Horse Sleeping Habits, Horse Stall Comfort
There is so much resting on your stall floor decision!
Article from Equine Products By SoftStall
OFFICIAL SUPPLIER FOR THE 2010 ALLTECH WORLD EQUESTRIAN GAMES
When it comes to stall flooring, stable flooring, stall bedding, horse stalls… or which ever term you
prefer… how many of you have heard, or experienced first hand the saying “my horse never lies down in its stall.” I have heard this way too often.
In my quest to understand this reason behind this statement, I have spoken with many equine
practitioners and the response is quite similar. Some horses do not lay down because stall floor
beneath them is too hard. This can create discomfort for the horse during the process of laying
down or getting up. This becomes more obvious with older horses or horses with lameness issues.
Even with up to ten inches of shavings in a horses stall they can compress shavings paper thin leaving them without a much needed cushion. Rubber mats as the base can help minimally but
remember, rubber mats can be as hard as a hockey puck, especially in colder temperatures and most do not offer much, if any, insulation or protection from dampness.
Being involved with the equine industry on both the business and personal side I have taken a great
interest in understanding how important it is for horses to get quality rest and how a their stall can
greatly effect this achievement. In my ongoing research I came upon an article by Michael Lowder,
DVM, MS a renowned equine practitioner from the University of Georgia who wrote the following:
Do horses sleep? Have you ever noticed that there are days when your horse appears more rested
than others? We all know how a good bed affects our sleep, and recent research indicates that the bedding material we provide our horses may influence their sleep as well!
Our horses spend most of their lives in an artificial environment, and tradition along with myth
dictates how we manage their lives. We often create the horse's environment from a human point of
view without giving much thought to what our horses really need. So what bedding should you use? Think about it when you want your horse to perform at his best, you must give him the opportunity
to rest and a good bed to sleep in.
Many of us have never given any thought as to how a good sleep affects our horse's potential. Give
your horse the best opportunity for rest, and he will give you the performance of a life- time.
On the average, a horse requires up to two hours rest each day. Much like ourselves, a horse
requires rem sleep to help rejuvenate its body and mind. We know a horse can rest standing up
but to get quality rem sleep they need to lay flat out. As the innovator of SoftStall, the therapeutic
equine bed for horses I ask you this question. How do you think you would perform during a vigorous exercise program the morning after sleeping on your carpeted floor and not on your
Unlike stall mats or rubber mats SoftStall invites a tired horse to lay down and rest for longer
periods of time with out the discomfort or getting up or down and will actually insulate them from cold and dampness which can onset arthritic and other muscular and joint conditions.. With
SoftStall your horse just will not develop a hock sore as there is no friction created when they get
up and down. As the one chosen to muck the stalls daily you will find that your time doing so will
be significantly reduced and you will save money on shavings as they are required only to absorb
the urine. The amount of shavings required with SoftStall depends on the behaviour of your horse in its stall and the turn out time it gets.
As horse owners we take a lot care and pride in our horses, our farms, from the actual buildings to
the stalls we put in our barns. It’s time to pay closer attention to what we actually put in our horses stall… for their sake!
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