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Hay Racks/Mangers in stalls?

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  • Hay Racks/Mangers in stalls?

    How many of you use hay racks/mangers in your stalls? Do you like/dislike them? Do you notice that the horses waste less hay, since they can't kick it around? Any issues since they aren't eating off the floor?

    I am referring to these types:
    Cherry Blossom Farm - Show & Field Hunters, Side Saddles

  • #2
    I don't currently use them, but have in the past. I liked them. Seemed to be less waste.


    • #3
      We have the steel racks that are wall-mounted, with doors made to feed from the aisleway. REALLY does help with the wastage, they still tend to pull out big wads and then do the sorting on the floor, but usually not the WHOLE bunch of hay at once. Since they are still feeding from a natural position (ie, head down) I see no health issues - and not having the hay confined in a bunk or tub lets them keep from being immersed in whatever dust may be there. Our stalls are all rubber matted, it's easy to sweep the feeding corner and keep dirt to a minimum. Ours are mounted in the opposite corner from the automatic waterers - they still get some hay in the waterers, but it's not a big deal.

      Downsides - we have some BIG horses, and they like to scratch their butts and shoulders on the just-right not-sharp corners of the racks - a few have been mangled, and a couple broken. Hubby welded the broken ones easily, and they can be bent back to some semblance of normal shape with a bit of effort. Also, you need to attach them ruggedly, with either bolts or heavy lag screws, for those same reasons.
      A couple of the kids who are always STARRRRRVING!!! and impatient learned to shove the entire load of hay UP and out of the rack. I learned to tie a net of hay twine up from the rack to the top of the stall wall, to disallow this behavior
      Homesick Angels Farm
      breeders of champion Irish Draught Sporthorses
      standing Manu Forti's Touch Down RID


      • #4
        I feed off the ground in the stall. I don't like hay racks. I would rather waste some hay and not have something that could cause an injury. I have used a hay bag for one horse, but it wasn't long before the tabs on the bag ripped.


        • #5
          I have them in two of our five horses stalls. One for a messy/hay waster and the other for a horse that due to an injury is often in. I don't think they really slow down consumption, but they do help cut down the mess for horses that like to mix their hay into their bedding rather than eating it. They are mounted with the bottom about four feet over the floor. I'm not sure what the injury risk would be -- unless you have youngsters that do a lot of rearing up in their stalls. I occasionally use hay nets for the other guys if everyone is in for bad weather -- I think they're riskier. I wouldn't recommend using the metal racks if your hay is dusty or has lots of small particles in it though. I find I only use them in the winter when the horses get more hay.
          "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
          <>< I.I.


          • #6
            I feed my hay in tubs on the ground. I have a paint that is uber-sensitive of dust/bugs/etc. Starts her ears watering, and then they get pussy and gross. Feeding in the tubs seems to contain some of the mess.


            • #7
              I have never been a fan. To me, they are an accident waiting to happen.
              FMO:OMG I almost put my eye out hunting clique.


              • #8
                I'm not a fan either, although our new barn came equipped with them in almost every stall. If anyone in the Frenchtown, NJ, area wants about 8 of the black metal kind, let me know!
                Kendra -- Runningwater Warmbloods
                Home of EM Raleska (Rascalino/ Warkant) and Donatella M (Furstenball/ Jazz Time)
                'Like' us on Facebook


                • #9
                  I have them in most of my stalls. I use them 75% of the time. I do not leave halters on in stalls, I have never had an accident though I can see the concern.
                  Come to the dark side, we have cookies


                  • #10
                    I know of a few accidents that happened from horses rolling and getting a leg stuck in them.


                    • #11
                      Tried 'em. Horses trashed 'em.
                      Looking for horse activity in the Twin Tiers? Follow my blog at http://thetwintiershorse.blogspot.com/


                      • #12
                        We've been using the corner ground feeders I built myself for 30+ years. I make them using 4.5 feet long rough oak boards and stacked 28 inches high. I have never had a problem and when bedding on sawdust it keeps the hay contained better. The racks are nailed to the two walls with just two nails and if a horse did get a leg hung inside, he could easily pull the rack off the wall.
                        Breeders of Painted Thoroughbreds and Uniquely Painted Irish Sport Horses in Northeast Oklahoma


                        • #13
                          Have one, have not installed it.

                          I just place hay on ground. But use old water troughs rubber tubs in the pasture to feed hay so it doesn't get scattered (can't find round bales right now), and am thinking might use this idea in the stalls using the smaller type water troughs. Hmmm food for thought.


                          • #14
                            I bought mine from SmartPak but not the corner style, the style that is flat against the wall. Really reduces hay waste and if I want to feed extra I can put 3 flakes in the feeder and a couple underneath.

                            The key, IMO, is to have them high enough to be out of the way of legs if a horse rolls but not so high the horse is on tippy toes with his neck outstretched trying to nibble.


                            • #15
                              Long ago (5+ years) my friend and I fed another boarder's horse M-F and in return he made us wooden hay feeders. We were so excited!

                              And a few years later we were equally excited to get rid of them.

                              Of course I doubt anyone is considering a WOODEN feeder and some of the problems (chewing, for example) were entirely because the feeders were wooden.

                              But it also was difficult for us to lift the hay up and over, and any mess that it saved in the stall was counteracted by the mess we made in the aisle (stalls are pipe panel so we were standing outside the stall hoisting the hay up and in). And our horses were able to make percussion instruments out of them... "It's time for dinner... BANG! hurry up with the hay... BANG!" Once I had read a number of articles indicating that ground feeding was more natural and healthier, I was happy to say buh-bye.
                              Shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you? You are at your very best when things are worst.


                              • #16
                                I use muck buckets as hay mangers - hung in a corner at the same height as their feeders. They hold several flakes of hay - my old wall feeders did not hold enough. They're cheap and even when stupid filly climbs into one, she does not get hurt. I have had the metal racks mounted to the walls, and they still lets lots of stuff fall on the floor. Much less waste with this method. And I think I've been using them for 6 or 7 years and no one has ruined one of them yet.

                                I will never have the metal hay racks attached to the wall again - I had a horse get a badly scratched cornea from having hay fall in his face while eating out of a wall-mounted hay rack.
                                Last edited by cyndi; Dec. 29, 2010, 01:13 PM.
                                Donerail Farm


                                • #17
                                  We have the hay mangers with bars above and a pan below, but our horses didn't like them and I think their eyes can get irritated from the hay and dust above their faces.

                                  They also make great scratching posts.

                                  We went back to feeding off the ground on rubber mats and really don't have any more waste than we did with mangers.

                                  We still have them, in storage, for the rare horse that may have problems eating from the ground and needs to have it's feed elevated, as may happen from a sore neck from a wreck or a reaction to a shot.

                                  Since we feed alfalfa hay, we are not talking large amounts of hay and they clean it very well quickly.

                                  The idea of the big manure buckets is interesting, but feeding all as a group, the wander from flake to flake easier without anything in the way.


                                  • #18
                                    I use a ground manger for Mr. I Can't Eat Hay I Have Stepped On. It's a really high tech device: a 30"x60" framed out 3/4" plywood board snapped to a corner of the stall w/screw eyes (stained and spar urathaned because that is how I roll). Hay goes behind it. Horse eats hay out of manger and unless he's in a speshul mood, doesn't drag it out of the bin. That's a lot less hay and wasted shaving for me, thank you very much. It cost me about $25 to make and it's been in maybe 7 stalls over the years?

                                    Mr. Easy Keeper Chowhound has a corner box slow feeder. That IS a high tech device and it's a damn good thing I can build reasonably heavy duty stuff, because that was a project in a half. Not one I'm likely to repeat anytime soon.

                                    here's a slideshow of the higher level assembly and if you hang around you can see exciting pictures of monopods and bottles of well named wine as well (bonus round)

                                    Your crazy is showing. You might want to tuck that back in.


                                    • #19
                                      DMK, how was the Bitch wine?
                                      Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.


                                      • #20
                                        I bought and installed ProPanel feeders this fall and I love them. They fit into the corner, right under the feed door in the stall wall. They're probably 3 feet high from the floor of the stall, and the hay just goes in the middle compartment. The horses are essentially eating off the ground, but the hay's contained. I have virtually no waste since they just don't pull it up and out anymore. There are two smaller compartments and I put their grain in one of them. They weren't cheap, but I am so glad I have them. I had a lot of wasted hay before when I was just feeding them on the floor.

                                        I don't know how to post a link, but it's propanel.com