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The Result of a Compromise: The Active Stable in Koivikon Hevoshaka




All things considered, the perfect stable from the horse‘s perspective would look like this: Endless fields (at least 10 hectare per horse), a little river running through, some horse friends in a nice little herd and, most important, no humans around to ruin the serenity. A pretty picture, but we, as the rider, have also needs.

I
n my stable, I tried to find a compromise: I want my horses to get high-quality food and water in small time intervals and to have enough space for moving as much as possible in between. On the other hand, when I come to work with the horses, I want to catch them in a reasonable amount of time, to get them ready efficiently and to have the opportunity to work with them in adequate facilities.

The Active stable consists of an all-year-round pasture which covers 1 hectare of ground and contains a water supply, a hay feeder and a protected resting place:


The Hay Feeder

For the Horses, this is the heart of the stable, where they have access to hay 24 hours a day. The hay is presented on a feeding table inside the hut.  This makes sure that the hay is not spoiled by the horses themselves and it is refilled four times a day. The feeder is specifically designed for horses: It is divided into different spaces with safety bars in between. So each horse has its own place and they all can eat at the same time. This is absolutely necessary to prevent fights. The safety bars make sure that no horse can put its hooves or head around in the feeder, preventing accidents.


The Resting Place

Although horses need to be in the fresh air, they don‘t need to stand in the poring rain, scorching sun or twirling snow. For these occasions, they have a hut with two separate entrances. These make sure that horses low in hierarchy always have an escape route. Plastic curtains protect the hut from rain or snow blowing in. In summer, the curtains also prevents insects from going inside, giving the horses a place, where they can spend their resting time peacefully. The floor is paved with thick rubber tiles, making the ground soft and insulated and giving the horses an clean opportunity to lay down for a nap.


In the summer time, there are  additional 1,5 hectares for summer pastures. In addition, there are two paddock boxes for new horses or emergencies.


Paddock Boxes

Although we all try to avoid it, there might be a time, when it is better for a horse to be separated from the herd for a while. For example, a horse with leg or hoof problems should only move as much as it feels up to and not be pushed around. Or a slow eater needs more hay if the temperatures get extremely icy. In these occasions, the horse can be put into a paddock box for a few hours or days. There, the horse gets all the rest it needs, but is never completely away from the herd therefore coming back to its friends is not an issue. It can stay in eye and nose contact, while still having a calm corner to yield, if it gets too much.

The paddock box is also the living place for newcomers. Here, they can adopt the „stable smell“  and get to know slowly their new companions. It is big enough to allow for movement in and out of the box, which helps to adapt to their outdoor life.


For the rider‘s convenience, there are  two tack rooms - one cold for the summer and one heated and insulated for the winter time - and a 20x40m riding arena and a 18m diameter lounging circle.


Riding facilities

Koivikon Hevoshaka offers an outdoor 20x40m riding arena and a lounging circle with 18m diameter. This area is illuminated in winter. In addition, the stable is surrounded by a lovely countryside for hacking out.