I have to say how thankful I have been of this thread!! (although I hate that Rocky is having to be confined) I purchased a new farm and had to move the 2 horses home before stalls were finished and fence was put up (broodmare is getting ready to foal and didn't want to be boarding her when she foaled). They are confined to a small lot next to the house that has been used as yard, we put up their portable run in shed (metal carport) in the lot and then had a huge amount of rain. Welcome to your new home ponies! Considering the ground turned to mush and we eventually want to use this lot as yard again I don't want it completely torn up (I know wishful thinking). I ended up swinging by TSC and picking up 10 bags total of these pine pellets and have been very happy with them!! While the ground is mushy it is keeping everything from turning into a complete mud pit!
Raised in Illinois, went to college in Kentucky, then moved to Alabama... and since Illinois is above the Ohio river I'm coinsidered a d*mn yankee to the 'locals'.
I'm just glad it's starting to dry out again!! (just in time for more rain this weekend) Have you ever used the Equine Pine brand or just the TSC brand of pellets? I haven't looked at the Equine Pine pellets yet but I just found out I can get them at a great price through work and figured I'd give them a try.
OP - I have a 30x24 pen attached to my run-in, and had the same issues you did. I also have the awful clay which becomes a giant muddy mess under there. I am now using pine pellets and am IN LOVE. I initially put mats down but they got slippery so I pulled them back up.
I cannot say enough good things about the pellets. They absorb EVERYTHING and there is zero mud/clay. What I did..... opened 12 bags, raked them out somewhat evenly but not so they reached any of the sides. Sprayed them lightly with the hose but did not drench them. Every day after I put them down, I picked out the poop and "raked" the pellets (which had now broken down and expanded, covering way more area) around and out. Eventually, after about a week, they cover the entire area and I now have about a 3" thick, cushion-y ground! No clay or mud is visible. It is seriously a lifesaver.
They are fairly inexpensive and I haven't even had to put down any more bags. I will probably throw 3-5 more bags down in another week or so (it's been nearly a month), but have not needed to strip it even once. I don't even pick the urine spots - they get soaked up, and when I rake it out, dry and there is never even any odor (if I were using them in a stall I would probably pick the urine spots).
Do you get the wood pellets at your feed store? I haven't seen these, or at least, I haven't noticed them. Are they made for horses, or I guess I want to know if they contain wood products which are safe for horses? They sound better than the shavings I am currently using.
I get them at either the local feed store, Southern States or Tractor Supply. They are pine pellets and sold as horse bedding Very safe. I love them. Only wish I could have them delivered in bulk. They run $5.99 a bag here (I have no preference in brand.. Guardian are the most expensive). Ill never buy shavings again.
"No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle" - Winston Churchill