Turn out woes😔

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I’ve not read the replies, but having been in your situation before, I’d just ‘suck it up’ keep my head down and wait for your new yard to have the space. It’s not long away, the nights are getting lighter and you’ve got an escape coming.
It’s not worth the hassle moving twice in a short space, nor the money.
I know it’s hard to go through, but arguing with the YO won’t make her compromise by letting your horses leg stretch in the school. She will see it as her yard , her rules. And I suppose it is really, despite the welfare issues.
Sorry op not what you want to hear, but it’s what I should’ve done.
 

paddi22

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just playing devil's advocate. i think 25 acres with 15 horses would be fairly well to over stocked.. we have 4 horses on 14 acres and its managable. 15 of 25 is very tight. i can see why she would be keeping them in if there was a storm due. You also have to think of the fact that if she gave you preferential turnout, then all the other liveries would expect it?
 
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I am not going to comment on the YO situation, I can see both sides of the arguement (and have been on one yard where turnout in a field was stopped for nearly 3 months - got desperate to move from that one!).

However, if the yard with no lights is nice and there is the possibility you might want to stay there I would move. I am on a yard with no electric at all (but 24/7 turnout 356 days a year) and ride in the same circumstances all winter as I do in the summer, 4 nights a week after work unless its is really raining as its supposed to be fun! If the arena is frozen I will often ride in the xc field instead as the grass cover is fab.

We have solar and handheld lights for sorting the horses, but ride without any. They can see perfectly well, and after a couple of minutes without lights your eyes adjust and you can see well enough. The only thing I dont do in the week in winter is jump and have lessons.
 

DabDab

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Agree, it might be worth trying the yard with no school lights (i actually prefer schooling in the dark with no lights if I'm honest - makes you concentrate on feel). It sounds like you are already at snapping point with the yard owner, and you don't want a row that means you are thrown off.
 
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I don't get why she has such a problem with the weather. We are currently in Poland where winters are much harsher than in UK and my horse goes out 7am regardless - if we waited for no frost or snow / dry / no wind days they would stand inside all winter. If is is very extreme weather some owners choose to keep their horse in, but it is their choice, or we can have the alternative that I use of asking for them to go out for just a couple of hours.

It seems to me that the owner does not respect your wishes as an owner. If she can't offer the services that her customer requires, despite having offered this when you first arrived, then I would just leave. Putting the horse on another yard for a couple of months won't hurt him, and at least you have somewhere in case the space at your first choice yard does not materialise. Good luck.
 

ester

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TBF I wouldn’t be relying on someone else’s house purchase to move, that might not be a couple of months. I’d be inclined to move now.
 

windand rain

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I can see how frustrating it would be but how many people have contracts stating exactly what treatment the horses get on livery. I agree the customer should be given treatment that the YO is contracted to give. It is often the case in livery yards that YO say one thing and do another and while their customers are paying sometimes huge amounts of money and receiving little or no service. There is an element of impotence when your lives are dictated by an other who says "my way or the high way" but customer service seems to be very lacking in horse ownership. I wouldnt expect to employ a dog walker and pay them to walk my dog and then they take the money and dont turn up to walk the dog because its raining. Again probably expecting too much of a service from what should be a service industry. I do think that land owners have right to protect thier land but if that is how they feel they should not have customers in the first place. However OP perhaps taking your frustrations out by text was probably not the best way to go about it
 

JFTD-WS

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This thread serves to remind me why I gave up offering livery more than 20 years ago. The long term health of grazing land is of infinitely more relevance than the short term selfish desires of lazy owners who can't be bothered to exercise their horses properly.
Whilst I agree that the expectations of liveries to dictate the terms of their useage is pretty unfair (though perhaps less so where the YO has an erratic approach to land management, rather than a consistent one, as you do), I think the last statement is a bit unfair. Not all horses are capable of being in sufficient work (young / old / injuries), and most owners do have other jobs to do - it's not just a case of "laziness". There is, of course, the question of whether people should have horses if they can't give them hours of work each day, or find appropriate livery for youngstock / older horses - but that would prevent most people, including a good proportion of the forum, from having horses at all.

I can devote hours of daylight to slow hacking / riding and leading / exercising all my lot if I need to - but I would still rather my horses had downtime with company in a field, or an all weather pen, or an arena. If a yard won't allow that, and insists on horses in stables with only formal exercise, I wouldn't stay there, and I don't really consider it acceptable for any length of time - turnout isn't just about physical exercise. I presume that's why you let yours loose in the arena - which is often (reasonably) not allowed on yards to protect a good surface, or because there are too many liveries who need to use it. It's not just as simple as feckless, lazy liveries, and decent yard owners who want to protect the land...
 
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I took them back to DIY, and sacrificed nice facilities and help, for decent turnout. I don't even have a school at the moment, purely because there are so few places which offer genuinely decent turnout. I have a long term plan to deal with that, but it definitely doesn't involve trying to convince yards to run in the way I think they should.
thats pretty much what I did 10 years ago and if your work hours are tricky-well it doesn't much matter if they are out all the time. I do appreciate it makes competing and getting out more difficult though when you don't have daylight hours.

managing your own land also gives you some perspective on it.
 

WandaMare

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Its difficult to have a livery contract to cover every eventuality, you do have to rely on people being reasonable when things aren't perfect. We had a water company working on a damaged pipe in our field last week and I had to keep my horses in unexpectedly for two days. I didn't have a melt down or expect compensation money for my inconvenience, I just exercised my horses and took them for a graze in hand instead. If I still had liveries here I know it would have been a massive issue and I felt so relieved I don't have to go through that anymore. Life is just too short.
 

paddi22

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We are currently in Poland where winters are much harsher than in UK and my horse goes out 7am regardless - if we waited for no frost or snow / dry / no wind days they would stand inside all winter. .
its . not really the frost/snow that is the issue here. What i struggle with is the damp/mud/milder rainy days. A few horses out on a soggy day can ruin a grassy area.
 
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Some of you may remember from my last thread that I have been out looking at other yards for various reasons. I've found a yard I like, but they aren't likely to have space until about Easter as one of their liveries is buying a house with stables at home. In the meantime I'm sitting it out at my current yard where we have been for over 3 years.

Yesterday I had a stand up row with my YO after she kept the horses in all day and I'm now desperate to move, but yards with spaces would mean moving my horse twice as they are not where I want to be long term.

I moved to my current yard as my last one didn't have enough TO in winter and I was promised good turn out. We have great turnout in summer and things were okay the first couple of winters we were here, although still not as much T/O as I'd like . I think that because last winter was so bad the YO got into the habit of less turn out and it seems to have continued and is a constant bugbear to me, especially since my boys ulcer diagnosis. NB it's assisted so YO turns out and brings in when she likes.

They were getting about 6 hours from about 8 to 2. When it's frosty they go out later and only get about 4 hours from 10 til 2. I have native hardy types and prefer my horses out in the field being horses. I was on a yard for 10 years where they were out from 7 to 4 all winter so that's normal to me ( It's too far away now as I work in the opposite direction) although I realise most yards can't accommodate that in winter.
Yesterday morning I got a text to say they wouldn't be going out. Bearing in mind that I live 2 miles from yard and drive past on way to work and I'd not long left the village , I knew the weather wasn't that bad although a storm was forecast over lunchtime. I replied to the text questioning it along the lines that the weather wasnt that bad. I got a reply saying it was bad and getting worse, so i replied saying it was no worse than the previous day and got a reply saying "I'm not going to keep justifying myself. My decision". I replied saying that, actually as my horse was affected by her decisions I felt she should be prepared to justify herself and that I'd checked the forecast and could see it was bad between 12 and 2 but it was fine before and after that. She replied saying if I argued any further she would throw me off the yard and she's fed up of my opinions (she knows I'm leaving when a space comes up and we had a frank but civil conversation about my reasons recently)

Now before you all start saying she needs to look after the paddocks, I totally appreciate that but we have about 25 acres to about 15 horses so not over stocked. We are on clay but slightly sloping and at the top of a hill so the wind dries it quickly. It's not wet or poached and we have grass still. Also paddocks have had no maintenance in past couple of years so i find it hard to take her serioysly when she uses that as a reason. I have asked for mine to be sprayed as it's getting to be more docks/ thistles than grass in summer, but she said no and won't let me do it myself either. In past years I've also trimmed back all the hedge where it touches the electric, dug up loads of docks, bought wood chippings for my gateway etc to help keep my paddock nice (all after agreement with YO) so I'm not a bad livery.

Anyway, I finish work early on Fridays and by the time I got to the yard the storm had passed and it was warm and sunny if slightly breezy. So I asked YO if I could put horse out while I mucked out. I got a flat no. Okay, can he go in the school while I muck out? No. This lead to a big row as she couldn't give me a reason for it. She was going on about I don't know what the weather is like from my office 20 miles away. I don't but my OH works from home so I knew from him that the weather was exactly as forecast. The only reason she seems to be able to give is that she doesn't want them charging around and hurting themselves in the wind - but surely as horses owner that is my risk to take.

I looked at another yard yesterday afternoon which is brand new and not quite finished. It looks lovely. If will be a tad pricey but not totally unaffordable. The only issue is that the lights to the school are not installed yet so I wouldn't be able to ride in the evenings for a while yet. I'm out doing Quest a couple of times a month so riding in the week is quite important to me, but maybe I should forgo that for a quiet life.

I'm tempted to move to a yard with space and lights which is a bit too far from home , and then move again in a few months but that will cause my boy the most stress.

I'm so frustrated that I can't find a yard to move to, but I can't bear where I am.

Sorry for the big rant but I just need to get it off my chest. 😩😩😩😩
I think whatever yard you are on, there is always going to be a compromise unfortunately. From experience, turnout is the one thing that most people will not compromise on, but often don’t have a choice. There are a lot of yards closing down for various reasons, the main one being financial. This then means those horses have to go somewhere, hence a lot of yards end up overstocked, hence restricted turnout. I don’t agree with others that 25 acres is insufficient for 15 horses, quite the opposite in fact, so I’m not sure why your YO is being so precious about it, unless it’s not very good land and gets churned up easily? Once churned up, it does recover, but it can be costly to put right. It sounds to me OP, that your time on this yard is definitely over, the only thing you need to way up, is whether you can stand it for a couple of more months till the other place is available, or whether you go now. Only you can answer that question really. In defence of your YO, though, far too many livery clients expect more and more for their money, and it’s just not realistic. A friend of mine runs a doggy day care at her livery yard and makes three times more from that as she does from the horses😏 I can see at some point, she will get rid of the yard and concentrate on the dog side of things. Food for thought I think?😏
 

windand rain

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I do understand that land has to be managed afer all that is what I do I am not on livery but I do think a lot and I do not mean by any means all have overstocked land, do no repairs or land care and just collect the money at the end of the month. I have been on a few yards like that, I have never been on one where turnout was limited to more than in for 12 hours over night and out for 12 hours during the day in winter and a choice of 24/7 out in summer or to use the stable as you wish. I do think that a lot of YO/M are unwilling to provide the service they offer in the first place and yes we probably should all pay more but I am not certain we would get a better service if we did
I will add that those who were supposed to be providing a service moaned continously when asked to do so
 

BlackRider

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This thread serves to remind me why I gave up offering livery more than 20 years ago. The long term health of grazing land is of infinitely more relevance than the short term selfish desires of lazy owners who can't be bothered to exercise their horses properly.
That's a bit harsh! I always say I need daily turnout, even half a day is fine in winter as my horse has a stifle issue and needs to be kept moving as much as possible, I also exercise daily so turnout isn't to replace the (perceived) hassle of exercise.

Again, I always explain this before I move onto a yard, but its amazing how often the rules change when you are there. Moving yards is very stressful and not something I undertake lightly, and it is very hard when you are on a yard and the rules changes with the weather!
 

SEL

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This thread serves to remind me why I gave up offering livery more than 20 years ago. The long term health of grazing land is of infinitely more relevance than the short term selfish desires of lazy owners who can't be bothered to exercise their horses properly.
Bit harsh! I've got one that is retired and another who is trying hard to get herself retired - they need turnout and I'm always very upfront with YOs. Sadly I've found not all YOs are as upfront with me when they have stables to fill.
 

WandaMare

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If the service from YO/M s is so bad and rules change unfairly at so many yards, I don't understand why people don't rent a field for their horses instead of livery services, then you don't have to be dependent on someone else's rules. You might not have access to the same level of facilities but if the horses must go out every single day perhaps it is the only way.
 
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If the service from YO/M s is so bad and rules change unfairly at so many yards, I don't understand why people don't rent a field for their horses instead of livery services, then you don't have to be dependent on someone else's rules. You might not have access to the same level of facilities but if the horses must go out every single day perhaps it is the only way.
In an ideal world, but in many areas opportunities like this are scarce.
 
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If the service from YO/M s is so bad and rules change unfairly at so many yards, I don't understand why people don't rent a field for their horses instead of livery services, then you don't have to be dependent on someone else's rules. You might not have access to the same level of facilities but if the horses must go out every single day perhaps it is the only way.
If you could find me a field to rent, I'd rent it the same day... Even better if you could find me one to buy I'd love you forever. I think land owners around us are clinging on to their fields waiting for them to come up for housing.
 
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A tricky situation. The horse world seems to be a choice between stables, facilities and limited turnout v limited facilities and good turnout. I’d guess most people are not able to pay enough to make both viable.
I think i’d keep my head down on current yard, while looking for something else. New yard sounds great - but waiting for someone to move house could be unpredictable.
I moved my horse home recently and have gained a lot of sympathy for YO / YM - the work and trying to work what’s best are constant... and I only have to think what I want to do! That said I do think that if your contract is daily turnout in winter, then you should get that. Mine live out 24/7 with shelters.
 

SEL

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If the service from YO/M s is so bad and rules change unfairly at so many yards, I don't understand why people don't rent a field for their horses instead of livery services, then you don't have to be dependent on someone else's rules. You might not have access to the same level of facilities but if the horses must go out every single day perhaps it is the only way.
Like gold dust since they took the brakes off planning for housing. A friend and I chased down some empty fields in our village to be told developers had options on them and part of the agreement was the fields were to remain vacant.

Another friend is renting 15 acres with the knowledge that she will get notice if planning approved and isn't even allowed to put up a temporary shelter.

About to get notice from our yard so it's a sore subject right now!
 

sport horse

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25 acres of clay soil for 15 horses is not enough to provide all day winter turnout.
The fact that you have thistles anddocks is proof that the winter damage to the land is compromising the grazing.
Livery charges on the whole do not reflect the capital value of the land and stables, nor indeed any machinery/contract costs in maintaining the land.
The profit (pardon me while I laugh at that word -profit and livery are not really words that go together well) will barely cover maintenance and perhaps keep of the owners horses.
Hence although I have 50 acres of grassland and 30 stables I do not have any liveries. That way I can manage my land and fencing to my own standards not those of someone paying me £35 pw which is barely the cost of a couple of post and rails who expects to trash the fields in winter and then magically have good grazing in the summer.
Go and buy your own land and stables and hire in any help you need then you will get a true idea of values.
 
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Maybe there should be a post about the amounts people expect to pay for livery? Ive only had horses on a livery yard once whilst I was moving house and it was certainly convenient but if people want top class facilities then they must be financed somehow, if there's only a YO and no other staff it must be amazingly time consuming running round after everyone, and if staff are employed do the livery costs cover their reasonable wages. Remember to provide a service 24/7 you need at least 3 people if you include annual leave and sickness cover. It seems to me horses are too easily available and we're back to the £200 horse/disposable scenario?
 

Arzada

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We had a water company working on a damaged pipe in our field last week and I had to keep my horses in unexpectedly for two days. I didn't have a melt down or expect compensation money for my inconvenience, I just exercised my horses and took them for a graze in hand instead. If I still had liveries here I know it would have been a massive issue and I felt so relieved I don't have to go through that anymore. Life is just too short.
Really? We had fields closed for 2 days and horses in while the overhead cables were replaced. I didn't have a meltdown, ask for compensation or have any sort of issue let alone a 'massive' one. In fact I thanked my YO for her extra care.
 

WandaMare

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Really? We had fields closed for 2 days and horses in while the overhead cables were replaced. I didn't have a meltdown, ask for compensation or have any sort of issue let alone a 'massive' one. In fact I thanked my YO for her extra care.
I wasn't saying that all liveries would have had a meltdown so apologies if that was how it read. I was referring to some of the liveries I had on my yard.
 
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Maybe there should be a post about the amounts people expect to pay for livery? Ive only had horses on a livery yard once whilst I was moving house and it was certainly convenient but if people want top class facilities then they must be financed somehow, if there's only a YO and no other staff it must be amazingly time consuming running round after everyone, and if staff are employed do the livery costs cover their reasonable wages. Remember to provide a service 24/7 you need at least 3 people if you include annual leave and sickness cover. It seems to me horses are too easily available and we're back to the £200 horse/disposable scenario?
I actually feel there's a gap in the market for a more expensive DIY livery in our area. Just because I have the time to look after my horse with very little help it doesn't mean I won't pay for good turnout and facilities.
 

ILuvCowparsely

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Some of you may remember from my last thread that I have been out looking at other yards for various reasons. I've found a yard I like, but they aren't likely to have space until about Easter as one of their liveries is buying a house with stables at home. In the meantime I'm sitting it out at my current yard where we have been for over 3 years.

Yesterday I had a stand up row with my YO after she kept the horses in all day and I'm now desperate to move, but yards with spaces would mean moving my horse twice as they are not where I want to be long term.

I moved to my current yard as my last one didn't have enough TO in winter and I was promised good turn out. We have great turnout in summer and things were okay the first couple of winters we were here, although still not as much T/O as I'd like . I think that because last winter was so bad the YO got into the habit of less turn out and it seems to have continued and is a constant bugbear to me, especially since my boys ulcer diagnosis. NB it's assisted so YO turns out and brings in when she likes.

They were getting about 6 hours from about 8 to 2. When it's frosty they go out later and only get about 4 hours from 10 til 2. I have native hardy types and prefer my horses out in the field being horses. I was on a yard for 10 years where they were out from 7 to 4 all winter so that's normal to me ( It's too far away now as I work in the opposite direction) although I realise most yards can't accommodate that in winter.
Yesterday morning I got a text to say they wouldn't be going out. Bearing in mind that I live 2 miles from yard and drive past on way to work and I'd not long left the village , I knew the weather wasn't that bad although a storm was forecast over lunchtime. I replied to the text questioning it along the lines that the weather wasnt that bad. I got a reply saying it was bad and getting worse, so i replied saying it was no worse than the previous day and got a reply saying "I'm not going to keep justifying myself. My decision". I replied saying that, actually as my horse was affected by her decisions I felt she should be prepared to justify herself and that I'd checked the forecast and could see it was bad between 12 and 2 but it was fine before and after that. She replied saying if I argued any further she would throw me off the yard and she's fed up of my opinions (she knows I'm leaving when a space comes up and we had a frank but civil conversation about my reasons recently)

Now before you all start saying she needs to look after the paddocks, I totally appreciate that but we have about 25 acres to about 15 horses so not over stocked. We are on clay but slightly sloping and at the top of a hill so the wind dries it quickly. It's not wet or poached and we have grass still. Also paddocks have had no maintenance in past couple of years so i find it hard to take her serioysly when she uses that as a reason. I have asked for mine to be sprayed as it's getting to be more docks/ thistles than grass in summer, but she said no and won't let me do it myself either. In past years I've also trimmed back all the hedge where it touches the electric, dug up loads of docks, bought wood chippings for my gateway etc to help keep my paddock nice (all after agreement with YO) so I'm not a bad livery.

Anyway, I finish work early on Fridays and by the time I got to the yard the storm had passed and it was warm and sunny if slightly breezy. So I asked YO if I could put horse out while I mucked out. I got a flat no. Okay, can he go in the school while I muck out? No. This lead to a big row as she couldn't give me a reason for it. She was going on about I don't know what the weather is like from my office 20 miles away. I don't but my OH works from home so I knew from him that the weather was exactly as forecast. The only reason she seems to be able to give is that she doesn't want them charging around and hurting themselves in the wind - but surely as horses owner that is my risk to take.

I looked at another yard yesterday afternoon which is brand new and not quite finished. It looks lovely. If will be a tad pricey but not totally unaffordable. The only issue is that the lights to the school are not installed yet so I wouldn't be able to ride in the evenings for a while yet. I'm out doing Quest a couple of times a month so riding in the week is quite important to me, but maybe I should forgo that for a quiet life.

I'm tempted to move to a yard with space and lights which is a bit too far from home , and then move again in a few months but that will cause my boy the most stress.

I'm so frustrated that I can't find a yard to move to, but I can't bear where I am.

Sorry for the big rant but I just need to get it off my chest. 😩😩😩😩
well you either have to say sorry through gritted teeth, or maybe turn horse out at new yard till stable is available
 
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We are at a friends yard and could turn out 24/7 if we wanted, instead our three horses go out Saturdays only for around six hours which is plenty
I muck them out myself and have a routine that cuts the work to a minimum giving me plenty of time to ride.
Not sure why you would want a horse out any longer there is nothing in the grass for them and wading through mud in the dark to ride of an evening probably would not happen
 

be positive

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We are at a friends yard and could turn out 24/7 if we wanted, instead our three horses go out Saturdays only for around six hours which is plenty
I muck them out myself and have a routine that cuts the work to a minimum giving me plenty of time to ride.
Not sure why you would want a horse out any longer there is nothing in the grass for them and wading through mud in the dark to ride of an evening probably would not happen
6 hours turn out one day a week may be 'plenty' in your opinion but is not ideal for the average horse and certainly not for one like the OP's who has been diagnosed with ulcers that needs to get out as much as possible and be in a good routine, getting turned out just one day a week is not going to help a horse with ulcers, there may be little goodness in the grass but turn out is about more than just the grazing.

I am a fairly 'controlling' YO and to my mind the horse needs to come first in any decisions I make so they get out every day apart from if it really is unsafe, snow and ice will mean the odd day in, rain and wind has never stopped me turning out, although they may have a shorter day, I think the OP needs to move as her relationship with the YO has broken down completely and I suspect it will get worse now it has become more personal.
 
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