Tag Archives: animal safety

What Makes For Good Horse Stable Design?

horse stable design

Mustangs brought over from Spain embody the West’s untamable nature. Hundreds of these equine animals once roamed the rolling hills and prairies through snow and rain. Their wild disposition has since traveled through their genealogy, into stables across the country.

A horse would never step into a stable if they had their way. They naturally detest them, just as any large grazing animal would. That’s why we take special consideration for how they operate in these spaces, by enhancing the ecological elements that make horse care easier. At DC, horse stable design is an art form. 

The minimum size for a loose box stable is 10’x10’ to 12’x12’, according to the Canadian Agri-Food Research Council. Although this might be suitable for a riding horse, it falls short when it comes to draft breeds or if you’re expecting a foal. Adding extra room to our horse barn kits is no problem with our Flex Design option.

Horses are extremely inquisitive creatures. A clever steed can easily find its way around a poorly placed latch and show themselves out. It’s been widely documented that they have even jailbroken their compatriots for late night romps around the barn. Did we mention they hate stables?

Kidding aside, this can be a dangerous situation for your animals. Our catalog offers multiple stall front variations so you can choose the one you think best fits your horse’s intelligence. After all, they may have been brought here from Europe, but it’s the American West that raised their rebellious spirit.

Animal safety is a top priority. That’s why our horse arena building packages are curated by Classic Equine, the leading brand in horsing around. Any accessories such as stall mats and water buckets are all vetted for maintaining the well-being of your four-legged friends.

Easy on the Hooves: Tips for Planning Horse Arena Footing

Arena footing—sounds easy enough, right? Decisions surrounding the footing you choose for your riding arena are a lot more complicated than you might think. Poor footing will subject your horse to an increased risk of injury and long-term degenerative problems. As such, footing selections call for an informed and measured approach that takes a variety of factors into consideration.

When evaluating any arena footing material, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What kind of maintenance will this footing require?
  • Do the pros of using this material outweigh the cons?
  • Does this footing make sense for its intended use?
  • Will this material interact well with the natural environment?
  • Is it possible to combine this footing with additional materials for a better effect?

If it sounds complicated, that’s because it is. Of course, any equestrian knows that caring for horses is no easy task! So long as you are guided by the will to create a safe environment for horses and their riders, everything—including dirt, sand and wood—will settle into place just fine. That said, some aspects of your arena footing are non-negotiable.

All arena footing must be absolutely:

  • Free of holes and uneven or shifting surfaces
  • Stable yet shock absorbent
  • Non-slippery and well-tractioned

Arena footings that meet these three necessary requirements can be comprised of a variety of materials—both natural and synthetic—as well as a combination of footing types. While there are countless products and formulas on the market, the most common footing materials are made from clay- or silt-based dirt, sand or wax coated sand, and wood products or natural and synthetic fibers. The arena footing materials you choose should be right for your regional environment and equestrian discipline.

Before you even think about choosing an arena footing, you must have 100 percent confidence in your riding arena’s base. Solid arena bases adhere to high standards for the three D’s: drainage, durability and depth. If you live in a wet region or know your arena will be getting lots of traffic, it may be necessary to go beyond standard recommendations.

  • Drainage: Opt for a strong base that will enable water to seep into the ground rather than flood the surface.
  • Durability: Make sure your base is compacted above a 90 percent density so it will hold its integrity and keep rocks from creeping to the top.
  • Depth: Keep your base layer at no less than four inches deep and up to one foot deep if your equestrian activities call for more support.

Thinking about a horse arena of your own? DC Structures offers two covered riding arena kits for year-round equestrian enthusiasts. Check out our Prairie arena kit and our Canyon arena with stables package. Request our digital catalog so you can get started on your dream arena.

No Horsing Around: Pro Tips for Horse Barn Safety

horse barn safety

Horse barn safety is DC Structures’ top priority when it comes to designing our top-of-the-line barn kits. Injuries pose a real threat to horses, as the road to recovery can be especially arduous for them. There are a number of preventative measures you can take to ensure the safety of your four-legged equine friends. Read on for our recommendations for best practices.

DC Structures’ top-8 horse barn safety tips

  • All barn materials should be free of chemical treatments as they present health risks to horses that chew on them. DC Structures uses top-grade untreated lumbers for its post-and-beam kit designs.
  • The areas within and around a barn should always be free of clutter. Loose items scattered about the aisles are a safety hazard.
  • Walkways should be no less than 12’ wide to allow horses to pass freely and turn around with ease. DC Structures’ barn kits all include plans that meet this requirement.
  • The aisle ways should have an even and well-tractioned surface. Textured concrete or dirt without rocks are both great options.
  • Stall fronts should have smoothed edges to avoid injury to the horse. All DC Structures horse barn packages include Classic Equine’s powder-coated, pre-galvanized steel stall fronts, designed specifically to protect your horse from scratches.
  • The only direction a stall door should swing is outward, as inward-swinging doors can create potentially dangerous situations for caretakers if the horse is anxious to get out.
  • Barn lighting should be mounted high away from a horse’s reach, or otherwise secured within strong wire casing.
  • Floor-to-ceiling height should be adequate for rearing horses. DC Structures designs its barn kits with a minimum of 9’ from the floor to the ceiling.

To learn more about DC Structures’ top-of-the-line horse barn kits, request our digital catalog.