rush Limbaugh. I've listened a few times and thought a few things made since but he's so nasty with his digs, that I lose all points he tries to make.

Thanks for your advise and opinion Erin. Why do you have to be such a snot about it? My ears are still open even if it's not all roses and cheers. I think the boo's were way more than the cheers and that didn't bother me one bit. I need information to make informed decisions. If I needed a cheering section I wouldn't have posted I was looking for advise. But you made it just about impossible for me to take your advise seriously without feeling like I've been reamed. Cool.


I will try to rise above that and think about what you said.


Thanks to all others for their ideas and suggestions. I've made no decisions except the one that I posted about the people buying this place. I can't, I don't have enough details yet. Nice to have good people to talk things over with.

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I agree with Amelia. :rolleyes:


What happens if at the end of the two years, they decide they don't want their horses?


What if they pass away.....you don't have legal ownership of the horse and until the estate is settled , you will have to care for them.


What if a horse get injured and there is a massive vet bill....they might say it was due to bad fencing, feed or a nail in the pasture.....this might turn into "you pay due to neglect"


What if they say they are going to take care of the horses and don't show up for weeks? Then the horses look bad and AC shows up on YOUR DOORSTEP!!


What if someone steal the horses? Who is responsible?


What if the horse kicks your sheep? Gets bit by a dog?


Someone comes by claiming the bought the horses, show paperwork and get them and it is fraud?


If you are feeding them....what happens if you take off for a few days...pay someone to feed them? Are you providing feed. I know that my alfalfa hay doubled in one year.


This sounds like a bad idea to me. I boarded a (ex) friends horse and she was to feed my stock or clean stall (5 hrs a month) , six months later, she bailed and never did it. She was fine at first then would find excuses not to and her horse killed 3 shetland sheep and i never got paid for them. I don't board any ones' horses at all anymore.





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Thanks Diane

You all have given me things to think about that I could have never come up with on my own. For that, I am greatful I posted needing advise.

So know that I'm really thinking about all you and most everyone else said.

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I managed a horse boarding stable for many years, housing anytime and any where from a dozen up to 35 horses ( it remained full more than not) not including my own horses which numbered anywhere from 1 to 5 horses at any given time. All these "what if's" are good fodder to think about and be warned about. How ever, my experience with horse people was quite different than all the what if's Im reading about. Most folks with horses, arent quite as careless as you all picture them to be. You all are giving worst case scenarios, and that is alright, but lets look at the other side of the coin, the one that is seen more often than not. In the 8 yrs I managed, I only had 2 owners that neglected their animals. Locks, after they failed to show up for 3 days, were placed on the gates to their stalls, and I fed the horses myself out of my own feed, contacted animal control, and the horses were then the property of either myself, or I turned them over to animal control. It was in a written contract that the owners signed when they brought horses in, along with detailed consequences if the rules were not followed. There was no three strikes your out. It was very clear that my stable did not tolerate neglect in any form. It was also outlined in the contract, that horses would be fed twice a day, turned out at least 3 times a week, waters should/would be cleaned and filled daily, Stalls were cleaned every other day, and bedding changed once a week, along with several other details such as shot protocal, foot care expectations and there were names and phone numbers for owners and their vets along with my numbers placed on individual stalls in case some one came to tend to their own horse and noticed some one elses animal acting out of character. I even had rules of conduct because it was a family stable, so no cussing, drinking, making out in front of others, (they had their own personal private tack sheds for that! LOL) But my point is, most horse people are pretty darn devoted to their horses. Most of the folks that boarded with me, were in situations where they had at one time, their own property to house their horses, and ended up moving, selling property, or what ever. So just because some one is at a loss momentarily for a place to house their animal, doesnt right off the bat make them bad horse owners, nor do I recall it ever making them worse owners even faced with the fact that stalling their animals may have ment more work being invloved in their care. As far as owners, I was faced with folks anywhere from the seasoned cowpoke having horses for their whole lives, to beginner owners, and again, I experienced people that had nothing but absolute adoration for their charges, and would go above and beyond not only for their own animals, but also had formed bonds with other boarders, and made arrangements among them selves to see to it that their horses were cared for when they needed to be away for a few days, go on vacation, hospitalization, etc. Yes, surprises happen, and there was the odd time when circumstances were such that a person just couldnt make it, and the responsibility fell on me to care for the animal for a day or two until, they could make other arrangments, but the ownwer was charged for those times, and happily paid the bill knowing their their horse/s were not left uncared for. Charges were a bit inflated for that, because I really had no intention of making it easy for some one to just not feel like making the trip to take care of their animal, so when I say they paid, it was more like a consequence than a favor. Communication appeared to be the key ingredient to keep things running smoothly, and being open and understanding to owners needs, while they were also expected to adhere to the contract. Slackers were simply not acceptable, not only not from myself, but slackers also caught hell from other boarders when/if they neglected their horses. The stable closed at 9pm. and a lock was on the gate to the property after that, and it was opened by 5am. Boarders had a key, but if horses werent cared for by the time I locked up at 9pm which I thought was a reasonable time to get a horse taken care of, I fed and watered and the owner was charged for the feed and time. It all in all, was really all about communication between myself and the owners, having rules set in place, and expectations met, both by myself and boarders. Those new to horse ownership, were open to listen and eager to learn, and other than 2 partuicular individuals that just didnt give a rats petutie about their horses, I have to say, running the place for 8 years, while at times was rather taxing on my time and patience, was overall a very positive experience, and I still have many lasting ties with some of the folks that boarded with me so many years ago. Horse ownership is expensive and time consuming, and those that cant handle or dont care to expend the time and effort, and monies, it has been my experience, dont last long as horse owners.

Krtisten, my advise would be to get to know the folks that own the horses. Find out through friendly conversation, their experience with horses, and try to get a sense of whether they seem to be trying to dump the responsibility of their care on some one else, or are they still active with their horses, and make up a contract with "your" expectations of their care. I think these folks have made a generous offer, and it could be a good one overall for them, you, and the horses. Having experience owning horses is always helpful, but Ive known a many a person that caught on pretty darn quick. At least those that cared to. Those that didnt/dont, I wouldnt waste much if any time on. Your lack of experience, doesnt appear to match your desire to do whats right, so I wouldnt discount lack of experience, to a person who is open to learning new experiences. You are not some teenager with better things to do than care for these animals, you are a grown responsible adult with nothing but the utmost of concern for the situation and the animals involved. I find it hard to believe you would knowingly abuse or neglect any animal, and if the owners are just going to be a stones throw down the road, I dont see any reason why this couldnt be a win win for all of you. Good luck in continuing the dream, and who knows, after a few months of caring for horses, you just may find that there is a future for a few of your own, they are marvelous creatures, and I think everyone should have the opportunity to know horses and what is involved in their care on a personal level. They can wrap themselves around your heart strings pretty quickly, and when that happens, you'd be surprised the lengths that people will go for their horses.

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Thanks Darc for letting me look on the other side. Still tons to think about and do.

Off to take Mick to the vet. He's not good. Bumming me out totally, right in the middle of all this other stuff. My biggest fear right now is a torn ACL or something simular. Yep...they do make you keep your priorities straight.

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