Check out this story from south Florida regarding some swanky barns:
They’re estates for pampered horses, places to enjoy a glass of wine and secluded retreats. These horse mansions have very human comforts: marble floors, imported European chandeliers, antique fox hunting prints, granite tile, pecky cypress, leather armchairs, landscaped courtyards, humidity-free hay store rooms, tongue-and-groove ceilings, flat-screen TVs, security cameras, sound systems, automatic bug spray systems.
Let’s think about this a moment…
- Marble floors: can’t be good for their legs
- Imported European chandeliers: be full of spiders and wisps of hay in no time
- Antique fox hunting prints: presumably not in the stalls, but you never can tell with some people
- Granite tile: around animals with hard yet vulnerable feet?!
- Pecky cypress: wtf? Is it hungry?
- Leather armchars: horses prefer to stand. Oh, all right. Think of the mice
- Landscaped courtyards: I could go for that
- Humidity-free hay store rooms: ooooo nice
- Tongue-and-groove ceilings: whatevs
- Flat-screen TVs: because you need to put your muck boots on to watch some of the current offerings on TV
- Security cameras: deffo
- Sound systems: I could see this getting obnoxious rather quickly
- Automatic bug spray systems: in Florida? Hell yes!
Do any of these things really add to the horses’ wellbeing? A few of them do, certainly, but it sounds like the rest of it is for people who want to enjoy being horse owners with all the grotty bits left out. This isn’t to say that horse ownership has to be a grubby ordeal, obviously, but…A friend of mine was boarding her horse at a place where some of the boarders never seemed to leave their stalls. When I asked her about it, she said the people would come out with their friends, pull the horse out of its stall, brag about it and bask in their friends’ coos of admiration, then leave again. That was about the full extent of their involvement with the animal. Maybe that isn’t what’s going on here but I’ll take good arena footing and a climate-controlled, secure tack room over pecky cypress any day, and that’s only partially because I don’t know what the hell pecky cypress is.
(I wonder if any of these barns are in Basura)