QMy horse is quite messy in some areas of his stable and less so in others. I’ve seen that some people use a combination of bedding to tackle this — for example, shredded paper in one corner and shavings over the rest of the stable. Is this an effective method or can it be quite expensive? Lana Wessel, North Yorkshire
AAll horses, owners and stables are different and what suits one will not necessarily suit the next. This is why there’s a vast range of bedding types on the market to meet myriad requirements. A messy horse can result in almost a full bed being thrown out on a daily basis, which can be incredibly costly, so it’s becoming increasingly common for owners to combine bedding types to create a bed that works for them. For example, those with particularly wet horses might put a highly absorbent base down with a free-draining bed on top to keep the wet away from the horse. This ‘trial and error’ of bedding products can be expensive, however, as each needs to be used as a full bed (not just a single bale) to establish whether it truly works for your horse or not. For it to be cost effective, you need to find a combination that works for each individual horse. Cost is a very important consideration, but remember to think about the economy of scale too — the price of an individual bale for one product may be higher than that of another, but the higher-priced product could last longer, so you’d use less over the season and spend less overall. Do your research — and your sums.
Combining bedding types can work if you have a particularly messy horse