Michigan - Bear Lake
by Ginger Wisseman
(Bear Lake, MI, USA)
Friendly Atmosphere - All ages, abilities, and backgrounds are welcome
Natural Boarding - Allow your horse to live like a horse
What will life be like for your horse at Fjern Fields?
In our barn, we have 12x12 box stalls available for each horse, a shared tack room, feed space, and grooming area. However, the horses primarily use the stalls only for morning and evening individualized feedings, or if a horse is on stall rest at the direction of a veterinarian. Typically the horses prefer to stay out in the open, even in inclement weather.
At night, we bring the horses into a medium-sized paddock, and during the day, they are turned out onto grass pastures. This allows the horse to have complete freedom of movement in fresh air 24/7. The stalls and paddock are cleaned daily.
Typically horses either have access to hay in slow feeders or access to pasture. Our turnout pastures are rotated weekly and allowed to rest. All horses have 24/7 access to clean, fresh water and mineral salt.
We feed quality grass hay and encourage the use of soaked beet pulp (free of molasses) for morning and evening individual feedings. Because we have sandy soil, we provide a monthly sand clear cleanse and a seasonal feed through fly control. We are happy to distribute any additional owner supplied feed or supplement.
During their individual feedings, each horse is visually inspected for injury. Also we do a quick brush down and apply fly spray and fly masks as provided by the owner at this time.
Movement is extremely important for the health of the horse. Movement is encouraged by living in a herd and by the design of our pastures.
Next to the Fields are wooded trails. We also have an outdoor riding area large enough to fit a standard size dressage arena or a full stadium jump course, and are constructing a cross country jumping course. We will be building a set of arena jumps, barrels, cones, obstacles, and a round pen in the future.
Owners that choose to board their horses with us appreciate our commitment to Natural Boarding. We welcome all riding disciplines and experience levels. However, we will not tolerate abusive, cruel, or neglectful practices - period.
We understand that lives are busy and occasionally we can't see our equine friends very often, but we ask that you make the commitment to visit and groom your horse a minimum of once per week.
Before a new horse comes to live with the herd, they must have standard immunizations up to date and a current negative Coggin's. As a new horse is introduced to his herd, there may be a few squabbles as the horses sort things out. We will only interfere if a horse's health or safety is at risk.
For a Natural Board setting, horses ideally should be kept barefoot and without a blanket if possible. If your horse is clipped during the winter to accommodate an active exercise program, he should have a blanket. The weather in Michigan can be very cold, and if your horse's natural coat isn't enough protection from the cold, he should have a blanket. (In these situations we recommend a blanket with a "Hug" style closure so they can still comfortably eat from ground level.)
If your horse currently wears shoes, we would be happy to help you transition him to a barefoot trim. We strongly recommend your horses be barefoot for health reasons, but we also realize that it may not be possible. We understand this and are willing to work with you to ensure the best living situation for your horse and the other horses in our care.
For more information, contact Ginger Wisseman at 231-889-0132.
Your horse will thank you.