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Important Signs To Have Around The Farm

Inherently, working with horses has its risks. While the majority of the time we simply get to feel all the emotions about actually teaching, working with, or keeping them, it’s important we cover ourselves for the possibility of any one of those prospective risks by having some key signs and information around the farm. 


State Liability Sign

Many states, including my home state of Oregon, require commercial barns to post an equine liability sign in a highly visible area at the facility. The sign language is often specific to the state but generally notifies riders and visitors that horseback riding and activities with horses hold inherent risks, protecting your barn or farm from liability.


Oregon equine activities liability sign

Even if your state doesn’t require it, many insurance companies do. It’s worth the extra bit of effort to ensure you sail through getting insurance coverage without any snags. 


I bought the sign featured above for Little Bird Farm from My Safety Sign and posted it next to the entrance to my arena on the gate latch side, so it’s easily visible to anyone using the arena or watching someone use it.


Farm/Barn/Stable Rules

While covering yourself from a liability standpoint is important, (imho) equally as important is a sign with your top barn rules. Most insurance companies will require this one, too, and it’s good to have a highly visible reminder you can point to as a warning or if something goes wrong when someone isn’t following one of the rules at your barn.


barn rules sign

A few key rules to include for all farms/barns/stables for the safety of you, your horses, and your riders/guests:

  • No alcohol, smoking or roughhousing is allowed

  • No pets allowed (check your insurance; some specify that dogs not belonging on the farm may visit during commercial hours)

  • Close all gates and stall doors

  • Proper shoes are required

  • Riders under 18 must wear a ASTM/SEI certified helmet

  • All riders (or guardians) must sign a release form before riding


Emergency Information Card

Farm emergency information card

This one isn’t liability related but it’s just as important. We keep an emergency information card in our tack space next to the riding helmets (which is also where the first aid kit is). It includes key information that can be helpful to emergency services in, well, an emergency. 


Ours covers: 

  • Farm Owners & Address

  • The county our farm is in (especially if you’re on the edge of a county as calling 911 could direct you into either county depending on which cell phone tower is pinged)

  • Emergency Number: 911

  • County Non-Emergency Numbers


Other Important Information

If you are not the sole caretaker at your facility, there are other key pieces of information that should be easily visible to employees and visitors:

  • Horses' names, feed schedule and restrictions, owner contact info, and vet and/or farrier contact info

  • Emergency vet number(s)

  • Farrier number(s)

  • Your cell phone number

  • The barn owner's or manager's cell phone number if that's not you


Way to cover your risk. You’re off to a great start. 


If you’re getting ready to apply for insurance coverage and you’re still in need of a Release of Liability, find a sample here


Happy Riding!


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If you have questions, want help with your business operations, or need help finding resources don’t hesitate to reach out. Little Bird Advising offers business coaching for equine business owners like you!


Blog posts from Little Bird Advising are not meant to replace individual professional legal advice.

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