Monday, 19 March 2012

Bed for success!

As we welcome the warmer weather many horse owners will be thinking about packing up their equine friends and frequenting competitions and events this summer. Alongside regular schooling sessions, lessons and optimum nutrition for our horses what else can we do to ensure we are set for success?

The environment we provide for our horses is crucial to both their health and performance and with the average horse still spending between 10-14 hours stabled during the summer months, it is clear that the conditions in our ‘horse’s housing’ are key to their wellbeing. This makes bedding a hot topic!

So how can bedding affect performance? Firstly the horse’s ability to respire (breathe) is vital to their success. The more efficiently your equine can inhale oxygen, the more energy can be created in order to fuel their muscles. Dusty bedding can limit a horse’s ability to breathe as inhaling dust may result in the cells in the respiratory system secreting mucus in an attempt to discharge the harmful particles. This can cause inflammation, reducing the air space to allow vital oxygen into the body.

Hoof quality is fundamental to the success of every horse and highly absorbent bedding protects the integrity and strength of the horse’s hooves from being damaged by ammonia found in wet bedding. Absorbent bedding should also work towards eliminating bacteria and odours by keeping mould away and insects at bay.

Nedz provide three different solutions to provide performance boosting bedding which suit any mucking out styles. The range includes Nedz Original, Nedz Pro and Nedz Advance all embodying the Nedz sentiment of minimal dust and maximal absorbency by using exceptional quality chopped straw. The inclusion of an exclusive Natural Nedz formula in both Nedz Original and Nedz Pro means the bedding is anti-bacterial, antiseptic, anti-fungal, and anti-parasitic helping to deter bacteria, moulds, insects and bugs and offer a fresh smelling aroma.

Is it any wonder that top professionals such as Geoff Billington, Mary King and Stephanie Croxford use Nedz? With performance at the forefront of the professional rider’s mind, Nedz compliments the routine of top riders and amateurs alike. International show jumper Geoff Billington is a big fan of Nedz Pro. "Nedz Pro is a fantastic product,” he says. “Very absorbent and easy to use, it makes the stable environment clean and keeps dust to a minimum, which is vital for the respiratory function of my horses and so helps them to perform well at the top level."

Nedz products retail around £6 - £8.50. For more information on the bedding choice of professionals visit or tel: 01254 677 762.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Springing Stable Support

With spring on the way many of our horses will soon be getting to enjoy more time out at pasture, rug-less days in the sun, and the flush of spring grass. However, for some equines warmer temperatures pose new threats. Whether on box rest due to injury, restricted grazing because of laminitis or simply seeking refuge from biting insects and pollen, your horse’s environment can be the difference between a stressful or stress-free summer season!

When a horse is on compulsory box rest it is not uncommon for them to become restless, anxious and bored, not to mention the stress and strain it puts on owners both mentally and financially. For these reasons it is vital to prioritise stable management to keep their environment as hygienic and comfortable as possible.

During the warmer months there are many perils to summer stabling. Insects can become a source of irritation which often leads to secondary health problems such as fly bites and sweet itch, and for those suffering from painful conditions such as laminitis, your stable should offer them welcome relief and “springing support” in order to keep painful feet away from a hard and uncomfortable surface.

In addition to mental stimulation and the correct nutrition, horse owners can make this confined time a more pleasant experience by choosing the correct bedding. Choosing a product that does not slip - especially when stabling on a concrete floor - and provides a deep base will ensure horses are always protected, especially important if they spend time lying down.

Absorbency is the key to hygiene and foot health, an even more imperative factor if horses are barefoot, and choosing a product that soaks up urine will help keep harmful bacteria and ammonia away from hooves, as well as causing less irritation to delicate sinuses and the respiratory system.

Timescale is also an important factor, owners with horses on box rest will be mucking out more regularly and choosing a product which is quick and easy will mean more quality time spent entertaining their equine, and less time shovelling!

A simple solution to these requirements is pelleted chopped straw bedding, Nedz Advance. The innovative product combines traditional chopped straw with modern technology to create small pellets that increase in volume to provide a soft, fluffy and virtually dust free bed. Capable of absorbing up to five times its own weight in liquid, Nedz Advance has already demonstrated benefits for horses with weak or sensitive feet by creating a super soft and sturdy base, which cushions the soles. In addition Nedz Advance contains a unique oil which helps moisturise the feet and prevent them from drying out.

Nedz Advance is priced around £6 - £8 for a 15kg bag. The recommended set-up is around 8-10 bags for a 12 x 12 stable, with one further bag added every 7 – 10 days.