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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2006
    Posts
    196

    Default Why oh WHY will they not drink out of the new waterers ??

    We put in new automatic waterers about 2 months ago, and some of the horses still won't drink out of them. We have one field of 4 mares that are happy to drink out of them, but then in the other 2 fields of 2 mares and one mare and foal, no one will drink. The water is good ( yes, I tried it ). Are there any tricks that someone has up their sleeve that they would be willing to share? They are only out at night currently, and come in in the morning. It is warm here in TN, and with the approach of fall/cooler days, I would like to be able to leave them out during the day without fear of them not drinking. Of course I will stick water tubs back out there if I have to, but boy, what a waste of money that will be
    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
    And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. Revelation 19:11



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 18, 2005
    Location
    Too Far North
    Posts
    173

    Default

    If there is electric running to the waterers, make absolutely sure that there is not the tiniest bit of current getting to the water. I know someone who had issue with horses not drinking out of all the waterers and that was the problem. The humans couldn't feel it but the horses could.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 8, 2012
    Location
    gulf coast
    Posts
    1,300

    Default

    Like wise, horses can taste things people can't. Can you put the horses that use the waterers in the field where the waterers are rejected, and see if they drink from them? If they reject the auto-waters also, then you know the problem is not the horses.
    A trick I've used once we know auto water is safe- put a horse who will use the auto-waterer in the pasture to teach the others. And put a little molassis in the water.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2007
    Location
    Watertown TN
    Posts
    492

    Default

    We just put in automatic waterers a couple of months ago (also in TN) and did have to go through some training to get them to drink from it. We installed two kinds, the bar bar A in the pastures and a heated bowl style by the barn in the dry lots. I think part of the initial problem (besides whoa whats that scary black thing for the Bar Bar A) was the new pipe and plastic trough. It definately had a plastic type smell and I would bet that could mildly be tasted. My silly boys were actually scared of the thing at first. When we still had our troughs out you could forget them getting anywhere near it. So we waited until we were going to be home all weekend and emptied the troughs. They definately had to get thirsty to show any interest. This killed me, but having thousands of dollars in new waterers I was determined. So every couple of hours I would go out there with some apple slices, halters and leads. I took turns working with each horse. We played bobbing for apples . Well we worked up to that. First I would just lay a slice on the side of the waterer, then when they willing ate it (took a few minutes), I moved it to the trough. When they would eat that I would hold the lever down and float the apple slice. I did this several times the first day. After the first, most inquisitive horse, got the hang of it, the others would wait in line after him to get their drink. Within two days they were all pros. When they got access to the bowl style waterer they were again scared of it but didn't take long to get comfy with it with no effort on my part. If it is the electric kind, try unplugging it to see if it could be a current problem. Heat certainly isn't needed now. If it is a fearful or taste thing, do try to do things to encourage them. But having a secondary water source IMO is going to deter them from trying it. You may need to try some tough love, but only when you are around to keep an eye on them.
    To ride a horse is to borrow freedom.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2006
    Posts
    196

    Default

    Thanks everyone for your replies. I will definately try the carrots and apples trick. There is no electric going to it....they are the yellow and red ritchie ones. There is a big well around it and the pipe to keep it from freezing over in the winter. I really don't want to put the unpregnant mares out with the preggos, just because I don't want to stress anyone at this time. Also, even though I don't smell plastic, I will make sure to scrub and refill just in case. Thanks so much everyone :0)
    And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. Revelation 19:11



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2003
    Posts
    935

    Default

    My b/o put in heated Nelsons a number of years ago and they are great. She left the tub out there for a week or so, and almost all of the horses got the idea to use the waterer. Except mine, of course. He would suck down a bucket of water when I brought him in to ride. I finally made him bob for apple chunks and he never looked back. A lot of them don't like the effects of the water running into the bowl at first, but they get over that too.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 30, 2001
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    2,664

    Default

    Take the balls out and get them used to simply drinking from the waterer first, then once they have that down put the balls back in. We've never had one not learn quickly how to drink from them this way. Interestingly we found that when we switched from regular troughs to the insulated auto waterers that water consumption went up in each pasture. I think they really like the water being the same temperature and fresh all the time.



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