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Keep hay out of the mud.....(updated) building a hay box

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  • Keep hay out of the mud.....(updated) building a hay box

    The friend I board with is having a dillema. She feeds individual flakes of hay to the horses twice a day (she also has a full time job, so she is not home all day). The horses get smallish individual dirt turnouts. She is finding lately that they are wasting a lot of hay that is getting all caught up in the dirt. She is also concerned because she would like for them to eat slower for more of the day, however, she isn't going to give them more hay if they are wasting it.

    So far she has tried mats (the horses buried them pretty quickly and they also got very icy in the winter) as well as some larger feed tubs (the horses pulled the hay right out of those).

    Price is an issue.

    I suggested hay nets but she is worried that the horses may get caught up in them. Also, she feeds very early in the morning before work and has the same problem I do with finding hay nets to be very confusing and time consuming. I think she is worried that she will not tie them correctly while half asleep when she feeds.

    I feel hay nets would be a good solution, but every time I mention them she seems resistant. So....

    Any other ideas? I know that there are a number of great hay feeders on the market, but they all seem pretty pricy. I'm considering spending the money on one for my horse's turnout, but I would like to help her think of a cheaper solution for the other horses.
    Last edited by Houdini1220; Dec. 20, 2008, 04:14 PM. Reason: Update

  • #2
    How 'bout one of those hay rack type feeders with a roof over the top? Like this one- http://www.horizonstructures.com/hay-feeders.asp If someone in the family is handy a similar structure could be built fairly inexpensively.

    Comment


    • #3
      Can she get some tractor tires?

      http://www.axeholmeshires.com/tirefeeder/

      Inverted works even better:
      http://www.bigskytirefeeders.com/

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        shakeytails, I like the idea of that....but it may be a bit big, although maybe we could try to create something similar but smaller.

        Leather...the smaller ones of those may be an option. I will mention it to her. I'm not sure where we could get them...but may be worth looking into.

        Comment


        • #5
          As far as hay nets go, there's a really easy trick to filling them.....

          Place the hay net in a garbage can so that the top edge/rope is on the outside of the can and the inside bottom portion of it's on the inside (I hope that makes sense....you place it in like you would put a garbage bag/liner in a garbage can). Drop the hay in, pull the strings up, and you're done. It makes hay nets easy to use and way less messy.

          Another alternative is to use hay bags....the ones that just have a hole in them.

          I have an OTTB who is TERRIBLE about peeing on and then not eating his hay. I just started putting his hay in a hay net and I'm feeding him half of what I was a month ago. Not to mention the fact that there's way less to clean up now.
          __________________________________
          Flying F Sport Horses
          Horses in the NW

          Comment


          • #6
            We also feed our guys hay out of garbage cans, though minus the hay bags. The garbage can is bungee corded to the fence with a stall mat under the whole thing. Very little spillage and that which is spilled is still salvageable.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by costco_muffins View Post
              We also feed our guys hay out of garbage cans, though minus the hay bags. The garbage can is bungee corded to the fence with a stall mat under the whole thing. Very little spillage and that which is spilled is still salvageable.

              What kinds/sizes of garbage cans do you use? Do you just bungee around the whole can? What do you attach the bungeee to? Sorry for so many quesitons, but that sounds like something that may work for us so I am very interested in the details.

              Comment


              • #8
                I wouldn't use hay nets since she is not home all day. Horses get bored and will play with whatever is available and there go the nets. If they get the net down and then get tangled, well there you go.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Costco Muffins, LOFF your name!
                  I too am interested in the exact brand of the garbage can you use.
                  Not sure mine would work - they would STILL pull the hay out I bet. Keep the ideas coming. I need something that will work too. I have sheds and can't figure out how to put up hay feeders in them somehow. Racks? Which kind?
                  Proud & Permanent Student Of The Long Road
                  Read me: EN (http://eventingnation.com/author/annemarch/) and HJU (http://horsejunkiesunited.com/author/holly-covey/)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I have a neighbor who uses these: http://www.horse.com/Double-L-The-Grazer-BRX02.html. They work GREAT! And it definitely helps to slow them down.
                    Honey badger don't give a sh!t.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I understand your concern about hay nets, but I also feel a net hung high & securely enough will be something they'll be hard pressed to hurt themselves on.

                      The trick is to place eye screws high, preferably in an inverted triangle shape, then use double ended snaps instead of knots to secure. Run the 'tie' of the net through it's body several times after stuffing, then through the highest eye screw. Back through a low part of the net's body, then back up to the middle/ highest screw. Secure w/DE snap. Secure either 'side' of the net to the remaining two eye screws. Only a *very* determined horse will manage to get this down & play w/it.

                      This is, of course, if you have no problems w/your horse eating with his head in a high positin while he's eating. Definitely something I would not reccomend if you've got one w/ respiratory issues..

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I think the ideas already mentioned for using hay nets are great and would be your best (and most inexpensive) bet. In fact I might try it myself to save on clean up time.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Tractor tires are great and the price is unbeatable--they are FREE.

                          I have one really big one and 2 big ones, and they work great. I can fit half a bale of hay in them and they're as close to indestructible as I'd ever need. My one horse used to pick them up and throw them around but I put some stakes in and filled the bottom sidewall with big rocks so that's no longer a problem.

                          Try the local tractor dealer.
                          Click here before you buy.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Hay nets are out. But thank you for all the ideas.

                            She mentioned the tire idea to her dad...and he sent her a bunch of car tires.

                            She thinks he didn't quuuuuite get what she was describing.

                            But it was a cute thought anyway.

                            Now the horses have new toys to play with


                            But we still need a feeding option.


                            She seems to be interested in possibly trying to build some hay boxes. We have wood fencing so a hay box could be easily attached to the fence.

                            We just need to work on some ideas....so any input on building an outdoor hay box that will drain is greatly appreciated.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Houdini1220 View Post
                              Hay nets are out. But thank you for all the ideas.

                              She mentioned the tire idea to her dad...and he sent her a bunch of car tires.

                              She thinks he didn't quuuuuite get what she was describing.

                              But it was a cute thought anyway.

                              Now the horses have new toys to play with


                              But we still need a feeding option.


                              She seems to be interested in possibly trying to build some hay boxes. We have wood fencing so a hay box could be easily attached to the fence.

                              We just need to work on some ideas....so any input on building an outdoor hay box that will drain is greatly appreciated.
                              Could you make a feeder with the tires? If you built a wooden frame and..hmm, bolted the tires around the outside for walls, then space some along the top for spacers, like on the tombstone style feeder. At least they are soft, round, and won't rot, rust or get eaten.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I was having the same discusion with a friend today about feeding hay in the wet dry lot. I have three horses in a one acre dry lot. I don't think tires are safe, seen to many pictures of dead horses caught up in tires.
                                So I'm also wondering what to use, I've tried muck buckets tied to the fence but they just pull it out. I want my horses eating with their heads down not up so no hay nets.
                                Please explain the garbage cans.........They are to deep for a horse to get to the bottom and if I cut them in half then its just like the big muck buckets.
                                Any more ideas?

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I forget who it was on here that had what I thought was a really neat hay feeder idea. They had posted photos of their horse and on a few spaced out fence posts they had attached one of those plastic laundry hampers with the holes in the side. I think she said they drilled a couple in the bottom too for rain drainage. Stuffed those full of hay, kept it off the ground and from being peed and pooped on, drained well, was inexpensive and looked neat too. Probably easy to fill too, just walk the fence line and stuff them full. I'll see if I can find the old thread, it had a photo of them in it.
                                  You jump in the saddle,
                                  Hold onto the bridle!
                                  Jump in the line!
                                  ...Belefonte

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    more hay feeder options

                                    Here's a link to a bunch of home made hay feeders. http://www.swedishhoofschool.com/hayfeeders.htm Not the most organized site, but it has a lot of information and if you click on the pictures, you're linked to even more photos and info. All types of materials have been used - inverted desks, hay nets made into "pillows",etc. I love the idea of making the hay harder to get to, thus feeding less, reducing waste and keeping the horses busy.

                                    MistyBlue: did the laundry basket hay feeder work so that the horses had to pull the hay through the holes in the basket?

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I agree that tractor tires are a real hazard. I've also seen pictures of horses killed using them. They crawl inside them somehow & get stuck. Don't know how they do it but you know horses...they'll chew a hole in a rubber wall & stick their leg in it.
                                      Producing horses with gentle minds & brilliant movement!
                                      www.whitfieldfarm.shutterfly.com

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Nope Duecavalle...out of the top. I looked for the old thread and can't seem to find it.
                                        You jump in the saddle,
                                        Hold onto the bridle!
                                        Jump in the line!
                                        ...Belefonte

                                        Comment

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