Mud from Hell - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By minihorse927
  • 1 Post By thesilverspear
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post #1 of 10 Old 02-14-2012, 09:07 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2011
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Mud from Hell

No really. I get that everyplace outdoors gets muddy during the wet season but I swear until you've seen this place you won't fully appreciate the f*ckedupness of it.

Currently keeping the horses on my friend's property on the San Mateo coast of California. It's a beautiful place with an actual ocean view and when it's dry it's great. Soon as it rains though, it produces a kind of mud which I'm convinced was conceived in the 5th or 6th layer of hell. The place where the horse paddocks sit is right between the foot of some hills and a creek, the area being a natural water catch with practically no drainage. At times it borders on standing water. Also, to dry out it would have to not rain for about a month and that pretty much doesn't happen this time of year.

I'm aggressively looking into someplace to take them to get relief from this situation as I'm getting worried about their health from living in these conditions, though because of the area we're in it's tough to find boarding that doesn't cost a fortune (one place is $800/month per horse).

Anyone ever been in a similar situation and if so, did your horses develop any health problems? If they did, how long did it take? They've been in there for just over two weeks so far and nothing yet, but I don't want to let it go that far if I can avoid it.
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post #2 of 10 Old 02-14-2012, 09:20 PM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Southern Ohio
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I have seen many cases of thrush caused from being in extremely wet conditions along with the hoof wall trying to separate from the underlying layers cause it is so wet all the time. Soaking wet conditions are hard on feet. Mud packs in hooves and harbors bacteria and causes that many more problems.

I have known many people who use to board horses at a place on 315 in central Ohio several years ago. It sat next to the Olentangy river. The place was always wet and even the inside of the barn had a dampness that was felt year round. Majority of the horses there were always battling respiratory infections and hoof problems. The respiratory problems mostly were the ones kept inside the barn a lot. Skins conditions such as rainrot were rampant also.

As far as the arena goes, there are many drainage systems that can be installed that will help direct the water down underground and away from the arena. That would give the horses some relieve from the wet nasty ground. I know it isn't your property but if the friend can afford doing something like this, it pays off in the long run. That way while it is nasty everywhere else, the arena would be someplace to let them run and play where they won't be standing in muck.
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post #3 of 10 Old 02-15-2012, 01:32 AM Thread Starter
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Update, my friend and I came up with a plan that should work out great. Maybe I'll talk about it later and say how it went, if anyone is interested!
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post #4 of 10 Old 02-15-2012, 01:46 AM
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I'd be interested to hear how ya'll made out. I'm in California as well... but i'm in Orange County. I'm one of those horse owners that spends more money on board than i do on my own rent. However, i did board up in LA county for a time, at a dive barn that would turn into a mud pit in the rains. We spent many a night digging horses out of mud that was up to their knees, horses pulling shoes, and thrush of course. More rain headed our way this week too, from what i hear. Hope your ponies make out alright!

Life seems mighty precious, when there's less of it to waste.
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post #5 of 10 Old 02-15-2012, 01:49 AM
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Definately want to hear your solution, Ian!

We had a mare develop something one year after several weeks of nonstop rain. (We had never had so much before) She had really, really soft feet and one day we went out there and she was laying down, unable to get up. After a lot of coaxing (And the redneck way to make a sling: My dads service truck crane with a makeshift strap) we got her up and made her a portable stall. We let her feet dry, and then put E-Z boots on her. She healed up just fine. We waited for the pasture to dry out, put her back out there, and never had a problem again.

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post #6 of 10 Old 02-15-2012, 07:24 AM
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Location: Scotland
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Mud fever is an issue around here.

Other mud-relate concerns: At a previous barn which would turn into a sticky, knee deep mud bath, I got stepped on by my horse. I put her halter on and started to lead her off. I thought I was going to move, she thought I was going to move, but my wellie lodged fast in the mud so I just fell over and the horse, who had started walking and was subject to the laws of physics, crashed into me. We managed to untangle ourselves and then I had to hop around on one foot, holding onto horse for balance, trying to free the wellie, which was by then buried in the mud and trying to become a permanent feature of that field.
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post #7 of 10 Old 02-19-2012, 01:26 PM
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ouch! thesilverspear!

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post #8 of 10 Old 02-19-2012, 02:05 PM
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Location: Ohio
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The mud has been godawful this winter. We've had less than 5 days of snow this entire winter (un-heard of in Ohio) and I just went out for a hack in three-quarter sleeves. It's been 45-60F all winter here with a record-breaking amount of rain (literally, we haven't had this much rainfall in one year since they started recording weather in the 1800s). My sacrifice pasture is a muddy mess, and I can't put them back on the grass pastures because of how soft the ground is. We're having someout out to evaluate the property soon to decide what limestone to put on top of a clay base in the sacrifice pasture. It's been absolutely awful lately. In the meantime, the riding horses are covered with a sheet to cut down on clean-up time before riding. Luckily, we have had no (knock on wood!) problems with scratches or mud fever.
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post #9 of 10 Old 02-19-2012, 08:17 PM
Join Date: Jan 2012
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Yes. Mud IS a problem, as much as people say it's not.

My horses lived at a very muddy barn, my mare for 4 years, my gelding from birth until 2 years.

I moved the horses because they were both underweight despite being on hay 24/7. Mare was ulcery, gelding was ulcery and full of worms, even though both horses were getting daily Strongid C. My vet said that when there is so much manure in the mud like that and the horses never get out of it and are eating off it, like ours were, that even daily wormer cannot keep up with it (IF the horses were getting fed the daily wormer at all, I assume they were most of the time because my bucket would get lower, but if has to be fed every single day to work). The joke about my gelding is that we didn't need to clean his stall, it would crawl away on its own, ick!!

Mare would stock up horribly in the mud and get these massive swelling cuts and nicks and such, to this day (like... 7 or 8 years later?) any blemish on the leg will immediately get the same, there is a bacteria that lives in her skin around there that started when we were there.

Scratches from hell at the time, scratches is very painful for a horse to deal with, but does not seem to have last effects. They say horses are more prone to it once they've had it, but mine have not gotten it since we've moved.

After I left my mare started having hoof problems. Her sole is quite thin and bruises easily, not sure why this is as she was not that way when I bought her. X-rays are picture perfect, so the structure is great, it is just the sole that is so tender. She lives her life, all year round, in shoes, and in some seasons, pads. My farrier suspects this from her former living situations, but we don't really know for sure.
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post #10 of 10 Old 02-19-2012, 08:25 PM
Join Date: Feb 2012
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I just dug fence postholes and discovered that my soil is quite clayey about 2 and a half feet down. That's not so bad, but living in Western Washington means that I get rain, lots of rain.

So, what is your solution, Ian?
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