Monday, February 25, 2013

Could Spring Be Coming Soon?

Happy Monday!!

Here at Southwind Farm, we are hopeful that spring is coming sooner than later! Upon awaking this morning, it felt a little cold/chilly. However, as the morning has gone on, the sun is shining, it's gotten warmer, and the birds are chirping gleefully! That has to be a sign that spring is right around the corner. At least, that's what the horses and I are hoping...keeping our fingers and hooves crossed ;-)

Have a wonderful week!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Pros and Cons of Pasture Boarding vs. Stall Boarding for Your Horse

Hello blog world!

When boarding your horse, there are many decisions to make. One of those decisions is whether to stall board or field board your horse. What is the best environment for your horse to live in? Many people can be unsure at first for several reasons: recently acquired the horse, changing careers, occasional pleasure riding only, etc. Really, the answer is, that it depends. It is important to make sure that your horse is comfortable, happy and most of all, healthy. Stall boarding or field boarding can play a major role in this. Luckily, here at Southwind Farm in Damascus, MD, we offer both stall and field board for your horse. That means, the only hard part is trying to decide which one is best suited for your equine friend. 

Some people say that a mixture of stall and field board can be the best option. Others with high sport performance horses feel that stall board is the best option. Here another opinion, an article by Ed Dabney who is a natural horsemanship trainer:

"Stall versus Pasture Board"
I strongly feel horses are happier and healthier mentally, physically and emotionally if they are allowed to live the way God designed them - out in the open, not in a box. Horses are not like us. They don't like small cozy places. As prey animals, they like to be out in the open so they can move and see all around.

Horses who live out in a pasture 24/7 are usually healthier than stall boarded horses who live in a hot, musty barn full of urine and manure odors. Walk into most full boarding barns at 6:00 in the morning when the barn has been closed up all night and the ammonia smell from the night's urine will knock you down. I feel sorry for the horses having to stand in there and breathe that all night. No wonder they develop respiratory problems.

I understand that not everyone has the option of pasture or paddock boarding and must board their horse in a stall with little or no turn-out. I also understand that stall boarding is sometimes necessary for some stallions, horses recuperating from certain injuries or for upper level show or performance horses that need the protection of a stall to prevent injury or coat fading.
In Wyoming my horses lived in the pasture and had a run in shed available to them but they never used it. They were happy to stand out in 15 below zero weather in a blizzard munching hay. They would grow a heavy winter coat and snow would pile up on their backs. As long as they had plenty of good quality hay their body would generate enough heat to keep them comfortable. (Note: if they were losing body heat the snow on their backs would melt.)
Observing my own horses in Wyoming indicates to me they obviously prefer to live outdoors. Certainly we prefer to be indoors on a cold or rainy day cuddled up by the fire in a warm blanket drinking a cup of hot chocolate, however my opinion is, we should allow horses to live in the way they prefer rather than try to force our human characteristics on them. 
Article can be found at:

Monday, February 11, 2013

Evaluating Horse Boarding Facilities

Happy Monday from Southwind Farm!!

As you know, we have some openings for horse board at our farm. While we encourage all breeds, sizes and disciplines of riding, we know that it is sometimes harder to chose a facility on the boarder's end. At Southwind Farm, we pride ourselves on having a relaxed, yet professional atmosphere for your horses to enjoy. Safety and the health of your horses is always our top priority. We also know that sometimes you and your horses need time to relax, unwind and just enjoy life, so we also offer miles of trails too. All of our staff also live on the property so you can be assured that there is someone available 24/7 in case of an emergency.

We would like to share this article on choosing a boarding facility for you and your horse. It does a nice job of breaking down all the aspects that go into consideration when looking at farms. We hope that if you are in the Damascus, Maryland area, and are looking for a new place to board, you will consider us here at Southwind Farm. We would love to make YOU a  part of the Southwind family :)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Boarding Openings: Montgomery County, MD

Happy Monday!

I wanted to do a quick post and let everyone know, since we had some of our dear friends move out of state, we now have boarding openings! This is great news for you! If you are looking for a wonderful facility and a friendly atmosphere, Southwind Farm is your place! We have stall and field boarding available in Damascus, Maryland. We accept all breeds and disciplines, which makes us a truly unique and fun place to be. Please visit our website to find out more:

Have a great day!

Southwind Farm