Help! I Have So Many Horse Chores!

Help! I Have So Many Horse Chores!

horse-1When you are flat out working and also have family commitments there are sometimes you barely have time to ride, let alone catch up on the many chores around the stables that should be done.

Your gear needs a clean, you saddle cloth and bandages need a good wash, the manure in your paddock is piling up and the mice love the amount of grain on your feed room floor.

The weekends are busy with kids to organise, competitions and other commitments. Sunday night comes around and you feel like there are more horse chores to do there were at the beginning of the weekend

It is easy to get overwhelmed with all the horse chores there are to do.

Don’t worry; you don’t have to catch it up all at once.

Just focus on the most important task until you have a well-run, efficient stable. That way, you can relax and enjoy your riding so much more. After all, isn’t enjoyment the reason you ride and have horses?

Change the routine.

When you are riding and training and your horse goes well, finish a few minutes early. This might give you enough time to sweep the feed room floor to pick up all the old feed. Then each time you feed after that, be careful! If you do spill feed or make a mess, clean it up immediately so the old feed doesn’t build up again.

Be efficient with your work!

You can have a couple of saddlecloths and sets of bandages and put them in a tub of water to soak when you finished riding. Then the next time you visit your horse to feed, take out your washing and hang it out to dry. Your work gear may not be spotless if you do it this way, but it will mean that the excess sweat and dirt has been washed away, making it more comfortable for your horse. If you can hang your washing out under cover then it won’t matter if it rains and it will be saddlecloths and bandages will be clean and dry when you are ready to use them.

Mix your family time with your horse chores.

When you are picking up manure in your horse’s paddock, make it into a game with your children. The ‘treasure’ is a new pile of manure and the rewards are based on a full bag of manure. If you make this into a regular routine picking up manure becomes a game and also combines family time with horse chores.

Organise your bigger tasks for the weekends.

Don’t make a huge list and plan to have it all completed in one day. Be realistic and prioritize. Organise equipment and other people to help beforehand if other people are available to help. You may have some friends who do not have horses any more who would just like to spend time around them.

Avoid overwhelm

Combine you enjoyment of horses with a sense of achievement by following a well-organized routine. Avoid overwhelm by prioritizing your workload to the most important thing for you (and your horse) for that day.

Are you a highly paid professional?

If you are flat out working full time, you may place a higher value on your time that what it would take to employ a local horse mad school student to do your extra chores. Work out how much per hour you are paid in your professional job and then how much you could pay some local labour to do the horse chores you would prefer not to. Sometimes it is just a good idea to outsource these jobs so you can focus on the thing that you want to do most, which is probably spending time with your horse.

 The main thing is to remember why you have horses.




  1. Harrison Bergman says:

    I spend so much time in the paddock that sometimes I get sick of doing all the work required every day. I remember my goals and achievements to get me through some days when I am tired. There is just so much to be done and the horses are out competing all the time – every weekend and during the week as well. As I am in Year 12 I have a big workload.

  2. I have had a few similar problems not with family as I am only 14 but with the farm work that needs to be done I have not ridden as much as I would like. I have lots of farm work to do like fencing and building a roof for the sheep and much more. To solve that problem I just get up a little earlier in the mornings and see that I get done what is needed then at the end of the day or early mornings I can go for a ride with the horse. I have a time set aside that I spend doing my horse chores. Now I do not have a stable and I only have one horse so it makes it much easier to cope then.

  3. Thank you for the article, they were some great tips. Definitely going to organise my horse chores better so it doesn’t get so overwhelming and I will have more time to ride.

  4. Breanan Hollis says:

    I am in year 12 and find study and keeping up with the horse chores quite overwhelming at times especially when I have assessments due. I am also learning to drive and have driving lessons to fit in as well. My family help out in stressful times to help everything run a bit smoother. I am writing a schedule to help keep me organised.

  5. bianca dingle says:

    As a parent of 4 children I get easily overwhelmed. I find it easier when I have a set routine, something to follow so that I can concentrate better. This article has some great ideas that I will put into place in my family.

  6. I have plenty of jobs to do around the house as well as completing school but I am also sure to look after my horses to the best of my abilities. That’s why I’m lucky to have a couple of different paddocks to keep my horses in and then constantly move my horses from paddock to paddock so that the grass has time to grow back. I also have what’s called a poo-vac and I use this to quickly and efficiently clean up my horses paddocks if I need to. However some of the ideas in the articles are also really good.

  7. Zyia Sheveleff says:

    I don’t even own a horse but i go to a riding school and I’m out there 6 days every week to ride and do chores

  8. Prior to buying a horse, I spent 12 months assisting a friend with her horses. It had been many years since I had owned a horse and I was in a different space in my life now to when I previously had a horse. This time enabled me to see if I really wanted to make the commitment to owning another horse, as it allowed me time to remember what was entailed. I also made a mental note of times when I was not able to help and why this was, so I could look at whether I was able to prioritise a horse into my life, or if I was just not ready. I chose that if I was to have a horse, that I would see my horse as my fun activity time and this included all my horse associated work. Since having a horse I always look at what jobs are most important, what can wait and when I will do it, so the list does not get too big.

  9. Thank you for the article, there are some great ideas, I’m not sure how I will go making the collection of manure a game with the kids, but i will see how i go.

  10. Really helpful article

  11. Thanks for the article! Some fantastic ideas here 🙂 Horses are our lives just as much as our families and other commitments, its important to make them all fit harmoniously together.

  12. Maddison Byrnes says:

    All these ways to help keep the stress level rising above hair ripping mode is and are so helpful! Even though I don’t own a horse I do work experience at trail riding places around where I live and they have a great system for their employees, they even have people working with specific horses based on their own level. I found that kinda cool. Overall this article is extremely helpful and when I go back for another round of work experience I will keep all these steps in mind!

  13. Great tips on prioritising 😀 Will try these and hopefully I will save some time!

  14. Elizabeth Verhagen says:

    The most important thing to me is spending time with my horses while improving the bond and relationship we have. Therefore, in order to have that time, I must prioritize all chores and tasks as well as find the most efficient way to accomplish them. For example, instead of picking up manure in the paddocks, I run a tractor with a chain rake over the paddock which breaks up all the manure so it acts as a fertilizer, by doing this I am saving a lot of time as well as improving the soil and future pasture growth.

  15. Cadi Cavanagh says:

    Even with regular worming you cant be sure, picking up manure is the safer way to go rather than hoping it dries out and the worms cant survive 🙂

  16. DylanVanSetten says:

    I really appreciate your article, it was fantastic to reed and i got something out of it.

  17. I ride my horse about 2 or 3 times a week then wash him, put everything away and give him a drink and throw his rugs on, then I go up stairs and study. When my mum needs help with putting them away and making feeds I help her.

  18. Hollie Brandon says:

    Pick up manure cause if you don’t it can spread worms

  19. Hello. I like reading your articles! I have 2c worth to share …
    Why would you pick manure up from the paddocks? Let me have a guess – to reduce the worm make the place cleaner and less smelly… to avoid tall grass around the piles where horses won’t eat…hoof health around loitering areas…. All good. All wrong. Mother nature simply does not operate like that. Horses damage and take from the environment. It is wrong to take the only thing they are able to give back – manure for the paddocks! Are there any horse owners out there that are also gardeners? They will understand.
    Firstly – worms love to live in moist, smelly piles of dung. If you took a boot or a hockey stick and belted each pile you would achieve several things – the manure would dry out, or at least break up, and not be able to smell nor support the worm eggs. Sun kills eggs. The manure would be spread to fertilize the ground. You could drag a small piece of grid mesh. Having areas that horses won’t eat also means that there are areas that horses won’t WALK – and that is the key to colonizing paddocks with grass. This one vital behavior of horses will enable you to purposefully pile manure loosely over surviving islands of grass so that it can spread. But they won’t eat it you say! As the rains wash it, the seasons change and the grass grows, parts of it gradually become very palatable. But they will walk around it, saving it – The key in small land holdings. There’s so much more to this story. Traditional ways of doing things aren’t always the truth of how it really is. We all have to be careful about what we teach. Hope this is food for thought! Best regards

  20. Lisa Stibbe says:

    I do get overwhelmed sometimes, feeling like I should be spending more time in the house than doing my horsie chores, but I do catch up when everything is running smoothly.

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