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Horse Barns

Horse barns are complicated entities with tons of things to know about them, such as safety recommendations, types of barns, how to build one, how to maintain one, how to add amenities, purchasing and maintaining farm equipment, how to reduce pests and critters and thus reduce the chance for disease, seasonal considerations and clean-up and maintenance, conservation of resources, avoiding hazards, restoring an older barn, and much more. Equine facilities house precious, and often expensive, inhabitants. The best horse barns are safe, functional, stylish, clean, airy, and have healthy occupants. Regardless of how perfect a barn can seem, there is always room for improvement in some area. Learn more about where you can improve with Horse Illustrated's articles, and take tours of various equine facilities.

Barn Site Selection

Your choice should give equal priority to drainage and ventilation. A barn situated on a beautiful spot will be a misery to you and your horses if, after an inch of rainfall, their stalls look like cross-country water jumps....

Barn Budgeting

Many barn manufacturers have affiliations with finance companies to facilitate that part of the building process. You should check out all your financial options before selecting a lender. Home equity loans are currently popular because the interest is often...

Zoning Issues

Don’t fall in love with a particular location for your barn until you’ve checked several determining factors. Foremost are your county’s zoning requirements and restrictions. In many areas of the country, residential growth has led to a trend of...


The necessity for barn insulation is somewhat controversial among horse owners, but in fact, it is more for the benefit of people than horses. Horses are quite comfortable in non-insulated buildings with adequate ventilation. Doyle Pokorny of M.P.B. Builders...

Doors and Windows

The main things to consider when selecting doors and windows are safety and ventilation. Is a stall door that swings into the aisle a hazard? If you prefer a mesh door for ventilation, how can you keep shavings from...

Tack Room

Build a door to the outside, so you can load your trailer easily from where all your equipment and supplies are stored, and make certain your inside door swings away from the aisle. For a custom interior look, you can...

Fire in the Hills

Photo by Cameron Strandberg from Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, Canada (DSC_7139) CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia CommonsKathy Voyer wasn’t having a good day. The evening of Dec. 2, 2006, was unseasonably windy and she was hobbling around her small...

Poisonous Posies

Learn to identify poisonous plants in your horse’s pasture by visiting these university websites. Plant photos, toxicity ratings, signs of poisoning in horses, first aid and prevention are just part of what you will find at:• Cornell University—www.ansci.cornell.edu/plants• Purdue University—www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/WS/WS_37_ToxicPlants08.pdf Read more...

Proof Is In The Pasture

Pasture-kept horses have the ability to interact socially and are exposed to a rich environment, but have less contact with humans than their stall-kept counterparts. A 1997 study* has found that in spite of decreased human intervention, young pasture...

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