As living spaces go, a horse stall is the most basic functional component of every stable. Its primary role is to provide a healthy and a safe environment for our horses. In most cases, a stall is the place where your horse spends a majority of its time. So, it isn’t a bad idea to employ a little thought to its design in order to ensure his comfort and safety and also to provide the handler with a high level of convenience. Here are the best ideas to consider while creating a healthy and stable living space for your horse.
Whether it’s a full-scale building facility or a two stall backyard barn, the basic needs of all stalls are similar.
What are the essential elements in stall design?
· Suitable stall size
· Stall front and partition type
· Door type and door size
· Flooring type
Learn how to determine the appropriate stall size
The ideal dimensions for a box stall may vary, depending on the type of the horses being housed, their size, and the amount of time they will spend in the stall. Horses are very comfortable while stabled in enormous open spaces. For this reason, no box stall can be large enough. However, an apt stall should allow the animal move around with comfort and lie down without getting cast (stuck on its sides with its feet wedged against the wall).
For compact and ponies breeds such as Arabians and Morgans, a 10 feet by 10 feet stall is probably sufficient, but for a majority of horses over 15 hands, the accepted size is 12 by 12 feet. Draft and Jumbo-sized warm-bloods breeds might enjoy in a more spacious environment, the most preferable being 14 feet by 14 feet, as well, to a majority of Standard-bred and Thoroughbred breeding farms.
If you want to keep stallions or foaling mares, you might need to have stall kits that are at least 16 feet by 16 feet. Miniature horses, on the other hand, are perfectly stabled in eight feet square stalls.
What is the best ceiling height for ensuring ventilation?
As crucial as the ability and freedom to move freely, the ceiling height will not only affect ventilation, but can have a reasonable impact on the animal’s level of stress. A ten feet stall height is considered a bare minimum but a bigger height is always better, both in terms of ventilation and horse safety.
What about stall doors?
Stall doors need to be at least four feet in width but wider if you’re housing draft horses. In so doing, you eliminate the risk of your horse banging their hip or shoulder each time they exit or enter the stall. You might like the sliding doors that are easier to maneuver around, or you might prefer the traditional swinging doors that are less expensive.
Doors can incorporate yokes to enable the animals hang their heads into the aisle. Your door track can be galvanized to prevent rust or finished to match the door color. There should be door stops and glides located at the bottom end of the door that securely hold the door in place while closed.
Partition design might vary depending on the type of the barn. For example, in a boarding barn the stall partitions may be less open than in a private barn. Ideally, the partitions should be designed to be as much open as possible to enable the animals smell and see their neighbors. It is advisable to have a solid partition around feed bins to avoid aggression when feeding.
Which kind of stall flooring do you consider for your stall? Whatever you choose needs to be tough enough to take abuse, be non-slip, provide good drainage, easy to muck out and clean, and forgiving on equine limbs. Comfort and durability should be your ultimate considerations. Dirt flooring becomes one of the simplest options because it is remarkably soft and inviting for horses to sleep on.