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  • Writer's pictureClay Nelson

Building a Better Horse Barn

Updated: Apr 21, 2023


Note: If you are interested in learning more about our new line of barns discussed below, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are currently offering incentives to new clients interested in being one of the first bring one of our new barn concepts to life, and would welcome the opportunity to speak with you.


A recent study coming out of Germany adds to a growing body of evidence demonstrating the many benefits to horse health and well-being of housing horses together in groups rather than individual stalls. Yet, today’s horse barns are still predominantly designed around the individual stall model. This is especially true for horse barns in the United States.


The timing of this study is welcome here at Sustainable Stables, as we are currently underway developing a new line of barns centered around the very idea that group housing of horses offers many benefits. In addition to improved horse health and well-being highlighted in the aforementioned study, other benefits include:


Cost savings: Let’s face it, individual stalls can be expensive. Barns where horses can be housed in groups can often be built for a fraction of the cost of a traditional barn. Alternatively, the cost savings can be used to afford the higher end finishes you always dreamed of for your new barn.

Chore efficiency: Feeding and watering of horses, among other chores, can often be done more efficiently when horses are kept together in one or multiple groups.


Better integrated with sustainable land-management practices: At Sustainable Stables, we believe in designing more than just horse barns, but horse properties as a whole. To this end, we advocate barn designs that can be integrated with one or more well-designed dry lots (or track system), with direct access to pasture turnout. Designing these features as a single connected system enables our clients to easily and efficiently implement sustainable land management practices such as rotational grazing, enabling better utilization of available pasture acreage while protecting local soil and water resources. Our new line of barns makes it much easier to achieve this “connected” system between your barn and the rest of your equestrian property.


We recognize that traditional stalls still have a place in modern horse barn design -- for example when a horse is sick or injured, or when a new horse is brought to the property and needs time to be safely integrated with the existing herd. Therefore, our new line of barns still includes options for one or multiple traditional stalls, but primarily in the context of being used “as needed”, rather than serving as the primary, year-round housing for your horses.


We also recognize the value of flexibility in barn design. Over time, horses may come and go, and therefore herd dynamics may change over time. Whether it’s needing to separate horses during feeding time, or wanting to create a temporary, removable stall, our new line of barns are designed to enable flexibility in these features as the needs of you and your horses change over time.


Finally, as our name implies, we love using sustainable, eco-friendly building materials in our barn designs, and our new line of barns are designed to take advantage of the latest in green building materials and practices, including tongue and groove boards and ground reinforcement grids made from 100% recycled plastic, sustainably harvested wood, and plenty of natural light and ventilation.


To learn more, you can contact us through our website at www.SustainableStables.com

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