Unusual Horse Boarding Set-up - Page 2

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Unusual Horse Boarding Set-up

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    12-05-2013, 05:04 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by Speed Racer    
Not seeing how it's even comparable to being in the wild though, as they're in a limited pasture space and still get regular feedings.
They have to walk from station to station to get food. Each station only holds a small amount of hay. Only some stations dispense grain/supplements. Wild Mustangs don't run into giant piles of hay so they have to keep on the move.
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    12-05-2013, 06:07 PM
Super Moderator
I am all for horses living out 24/7 and having to move about from feedspot to feedspot, from a water source to a salt source, over different terrains, etc. Healthy for their minds and bodies. Grain dispensers and microchips? A little over the top, imo. :)
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    12-05-2013, 06:15 PM
Originally Posted by frlsgirl    
They have to walk from station to station to get food. Each station only holds a small amount of hay. Only some stations dispense grain/supplements. Wild Mustangs don't run into giant piles of hay so they have to keep on the move.
This whole setup has very little to do with how things are done in nature. These domestic horses know where the food is at all times, even though they have to walk around.

Feral horses have miles to travel over harsh terrain and don't always find food or water, so to say that limited space and feeding stations are comparable to how mustangs live is not really true.

I think the more time horses spend out and moving around is healthier for them, but this 'natural' setup is no more natural than what I'm already doing with mine.
    12-05-2013, 06:27 PM
From someone who lives in Germany, and has seen all manner of yards... I have never heard of this o.O

Sure, a lot of places have the feed areas spread out and they make the horses move... But you very rarely find horses on grass outside the months of May to October. Mud paddocks is generally all that is offered, and most yards I have been at, or around don't use them as they get deep..really deep.

But the microchip thing? New one for me. I wonder how easy it is to change your horses programmed feed... And how the containers work. Going to speak to a friend who will know more about this than myself!
    12-05-2013, 07:41 PM
A lot of places I've been to put the feed out in multiple piles, and the horses have to walk around, but the microchip thing, I don't think is a good idea. Like people said, horses can and will figure it out, and then start running each other off the food, and stealing the other horse's grain. We made sure that the horses each had their own pile of hay, and then would put down their buckets of feed. I did have to run other horses off when I fed my mare though, as she was the bottom of the herd, and was always getting run off her grain, and was getting skinny. Same thing would happen with the micro chip idea. The horses that live in the most natural of settings are the ones that are on HUGE acreage, with grass, hay supplemented when necessary, and not fed anything else. But that's hard to find in a lot of places, so it's not really a "natural" way of doing things. I have a friend who lives in Germany, I'm going to ask him for more details, cause I'm interested to see where this is coming from.
    12-05-2013, 07:50 PM
I've often pondered an RFID/microchip setup, but mostly for managing letting the horses in and out easier. I'd have RFID gates that only let the specified horse through (so horses can go in and out of their stalls- and only their stalls- at will). The BM could then just feed in the stalls (or they could do an automatic dispenser, going with the current theme ) without having to bring the horses in, could lock the horses in the stall if desired by turning off the RFID reader, turn all the horses out again by turning the reader back on, etc.

Putting multiple food sources out in the paddock is a good idea, though not a new one. Encouraging movement is great for the horse's health but I don't think it makes the arrangement any more natural. Horses in a natural environment go through periods of plenty and periods of scarcity, and I've yet to meet an owner who wants their horse to get skinny and ribby in the winter just because that's what horses in the wild do.
    12-05-2013, 08:07 PM
Green Broke
Most of the info on "Aktivstall" I'm finding is in German but I found one in English:

HIT AktivstallŽ - HIT Offenstall - Products/Services for group horse keeping in open stable
    12-05-2013, 10:25 PM

Read this about two years ago.....interesting concept
    12-05-2013, 10:41 PM
Green Broke
Ahhh. Thanks for sharing Sarahfromsc!
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    12-05-2013, 10:53 PM
Green Broke
I've been doing this all along, with the concept of keeping my horses moving around in between feed times....In winter, I have numerous places I place flakes of hay in the snow, (my horses aren't fed grain, but a handful of hay pellets in the a.m. With a scoop of loose minerals), and the other 3 seasons I do the same, but in bins/nets... I really like the fact that they're moving around all the time to 'find' their feed, as my mares are easy keepers. :)

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