Carrying heavy water buckets is probably one of the least pleasant aspects of daily barn life. Stall cleaning can be meditative, sweeping the aisle can be relaxing, but lifting buckets, dumping them, scrubbing them out, and carrying them, full of water and splashing on your legs, is never fun.
Thinking of dumping buckets and going with an automatic waterer in your horse’s stall or paddock? Let’s look at some pros and cons and decide if automatic waterers are right for you and your horses.
The first obvious pro is eliminating dragging around a hose or carrying back-breaking […]
Ready to give shavings the boot? If you’ve been thinking for a while, “maybe using chopped up trees as horse litter isn’t the best idea,” you’re in luck. There are a variety of new, environmentally-friendly bedding choices on the market. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of one such choice, corn cob bedding.
Corn cob, ground up and processed into pellets with steam and water, creates an absorbent, biodegradable bedding for horses. The bedding composts much faster than wood shavings (some manufacturers state their bedding composts in as little as six months […]
Ask an expert what a stabled horse is often lacking, and you’ll probably hear the words “fresh air.” Ventilation in barns is of utmost importance; a horse’s sensitive respiratory system is susceptible to mold, fungus, the fumes from ammonia in their soiled bedding, and dust floating through the air. Even in summertime, with all the windows flung open, a barn can be a place of still, unmoving air, which exacerbates heat problems as well.
All sorts of fans exist to help out with still stable air, from massive ceiling fans to discount-store box fans. Which fan is […]
Spring is here, and everything’s turning green. Take a cue from Mother Nature and add a little green to your farm routine. If you’re running a farm or visiting a boarding stable on the regular, you’re participating in an important conservation effort, whether you knew it or not. Farmland conservation promotes green-space in rapidly developing areas, supporting animal and plant life which would otherwise be threatened by new construction.
So just by participating in the farm lifestyle, you’re making a difference. What’s next? Here are a few ways to add environmentally friendly practices to […]
When we think about designing our dream stable, our minds often go first to the stalls. With good reason — our horses spend a decent percentage of time in their stalls, so we want them to be roomy, safe, and comfortable. Then we think about our tack room, our wash-racks, our amenities — all the extras that make the stable comfortable for us, the humans in the equation. But we might actually spend the most time of all in our stable aisle, getting from place to place, grooming horses, or just plain hanging out and having a chat with friends. It […]
Horse theft seems to be as popular these days as it was back in the Wild West. We may not call them rustlers any more, but we still have to be on high alert to protect our horses from thieves who might appear on foot or with a trailer, ready to open our gates, break into our barns, and take our horses from us. In a recent article, we talked about simple strategies to improve security around the barn. Now, let’s look at a few simple ways to mark your horses as your property.
Microchips: Microchipping horses […]
No hoof, no horse. We all know the saying, and we all know how maddeningly true it is. You walk into the barn, midway through a great training week, and your horse greets you with a naked hoof where there ought to be a shoe. Or worse, a half-naked hoof, with a shoe hanging on by a few loose nails.
Every equestrian needs a home hoofcare kit, something that can help you sort out minor hoof problems until your farrier can visit your farm. Whether it’s pulling off a loose shoe, or smoothing down a rough clinch, you […]
Change up your reins! It’s hard to oversell how important your reins are. Whether you’re riding or driving, your reins are your direction connection to your horse’s oh-so-sensitive mouth. In a lot of ways, they’re also your first line of defense in emergency situations, when you need to stop or turn as soon as possible. When they’re wet, though, traditional leather reins can do anything but offer a quick, soft touch to a horse’s mouth.
So why are you still using those old laced reins that came with your bridle years ago […]