Is it worth the extra $$ compared to a standard hay bag?
My mare is on stall rest and goes through a lot of hay. I've been using a hay bag, which she likes and actually prefers to hay on the ground, but it is quickly falling apart and I need to replace it. I was looking at the deluxe bag since she empties her current hay bag pretty quickly and I like that the deluxe bag holds more and looks durable.
Also she constantly dunks her hay so the hay bag accumulates wet hay in the bottom and the deluxe bag has a mesh bottom.
A barn mate of mine has one like that. Absolutely useless for slowing the horse down--if anything it speeds them up because they don't have to keep lifting their head up/down to get another bite. Arguably has some effect in keeping the horse from strewing hay all over the stall since they tend to stick their entire face in the net, which means they're not likely to drop much hay on the ground. The construction quality is good.
I have one and like it. I bought it for my gelding who likes to bed himself in his hay while we're at shows. The design stops a lot of hay from falling out of the bag, even when they shake it around to get out another bite.
You can fit a lot of hay in, and it's really easy to get it in. I find I can squeeze in about 5 flakes of hay from a regular two string bale.
The only fault I have found is that if you don't tie it up really securely they can flip it around and then the mesh side faces the wall and they can't get any more food out. So secure tying is in order!
I use the top load hay bags and they are super user friendly when filling one up. The Classic Equine brand is made from sturdy fabric and none of the hardware has broken on mine after all these years. The only weak link is the top rods- they did eventually poke through the end of the sleeve. My repair was the duct tape the ends and that's been working fine for quiet a long time.
I third the recommendation for some sort of small mesh hay bag for a horse on stall rest. If you are handy, you could add the small mesh part yourself (made from hockey puck netting.)
I don't see the chicksaddlery working to slow a horse down since it looks like the top is wide open -wouldn't take a clever horse to long to figure that out!
This other one would work better: http://www.chicksaddlery.com/Merchan...gory_Code=0003
A friend told me I was delusional. I almost fell off my unicorn.
Hopefully my mare will be off of stall rest soon, if this terrible weather ever ends, so I guess I'm actually looking for more of an all-around hay bag, for example something to use at shows. She's quite messy with her hay, so something that minimizes spillage is important.
The BO is actually encouraging me to get a metal hay rack for the stall, so I will probably bit the bullet and also invest in one of those sometime before the summer fly season when she'll be spending the day in her stall.
To be honest I'm not a fan of traditional hay racks given the position they put the horse in while eating.
Because they're mounted high up, all the junk (dust/leaves) goes right into their noses, and their heads are too high for optimum jaw/muscle alignment while chewing. (And if you mount them too low, the horses just pull the hay out of the racks which defeat their purpose.)
For those of you looking for hay rack / hay bag alternatives, check out www.perfecthayrack.com . It's designed to promote proper "head down" foraging, and is safe...the front bars are flexible. I have eleven of them in my barn and it slows down fast eaters, GREATLY reduces wasted hay, and makes stall cleaning much easier! Also allows horses to EAT all their hay, rather than scatter it around the stall and poop and pee on it!
Whoever said money can't buy happiness never owned a horse.
Tried similar ones, the horses pulled the hay out instantly and threw it all over the floor. Nibblenets are the way to go for slowing down a horse, or small-mesh hay nets work fine, too. Nibblenets are probably a little safe, since it would be hard for them to get tangled around a leg or caught in a shoe. I have a couple and just hang them at chest level outside.
I had three of the Deluxe hay bags. They didn't last long enough to make it worth it. My horse would destroy one in about two to three months. My horse needs hay in front of him all the time because of gastric ulcers. If we put the amount of hay he needs on the ground, he will eat for a while and step on a lot of it. Then he won't eat it, and a lot is wasted. Finally, the BO put up a metal hay rack. Yes, I had the same concerns about the height and dust, but honestly it hasn't been a problem. My horse does not put his entire nose into the hay in the rack. He just grabs some from the edge, pulls it out, and puts his head in a normal position for chewing/swallowing. The chaff ends up at the bottom of the metal rack, and I clean it out about 2x/week. With the hay bag, he had to actually put his nose into the bag to get the hay. IMO, the rack is better than the bag from a "dust in the nose" standpoint. I agree that eating at ground level would be better, but this won't work for my horse at the present time.
I decided to get another regular hay bag: http://www.smartpakequine.com/Produc...ctclassid=6162
but then just started putting her hay on the ground in her stall after the person who does morning barn chores told me that my horse was coughing a lot one morning. I figured that she would be exposed to less dust with the hay on the ground versus in the hay bag, and I have been happy to find that she is actually quite good about eating all of her hay and not wasting it. And since she's now turned out during the day, her going through too much hay is not an issue.