How to Muck Out a Stall

Straw vs. Hay

A clean stall is very important to the health and happiness of a horse. When a horse stays in a dirty stall, health issues are likely to arise like thrush, a bacterial infection in the hoof, lung infections from bacteria in the air and skin infections. Mucking out a stall daily prevents these issues and ensures the horse’s comfort.

The best time to muck out a stall is when it is empty. Every morning after turnout, grooms head in for daily stall cleaning. They begin by picking out manure and soiled straw with a metal pitchfork and placing it in a pile. Clean straw is moved to the corners of the stall with a pitchfork or rake so that the floor of the stall is exposed. This allows the grooms to check for any hidden manure or soiled straw as well as allowing the ground to dry.

Once all of the dirty straw is collected, it is placed in a pile outside of the stall for collection. The clean straw remaining in the stall is spread back out and new straw is added if necessary. A truck is then driven through the barn to collect all dirty straw which is periodically collected from the farm by a removal company. Mushroom farms from around the country use muck as compost.