Do you ever wonder what your horse is up to when you’re not around? Do you want to know who is at the barn when you’re not there?
Security cameras can give you peace of mind. Advancements in technology have made camera options affordable and easy to install. Pet monitors and wireless home security cameras can also work well in the barn.
“Systems specifically designed for pet monitoring, horses in this case, can send photos to your smartphone or other personal device,” said Heather E. Lewis, AIA, NCARB. She is a principal partner at Animal Arts, a Colorado-based architecture firm. “As a barn manager, imagine having an app on your phone that allows you to ‘check in’ at the barn at any time. How handy.”
Cameras are useful for watching a mare getting ready to foal, monitoring a sick horse or simply watching a horse’s daily activities. The devices offer an added sense of security when installed at entrances, and they provide a method for keeping an eye on costly tack.
Safety.com reviewed 20 petcam options. Each review offers a detailed list of features, links to retailers and pricing. The products highlighted are aimed at dog owners, but basic dome cameras could be used in barns for as little as $40 a unit.
Lewis cautions that privacy laws apply when filming people. For example, it is illegal to video people in a place where they expect privacy, such as bathrooms and changing rooms. This blog from wirecutter.com (a New York Times property) provides extensive details.
“You’ll need to put up a sign that informs people they are being filmed,” Lewis said.
Installing a camera in the barn could give you greater peace of mind while you’re away. Being able to check in and see how your horses are doing can make you less stressful when you are not on-hand to supervise the animals and people. The remote viewing also gives you a better idea of what your horses and human employees and clients are up to during the day, which in turn can help you run a more efficient and safer barn.