How to Plan and Design a Stable for Your Horse

View Of Horse In Stable
Zoran Jesic / EyeEm / Getty Images

Is this the year to build your horse a new home? Or, are you planning on renovating that old barn that was once used for cattle? A little planning before the building begins will ensure that your horse has a safe and comfortable home, and a stable you'll find easy to maintain and enjoy.  Here are helpful articles with advice and recommendations on every aspect of stable design, from flooring types to the best lighting options. 

  • 01 of 08

    Basic Stable Design

    Horse stall with horses looking out of their boxes

    Anna Rostovan / Getty Images

    When designing a new stable, or perhaps, renovating an older barn, you have lots of decisions to make. Your new or refurbished stable needs to be roomy, safe, and convenient. Horses should live outdoors as much as possible, but when kept indoors they need a healthy environment too.

  • 02 of 08

    Stable Windows and Lighting

    Close-Up Of Horse Neighing At Stable

    Hugh Johnston / Getty Images

    Let the sunshine in! Windows add a source of natural light and ventilation. There are a lot of different types of windows out there, not all suitable for stables. Learn how to choose windows that will be safe and easy to use in your stable. 

    With daylight streaming in, it may be hard to imagine how important effective and safe lighting is in your stable once the sun goes down. A dark, shadowy stable is unpleasant and could be unsafe for both humans and horses. While the job of wiring your lighting should be left to a professional, you can also learn about different lighting options and considerations for your horse's home. 

  • 03 of 08

    Flooring Options

    Concrete stable floor

    PeopleImages / Getty Images

     If your horse is spending a lot of time indoors, its legs and hooves will be affected by the type of flooring it stands on. What's the best stable flooring for you and your horse? You'll want flooring that is easy to clean and maintain, and your horse will want flooring that is comfortable and safe.

  • 04 of 08

    Stall Doors

    Horse barn stable doors

    Chris Clor / Getty Images

    Ease of use, safety, and eye-appeal are some of the things you'll need to think about when choosing stall doors. There are a surprising number of options depending on your needs, wants, and of course, budget. 

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  • 05 of 08

    Stall Size

    A man leads a horse out of stables.

    Michael Hanson / Getty Images

    One of the first questions many people have about designing stables is how large the stalls should be. There are recommended standards for both standing stalls and loose boxes. Many people like to exceed the standard recommendations and build stalls that are a bit roomier. The choice is yours. Your horse will appreciate a stall that is as large as it can possibly be.

  • 06 of 08


    Ventilation fan in metal barn

    Barbara Chase / Getty Images

    Air quality is one of the most important health considerations in your barn, but because you can't see it, it may be one of the most overlooked. Fresh air in your stable is about more than just dispelling bad smells. Ventilation is so important to your horse's health and to the structure itself.

  • 07 of 08

    Fire Safety

    electrical conduit on ceiling

    Rapid Eye / Getty Images

    Barn fires are tragic, especially when horses or humans are lost. There are a few common causes of barn fires, and most can be avoided with good planning and stable design.

  • 08 of 08

    Designing Run in Shelters

    A simple run-in shelter

    Irwin Mcneely / Getty Images

    Also called loafing sheds, or run-ins, these buildings can provide shelter from the elements, and your horse can choose whether or not they wish to stand in them or not. They are regarded as a more natural alternative than stabling, replacing natural structures such as trees or bluffs that horses would take shelter beneath in the wild. If your budget doesn't allow building a stable, a shelter is a good option, and your horse may even be happier and healthier for it.