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Shavings ??? Yes or No

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  • Shavings ??? Yes or No

    I am trying to decide if I should continue to use shavings on the floor of my horse trailer.

    I do like the fresh smell they provide and absorbing the urine, but I am not so sure they offer any better footing. I have rubber mats down, and it sure would make cleaning the trailer up after use, if I didn't have shavings..

    So, I would like to know what you all prefer and why and perhaps it will help me decide what would be best for me and my horses...

    Thanks..

  • #2
    I use them. Rubber mats + quick stops + pee = slipping horses.
    Providence Farm
    http://providencefarmpintos.blogspot.com/

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    • #3
      I only use them for very long trips, 6 hours or more, but I don't really like too. Rarely do mine ever pee on the road during short trips. The biggest/most likely stress/injury to happen to horse because they are hauling concerns the respiratory system not physical bumps and bruises. Breathing dust and being unable to cough since they can't get their head down because of a chest bar is a big culprit. Shavings on the floor with air circulation of a trailer just doesn't make me very happy. Not very happy about hay either the same reason.

      So, no hay or shavings for shorter hauls. Hay but only in a hay bag if the horse has shown he will eat while traveling (some won't so they don't get any) and shavings on the floor for long hauls. But I will try to stop somewhere along the way and pull down the chest bar for few few minutes--mines on a pin just like the butt bar--to give them room to get their heads down and cough.

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      • #4
        I find the horse I am currently hauling slips badly without shavings...so its a yes for me
        "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
        carolprudm

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        • #5
          We just had a thread about this:
          http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...ailer+shavings

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          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by Bayou Roux View Post
            Thank you for the link to the other thread.. I should have done a search before posting to be sure I wasn't duplicating...I read everything there, and I believe I will continue with using shavings..

            Thanks !

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            • #7
              I also vote yes.
              Veterinarians for Equine Welfare

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              • #8
                Originally posted by subk View Post
                I only use them for very long trips, 6 hours or more, but I don't really like too. Rarely do mine ever pee on the road during short trips. The biggest/most likely stress/injury to happen to horse because they are hauling concerns the respiratory system not physical bumps and bruises. Breathing dust and being unable to cough since they can't get their head down because of a chest bar is a big culprit. Shavings on the floor with air circulation of a trailer just doesn't make me very happy. Not very happy about hay either the same reason.

                So, no hay or shavings for shorter hauls. Hay but only in a hay bag if the horse has shown he will eat while traveling (some won't so they don't get any) and shavings on the floor for long hauls. But I will try to stop somewhere along the way and pull down the chest bar for few few minutes--mines on a pin just like the butt bar--to give them room to get their heads down and cough.
                I roll as you do, except for the bolded part. Can you really convince them to lower there heads and cough during these stops? Mine won't pee or drink (90%) of the time. They just look at me and wonder why I'm wasting their time.

                Otherwise, I vote no because they usually don't pee and shavingsless makes the trailer easier to clean and less waste. I am pretty religious about cleaning out my trailer carefully after each trip, so perhaps I'm asking my horses to put up with this bit of anality.
                The armchair saddler
                Politically Pro-Cat

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by camohn View Post
                  I use them. Rubber mats + quick stops + pee = slipping horses.
                  ^
                  THIS

                  subk: manure can be just as slippery

                  Sweeping manure + shavings out of a trailer is no harder than manure alone.
                  *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                  Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                  Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                  Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I said this on the other thread and I'll say it here.. I use shavings.. 3 horse angle haul, with drop down windows/bars by their heads and slide windows by their butts.. plus roof vents. Never had a problem.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by mvp View Post
                      I roll as you do, except for the bolded part. Can you really convince them to lower there heads and cough during these stops? Mine won't pee or drink (90%) of the time. They just look at me and wonder why I'm wasting their time.
                      I usually pull the bar down at a rest stop, shut the escape door and leave the horse alone for a few minutes, most will snort or cough once I'm out of the way.

                      Years ago when the Pony Finals came to town my vet was the attending vet. He said pony after pony came off the vans with some sort of respiratory distress. Most bounced back pretty quickly although it's a bad atmosphere to lower their immunity systems. I don't think any came off with physical issues.

                      So yeah, pee is slippery, manure is slippery, but in my horse management I try to prevent the *mostly likely* problem first. Shavings blowing in a trailer are dusty, dust is a big culprit of respiratory distress. Everybody has to do what it is that let's the sleep at night.

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                      • #12
                        I would think slipping would be a bigger problem than respiratory issues. I've hauled my own horses for the last 20 years, always with shavings down, as far as 10 hours away and never had a problem with dust causing respiratory issues. I did haul once last year with no shavings and had a horse slip coming off the trailer. Luckily he was not hurt, although it did scare him (and me as well)! Will never haul again without shavings. It is possible to buy dust free shavings by America's Choice Bedding.
                        "You can't fix stupid"- Ron White

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                        • #13
                          I do not use them unless it is four hours +. My horse won't pee in the trailer and my textured mats do not cause slipping.
                          Life doesn't have perfect footing.

                          Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
                          We Are Flying Solo

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                          • #14
                            Always and we actually mist them down.
                            www.signaturesporthorses.com

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                            • #15
                              Sand

                              We don't use shavings in the trailer at all, no matter how long the drive. Ours have been trained to load and unload well, so if on a long haul we take them out of the trailer to stretch, pee, etc.

                              Wet shavings are very slippery.

                              We sprinkle sand on our rubber mats, and it works great. Even if they pee, even at the back where they poo. The grit of the sand provides much better traction than shavings ever did.

                              I'll never go back to using shavings in the trailer.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by monami View Post
                                Always and we actually mist them down.
                                Me, too. I have a ramp and if it's dewey or rainy, I put a cocoa mat down when loading/unloading to prevent slipping on the ramp.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Char View Post
                                  We sprinkle sand on our rubber mats, and it works great. Even if they pee, even at the back where they poo. The grit of the sand provides much better traction than shavings ever did.

                                  I'll never go back to using shavings in the trailer.
                                  ??? honestly not snarking here - but how do you get the sand out of your trailer?
                                  In warm weather I hose my trailer out after sweeping so that wouldn't be a problem.
                                  But in cold weather I don't believe sweeping alone would get all that sand out. Especially if you have a ramp, that stuff could play havoc with the hinges.
                                  *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
                                  Steppin' Out 1988-2004
                                  Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
                                  Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
                                    ??? honestly not snarking here - but how do you get the sand out of your trailer?
                                    In warm weather I hose my trailer out after sweeping so that wouldn't be a problem.
                                    But in cold weather I don't believe sweeping alone would get all that sand out. Especially if you have a ramp, that stuff could play havoc with the hinges.
                                    Well, we don't have a ramp, so no worries with hinges. We don't put it an inch thick or anything like that, just a little bit sprinkled across the mats for traction. It sweeps out easily enough, but generally we just leave it and add more as needed. Spot clean the poo as needed. We usually pull the mats out once a year and scrub the whole trailer down at that time with soap and water. Have never had any problems.

                                    We don't haul professionally, maybe 10-15 times a year with our own horses.

                                    Also, we use the landscaping sand, which is supposed to be more coarse, thus needing less to do the job and do it well. The finer playground sand might be more problematic for getting rid of it, since the sand granules are so much smaller than the landscaping stuff.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Short trips - no
                                      Longer trips - a small amount at the back of the stall (straight load)

                                      I'm pretty religious about lifting mats and rinsing after every trip.
                                      Like the sand idea but I think it would clog the drain holes at the back of the trailer.
                                      You're entitled to your own opinion, not your own facts!

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I use them, because my horse has to "claim his spot" the moment he gets in the trailer. i don't like how they can sometime fly around and have their dust get in the respiratory tract, so I layer straw/last ride's left over hay over them.
                                        There's coffee in that nebula.

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