How can I help prevent my tack from being stolen?
Well, this list of tack theft prevention techniques has some good ideas, and one bad one, too. For good measure, you know. You can protect the farm, protect the tack room, protect the actual tack, and/or make your tack so dang unappealing that no one would want to steal it. As I said, one bad idea, too.
Protect the farm:
Gates - this is also a great way to keep the houdini escape artists inside the farm.
Automatic motion detection lights around the property will highlight critters and criminals.
Alarm systems - good for houses, good for tack rooms. Maybe not so good for easily startled horses.
Cameras - Some barns have these anyway to check on horses through the night.
Guard dog - and by “guard” it could just be your ankle biting little dog with the big bark!
You will have to decide if you are more likely to keep a key or remember a combo.
Protect the tack room:
Make the tack room blend - don’t have a sign on the door that says EXPENSIVE STUFF IN HERE. You could put a bathroom sign on the tack room to confuse any would be cat burglars. And visitors.
Automatic motion lights around the barn - or keep the barn entrances permanently lit so there’s not the constant on/off every time a bug or critter walks by. Other areas of the property could have the automatic kind.
Locks on the door of the tack room.
Locks on your trunk. Even the home improvement store trunk varieties have the ability to be locked.
*Word of Caution* If you lock up your horse’s vet kit, be sure and tell the farm owner your combo so any emergencies can be attended to.
Protect the tack:
Locking saddle racks (who knew these existed?). Your saddle hangs out on a rack, and a roller coaster type lap bar rests on the seat and locks into place.
Personalized tack won’t really deter the most determined thief, but at least they will have to work a little bit more.
Tags on your saddle - there are services that you can register your saddle with for tracking, a little plate fits on the flap and it’s darn hard to remove.
GPS tags - borrow one from the dogs. These little trackers usually need to be charged, so you may only want to use them at shows or clinics.
Mark your saddle with something permanent that can be used to ID your saddle if it’s stolen. Your name, some numbers, some other phrase to let folks know it’s yours.
Keep your trailer locked!
At the show:
Use your locked trailer tack room to store your stuff if you don’t have a grooming stall. Keep it locked!
Use a chain with lock around the grooming stall if you store some stuff in there.
Don’t leave anything unattended - including horse food!
Stud chains make great impromptu ways to lock a stall at a show, wrap the chain through the bars, and secure with a lock.
Just in case:
Check if your renter’s or home owner’s insurance policy covers your tack when it’s not stored at home.
Create a record of serial numbers of your saddle(s) and other horse related stuff.
Keep detailed photos of your tack for identification purposes.
How do you secure your tack?