Time for Spring Cleaning
Spring is right around the corner and while Spring comes with some negatives, like mud everywhere, it also means more time in the barn and in the saddle. Right now is the perfect time to give your barn a good deep clean. Tackling the built-up dirt and cobwebs and getting your supplies organized will save you time when you’d rather be in the saddle in a few weeks (or months).
The tack room is always a major target area for Spring cleaning, but there are some other areas you should spend your time on, too.
Remove hay: remove loose hay from hayloft, aisleways, stairs and anywhere else it has built up. This can get very dusty and even moldy, which we definitely don’t want in the barn. While you are sweeping you can look for wet spots (possible roof leak?) or any winter damage to your barn that might need to be repaired.
Buckets & water troughs: scrub all of your buckets and water troughs. Scrubbing water buckets in the winter can be tough during freezing temperatures. With the warmer weather, it is a perfect opportunity to get those squeaky clean. Clean your automatic waterers as well and check for any needed repairs.
Stalls: remove all of the bedding, disinfect the mats, and re-level the footing, as needed. You can also remove any cobwebs or dust. Cobwebs are a fire hazard and dust causes all types of respiratory issues for horses and riders. If you use blanket bars during the winter, you can remove them for Spring and Summer.
Pastures: remove any branches or fallen trees. Check your fencing for any needed repairs or replacements. Fence posts tend to shift when the ground freezes and thaws. If your posts are not in concrete, you may need to firm them up as the ground thaws. Make sure you wear waterproof barn boots as you traipse through the pastures. There is nothing worse than wet cold feet while you are trying to get projects done.
Tack room organization is the best part of Spring cleaning. There are few things as satisfying as an organized, clean tack room. Do a thorough cleaning of brushes, grooming equipment, and blankets. Winter blankets can take quite a beating all winter long, so be sure to check for any needed repairs. Many blanket repair providers will clean your blankets, too!
Next, deep clean and condition your tack. Take all of your bridles apart and clean both the leather and the metal. You can use bridle bags to keep your bridles clean and organized, even in your tack room.
Finally, soak and scrub your halters and lead ropes. They accumulate a lot of dirt during the winter months and a good soak will help to remove the grime. Hang them out in the sun to dry.
As you are going through your barn and tack room, make sure to remove any old containers, feed bags, or broken items.