The Horse Forum banner

1 - 3 of 3 Posts

1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good afternoon all

I have just purchased my first horse 14hh and been advised for health of horse and being cost effective to buy stable mats, any ideas on the best ones ? Do i also mat out the whole stable along with bedding ? If so best type and also best way to build trust with myself and pony

Super Moderator
14,705 Posts
Hi Lisa...Welcome to the Forum....

There are many ideas to research and apply to what works for you in your situation.
Thinking the horse is home in a barn or run-in situation or much of what you ask about should fall under the responsibility of the boarding barn you keep your horse at.
So much depends upon what you have for a base the animal will be standing on.
Dirt, concrete, wood, sand....are all widely used base of a stall, run-in or any combination of is seen often too.

I have my barn in my backyard.
Dirt floor stalls. I use pine shavings placed right down on the sand that over time have mixed and become a stable base that rarely moves or becomes un-level for the horse{s} to live on when they come in for meals and to hang out in the shade of day and during dark of night.
When we first made the stalls the mix of shavings and sand was terrible, but within about 6 shavings no longer mix anymore...
I have friends who have stall mats wall to wall...when properly laid close together and edges snug they not move and then bedding is put over the mats.
Some use mats and very little shavngs or bedding pellets but my choice is I want the thick soft absorbent bed not the splash off a mat from urine making a worse mess.
Mats were bought at Tractor Supply, the smaller sized that are also not as thick as moving a mat is hard enough at the smaller size forget the bigger ones and weight associated...
I too have mats in my stall doorways so no ruts from horses going freely in & out and also under their feed pan so no food is in the sand if we can help it. But I do not do the entire stall floor..
I've also have worked in barns where concrete was the stall base, and when bedded properly the horses had "0" adverse effects to their bodies...these were competition show horses.
To me, the secret of any stall/run-in being suitable for inhabitants is to bed more than minimally, clean daily.

I would far rather clean a stall and have a horse with healthy skin, hooves and a living environment that is healthy air to breathe than save a few $ and bed skimpy and well, the place smell, and skin issues happen.

I am not sure why your situation is that you were advised to mat your stall...
Please share a bit more about the stall situation your horse will be kept in...

As for building trust...
Just spend time together to learn each others habits and moods.
Trust is built when you each get to learn and know each other and what will be a normal response to behaviors good or bad.
Be firm, be kind, be fair and just, be generous with praise of kind word and gesture, be firm when the animal errs and teach the animal what is expected and then be consistent so the animal knows what you expect, will tolerate and knows if it steps over the allowed; discipline is fast, fair and just...then move on.
Watch how horses in the wild are governed by the lead mare who is the herd disciplinarian and realize you will become lead mare and respected if you are fair, just and dependable...
Enjoy your new friend..

Premium Member
23,897 Posts
Hi & welcome!

Haven't really anything more to add than what HLG's already said. Well, substantially less about stable mats - so far as I know, few use them over here, tho I've seen one equine 'horspital' had them, on top of concrete floors, to be more yielding for the beasties as well as being easy to clean - they didn't use bedding.

As for trust, I don't go in for the whole 'dominance theory' but yeah, being consistent, fair, strict, and also considerate of their feelings, is a 'general' sort of answer.
1 - 3 of 3 Posts