Ordering shavings/pellets online? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 10-01-2011, 01:01 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Central Texas
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Ordering shavings/pellets online?

Currently I buy Equine Fresh from Tractor supply (i'm in the US) for $6 a bag. Not terribly expensive, but it can add up. My paint is a horrible stall keeper, and soaks his stall often. So I'm adding a bag a week to his existing stall shavings. Is there a place to buy online? Or can anyone think of a cheaper pellet? I really dislike the look of wood/pine shavings, and over the next few weeks will be adding in some sand under the existing dirt/shavings.

~*~Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction. - Cowboy saying~*~
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post #2 of 5 Old 10-01-2011, 02:57 PM
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: New York
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I would think that if you bought online, (which I didn't know people did, at least, not for bedding) I wouldn't think that you would save much considering shipping costs. I've had experience with three types of bedding, straw, shavings and wood pellets. Straw is the only cheaper alternative I know of, but I hate using it. It's a pain to muck and takes way to much room at the muck pile. Ideally, in most cases, the more you spend on bedding, the more you should get out of it. But I've never used the expensive corn cob or whatnot beddings before. (too chicken to try them cuz -wow- are they expensive)

I use the shavings, but I have a system to how I use them. Not sure how big my stall is in measurements, but my haflinger has lots of room to walk around, so when I empty a brick of bedding in his stall I empty the whole thing in the far corner of his stall and stack it up as high as I can so that it's out of the way. I then distribute a thin layer with my muck rake in whatever areas he needs more bedding. Whatever is left I use up over the next week/week & 1/2 until I need more. I used to spread the whole thing out, but the bedding was so thick that he'd kick all his muck around into the good bedding and it was a nasty mish-mosh by morning. I could either dump half a stall of semi wet bedding (and my horse can be a stall soaker)or leave it to get dirter and deal with the flys/smell/dirty look. I'd go through two bricks a week for one horse. Once I started leaving the stall bedding more shallow, his manure piles stayed in piles (instead of turning into patties under the fresh bedding in the corners of the stall. How does that even get there?!) and the urine collected in noticable piles that I could completely muck it out without taking out the good bedding. When I was done I'd replace what I took with some fresh bedding and my stall always lookes/smells clean. If I want to sit against the wall and watch my horse nibble I don't have to wonder about what I'm sitting in.

The wood pellets are more expensive. I've seen it used a couple of ways. I've seen one person use it dry and let her horses crunch them down and spread them out, and I've seen one person use them after dumping half a bucket of water into the bagg and letting them fluff up. I'm not big on this bedding for a good reason. It's -great- with the manure because it sifts right through. But when the horses urinates, the moisture spreads through the entire area (which in turn fluffs up the bedding) and makes it impossible to disern between what's clean and dirty. I don't like leaving any traces of urine in my stalls because urine, when left, turns to amonia. Which attributes to that "stall smell". And since our horses stand in their stalls for considerable amounts of time and quite often with their heads to the ground, this is a major cause of respiratory problems in horses, especially show horses or horses that are trailered alot. So all in all, a dry stall is a good stall, and that is why I like shavings. I'm sure there are better beddings out there, but for the cost, I find shavings to be cheap, reliably available at stores, and I think it does the job well.

Actually, if I had the time and inspiration to make my own bedding, I'd mix finely chopped straw and wood shavings together. ^^
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post #3 of 5 Old 10-02-2011, 12:25 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Central Texas
Posts: 436
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All very good points!

I really dislike the look of shavings, personally. Nothing against those who use them, just don't like them. I find them hard to pick up in, and they blow all over the place. My stalls are open 10ft by 30 ft long, and they just end up wherever their not suppose to be. Same thing with straw. To hard to pick up in, and just is icky looking. My stalls are dirt floors, so 'technically' don't need anything. But since my gelding is a 'stall wetter', I don't like the mud it creates.

I prefer the look of the pellets when they 'fluff' out. We use them for display stalls at stock shows for our show cattle. Make for pretty displays. When there is urine, it typically dries up fairly quick. Rather in the stalls or the displays, just because we don't use inclosed areas.

I was thinking about shipping cost, and agree, that would more than likely make it more expensive. After looking around online last night, I didn't find any sites that weren't state specific and you had to order ton or 18 wheeler trailer load at a time.

~*~Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction. - Cowboy saying~*~
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post #4 of 5 Old 10-02-2011, 12:40 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Louisiana
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I use pellets (corn cob ones) then shavings on top. Have you looked into local saw mills?
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post #5 of 5 Old 10-02-2011, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Central Texas
Posts: 436
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We use the thin cedar saw mill shavings for my cattle barn, but the place closed down after we bought home the last truck load. And I haven't found a local saw mill here (I'm about 280 miles south of my cattle barn.) But I'd love to use what I use in the cow barn. It looks, smells, and cleans great.

~*~Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction. - Cowboy saying~*~
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