How To Muck Out A Stable
How To Muck Out A Stable
This simple guide will show you how to do a full muck out so your horse remains safe, warm and injury free in his stable. If a dog is a man's best friend, a horse is a person's best friend; so learn how to muck out a stable correctly to treat your horse the way you should.
Step 1: You will need...
- 1 Wheel barrow
- 1 Pitch fork
- 1 Broom
- 1 Shovel
- 1 Pair of rubber gloves
- 1 Sponge and bucket
- Some clean straw
Step 2: The benefits
It gives your horse a warm, clean, bed to rest on. It protects his legs from injuries and wear and tear on his joints. It stops draughts and provides a clean environment for healthy hooves, and prevention of disease. It especially helps your horse to stop getting cast. This is when he gets stuck against the wall, whilst lying down.
Step 3: Tie up your horse
Begin by tying up your outside, if the weather permits. This is better for his respiration. It's also quicker and easier to muck out when he's not in the stable.
Step 4: Remove any droppings
If you have any water buckets, remove them from the stable. If not, begin to sweep any clean bedding away from the door to give you a space to put the solid bedding. Place the wheel barrow across the door with the handles always pointing alongside the stable wall. Using the pitch fork, remove any visible droppings off the straw bed.
Step 5: Remove the soiled bedding
Throw any clean bedding up against one of the walls or corners of the stable. Remove any wet bedding. Place it into the wheel barrow or near to the door. Work your way through the whole bed. Try not to waste any clean bedding, as this is costly.
Step 6: Sweep the floor
With the all clean bedding now tossed up against the wall, sweep the stable floor clean using the broom. Shovel the soiled bedding into the wheel barrow. Allow the floor to completely dry.
Step 7: Bed down
When the floor is dry, shake down the clean straw from the sides of the wall and spread it evenly over the floor with your pitch fork. Bring in the clean straw. Shake and spread it out to create a second thicker layer of bedding. Start to build up banks of straw around the edges of the stable, by packing it with your pitch fork. This is to protect the horse from draughts and knocks.
For a totally professional finish, fold under the banks with your hands to create neat, firm, edges. Test to see if you have enough bedding. Hold the end of your pitch fork, in one hand, and drop the fork end onto the bed. You should not be able to hear the concrete floor underneath!
Step 8: Replace the water
Using the bucket, scoop out any dirty water from the automatic water drinker. And give it a quick wipe over with your sponge. Or replace his water bucket.
Step 9: Finishing touches
Finally, sweep the entrance into the stable clean. Fold the front edge of the bed to create a neat bank. Give the outside of the stable a quick brush and tidy. And empty the wheelbarrow onto the muck heap. To maintain a fresh bed, remove any droppings throughout the day.