It’s not her job to hold your horse for the vet October 13 2009, 0 Comments

Recently, we had a barn meeting for boarders. About a week later, there was a meeting for barn workers. Since I fit into both categories, I was at both meetings. For the boarders, it was a chance for the trainer to remind us all to pick up after ourselves and to set some general guidelines. It was all good. At the workers meeting, there was talk about how to decide whether to turn out horses when it’s rainy or muddy. And we talked about the best way to alert boarders when they are getting low on supplements, among other things. It was a positive, productive gathering. There was one topic that came up in both meetings. Holding horses for the vet. The barn workers’ number one complaint was this: boarders shouldn’t expect them to be available to hold their horse for the vet. There seems to be a misconception among the boarders that that’s a job for barn workers. The gals all said they never minded doing it if they had the time, but they wanted boarders to know these three things:

1. Let barn workers know if the vet is coming to see your horse. Call or leave a note.

2. Plan ahead. If you can’t be there to hold your horse, ask a barn worker if she/he has time to do it for you.

3. Show appreciation. It’s a common courtesy to offer the barn worker a monetary tip for providing this service.

Sounds easy enough. How much to tip? I guess it depends on how long it takes to hold your horse and how well-behaved the beast. I would recommend $10 for a very short vet visit and $25 for anything more than 30 minutes. Of course, this will vary by region. You can always ask the barn manager or owner for a recommendation.X