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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I've heard pros and cons on each, and honestly I can't decide what I'm going to use with Galaxy. I almost got a bale of straw yesterday, she's not anywhere near due yet but I don't wanna go try and find some and *Gasp* there be none.. that's how my luck runs!

So... I wanna hear some opinions from people who have used one or the other, and why.
 

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Straw for foaling out...always if you can get it. Bed it deep, pick out the poo and really wet spots, and bed it on top of that.
 

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After all I've read on here, I'd use thickly bedded straw with a skimming of shavings under it. That way, the shavings can soak up the pee instead of actually going into the ground. Plus, you don't want the baby's first few breaths being full of shavings. Good Luck with your decision...AND with the new baby!!
 

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I've been keeping Freyja's foaling stall only bedded a "normal" depth with shavings, and cleaning it every day. I have 4 bales of straw stacked right next to the stall ready to bust loose in there on top of the shavings the minute she shows me she's ready, and another half dozen bales in the loft ready for cleanouts after that. I really, really dislike straw for everyday use, it's just yucky to me, but I'll keep straw in there for the first few days of the foal's life, then switch back to shavings when it is about a week old.
 

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Okay cool! Especially with the shavings under it. We use mats, I can just imagine the icky wetness from straw!
 

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yeah i'm using about an 1-2 inches of shavings. and then a good thick layer of fresh straw over it. i can usually go about a week and a half with just picking out poo. and then i have to clean it all out and redo the whole stall. and it's easy to clean! i love it that way. as the shavings soak up the wetness and since my stalls are on bare ground it saves me from having a stinky stall. and the straw is just a comfy bedding as i've laid in it. and personally it's pretty soft granted it doesn't touch your skin. then you just itch! yuck
 

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Okay cool! Especially with the shavings under it. We use mats, I can just imagine the icky wetness from straw!

Exactly! I have matts and underneath them my barn floor is concrete (140 year old barn, nothing I can do about it) so relying on straw makes it disgusting. I'm kinda a germaphobe anyways so I just keep shavings for absorbing the wetness so I can pick it out and I'll bed straw on top when I need to.
 

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Okay, but PaintsPwn is talking about a foaling stall and foaling out a mare, right? Not just general preferences for bedding.

So shavings are a no-no, because they get stuck to the umbilicus, the foal's nose, mouth and eyes, the mare, everything - yuck! That's why straw is considered standard for foaling stalls -- it doesn't stick and get into everything.

So, Paints - find 10 - 20 bales of straw NOW and put them aside for your mare. Don't bed her stall with straw until close to her due date, when she's waxed up, dripping milk and almost ready to go. Keep her and the baby on straw until your straw runs out, or until the baby is a week or so old.

If there's a deep spot in the stall where urine tends to collect, or if your mare prefers one spot, then putting shavings down in that spot and straw over it is a great idea.

There's a technique to mucking on straw - I used to keep a whole barn on it and loved it - much faster to muck than shavings, but the most important thing is to keep the foaling stall scrupulously clean. Leave a muck tub and fork outside the stall and pick the stall everytime you walk by.
 

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I use shavings, if I put in straw at night, there won't be any in there in the morning
Then your mare is either not getting enough to eat or not getting the right nutrients. Foaling on shavings is a complete no-no - the particles and dust get into everything and can cause serious complications and infections.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I don't think I'll need 10-20... she's a mini LOL. I shoulda specified that.

She's the only one that gets an A+ for good potty habits u__u She does use one corner.

Okay, so straw it is! Thanks ya'll!
 

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>>>>> if I put in straw at night, there won't be any in there in the morning

>>>>> Then your mare is either not getting enough to eat or not getting the right nutrients.

Seriously thats not always true-- some mares simply LIKE to eat straw (or more specifically, given the option, eating is always a better alternative than not eating to some mares, nice clean oat straw smells like food to them, and its something to do when they're bored, LOL)
 

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>>>>> if I put in straw at night, there won't be any in there in the morning

>>>>> Then your mare is either not getting enough to eat or not getting the right nutrients.

Seriously thats not always true-- some mares simply LIKE to eat straw (or more specifically, given the option, eating is always a better alternative than not eating to some mares, nice clean oat straw smells like food to them, and its something to do when they're bored, LOL)
I understand what you're saying, but I'm just leaning towards having difficulty believing that you can bed a mare down with a bale or two of straw and that she can polish up her own food, plus her entire bed. :lol:

I know some horses just like to be munchy, but in my experience it's a lot like licking dirt or chewing wood. It's developed moreso out of boredom, lack of proper minerals, or lack of proper nutrition. When we brought Zena home, she'd pack away her entire portion of hay plus half her bedding every night for several months.

I know plenty of horses that will "pick" at their straw, but to consume the entire bedding seems a little out of character to me.
 

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>>>> but to consume the entire bedding seems a little out of character to me.


LOL.... having been a "ravenous broodmare" myself, I can totally relate to the mares who hoover down their bedding each night... (Wont tell you what I gained with each pregnancy... :oops: )
 

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I've heard that shavings is not good when the mare first foals because of the dust or something can get in the foals lungs, up nose,in eyes, ect. When are miniature mares foal we always use alot of straw, and once the foal is born we clean up the wet spots and put new straw down...so the foal willn't be wet and cold. Then after the foal is old enough you can start putting shavings down instead of straw...but to be safe we always use straw and i think you should too! Good luck on the birthing part!!!(:)
 
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