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Ideas for Building a Belly Scratcher for My Horse?

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  • Ideas for Building a Belly Scratcher for My Horse?

    Need some clever COTH ideas here! Despite all the flyspray in the world, my horse loves to itch his belly on my hazel tree/bush. Every summer I try to keep him from trampling the hazel shrub, but he is desperate for a good belly scratch.

    So what could I build that would be low enough for him to walk over but high enough to get his belly?

    I have tons of plastic barrels but can't think of anything. Maybe some sort of cheap and durable shrub for his paddock?

    Thanks in advance!

  • #2
    There are very thick strong brushes used to distribute fly repellents on cattle.
    Someone from ranchland here will know where, how, etc. You coulud have one horizontal for bellies, and one verticle for bottoms!
    Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


    • #3
      They make those cattle scratchers - get one of those and attach it to a barrel. But post pictures of him learning how to use it .

      Found this for you:



      • #4

        i have horses that are eternally itchy - one will get down and rub his belly on the ground - great for tendons, huh!

        i've been treating his itching - mid line dermatitis. first i scratch his belly with a shedding/sweat scraper - the kind with the little teeth. he totally loves it. then i put "Scalpacin" on his belly - get it at the drug store - it's in a bottle that you can squirt upwards or just put some in your hand and rub it in. then i get a big mane comb and comb the Scalpacin in. He totally loves it.

        if your horse already has a bald spot on the belly then treat it with a mixture of Swat, benedryl lotion, and ivermectin. the vets will tell you the ivermectin does nothing, but i beg to differ.

        since I've been doing this my horse hasnt come in with a dirty belly from dragging it on the ground. i recently started feeding him "Bye Bye Itch", but i cant say if it has had any effect as i started it about a week ago. i have heard rave reviews about it though.

        good luck!


        • #5
          Bastile, thanks for a good suggestion. I book marked those cool 'itchin' posts,' hundred acres, because I think my draftie would love one. He loves a belly scratch, too, and he will lift his leg up like a dog for a really good scratch.

          I wish there was something like a big whisk broom that I could set up for his belly scratch because I've moved him to a place where he doesn't have his favorite low lying bushes to wander through.


          • #6
            Misty Blue has a great one that she made out of a street sweeping brush , i think that's what it was at aleast.

            Hopefully she will chime in!

            A Wandering Albertan - NEW Africa travel blog!


            • #7
              I read about MistyBlue's scratching posts and even went so far as to get those rollers from the highway department (free). Our highway dept., though, uses rollers that have wires throughout the plastic bristles so decided it wasn't safe enough to use around horses. Otherwise I think that's the best idea.

              In case she doesn't chime in, those brushes have a round hole through the middle of them (they are something like 5' long) and I believe she installs a fencepost and drops the brush down over it. I suppose you could rig up something so the brush was held horizontally for belly scratches.
              Follow us on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/peonyvodka/


              • #8
                So, I googled this and came up with "cattle oilers", which provide a slanted scratching post plus a flap of material mounted next to a tank. This is how ranchers dispense fly spray (lice control, etc)!
                Cows have to go under the material flap to get to the scratcher.


                Not the best design, but google has other images.

                Would be a great way to dispense fly control IF it works with horses. I say IF because cattle don't carry their heads high, so distributing it onto their backs works. Horses may get it in their eyes.

                Better pic here, http://www.lewiscattleoilers.com/cattle.html second image.
                I bet Bluey could give more information on the appropriateness of these for horses.


                • #9
                  Tractor tire, on its side (as if it were still on the tractor) half buried in the dirt. Horse can step over it and rub belly to heart's content. I see them here and there...
                  “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey


                  • #10
                    Hizzhonor the (NOT!! Spoiled Arabian) used to scratch his belly on the small short pine trees in his pasture. He would go back and forth from his chest to between his back legs...the MOST blissful look on his face...

                    Plant him a tree!
                    the NOT!! Spoiled!! Arabian Protectavest poster pony lives on in my heart


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by cowboymom View Post
                      Tractor tire, on its side (as if it were still on the tractor) half buried in the dirt. Horse can step over it and rub belly to heart's content. I see them here and there...
                      That's the best idea, and you can put itching post material on it. But I'd fill in any of the side gaps left so nobody can catch a foot, halter etc on it.


                      • #12
                        A recycling company in Denver is marketing used 6' long street sweeper brushes for this purpose. You could ask at your city public works dept.
                        Comprehensive Equestrian Site Planning and Facility Design


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ytr45 View Post
                          Need some clever COTH ideas here! Despite all the flyspray in the world, my horse loves to itch his belly on my hazel tree/bush. Every summer I try to keep him from trampling the hazel shrub, but he is desperate for a good belly scratch.

                          So what could I build that would be low enough for him to walk over but high enough to get his belly?

                          I have tons of plastic barrels but can't think of anything. Maybe some sort of cheap and durable shrub for his paddock?

                          Thanks in advance!
                          horses that scratch there bellies could be suffering from sweet-itch mine does it all the time used to have it all over body so its important you have fly rug on that covers the belly as this is a normal habit of horses and make sure you have decent fly mask

                          look here-- www.sweet-itch.co.uk


                          • #14
                            Oh, I have an old big tractor tire that came with the property and I've never known what to do with it!

                            Now I can bury it 'standing up' (like it is on a tractor) and they can use it for scratching/itchies!!!! BRILLIANT!!!
                            Equine & Pet Portrait Artist
                            **Morgans Do It All**