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is there some reason I can't use leftover hay for bedding?

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  • is there some reason I can't use leftover hay for bedding?

    I have hay in a net, but there's still a lot that falls out. She has shavings, and I was going to toss the extra hay that falls on the ground on the shavings for extra bedding. Its a lot after she eats the whole bale, plus there's always some leftovers in the net. Its orchard hay. I know its usually straw used for bedding, is there some reason not to use old hay? Anyway, if it doesn't work out, at least its close to the dumpster. Lol

  • #2
    No, there is no reason why not to, besides that you need a real pitchfork to get it up.

    However, if she wastes this much, why not just feed less?


    • #3
      You may not want your horse to have old hay for bedding because she could eat it and get sick.


      • #4
        Originally posted by skippy60 View Post
        You may not want your horse to have old hay for bedding because she could eat it and get sick.
        Well, if she would have said 'the old stuff I found in the back of the hay loft 5 years ago'.....
        She is talking about the stuff she just put in front of the horse to eat.


        • Original Poster

          She free feeds out of a cinch chix net. It actually saves a lot, but there is some that's left over when she's done with the bale. Little bits fall out and it stacks up.
          Last edited by pal-o-mino; Feb. 26, 2012, 02:23 PM.


          • #6
            hay is certainly adequate for bedding.
            If it works for you, why not.


            • #7
              As long as the hay is decent, sure. There are certainly plenty of horses bedded in straw who eat their bedding.


              • #8
                Sorry I misread what the OP said. I translated it as "old, trampled hay". Sorry OP, I was wrong. It is perfectly fine to use that as bedding.


                • #9
                  I hate the mix of hay/shavings, personally. It's harder to shift clean from dirty bedding since you're dealing with two different textures. I ended up going through a lot more shavings. I also think urine-soaked hay smells worse than urine-soaked shavings.

                  There's nothing wrong with it, per se, but I think it makes cleaning stalls a PITA.


                  • #10
                    Most breeders in my area use old hay for bedding. Not moldy, dusty old, but last years leftovers. It's cheaper than straw, just as dry, cleanup is the same (I hate it after using shavings, lol, but it goes with the territory) and I haven't yet had a horse tell me that they thought I should spend more and buy straw for them.

                    Damrock Farm


                    • #11
                      Yeah, I know a lot of small farm TB trainers that use it. I don't like it because it is harder to clean the stalls and I find that it seems to draw more flies when wet than shavings for some reason.
                      Groom to trainer: "Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!"


                      • #12
                        When our horses leave a bunch of hay and mix it into their bedding on their own we leave it there until they get it dirty. If there is a bunch of good stuff not mixed in it usually goes to one of the other horses thought. Really the only problem with it is how much harder it is to clean up but if the parts are small then it shouldn't be too hard.
                        "I'm too sexy for my blanket, too sexy for my blanket, these mares-they should take it..." (J-Lu) - Featuring The Skypizzle Pony aka Classic Skyline


                        • #13
                          absolutely you can use it for bedding - i do it all the time - leftover hay on the ground and use it for bedding - also left over hay when sweeping gets put in the stall for bedding.

                          We don't usually have left over hay in the stalls unless they are in for 24/36 hours in a row. Clean stalls and fresh hay in the feeders for a night there usually isn't anything left in the morning as we don't overfeed in the stalls.


                          • #14
                            I like to use it to bank the stalls, and half the time bed the mare's stall. The pony gets hay banked up to keep him nice and cozy when he's locked in, and the mare can come and go, so when I have enough leftover it gets used as bedding. Saves me money, I can't afford to go through shavings too quickly!
                            "On the back of a horse I felt whole, complete, connected to that vital place in the center of me...and the chaos within me found balance."


                            • #15
                              You can, and I know people that do, but it absorbs nothing and I can't take the smell when it gets wet... Bleh. I think mixed with shavings will make it a total PITA to clean out.


                              • #16
                                Why not feed your hay on the ground? That way the horses eat all that's put out in their stall and their is no waste to use as bedding. Or maybe I just have hairy hay vacuums.
                                Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
                                Alfred A. Montapert


                                • Original Poster

                                  I can't be there twice a day for feeding, so they free feed. When they were fed twice a day on the ground, the baby* would toss it all over, stomp it, pee on it, poop on it, then refuse to eat it. Lol. He was wasting a lot. So then I got the net. It actually works pretty good, plus he had food all the time, which helped keep him busy. They eat some off the ground, but they get busy with the whole bale and step on the stuff on the ground and then they don't eat it.

                                  I noticed when they free feed, they tend not to vaccuum so much, its more lazy munching. So if they drop some, they don't rush to pick it up. They go back to munching the bale.

                                  She's in a big corral. I kept it more in her sleeping area and not so much in her pee spot, so we'll see what happens. If she does mess it, its okay because it was going in the dumpster anyway, I thought she might like to take a snooze on it first.


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by pluvinel View Post
                                    Why not feed your hay on the ground? That way the horses eat all that's put out in their stall and their is no waste to use as bedding. Or maybe I just have hairy hay vacuums.
                                    LOL, I have found that they scatter more if I feed on the ground ut I don't like to use hay nets or racks for youngsters.

                                    So yup, I use hay for bedding, though not intentionally
                                    I wasn't always a Smurf
                                    Penmerryl Sophie RIDSH
                                    "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                                    The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by pluvinel View Post
                                      Why not feed your hay on the ground? That way the horses eat all that's put out in their stall and their is no waste to use as bedding. Or maybe I just have hairy hay vacuums.
                                      Some horses (who shall remain nameless) find hay on the ground to be something you need to pee and manure on. Then said horse has a temper tantrum that she has no hay.

                                      Not saying this is the case with the OP's horse but it is the case with more than one horse I know.


                                      • Original Poster

                                        Originally posted by trubandloki View Post
                                        Some horses (who shall remain nameless) find hay on the ground to be something you need to pee and manure on. Then said horse has a temper tantrum that she has no hay.

                                        Not saying this is the case with the OP's horse but it is the case with more than one horse I know.
                                        That's him!! He was worse with the net, he'd stomp it, toss it, try and destroy it. I finally had to attach it to the tackroom to keep him from doing that.

                                        This morning, my lovely hay bed I made for my mare was completely a mess. Poop, pee, spread everywhere and stomped into the shavings. I couldn't tell if she slept on it or not. Lol Does that mean she likes it or hates it?