Anyone wondering what best practice for stables during these times are, here are some basic procedures everyone should consider implementing. The wonderful owner, trainers and staff at the barn where I board have put many of these measures in place to make sure we can all continue to enjoy our horses safely:
- limit the number of people at the barn at once (restrict visitors, postpone shows and clinics and eliminate group lessons)
- limit the length of time boarders and students can stay at the barn (staggered entries)
- no communal sharing or serving of food, beverages, serving utensils, etc.
- no sharing of equipment or supplies
- frequent cleaning of high touch areas with dish soap, water, and elbow grease, along with interim wipe downs with disinfecting wipes
- require everyone to wash their hands with soap immediately upon arrival, and to wipe down any communal surfaces they touch, such as sink handles, doorknobs, etc
- require anyone who has travelled outside the country, or who is in close contact with anyone who has travelled to stay away from the barn for 14 days.
- require anyone with symptoms of ANY illness, or those who live with someone with symptoms of any illness to avoid coming to the barn
- consider offering services such as grooming, blanket changes, lungeing, etc. if not normally offered, so that boarders who should be self-isolating don’t feel compelled to come and provide basic care
For most of us, the barn is a safe space, a little respite of sanity amid a lot of craziness. Let’s all help keep it that way!
About the author
I'm a middle-aged, overweight, rusty re-rider who refuses to let any of that get in the way of my passion for dressage.