It’s always a big decision to move stables and it wasn’t one that I made lightly. Gracie was born at my old stables and I bought her off of the yard owner. I always felt that she kind of got extra special treatment there which was lovely but as time went on I just felt like I didn’t have full control over Gracie’s care and it was also a 40 minute drive away that was starting to put me off wanting to go there after work.
I had begun to think about moving a while ago. Then my friend said she was going to view a yard that looked really nice and I offered to go translate for her. The yard was incredible! It is only 20 mins away from home and half the distance than the other yard and it really is like pony paradise! Our horses could share a 2 horse paddock with a shelter. It has an outdoor 60×20 arena , an indoor arena and a lunging pen. We have access to a massive forest to hack around without going on the crazy French roads and it is also opposite a big equestrian centre with a cross country course that we could hack over to do some schooling and hopefully some of the competitions! It was an easy decision to make once I had seen the place and I thought Gracie would benefit a lot from moving yards and experiencing new places.
The move itself went swimmingly. Both horses travelled beautifully and quickly settled in to their new surroundings. I must confess the month leading up to that was very stressful and unpleasant as our old yard owner was not happy that my friend and I were moving. It’s a shame as I explained why and was very civil with her in the run up to the move. But then she ignored me completely on the day we moved. Didn’t say goodbye and promptly deleted/unfriended me on social media. So I was quite disappointed to say the least as I really didn’t want to leave on bad terms. But if I have learnt anything from this you just have to focus on what is best for you and your horse!
I was so pleased with Gracie when she arrived at the new yard. She was much calmer than I had imagined. She settled in nicely with her new paddock mate, my friend’s horse who she knew already but hasn’t lived with before. I gave her 2 days to just chill in her paddock and settle in a little before bringing her in and walking her around the stable yard, tack room area and arena. Then the next day I rode her in the arena with my friend and her horse and then we went on a little hack in the forest which was fantastic!
Now we are working on the horses being calm when we separate them. As her paddock mate is an older very calm horse I’m sure Gracie who is only 5 years old sees him as reassurance. They both are happy to leave the paddock solo but the one left alone is not happy despite them being surrounded by other horses in neighbouring paddocks. Funnily enough the older calm horse is worst at being left alone! So we will be working on that as we want nice happy calm horses!
My plan for the next few weeks is to build up Gracie’s fitness now she has been given the all clear from the osteo. I won’t rush that as I want her to settle in to her new surroundings as I appreciate it would have been a big move for her. I am hoping that the more she experiences the more she will learn to take in her stride.
I am really looking forward to the future at our new yard. I hope to restart my lessons with my French coach as soon as Gracie is fit enough and hope to try some lessons with another instructor who specialises in eventing who often teaches at the yard. I also cannot wait to head over to the equestrian centre opposite to start competing there and galloping around the cross country course!!
Tell me have you ever moved yards? What are your top tips?