Rubber stall mats, strong smell of urine...is that normal? - The Horse Forum
 26Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 04:26 AM Thread Starter
Started
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: I'm an American girl living in southwest France
Posts: 1,563
• Horses: 6
Rubber stall mats, strong smell of urine...is that normal?

We are boarding my daughter's horse at a local club to get him back in shape. He's in a paddock during the day and brought into a box at night and during bad weather (something new for him and us). These stalls are concrete floors with a thick rubber mat over the top, probably a couple inches thick. They are made by a German company called Sagustu.

Whenever my daughter is there, even just to groom her horse for 15 minutes, she comes home smelling of urine. It's so strong, she has to take her clothes off and put them outside immediately and take a shower and wash her hair. Anything that goes into the barn stinks of this....saddle, cinch, leg protection, clothing, hair... I can smell it in any soft material from several feet away.

I told the owner, and he was offended. But he called the company, and they told him he only had to clean under the mats once per year. He does it twice per year. They told him it's the scent of rubber that I'm smelling. But WTH, I know the difference between rubber and urine! The barn owner smokes a lot, so I am going to assume he doesn't notice it because the smell of his smoke is stronger and his sense of smell is dulled. Also, I don't know that he cleans the top of the mat at all. He just puts straw down and replaces it daily.

At my request, he disinfected the stall. It didn't help. The urine is in the air somehow. And it's not an ammonia smell, but actual horse urine.

Does anyone have experience with this? And if so, how do we fix it? How are these mats supposed to be cleaned? I can't keep my horse there if it continues and I really like the training he does with the horse and my daughter.

Thanks in advance for any help.

“When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk: he trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes. ” ~ William Shakespeare
ecasey is offline  
post #2 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 05:03 AM
Trained
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Palmyra, Wisconsin
Posts: 6,161
• Horses: 4
It's not the mats. Straw is not very absorbent, the horse pees & it goes through the straw onto the mat where it sits. Shavings or sawdust hold the urine but I've been in barns where they skimp on shavings & they stink too.

I never clean under my mats. They are a tight fit & the few times I've moved them for various reasons they were clean underneath. I use deep bedding & remove the wet spots daily. I never strip stalls & my barn doesn't stink.

I'd move my horse too. Can't be good to breathe that all the time.
Wallaby, jaydee, Uze and 3 others like this.
natisha is offline  
post #3 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 06:26 AM
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 12,270
• Horses: 0
If the smell permeates your daughter clothing, is that offensive after she is just in the confined space of the barn for a few hours at most....
Can you imagine the burning of the nose and lung membranes, of the eyes the horse endures?
Irritating to you and possibly dangerous to the horse.

Rubber mats, so many of them can put off a odor....but so do horses, their poop and urine.
Bedding in stalls if cleaned daily and correctly should also halt much of that smell.
Tires, like in a tire store or dealer give me a headache from the smell....but smell like urine. "NO"....
Sadly, sounds like it may be housekeeping or stall-keeping in this case that is lacking.

Me, so the trainer smokes that much he can't smell the reek? At all?
So...how much does he smoke at or in the barn area?

Personally, if the smell is that offensive I would find another trainer and barn.
No one should stink so bad after visiting their horse, period.
Of course, if you fall off and land in a pile that is a different situation, but just being at the barn....no way!
.....
jmo...

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
horselovinguy is online now  
post #4 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 07:30 AM Thread Starter
Started
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: I'm an American girl living in southwest France
Posts: 1,563
• Horses: 6
Thanks for your input, everyone. I guess I wanted to have my ideas validated or something, because it is pretty obvious this is wrong!! He smokes a couple packs a day which is nothing for the French.

I contacted the company who makes the mats. They said they should be pressure washed 2-3 times a year with soap and disinfectant. I told the BO and he said he would do it tomorrow. So I think he's interested in fixing the problem. We'll see if it works!

“When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk: he trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes. ” ~ William Shakespeare
ecasey is offline  
post #5 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 07:54 AM
Trained
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Palmyra, Wisconsin
Posts: 6,161
• Horses: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecasey View Post
Thanks for your input, everyone. I guess I wanted to have my ideas validated or something, because it is pretty obvious this is wrong!! He smokes a couple packs a day which is nothing for the French.

I contacted the company who makes the mats. They said they should be pressure washed 2-3 times a year with soap and disinfectant. I told the BO and he said he would do it tomorrow. So I think he's interested in fixing the problem. We'll see if it works!
It won't help. He should spend the time & money on decent bedding. Ventilation is important too.

I've never pressure washed my mats in 16 years.
Chasin Ponies likes this.
natisha is offline  
post #6 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 08:09 AM
Showing
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: OK
Posts: 13,975
• Horses: 9
Part of the problem is the straw. And I understand that in EU shavings and such can be very expensive and hard to come by. I would check around and see if you can find a distributor of a product like Sweet PDZ, a deodorizer and Stall Dry an absorbent. Those can be put under the straw and will absorb the urine and cut the smell. Not sure what's available in EU but those are 2 products I've used here in the US and had really good results.
natisha, Blue and Chasin Ponies like this.

Dreamcatcher Arabians is offline  
post #7 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 08:51 AM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Ontario Canada
Posts: 2,862
• Horses: 0
I don't dislike the idea of rubber mats in stalls but I found around here people seemed to think this would replace bedding and be easier and faster to clean stalls which I don't like at all. Sometimes they put a little layer of pellets in to absorb the moisture but the stall is still wet with urine.
I found that horses would urinate in their stalls and then stand and lay down in a puddle of urine which IMO is not good at all. Plus I would imagine it's difficult to get up when the stall mats are wet and perhaps slippery.
I had a horse that I rode at one of these places and she sure did stink. Like your daughter I came home really smelling so bad that I could not stop on the way home to buy bread or milk as I was too ashamed to go into a shop smelling like that.

If I had rubber mats in any of my stalls, I would still have lots of bedding in there just the same as not having any mats, but that's just me as I like lots of bedding for my horses.
natisha and horselovinguy like this.
Woodhaven is offline  
post #8 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 09:25 AM
Showing
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: MD
Posts: 16,911
• Horses: 1
I think it's the straw that's causing the problem as well. It's not very absorbent, which means old/new urine is definitely causing the smell. It's building up. They should try new bedding for sure. Washing the mats may help, but if the bedding isn't clean/new then it won't really solve the issue.
If that doesn't work, I'd look into a new place. I wouldn't be able to stand the stench either! :(
Chasin Ponies likes this.

Ride more, worry less.
PoptartShop is offline  
post #9 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 09:37 AM
Trained
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Palmyra, Wisconsin
Posts: 6,161
• Horses: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodhaven View Post
I don't dislike the idea of rubber mats in stalls but I found around here people seemed to think this would replace bedding and be easier and faster to clean stalls which I don't like at all. Sometimes they put a little layer of pellets in to absorb the moisture but the stall is still wet with urine.
I found that horses would urinate in their stalls and then stand and lay down in a puddle of urine which IMO is not good at all. Plus I would imagine it's difficult to get up when the stall mats are wet and perhaps slippery.
I had a horse that I rode at one of these places and she sure did stink. Like your daughter I came home really smelling so bad that I could not stop on the way home to buy bread or milk as I was too ashamed to go into a shop smelling like that.

If I had rubber mats in any of my stalls, I would still have lots of bedding in there just the same as not having any mats, but that's just me as I like lots of bedding for my horses.
I see that all the time too. Fancy places for the people but a closer look reveals nasty stalls with minimal bedding, hock sores, dirty stinky horses etc...but hey, check out the nice heated lounge!
To be fair, most boarders never think about those things or think that's just how it is. Kudos to the OP for realizing the truth.
Chasin Ponies and Woodhaven like this.
natisha is offline  
post #10 of 17 Old 12-01-2016, 10:07 AM
Administrator
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: CT USA an English transplant
Posts: 34,852
• Horses: 3
I've always found that rubber mats work best when laid over crushed stone or cobbles/pavers because anything that does go through the joins can soak away but with concrete it just gets trapped and if you use straw for bedding it only makes the seepage worse
natisha, Foxhunter and Avna like this.

Just winging it is not a plan
jaydee is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.



User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How to remove urine smell from synthetic saddle hilltopmiller Horse Talk 14 07-23-2015 11:31 PM
Stalls with rubber mats Shosadlbrd Horse Boarding 6 12-10-2014 04:02 PM
rubber mats luke4275 Barn Maintenance 1 10-13-2014 04:22 AM
Barn Maintenance-rubber stall mats Boots4ACowGirl Barn Maintenance 8 10-04-2014 03:22 PM
Rubber Stall Mats? ilyTango Barn Maintenance 7 02-11-2011 05:54 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome