Is it time to design your horse a new home? Perhaps you’re renovating an old barn or maybe you’re starting completely from scratch? Either way, you have a lot of decisions to make. Having a plan before you start building will ensure that your horse has a safe and comfortable home that you’ll find easy to maintain for many years to come.
Here are some helpful tips and tricks to design a stable that’ll keep your horse feeling happy and healthy at all times.
Your new or refurbished stable needs to be spacious, safe and convenient. We recommend building stalls that are a bit roomier, so your horses have space to roam and can lie down without feeling cramped. If you have the space, a double-sized stall is always a great idea – your larger horses will appreciate the extra room.
When building a stable, your stall doors will be either swinging or sliding. In either case, these should have latches that undo easily but that curious horses cannot tamper with! Swinging doors should open outwards and fasten securely so horses don’t escape, whereas sliding doors should slide smoothly. When building stables, we recommend that each doorway is at least 1.3m wide, for comfort and safety.
Horses are kept inside and in their stalls for long periods of time, which can be hard on their legs. For this reason, your stable flooring needs to be chosen carefully. Some of the most common flooring options are tile, soil, clay, sand, concrete and wood. Each have their own strengths and weaknesses and we recommend you look into each option carefully before deciding.
To consider them briefly, tile upkeep can be easier than others, while soil is an inexpensive, healthy and safe option for your horse. Sand will be kind to your horses’ legs and is non-slip, while wood will generally be warmer and feel natural for your horse.
When designing a stable, the space needs to be a safe not just for your horses but for you. Any lighting and wiring should be installed safely with plugs, switches and light bulbs placed where horses cannot reach them.
Horses need to be connected to the outdoors as much as possible so wherever you can, consider windows and skylights for natural light and ventilation. These should be made from strong, shatterproof glass or covered with a grill or mesh so horses cannot break them.
Air quality is one of the most critical considerations in any stable, however it’s often the most overlooked. It might sound simple but ensuring fresh air can circulate freely is critical to dispelling bad smells and keeping the air fresh and clean.
Horses need constant air flow and fresh air to stay healthy as stagnant air can encourage the development of lung infections. The easiest way to achieve ventilation is to provide sufficient openings around the stable and in the stalls, including doors, windows and vents. This means fresh air can enter the stables and stagnant air, dust spores and heat can exit, improving your horses’ overall comfort.
To find out more about designing a stable that’ll keep your horse healthy, or to get started on construction, get in touch with the friendly team at Cunningham Constructions today.