Many of us have battened down the hatches in preparation for a long chilly, or downright cold, winter many months ago. Combining sweaty saddle pads, urine, moist leather, and manure inside stables overwinter is a recipe for some serious BO (AKA “barn odors”) which are far from the coziness we crave in winter months. Bad barn smells are one factor but another serious consideration is yours and your horses respiratory health. Fresh, clean air is a key component of that. 

Do you enjoy the smell of fresh cut roses? This month identifies with St. Valentine and love and roses. Roses? Hmm? Roses? These four tips will help keep your barn smelling like roses (ok well maybe not roses 100% but they will help clear up stinky smells for certain) to help you and your horses breath fresher and cleaner air!

Clean Up.This one seems obvious but it’s not. Winter slows things down and that can include the frequency of cleaning. Pick urine and manure from your stalls daily then spray Bye Bye Odor on the urine spots. Bye Bye Odor will eliminate the ammonia in the urine. Do you think your stalls smell just fine as they are? Get down at floor level where your horses noses spend a great deal of time and take a good wiff. Chances are you’ll be overwhelmed by ammonia smell. Ick! Ammonia not only smells bad but is detrimental to respiratory health. Bye Bye Odor eliminates the ammonia but likewise it has a light, refreshing, pleasant smell on its own.

Fresh Air. This springs off cleaning and will aid in mitigating ammonia. Check your stable for proper ventilation. Without creating a giant draft, crack windows and stable doors at least for a short portion of each day to allow for fresh air flow through your barn. Breath in that crisp winter air! Mmm!

 Clean Water. Along the lines of cleaning up and bringing some fresh air in. Clean drinking water is paramount! Don’t just add more water your buckets. Make a habit of dumping, rinsing and then refilling at least every other day. FYI, this is a year round tip. If you are just constantly refilling buckets with grain and hay remnants floating around in them it will sour and generally discourages most horses from drinking. We should goal to encourage drinking more water by keeping a fresh, clean supply readily available for them.

 Bedding. As a rule, we get a better nights sleep in a comfy bed with clean sheets vs those nights we fall asleep on the sofa with the TV running, correct? Your horses are no different! Yes, proper bedding is costly but this is not a place to cut corners in the winter months when horses are standing in their stalls more often than not. Whether you bed on straw, shavings, or pellets make sure you have a sufficient amount of bedding to absorb urine in your stalls (SEE aforementioned “Clean Up” tip). Also, investing in quality stall mats now can cull the amount of bedding needed thus saving your expense on bedding in the long run.

Before you know it, you’ll be shedding your winter layers and preparing yourself for some fun in the sun! With that in mind, don’t forget to make sure you have your Fly Predators scheduled for the season, a bottle (or two) of Bye Bye Insects on the ready, and any fly traps you might need. When in doubt about what types of flies you have, please always feel free to give us a call at 888-562-5696.