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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May. 26, 2005

    Default soaking hay in winter

    Pony has recently been diagnosed IR so we've been soaking his hay. How do you handle this in the winter? We've been just throwing the hay in a clean muck bucket full of water and fishing the flakes out with our hands but this morning (39 degrees!!!) it became painfully obvious that we need a better method.

    Also, does the soaked hay freeze in the stall?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2007
    Beside Myself ~ Western NY


    We handle it the same way as we do in the summer... only we wear dish gloves to keep from freezing our ningers off

    Disposing of that much water in the winter is a bit of a hassle, since we live in the great white north, but the horses don't seem to mind if the hay begins to freeze a bit as they eat it.
    ::If I was wrong don't you think I would know it?::

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec. 2, 2010


    You could put the hay in a hay bag then put that in the muck bucket. Then you dont have to freeze off your fingers fishing out hay.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2005
    Columbus, OH


    If hay bags aren't convenient for you, try finding a suitable "colander" for your hay that you can nestle into the muck bucket. A heavy duty laundry basket, or a sturdy plastic container with holes drilled in it, would probably do the trick.
    Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May. 26, 2005


    Thank you. Both the hay bag and "colander" laundry basket are simple, perfect ideas.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug. 14, 2000


    Quote Originally Posted by sassy45 View Post
    You could put the hay in a hay bag then put that in the muck bucket. Then you dont have to freeze off your fingers fishing out hay.
    I did this plus set up a very large 'sawhorse'(~5' high) over the muck tub that I could pull the drawstring up over and let the excess water drain back into the tub for a while. Yes, in really bitter cold weather(teens and below) the hay would freeze. I'd usually just toss that haynet into the heated tackroom (~55 degrees) in another muck tub with a towel at the bottom to soak up the excess water for a while and then feed it. Dumping the water out of the initial muck tub daily was a PITA but fortunately one of my big barn doors opened to a summer pasture and drained away from the barn so all that had to be done was to keep that door open to get rid of the excess water. After a heavy snowfall that wasn't always easy but it was doable.

    I did this for about 4 yrs for 2 different horses with RAO. Unfortunately I had to treat all my hay like that or keep the RAO horse separate from the other horse for the rest of his life. I was very thankful I only had 2 horses. Once you do it a few times it's not so bad. I actually had 2 'sawhorses' set up and 2 muck tubs so I could do 2 haynets at the same time.

    I'm not saying let's go kill all the stupid people...I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

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