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Since our horses are often a reflection of the environment we create for them, this podcast shares ideas, strategies, and innovative products that help us create the best home we can. Whether the barn is your sanctuary or your business, you will learn a lot from our conversations with experts about about best practices in horsekeeping (and the life that goes with it)! Hosted by veteran podcaster, Helena (Bee) Harris.
 
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show series
 
The saying goes: “If you ask ten different horse people how to do something, you will get 10 different answers.” Well, Helena decided to put that adage to the test and ask ten different horse people their opinions about what qualifies for happy horsekeeping. The ten people happen to be her Horse Radio Network colleagues-all horse professionals in s…
 
Time is money. This simple truth makes companies like Horizon Structures a real gem in the barn-building industry, because modular barn construction can save us both time and money. In this episode, Helena welcomes back her very first guest, Jill Siragusa, from Horizon Structures. They're talking about Monitor Barn design, what's great about it, an…
 
Helena made fresh tracks with Siouxsie in the new sand ring, and so many things became clear during that ride. The change in Siouxsie's attitude, the way she feels while being ridden, the potential for developing a truly fit and healthy horse, and the feedback loop between a green horse and the human she’s come to trust. How does a horse’s environm…
 
Living with a horse person is a unique experience, especially when you’re not the kind of person who is completely obsessed with horses. Living with horses in your backyard is an equally unique experience, because horses aren’t just in your life, they ARE your life, whether you like it or not. In this episode, Buck joins Helena once again, but this…
 
"The road to hell, they say, is paved with good intentions. Well, I say it’s paved with filter sand. Lots and lots of filter sand." In this episode, Helena recounts the horror story that is her sand arena project, and shares important information to have on hand before you hire someone to build an outdoor ring. From working with contractors and mea…
 
"One thing I’ve learned in my time on this planet, is that change is constant. Whether we invite it in or it arrives as an unexpected guest, our best strategy for dealing with it is to learn how to be adaptable." In this episode, Helena is joined by her husband Buck to discuss not one, but several big changes happening at Hoo Hollow. In life, in bu…
 
Small farm or large, the essentials of horsekeeping are the same. Some methods we use to keep our horses happy and healthy will differ based on the way we use our horses, but the underlying principles are pretty firm, whether you have two acres or 20. In this episode, Helena shares some observations from her recent trip to several farms in the hear…
 
If you’re one of the lucky horse people who finally get to bring their horses home or start that boarding business you’ve always dreamed about, you’ll appreciate this episode. Tips and advice about horsekeeping are plentiful on the internet, but many of them are either unreliable, sketchy, or based on a situation that’s very different than yours. T…
 
Have you ever thought about adopting a wild mustang? With so many programs now available to help horse lovers learn to train these wild horses, having an idea about what to expect in the first few days and weeks of bringing one home could help you decide whether or not a mustang is in your future. Today’s episode features a conversation with horsem…
 
Whether you are thinking about building a small barn or a large one, there are thousands of decisions to make along the way. When it comes to the actual components of your stalls, this is where you need to really focus on making decisions that are safe and comfortable for your horses. This doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice beauty. Nick Thornton fr…
 
Now that COVID is settling into our rearview mirrors and Helena's out and about with her vaccinated self, she has some neat experiences to share with you. In the past three months, she's traveled to at least a dozen farms, met with barn owners and managers, attended clinics, and hosted some of her own. In this episode, she shares key takeaways from…
 
Whether you own your own farm or have dreams about it, this is an episode you want to listen to. Making money in the horse industry is tough. The good news, is that there is help you may not know exists. This week, Buck joins Helena to talk about loan programs available to equestrian businesses. Buck is an Economic Development specialist who works …
 
Fuzzy coats, sweaty horses, fancy horses, plain horses, all kinds of horses benefit from having their coats clipped. Did you think that clipping was just for show horses or very specific circumstances? It turns out that clipping is often necessary to keep our horses comfortable, whether they are competitive or pasture pets. There are many different…
 
What’s the latest in forage-based diets for horses? What myths have plagued you, and what do we need to know in 2021 about feeding hay to keep our horses healthy and happy? Do horses need Omega-3 supplements? Is beet pulp all that helpful? What gut supplement can actually help prevent ulcers? Carey Williams, Ph.D., a research scientist and professo…
 
Shopping for a tow vehicle can be a daunting task! In this episode, I recount my experience shopping for a truck that could haul my two-horse bumper pull trailer but also serve as our daily driving family vehicle. It took a lot of online research - and inner work - when talking with dealership sales reps who know little about hauling horses. Listen…
 
Barns are the perfect proving grounds for efficient management and thoughtful design. There are many different ways we can improve upon our daily chores - from setting up feed and turning horses out, to sweeping up after all of those picked hooves. This week, I’m sharing a few observations and tips that can keep your barn chores flowing and efficie…
 
This episode was going to be about hoses, but so much has happened in the last three weeks, Helena thought it would be more fun to share her experiences (and epiphanies) with Siouxsie as a temporary client on training board at Unexpected Farm. Plus, we get our geek on with Marc Hollahan from Tangent Materials, as he explains just how Tangent Fencin…
 
It’s springtime in America, and that means many of our horses are back to work in earnest. For some horse owners, separating our horses from their friends in order to work, travel, or show, can mean managing emotions - theirs and ours. Nick Rivera, of The Horseman’s University, joins Helena in this episode to talk about how we can manage our horse’…
 
This is either going to be one of those amazing adventures or one of those times in life when you call your mom crying because everything is awful and you just wanna come home. Siouxsie and Helena are on an adventure in Wales, Maine. They were invited to spend a month riding and training with Chelsea Canedy at Unexpected Farm. Getting unstuck somet…
 
In Washington state, Nina Halvorsen is living her best life with her reining horses at home and a never-ending list of things to do around her farm. It's what so many of us horse lovers live for! Riding and driving and training our horses is the payoff, but the work that goes into keeping our horses is almost as much fun. In this episode, Nina shar…
 
When making the decision to bring our horses home, it is easy to forget about how their social environment will change, and what effects that may have on how they’re able to perform their jobs as riding or driving partners. The fantasy of a two-stall barn right outside your back door is a lovely one, but the reality of having two or three horses me…
 
Even if your horses graze on acres of lush pasture for most of the year, there is always a need for hay on a horse farm. For many horses, and for many different reasons, pasture is not an option as a primary source of forage, which means buying hay becomes a critical part of every barn manager’s or horse owner's job. And it can be a tricky task. In…
 
Horses can have a powerful impact on human beings. In fact, many of us believe our horses to be valid therapy for our mental health. But horses are individuals, with unique personalities. How we combine with those personalities shapes our relationship with them-whether as pets, performance horses, or therapy partners. In this episode, Helena is joi…
 
My guest today is Ashley Newman, a Stall and Stable listener from Atlanta, Georgia, who just bought her first farm. Ashley is in the process of setting things up for her own horses, while putting plans into place to one day welcome boarders, as well. In this episode, we chat about digging trenches, round bales catching fire, trailer mishaps, workin…
 
Well, well, well, it’s been an interesting three months of learning, coping, and evolving here at Hoo Hollow! From mental health and crazy horses, to shattered splint bones and a new truck, there’s a lot to cover. No matter how long you’ve been involved with horses, or how much you think you know, there is ALWAYS room for learning… and a slice or t…
 
Innovation in the horse industry is always an exciting thing! Whether that's research findings in veterinary care, a high tech pitch fork, new training techniques, or software designed to make life a little easier for riders and barn managers. Today’s episode includes a conversation with the founders of Strider, a new, digital platform that allows …
 
If there was a deity to worship in the world of barn design, John Blackburn would most certainly fit the bill! John is the principal of Blackburn Architects, inarguably producing some of the world's most beautiful and practical equestrian facilities today. With a focus on barns that can safely and elegantly serve horses of all kinds, in all discipl…
 
Historically, most horse farms were designed and built with human needs in mind, The horses’ needs weren’t necessarily ignored, but they were (and often still are) secondary in the design and planning phases of equestrian properties. But, as we build new farms and update existing ones, we have the chance to change that. We have the chance to create…
 
We know so much more about our horses needs today than we did 10 or 20 years ago. Research, technology, and the internet have allowed us to learn and share information about horse care like never before. One of things we have learned of late is that healthy horses and hooves depend a lot not just on how much time horses are turned out, but what the…
 
This month, the Stall and Stable Pro Clinic series featured the legendary USET competitor and coach, Bernie Traurig to Seapowet Stables in Tiverton, Rhode Island. A small group of riders and auditors got the chance to experience top-level instruction that was surprisingly simple. This episode features a few key takeaways from the clinic - from a ri…
 
When you walk into a barn, can you sense the overall energy of the place? Are the horses happy? Is the barn clean and tidy. How are you greeted by the staff? All of these details are driven by one thing… the barn manager. Good energy in a barn starts with good leadership and works its way down to the tiniest of elements – and creatures. My guest to…
 
Stall and Stable listeners are the BEST listeners ever! In getting know some of you over the last year, I am both overjoyed and humbled by the stories you share with me. Stories about your barns, your horses, your accomplishments, and your challenges. It’s really starting to feel like a family. Today, Helena welcomes a listener from South Carolina …
 
Last weekend, we had the pleasure of hosting Tik Maynard for a 2-day clinic in the Ocean State. It was a very enlightening two days! Advanced Eventer, Horse Trainer, and author, Tik Maynard, is a quality human being. You sorta need to be if you're going to convince horses to be awesome, and Tik does that without even thinking about it. Do you how h…
 
When you finally get your horses home, there is no other feeling like it. Looking out your window and seeing your favorite creatures enjoying life under your care is one of THE most gratifying experiences for a horse lover. But there’s a flip side. Happy Horsekeeping isn’t as easy as it sometimes seems. While we can design our barns, yards, and tur…
 
There’s a wonderful surge in horse adoptions this year. Many rescue horses, however, are in poor condition, and that leaves adopters struggling to nurture their horses back to good physical and mental health. Our guest in this episode is Dr. Stacey Boswell, an equine veterinarian whose new book, The Ultimate Guide to Horses in Need, covers the most…
 
We're having a conversation about stall doors today. If you're a barn geek like us, every design element in a barn is meaningful, but perhaps none so much as doors, which can be used dozens of times a day. Doors need to be safe, efficient, functionally compatible with your barn's workflow, and of course, handsome. Join Helena and guest, Nick Thornt…
 
What’s so great about boarding? Lots of things, actually! Helena chats with return guest, Terry Golson, of the Cooperative Horse today, about Terry's recent move to a new boarding barn that has turned out to be quite the surprise for her and her American Paint Horse, Tonka. "Terry is one of my favorite people to talk with because she’s not just a h…
 
In today’s episode, we revisit a favorite book of ours; The Compassionate Equestrian. The book describes 25 principles that compassionate equestrians use as a guide to create healthy and productive relationships with their horses. As we circle back to the principles of compassion when we work with our horses, this episode’s conversation digs deeper…
 
In another installment of "Siouxsie and the Solitary Witch", Helena catches listeners up on the first year (and canter!) with her OTTB mare, Siouxsie. --- One of the hardest things to overcome when you work by yourself, and you're a bit of an overachiever, is to stop second-guessing yourself. And lemme tell ya, a Thoroughbred in your back yard will…
 
#BlackLivesMatter means the black community deserves to be heard, embraced, and celebrated, especially in the horse world. We are Equestrians first, whether we’re bay or gray shouldn’t matter, and yet it does. Still. In an effort to move the dial of racism down to zero, Helena talks with two smart, young women who know a thing or two about horses, …
 
One of great things about podcasting is the opportunity to connect with other horse owners and sharing their stories and ideas for happy horsekeeping. We welcome one such listener today, Lori Rodriguez, from Tallahasse, Florida. Lori shares with us a bit about her life as a new backyard horse owner in the Sunshine State, including how she handles t…
 
Today’s episode was going to be about bailing twine. In light of the recent events in America, the discussion will instead be about how having our horses at home can teach us about silver linings. For every frustration, every complaint, every step backwards we take in our horse lives, there’s a blessing hidden just beyond it. Stick around and see i…
 
There’s been a lot of activity at our place these last few months. The quarantine has us sheltering in place here in Rhode Island, but that doesn’t mean there’s been a lack of things to do. On the contrary! From finishing our new hay shed, to major driveway construction, Buck and I have been busy little bees. Stick around to find out what inspired …
 
We had an entirely different episode planned for today. Dr. Karyn Malinowski, was kind enough to agree to a 2-part series on horse keeping at Rutgers University Equine Science Center. Well, we got part 1 down okay, but as we connected last week to begin recording part 2, Dr. Malinowski and Helena found that their casual conversation about their hor…
 
Dr. Karyn Malinowski, an accomplished equine scientist, is the Founding Director of the Rutgers Equine Science Center at the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES). She joins Helena in this episode to talk about current best practices in horsekeeping. Listen in to hear about how the experts at Rutgers manage things like the dietary requ…
 
As we move closer to peak infection rates of coronavirus in the United States, more and more states are reporting their hospitals becoming overburdened with sick patients, healthcare workers are also becoming infected. This makes any visit to the hospital an especially risky one. The governing bodies of most equestrian sports have issued notices to…
 
It may seem odd, at a time like this, to talk about saving time, when we’re all locked in our homes with nothing but time. But it’s actually a great time to talk about time. While our everyday lives have slowed to a crawl, let’s take this opportunity to get creative about the ways in which we can optimize our time at the barn so we can enjoy every …
 
Meghan Hamilton runs a quality dressage training facility in southern New England. Like all horse owners, managing the manure pile is something she calculates into the cost of doing business. Unlike others, however, Meghan's manure pile isn't in her debit column. Nope. Meghan has actually turned her horses' manure into a profit center using a prett…
 
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