When your horse can no longer be ridden due to old age or injury, retirement becomes a popular option. While retiring your horse at your current barn may be impractical due to facilities, space, or boarding rates, retirement facilities offer great environments for your horse to retire in. But how do you choose the retirement facility that is right for your horse?
Consider the Distance
Quality retirement facilities are somewhat limited in areas. When choosing a retirement barn for your horse, you may have to face the fact that your horse will be located far away from your home. Before you start looking for retirement board, think about whether you are comfortable sending your horse to a barn where you cannot see him often. While a facility closer to your house might be more convenient for you, a retirement barn farther away might offer better options for your horse. You will need to weigh these factors and decide what is best.
Factor in the Climate
Horses dealing with medical conditions such as arthritis and back issues may benefit from a warmer climate with a milder winter. On the other hand, many older horses do just fine with cold winters. Definitely think about how different climates might affect your horse as you look for a retirement barn.
Ask About the Experience of the Staff
When you send your horse to a retirement facility, you need to be able to trust the staff who will be caring for him. Be sure to ask about the experience that all of the staff have, but also ask about the experience of the barn manager in particular. The more confidence you have in the staff, the better you will feel about sending your horse to the facility.
Consider What Your Horse Needs
When looking at different retirement barns, think about the specific situations and services that your horse will need to be able to thrive. Is your horse accustomed to coming into a stall at night, or might he be more comfortable in a field with a run-in shed? Arthritic horses may do better with flat ground, and horses who are highly social may appreciate a facility where group turnout is an option. Your horse’s specific needs may quickly narrow down your search for a retirement facility.
Compare Rates and Services Offered
Every retirement facility offers a different set of services at different rates. Think about the services available at each facility that you are considering. Will they feed supplements? Do blanket changes? Put on fly spray and fly masks? You may end up paying more for such services, but it can also be worth it if you know that your horse is receiving the care he needs.
When choosing a retirement facility for your horse, there are many factors to consider. Take your time and research each facility carefully so that you can ultimately make the right choice.
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Original source: How to Choose the Right Retirement Facility for Your Horse