Recommended Size For A Run-In Shed
Many people are unsure about what size run-in shed to buy. While there are some
general guidelines regarding the optimal size, much of determining what size shelter is best
depends on your horse(s).
Some online sources recommend providing a minimum space of 12'x12' for each horse. Another
source recommends 10'x10'. Yet another suggests space should be calculated
as 60-80 square feet per 1000 pounds of horse.
At Horizon Structures, we generally tell people that a 12'x18' run-in shed is usually adequate
for 3 average sized horses (about 15 hands) that will share their space
As any horse owner knows, horses - being herd animals - have a definite
social "pecking order" with some members of the herd being more
dominant then others. It would not be uncommon to see a pasture with one
horse comfortably enjoying the shelter of the shed and its herd mates
all shivering in the rain outside!
1. Always buy "wider" as opposed to "deeper." This
will make it more difficult for a more dominant horse to block the entrance
and easier for the other horses to get inside.
2. It is better to buy several smaller sheds and spread them throughout
your pasture than one larger, longer shed. If you do have a dominant horse,
this will prevent it from "guarding" the single building and keeping the other
3. Avoid feeding your horses inside the shed. Some horses can get very territorial
when it comes to their food. It is best if your horses do not learn to associate the
shed with feeding time.
Finally, you may find, after going to the trouble and expense of setting up a run-in
shed for your horses, that they don't appear to be using it! Horses are
generally very well adapted to withstand cold temperatures and don't seem
to mind rain or snow. However, it is very important that your horse has
shelter from driving winds and hail as well has a cool, shaded place to
go on a hot summer day.
The interior should be at least 10' high and include 4' high kickboard.
Customers often ask if they need a taller structure for their taller (17h)
horses and are concerned about the clearance on the open side. Rest assured,
your horses will lower their heads to enter. The 7'+ is perfectly fine.
Also, keep in mind, if you are purchasing a pre-built run-in shed, there
are transportation height restrictions . Sheds higher than 10' would have
to be built on-site.
Finally, when setting up your run-in shed, always face the open side away
from prevailing winds and place the structure on a level, slightly elevated
spot or try to build up the floor to keep it is dry as possible inside.
As always, please feel free to call us at 1-888-44-SHEDS if you have any
questions or would like help choosing the best run-in shed for your unique
NOTE: All barn, run-in and stall dimensions
referred to on this site are OUTSIDE dimensions
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