Loafing Shed - Essentials of Building A Horse Shed

Published: 21st March 2011
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If you own a farm, no matter the size, having an outbuilding such as a loafing shed is always important. It gives your animals refuge against harsh elements such as blinding snow, driving rain, and scorching sun. This type of shed is also a safe place to put horses that are ready to give birth, so they are isolated from the herd and any potential danger.

Here is a list of essential factors to consider when building a loafing shed using your shed plans.


Know your land - It is important to know your land and identify where exactly is the higher ground, the direction of the wind, and the coolest or hottest part.

Wind direction - Always build a shed on the opposite direction of the prevailing winds. Building your shed this way guarantees that your shed can keep itself warm in cold weather and is able to stand the test of time. Remember: warm weather is crucial to the survival of your livestock and their young.

Keep it clean - You do not want your horses standing in muddy stalls. Keeping the shed clean prevents any unwanted sickness.

High and dry - A loafing shed should be constructed on a leveled and elevated location. Choosing a location on higher grounds ensures that water will not accumulates near the shed. It is a must that you keep this area clean and dry.

Middle is not always better - Always remember to account for the intangibles, like the distance you have to travel to feed or take care of your stock. It would be very inconvenient to have your shed very distant from your house when it's raining or snowing. Also, in case your stock needs extra attention it is always best to be near any access point.


The herd sticks together - Loafing sheds should be big enough to accommodate all of your animals in the pasture because herd animals tend to stick together.

How big are they? - Consider the size and kind of the livestock that you are planning to put in the shed. Account for their size when fully grown as herd animals gather together and you do not want your livestock to be overcrowding the shed.

Numbers matter - When building a shed, the general rule is to give at least 150 square feet per horse as indicated in the study made by Kentucky Equine Research. Thus, remember to account for the number of animals you are planning to put in your loafing shed.


Test them for bad weather - Make sure that the roofing materials you are planning to use are weather tested and capable of enduring all the harsh elements nature has to offer. These materials should be durable and strong enough to withstand heavy snow pack especially if you are living in an area where winter may be severe.

Wood is good - As for building materials, wood has always been the preferred choice for most livestock owners because of its availability, versatility and adaptability. Do not worry about durability because if you plan and build it with the right wood, it can be just as durable as any material out there.

Fasten everything - Securely fasten all construction material and if possible, check them from time to time to prevent the chance of anything becoming loose. Such will ensure the safety of the animals living in your shed.

Sean Thomas is an avid woodworker and has been building sheds for more than 15 years. If you are going to build a loafing shed visit shedplansheadquarters.com were you will find free information on how to build beautiful wood sheds using shed plans that will save you time and money.

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