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Barn Flooring question

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Barn Flooring question
  • I have a part cement, part wood (solid timbers) floor in my run-in shelter for my horses (I bought the place that way and can't afford expensive changes). I have rubber mats on the floor. We live in Minnesota, so freezing temps all winter. I am having problems with freezing urine and horse apples making the floor a disaster, and slippery. I've tried a thin layer of shavings for the urine to freeze into, but all in all, its not a pleasant place for them to lie down, even though I clean daily, sometimes twice a day. Does anyone have an inexpensive solution? Shavings are expensive when I have so much urine soaking them and have to dispose of them daily. I'd like a soft bedding for them to lay in, but with their bathroom habits in the shelter, I can't afford truckloads of shavings. Help!
  • Have you considered those wooden pellet bags that fluff up as they are wet?  They would soak up your urine and stay fluffy for them to sleep on.  They are not cheap but are supposed to last longer than shavings.
  • Some of the farmers here use stone dust (limestone, we have quarries nearby) to keep the concrete less slippery and easier for the cows to walk on.  The Standardbred track uses all stonedust floors.  My personal preference is straw for bedding.  It is cheaper here than shavings and looks better longer.  Hope this helps
  • Do you mean wood stove pellets?  I heard that those work very well.  I have decomposed granite in my stalls and put shavings on top of that. 
  • Up here they call it woody pet.
  • I had always used stone dust in Maryland, and it worked very well. The biggest expensive is delivery if you don't have access to a dump trunk.
    Things to consider are the size of your shelter - the larger the easier to clean because the manure and urine is spread over a larger area.
    Remember - straw, shavings and other "bedding" is actually not bedding. It is a horse toilet. It's main function is to absorb wet stuff.
    This will be my first Minnesota winter. The horses have their blankets on, and a minimal shelter, but no bedding.
  • oops sorry. Double post.
    $#@ old stupid fire damaged #@! f$32 computer.   Grrrrrrrrrrrr
  • Dash, where are you in MN and what are you doing?  You had to drive right by me to get there and didn't even stop to see me!!!
  • quite honestly, if its a run in, i wouldnt put any bedding down.  if you are locking them in there, then i would put lots of shavings and or straw down.  where in MN are you?
    Im way up north in MN (50 miles to International Falls) and the only bedding i have is in the stalls in the barn that the horses only get to use when the winchills drop to about -40.  They hide from the wind by sneeking up by the barn in the trees. 
    my barn has a concrete floor and im slowly purchasing mats to go over that.  i bed down deep with shavings, and at lambing time put down straw or bedding hay over that. 
    Rod, Dash is down in the Pipestone corner of the state.