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How to build a single horse barn

Updated November 21, 2016

Horses are wonderful creatures and can be a joy to own. They are also an expensive animal to care for. One of the basics needed for any horse is suitable shelter from the elements. In winter, horses need protection from wind, snow and rain. Horses need shade and a place to filter cooling breezes in the summer. A one horse barn is the perfect solution if you plan on keeping only one horse. It's relatively easy to construct.

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  1. Begin with measuring for your barn. Stalls should measure a minimum of 12 by 12 feet. They should ideally measure the more suitable size of 16 by 16 feet. Make your measurements of the overall size of the barn based on these calculations. Height should be around 12 feet or higher for proper ventilation.

  2. Mark the size of the barn and then create your pad. Use the sand to raise your pad at least 18 inches above ground level. Make sure the area is in a well-drained part of the pasture. Do not put your barn in a low lying or swampy area.

  3. Measure carefully. Sink posts at the corners. Posts need to be sunk at least 2 feet into the ground and cemented securely. The framework of the barn should be completed.

  4. Board the side of the stall to the height of at least 3 feet. The purpose is to keep the horse from kicking through the siding. Once the framework has been completed, the siding can be applied. Be sure to overlap the siding to increase waterproofing.

  5. Build the roof at an angle to encourage rainwater to drain away from the opening of the stall. It should be made of metal or aluminium siding. A gate should be hung at the front of the barn to allow the enclosure of the horse during inclement weather.

  6. Tip

    Always take the time to do the work properly the first time with quality materials. Cheap construction will just mean lots of maintenance and early rebuilding.


    Take great care to properly elevate and drain your shelter. Otherwise, it will end up a muddy mess.

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