So you just got a new horse! How exciting – now where to board him/her?
You start by calling the farms to get the prices of the board but there are a lot of other questions that need to be answered to see if the facility will meet YOUR needs and not just your budget.
- Full board, partial, or pasture board? – Full means the barn manager does everything from feeding, to cleaning stalls, buying feed and hay, and taking care of injuries. Partial board means you are a part of that equation. You may have to buy the hay and grain, feed your horse, and clean the stall – if you even have a stall and take care of any injuries. Know what your role is before committing to the time and expense. Pasture board may or may not include access to a stall in bad weather or if your horse becomes injured. Are you experienced enough in feeding and caring for a horse to know what is OK and what might kill a horse? Horses are big and strong and surprisingly fragile. They can hurt themselves on just about anything. Are you prepared to address the injuries?
- Arenas, trails, jumps, XC fences, barrels? What kind of riding do you do? Does the facility have boarders who enjoy the type of riding you do?
Lesson barn with kids, family-friendly barn, or adults only? Each barn is unique and the personality of the barn is determined by the people who board there and the people that run it. Is it friendly or frosty? Visit and find out how you are welcomed as a stranger. If you want to have the barn as an escape from your kids, you might want not to go to a lesson barn with kids. On the other hand that might be just what you want so that you can enjoy your horse passion with your kids. Is there a trainer available that can help with the discipline of riding that you want to do? A dressage barn might not be the best option for a hunter/jumper rider and vice versa.
- How experienced is the person running the barn? This is extremely important. More experience means better care.
Be sure to ask about these options and know what will work for you and your horse.
Bits & Bytes Farm is a full board, full-service barn in Canton, GA.
So, what does that mean for you? Your horse gets a stall – a big stall. Most of our stalls are 12 x 18 feet with great ventilation. We do three feedings per day. We provide premium Triple Crown, Buckeye, and Purina Feeds. Our hay is Western Alfalfa and local fescue. We clean the stalls and provide the bedding. We supplement the horses’ fiber needs with soaked alfalfa and beet pulp and daily turnout in our pastures. Each horse gets a custom feed mix with the owner’s supplements added.
Our management has over 60 years of horse experience! We have seen all kinds of injuries and discipline problems and we know how to address them. We know Thoroughbreds! Our farrier has been working on our horses for 20+ years and he can fix Thoroughbred feet! We have a great veterinary support team and an equine hospital around the corner from our farm.
Many of the horses at our farm are Thoroughbreds that we have gotten off the track. Thoroughbreds have special feeding needs to keep them round and dappled. We also have a few quarter horses and even a mini so each horse gets a custom mix, especially for them. We are not limited to Thoroughbreds but we do understand them and their unique needs.
Who Boards at Bits & Bytes Farm?
Our typical boarder is an adult who wishes to keep their horse in a drama-free environment. Many have purchased Thoroughbreds that we have gotten off the track. They appreciate that we can help them with their training needs. The barn is their escape from the pressures of day-to-day living and working and it is their support network. Check your bad day at the gate and enter a place where you can just enjoy your horse. At Bits & Bytes Farm, they find a family of friends that enjoy learning and relaxing together. Bits & Bytes Farm is known for its picnics at the farm or when we are out and about enjoying our horses.
If you need help, we have trainers available for lessons. They teach us riding skills and also how to become better horsemen or horsewomen. Everyone is willing to share their knowledge with anyone who asks for help. Learning is fun!
We limit the horses on our farm to 20. We have stalls for more but we have pastures that we want to maintain with grass. Horses are turned out, in small groups, either all day or all night depending on the time of the year. There is a lighted 100 x 200-foot arena with jumps and dressage letters. We have a round pen. There are x-country jumps, and trails through the woods. Our boarders enjoy attending local schooling shows and participate in our fix-a-tests, lessons, and clinics held at the farm. There is always an event on the calendar that you can join if you like – either with your horse or as a spectator. It is a fun place with fun people.
If you find yourself drawn to what our farm offers, give us a call (770) 704-6595 (landline – no texts). We have one stall coming available May 1st.