Barns may house several different animals, but regardless of what it houses it’s important to make hygiene a priority in order to prevent disease in your animals. If kept unclean, barns can accumulate bacteria, viruses, and ammonia, making your animals sick. Here’s what you need to consider to ensure you’re maintaining your barn in best condition as possible.
Mucking Your Stalls
Having a cleaning regimen and staying on top of it is the best way to prevent the spread of disease and keep your animals healthy. If left to accumulate, urine and manure from soiled bedding releases strong orders and ammonia that can be damaging to horses’ respiratory tracts. Ammonia is released from all animal urine, but its harsh smell can irritate not just your horse’s respiratory tract but yours as well. Aim to muck out your stalls daily, removing any soiled bedding to minimize the concentrations of ammonia in the air. We recommend sprinklings Odor Buster; a natural product made from Yucca that prevents urine-enzymes from reacting, thereby reducing ammonia production. This can help not just lower concentration of ammonia in the air, but also help reduce the smell in your barn. Removal of soiled bedding should be done daily; this will help you save on bedding. If you can spot treat and remove soil bedding before it can spread and make the rest of the bedding dirty you can lengthen the time until you would need to completely strip the stall and put in completely new bedding.
Proper ventilation in your barn will minimize the amount of ammonia that is able to build up. Having good airflow also reduces eye and lung irritants that can accumulate from dust and bedding material. If you are constructing you own barn, be sure to choose a design that allows enough ventilation. If you already have a barn and feel like it has poor ventilation, try to keep windows and doors open as much as possible.
Although daily mucking of your stall is important, a thorough deep clean every so often is a good way to control the spread of diseases. Deep cleaning means removing everything from inside the barn, when all bedding and supplies are out, completely hose down the area and scrub down with a cleaner and then disinfect. If you have rubber mats in your stalls this is a good time to give them a good scrub down and wash as well. Doing deep cleans like this can be difficult if your barn does not have proper drainage. Drainage is another thing to consider when building a barn. If you have proper drainage where dirty water can easily run off to, deep cleaning will be a lot easier and could allow you to do them more frequently.
Horses That Can Not Be Turned Out
If you have a horse recovering from an injury or that cannot be turned out, you will need to muck out its stall and clean a lot more frequently. Since the horse is spending all its time in its stall, urine and feces will accumulate a lot faster. In order to keep your horse safe and comfortable in its stall during this time it is recommended to muck out twice a day, keeping an eye on its overall bedding since it will likely need to be completely changed out more frequently.