Criminals often view a stable yard and equestrian properties as an easy target, low levels of security protecting thousands of pounds worth of assets.
Install a burglar alarm. Aside from the traditional loud ring, there are now alarms available which can let you know by phone call, text message or email that the alarm has been activated.
Make sure that there are at least two people, including yourself, who know the pin code or hold a key to your alarm on your stable yard. You will draw attention to the fact the yard is unattended if the alarm is ringing for a long period.
Remember that burglars love door locks they can open quietly and easily, rather than breaking a door down and risking being heard. A professional locksmith or lock company will advise you on the best sort of lock to use, taking into consideration the type of door you wish to secure and what is inside. They will also install locks for you.
If you are planning to fit your own lock, make sure you get the most effective for your budget. If you have a weak, old or unsuitable door, think about replacing it. All the locks in the world will not help if your door has been rotting away for the past 20 years.
We offer a high security galvanised steel tack room door complete with a high security, multi point lock incorporating anti-pick technology to prevent opportunist theft.
Consider concealing your tack room so its not in full view, incorporate it in to a barn with security doors on both.
Choose your padlock carefully. If you have an inexpensive padlock it is likely that a burglar will either be able to force it open or cut through the shackle. Close-shackled padlocks make it more difficult to get a good enough grip with a bolt cutter to break the lock. There are padlocks available that are made from reinforced materials that resist cutting or sawing.
If you go for a padlock with a combination code, make sure that someone jiggling the lock around cannot easily detect the code. Don’t use obvious codes that a thief could guess e.g. birth date, age.
Use chains to secure movable objects such as tack, trailers and stable yard equipment. Reinforced ones are available at a higher price and will more than likely be a more effective way of keeping everything safe.
Equestrian vehicles can easily be stolen from the yard and quickly moved a considerable distance. Their appearance and identity can be altered significantly by criminals in a very short period, enabling them to be sold quickly to an unsuspecting buyer.
Trailers should be secured using both hitch and wheel locks and preferably stored in a locked barn, acting as a further obstruction to would-be thieves. The description and identifying features should be recorded, to assist with identification. Many modern trailers are supplied with electronic tagging, as an additional and covert means of identification. Horse boxes and trailers, being relatively easy to break into, should not be used as storage for other equestrian equipment. As such, they would serve only to assist a thief in making off with an even greater haul.
Closed circuit television can help police identify any intruders on your property and, if the suspect is caught, may be used as evidence at a trial. Burglars know this; so put up warning signs alerting people to the fact you have CCTV installed and somebody is watching.
You can also now get CCTV cameras which run off a sim card and leisure battery, allowing you to view your stable yard at any time on your mobile phone, without the need for an electricity point or WIFI on your yard, we love the range available from http://www.horsemonitor.co.uk.
Labelling items with security pens can deter a would-be thief. You can label tack, rugs, carriages, yard tools, feeds bins and so on with indelible or ultra-violet marker pens. Larger items such as trailers and horseboxes will benefit from being labelled on their roofs, especially if a police helicopter spots the vehicle. Your home postcode is the most common label to use.
As an extra deterrent, put up a warning sign to say that your property is security labelled.
Micro chipping is also a popular way of identifying the owner of a horse. Again, make sure you are registered as the owner of any micro-chipped horse you buy or own.
With all the methods that involve “marking” your horse, it is wise to alert people that these horses are marked and can be identified as yours.
Don’t discount how much your dog can deter a potential burglar. A burglar doesn’t know whether the dog is friendly, if it will bark, or even if there are more dogs on the yard. For those without a dog, doorbells that trigger a “bark” recording may convince some that you do own one.
Try to make sure that there is always a person on site, making this obvious to anyone passing by. The thought of someone being able to pick up the phone and call the police could make thieves think twice about breaking in. If you can’t have someone on site all the time, tell a trusted neighbour or friend to keep a lookout for anything suspicious.
Check all the access routes to your yard, boxes and trailers. Is there an easy way for someone to slip in and out undetected? If so, make it more difficult. Is there a dark area of the yard for someone to hide in? If the answer is yes, fit a security light.
Thieves will normally watch the yard before striking. Make sure you always vary your timetable to make the yard look busy.
Make sure you are adequately covered by insurance. Check that you have met all the security requirements on your policy and that your premium payments or policy have not lapsed.
Keep a comprehensive, up-to-date inventory of all your tack, including colour and make and any security markings, with photographs.
We offer a bespoke design service, and can construct your stable yard for maximum security including, concealed tack rooms, security doors and grilles.