Horses and Winter Water

goodhors(z5 MI)January 30, 2006

I was just wondering how other folks are doing with their horses this winter? I have been hearing the usual stories about colic, usually impaction colic, now that the weather is changing so often. We are having a streak of warmer weather than usual, mid-30Fs. However it was 18F the other day with 50F+ yesterday. Horses get picky about drinking when it is cold out.

We haven't used the water heaters in the tank very much since Dec cold, just a couple hours here and there this month. Great SAVINGS on the electric bill though!

My horses seem to be on an every other day schedule, drink a lot one day, less the next, lots again on the third day, out of the water tanks. They are fairly consistant on tank amounts.

I had a colic incident a number of years ago, mare had to go to the vet college with dehydration colic. They managed to give her enough IV fluids to rehydrate her, didn't need surgery. Still cost a bundle, was a nasty surprise expense. Probably what has made me so over anxious about winter drinking.

This year I just went ahead and started salting all the horses when it got cold. They all have mineral salt blocks free choice in the stalls. So I have just added white iodized salt to their once daily grain/wet beet pulp meal. I find horses don't always eat enough salt when given free choice.

I do find the salt addition to have increased their water consumption. I think the salt also allows them to retain some water they wouldn't otherwise. Like people get swollen ankles with salty diets. Water is there for horse to use in body.

I visited our trainer, to see how our young horse was doing. She is tuning him up for sale, can get him ridden in the indoor ring daily, whatever the weather is doing outside. I can't get him ridden him daily. Doing a nice job, he looks wonderful. Went well when I rode him, basics are pretty solid, just green still.

Most of the horses there have very dry poops. Almost like sawdust, falls apart when it hits the ground. Not much extra moisture in their bodies.

Made me feel a lot better about my horses water intake. They have poops that look like they are on good early grass, very wet, dark green. We both feed about the same kind of hay, though she is not a wet beet pulp feeder. They do wet the grain at her barn. Interesting what more water will do to change horse digestion.

So this was kind of a check your horse message. Keep a close eye on quantity of water consumed, daily checks. That mare is our Princess, exhibits odd behaviour when she is feeling any kind of off normal. Very sensitive to pain, which probably saved her from a worse colic. We saw her out alone, was very odd behaviour, went and did something very early on when it could still save her. The stoic horse doesn't tell you soon enough.

Any questions on the water drinking, irregular amounts, I would add salt to daily diet. Mine are getting 3 Tablespoons each, once a day, for 1200-1500 pound horses. Colt at 500 pounds gets 1 Tablespoon daily. Better safe than sorry for me. If horse would not eat it, I pull their tongue out and pour it on.

We do feed the wetted beet pulp made with hot water, adds more moisture to body. Horses seem to like warm feed. I do not feed warm Bran mashes. However the water, fed warm or cold in tanks, doesn't seem to make much difference in consumption. The Princess has a heated bucket, usually prefers the cold bucket. Others drink their cold stall buckets fine. The added salt in diet is what has done a better job for me.

Colic is a nasty thing to happen, surgery is very expensive, with aftercare taking months to heal. That is if the surgery is successful, not promised. Prevent colic if possible, adding salt is pretty easy and cheap. I use so much salt now, I buy the pickling salt in the big boxes.

If anyone has any other tricks, methods for getting horse to drink, I would love to hear them.

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fancifowl(5Pa)

5o years with horses and never a cholic experience. We rarely grained more than some oats and a bit of whole corn but lots of long grass hay. Only times grains were fed is when the animals were worked and need more energy. Eating snow also helps, I believe + we always hand watered and nevet let them drink too much ar 1 time.??

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 7:26PM
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Miss_Kitty(6a KY)

We are warmer here in Kentucky than you are up North. My 3 are in at night, to make sure they get their own food. The mares will eat the old gelding's grain and run him off the hay. He nearly starved last winter!

The pasture is gone, we have only 5 acres. We've been graining to keep the old ones in good flesh. Right now they are drinking while in the stalls at night, as well as from the two tanks. One is heated, but the mares prefer the cold tank, and break the ice with their teeth.

Old Nedders dunks his hay while he's eating. Then cleans the hay out after it's soaked. Silly horse. Goes through a bucket every night. I've yet to have colic trouble, (knock on wood) though it's a problem in Ohio where we are from originally.

We have foot trouble, the soil is hard, and our quarter horses weren't bred for good hoof but are heavy on the TB blood. The old stable was a muddy mess, the stalls flooded and we lost shoes, had abcesses, scratches, rain rot, soft peeling hooves, you name it. This year the horses have been on dry ground, we have better hoof quality.

I'm brushing the horses, and looking for 'scratches'on their legs, keeping the sawdust bedding clean and dry. I'm hoping that rain rot isn't a factor this year. The old mare lost ALL her hair when we moved her here last year. A blanket fixed that problem. You should have heard her sigh when I put it on her!

I'm hoping to not have any more construction projects this winter! Maintaince is easy compared to the old place. When I start thinking about the difference I get silly. We have water in the barn, and electricity, we are dry. Almost had a camera in the barn so I could keep an eye on them. But the metal sides of the barn blocked the signal.

That's it for me.
Kitty

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 9:46AM
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pamghatten(wny5)

I have 3 mini-donks with heated buckets on thermostats. Must say the buckets haven't had to heat much this "winter". It's been really wet and muddy though. I'd prefer frozen ground and a nice coating of snow.

But the donks have been outside more this winter than any in the past couple of years. When we get one of those "Buffalo snowstorms" the snow is usually too deep for them.

Interesting talk about salt ... I'll have to look into that some more.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 2:06PM
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marquisella(z4 NY)

I heat the water in the pastures. Sometimes they drink it, sometimes they don't. I have 2 horses that dunk their hay, thats not dumb, its smart!

Funny thing, I've had colic 2 times, once in June and the same horse again in September. I don't worry in the winter. Its the changing weather that bothers mine most. Seems that when its raining a lot, the pasture is very wet, and it gets cold at night is when I have problems.

So fluctuating temperatures & wetness keep me on my toes for colic.

m

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 2:42PM
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goodhors(z5 MI)

Fancifowl, I guess you were lucky with your previous horses. I also went 20+ years before the Princess had her colic episode. In those previous years I watched quite a few folks lose their horses to colics, mostly from not enough water in winter.
Horses don't get enough water from eating snow. Takes about 8 gallons of snow to make one gallon of water, plus using up a lot of energy for heating the body to warm up snow. I have some Canadian friends, lots of winter cold with -30F or worse weather for months. Can't keep the water unfrozen with heaters, even in the barns. Colic from dehydration is major cause of death for horses in that area. Horses just don't/can't eat enough snow to stay hydrated.

Hand watering is fine, but I would never limit an animal who wanted to drink unless he was overheated. Then I would let him drink small amounts, over time, until he had cooled off. Feed him a small amount of hay, then let him drink until he was full. I don't know of any horse getting sick from too much water if he wasn't overly hot.

I have also heard of horses who colic, act poorly, when there are tempature changes, storms in the air. Seasonal affliction. Some who stress themselves, worry, get colicy.

Horses are rather delicate if something gets out of balance.

Seems water consumption and colic are the first discussion topics between horse folks in the winter, around here. One or the other person always knows of someone who just had an episode, or lost a horse, to colic recently. Pretty depressing when you add names and numbers up at the end of winter.

I am working hard to stay out of those colic numbers, hope you folks are also successful.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 10:51PM
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keena

I found this solar powered water trough and I am thinking about getting it. I am not sure but think it is worth a try.

http://www.horse.com/products/sku-BSA40.html

Here is some information about it:

Solar Powered Water Trough
Holds 25 Gallons and easily refills from your garden hose or water hauling tank!

No Freeze-ups!
 No fuel or electricity needed!
 Can be placed anywhere!
 SAVES time and money!
 Pays for itself!

These durable, never rust troughs have been extensively field tested for 17 years are still going strong. Guaranteed to -20° below zeroÂduring winter conditions with wind chill factor included! No risk of electrical shock to livestock. No costly fuel bills...uses FREE ENERGY from the sun. Shatterproof solar collector. Will NOT freeze even when livestock donÂt drink. Easy accessible water for livestock even in ice and snow conditions. No minimum number of livestock needed. Unit even keeps water cool and Algae-free in summer. Fills from the top with a hose.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 12:20PM
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acorn

My gelding Ralph had mild colic this fall when the temps went from 98 to 60, I salted carrots for him.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2006 at 6:43PM
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balsam(z4/5 NB)

goodhors - great advice here to keep in mind for horses and winter watering. I've seen the salt method before, as well.

We don't have our own horses (yet), but several friends do. None of them heat the water, but most have well-insulated, sometimes heated, barns. Not sure about the winter pasture. I'll have to ask and find out if they use water heaters there.

Good luck with the horses this winter. Here's hoping it's a problem-free season.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2006 at 8:32AM
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mstnarabs654

TO: Keena in Farm Life Forum...
Solar Powerd Water Trough...

Hi Keena, I just read your post in the "Horses & Winter Water" forum...

Are you still thinking about purchasing a solar powered water trough?

If you live in a part of the country that experiences frequent cloudy/rainy/snowy days, the Solar Powered unit may not work. Other types of Solar units require so many hours of bright Sunshine per day to operate properly.

We have Solar Powered Gate openers on our country property and quickly discovered that this type of Unit only works when there is plenty of bright sunshine. Just like our solar landscaping lights, they don't work on cloudy days!

For our gates, we had to use a back-up battery, as recommended, which, had to be taken off many times and charged up at the house because it ran out of "juice" when we experienced extended peroids of dark winter days. (The battery took up the slack when the Solar Power failed from lack of sunshine, but could not operate those heavy gates day after day before running out of power.)

Meanwhile, as the battery was spending time charging in the garage, we had to get out of our vehicles on these cold, wet, rainy/cloudy days to open & close the two heavy farm gates every time we came and went from the property! We soon became weary of this exercise! This had to end!

After a season of this, we purchased a heavy-duty Marine Battery to replace the smaller, regular battery as a back-up power supply for those cloudy days. Since then, it has been a smooth six years of good service from our Solar Powered Gate Openers (with Marine Battery Back-Up)!

Hummmm...something to consider. :-)

MsTnArabs654

    Bookmark   February 14, 2007 at 10:36PM
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Siamese(VA)

Some horses are sensitive to water tank heaters. They act as tho their nose is getting a little shock. (especially in metal tank; it's good to ground the tank.) That will help. It seems like mares are most sensitive. We haven't used the heater this winter... it's been mild until recently.

I have never experienced colic either, *knock on wood*!! I am a big believer in a horse being turned out 24/7 (so they can move around and it helps with boredom), free-choice hay or pasture, and very little grain. & regular deworming. and as much good clean water as possible!

I have one horse that will drink for 20 minutes solid after his handful of grain each morning/evening... I don't think he'd survive off a 5-gallon bucket here and there...

    Bookmark   February 14, 2007 at 11:48PM
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mstnarabs654

Hi goodhors!

I am new to GW and enjoyed your post about Horses and Winter Water!!

I have some Winter Colic Prevention Tips that may interest some people out there, too:

These days, I don't stall my horses as often as I did when I was younger and more "able bodied", but, way back a few years ago, when some of our winter temperatures dipped into the teens and single digits here in the Mid-South, my horses were kept in the stalls every night and on the worst messy days with short turn out time to exercise in the 80' round pen while I cleaned stalls.

By giving them warm/hot water from my barn's wash rack water heater, I eliminated all cold weather colic!

Before the hot water heater, they drank very little cold water and, yes, we had colic. Now, for the last 7 years, they will drink about 5-8 gals water each time I refill buckets with the heated water! WOW!

I also wash out the 5-gal water buckets with a soft brush EVERY day. (My horses are SO picky about clean containers and FRESH CLEAN WATER! It really does make them drink more when everything is fresh & clean!)

Here is the other thing I do for my horses which PREVENTS COLD WEATHER COLIC:

WARM BRAN MASH BREAKFAST:
As added insurance against colic from lack of fluids on those cold winter mornings, I treated them to a runny, WARM BRAN MASH BREAKFAST: It's the perfect way to prevent inpaction from lack of water, Plus, there are no more dry hard manure balls!

WARM BRAN MASH BREAKFAST RECIPE:
For 5 horses, I filled a 5-Gal Bucket 3/4 full of Bran, adding a Gallon or more of boiling water, 1/4 Cup Salt, one Cup Brown Sugar, two Apples, and stir until "Soupy". (Yes, this is hard to stir at first. Try using a broom handle!)

Boy, do my horses LOVE their "hot cereal"! By the time I transport this bucket from my kitchen to the barn in freezing cold weather, it has cooled considerably. You should hear them slurping up that breakfast! Shortly afterwards, I turn them out for three hours or so and they have a good loose BM before returning to the stalls. It is a great laxative! Then they get plenty of soft bermuda hay.

CAUTION! Please cool bran mash before feeding!!!
Before feeding this "cereal" to your horses, PLEASE make sure it is NOT TOO HOT for their sensitive mouths just as you would for a small child! Consider how much the surface cools faster than the bottom portion of the bucket, too, so stir often to blend the hot mash on the bottom with the cooler top layer.

Hope someone finds this helpful.

Happy Valentine's Day! :-)

MsTnArabs654

    Bookmark   February 14, 2007 at 11:50PM
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broodyjen

Gee, my ponies seem to like cold water. It has been below freezing for almost a month now, and have seen no signs of colic nor decreased water consumption.

I don't grain them, but they do each get a flake of orchard grass hay per day. I would increase it if they would eat more, but most days they don't even finish what I give them.

The pile of ice next to the water tank is getting HUGE. It really is a pain having to break ice 2-3 times a day, and drain the hoses when I fill the tank (which I have to do more frequently, since I'm taking out so much ice). But the less "technology," the less there is to fix/replace! We have heated automatic waterers at the farm where I work, and nearly daily, one of them is broken--either the heater broke and the pipes froze/burst, or it overheated and the water is too hot, or a wire got loose and there was electricity running through the water. NO THANKS. I'd rather stop and break the ice every morning. That way I KNOW how much my horses are drinking!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2007 at 10:04AM
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cymraes(8)

I have the kind of tank heaters that screw into the bottom of the rubbermaid type tanks. They work great and the horses drink a lot more water when it is warm. I also feed soaked beet pulp in the winter just to insure a little more water intake. We've been having fairly warm weather here in Idaho this winter so there is water in the creek now too.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2007 at 10:04PM
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bulldinkie(pa)

We have bucket ineach stall theyre electic you plug them in we also have waterers out in pastures,Water doesnt freeze.We havent had any problems.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2007 at 4:35PM
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lilamy(zone 8a)

I keep two water troughs filled and one of those I keep a de-icing heater in. My herd of five only drinks from that one it seems. I also feed hot soaked beet pulp in the mornings.

Miss_Kitty....horses dunking their hay in water is a classic sign of ulcers even if there are no other visable symptoms.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2007 at 12:33PM
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marquisella(z4 NY)

I have to disagree with lilamy. I have 3 horses that have always dunked their hay.

I'm happy to have them do it especially in the winter. It gets extra water into them, and helps keep the water from freezing so fast.

One is 14 years old, and still dunking.

M

    Bookmark   February 28, 2007 at 2:36PM
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lilamy(zone 8a)

Dunking water in hay is classic behavior of a horse with ulcers according to the equine courses I took at the North Carolina State University. It is also the opinion of my vet. There was also a question on my final exam of my month long training course to become a therapeutic riding intructor that asked what you would think of with a horse displaying that behavior...I am one of only two in my class that got that question right.

That said, I most certainly am not saying that the ONLY horses to ever do this have ulcers....I am only saying that it is often the first (and sometimes only) behavioral sign of ulcers. To have three horses doing it, my first thought would be that one may have had ulcers and the others picked up the behavior.

Something you might want to look into.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 1:18PM
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goodhors(z5 MI)

Well it is nice to see folks reading such an old posting!

I did want to mention that REGULAR, DAILY Bran mashes are now considered bad for horses. Bran is an old-time traditional feed for horses, but actually does nothing nutritionally as a feed. A horse with very loose stools from eating bran, is actually LOSING valuable winter water AND minerals from his system. The bran makes horse use lose more water out of his body system, than horse normally would without the bran. Few horses drink additional water to replace that water loss. The bran intake often, allows minerals to leach from the body and mineral loss is also a problem to the horse.

I know I heard lots about feeding Bran mash in winter, how good it was for horse. Now has all proven to be a total fallacy in horse feeding.

The wet beet pulp with hot water, hot water on hay cubes, add your snack bits of apples or carrots, is MUCH better in food and water intake value, than bran mash. Bran is actually harmful to horses when fed regularly and often. Does smell good though, about the only good part.

Our horses LOVE the warm, wet beet pulp we feed at night.

Do pay attention to individual horses. One of ours quit drinking inside. Daughter mentioned seeing her roll the evening before, as they lined up to come into barn. Odd timing for that to happen, so I was lookin at her hard when I did AM chores. Full water buckets in stall, 2nd morning in a row set off the alarm for me. I was watching her MUCH more closely when I turned her out that day. She was "off", didn't eat much hay, no drink from tank. I started doing hourly checks on her outside.

She has always been a problem drinker when she doesn't feel perfect. She is atypical in her signs, still pooping and having gut sounds while acting out pain, usually laying down, not rolling. We NEVER do the "wait and see" with her. As she started acting odd, Husband came home and gave her a pain shot. Vet came and pumped her full of water mixed with a new med to break up forage material in her gut. This horse goes off and shows it VISIBLY at a very early stage, not a stoic pain endurance animal. We did everything right, she came around, but it was a LONG 24 hours before the wait was over.
She still didn't drink well for another 2 days, ate some snow, was not offered much feed like hay. We wanted her gut more empty, easy to move what forage was in it. Wet beet pulp stayed in front of her, along an electric warm water bucket, She was turned out on small grassy paddock where she dug for old grass and ate snow. Room to move helps gut work. Alone in paddock allowed us to find and count poop piles to ensure she WAS going, gut was moving food.

Just wanted to make sure you are checking individuals and each equine's water intake.

We know our Princess well, her visible pain reaction EARLY, prevented her from being a statistic. Over this last weekend, the Vet said they lost 6 others to Colic, impaction from not drinking enough. One was the my kid's 4-H leader's horse, who showed no signs early. He was too far gone when found in the AM, rolling terribly, had twisted his gut along with impaction. Quite horrible to find, had to be put down.

We think that mare was having a painful heat cycle, with new longer sunshine days getting her back going. Painful cycle probably was the origin of not drinking. She is in full heat now. Other folks have said they noticed colic problems with huge temp swings from cold to almost hot of early Spring or thunderstorm activity with pressure changes.

Keep an eye on your animals, know what is normal for them. React quickly when they quit being "normal", before it is too late.

Hope you all have NO PROBLEMS with your 4-legged friends.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2007 at 1:33PM
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mstnarabs654

Hi GoodHors! Enjoy your posts! Good info.

As I mentioned in my long post earlier, The Bran Mash Breakfast served on my farm was used through the years only as a TREAT- maybe twice per week during BAD WEATHER if herd was showing signs of hard manure balls and needed to get bowels "loosened up and moving again" as extra "insurance" so as to "HEAD OFF COMPACTION" in the making. Oh dear, Hope I did not sound like it was given on a daily basis!!!

Got this original tip from a Long-Time breeder/Trainer friend with top notch operation and exceptionally healthy animals. This method of hers was taught and stressed to be used only as a TREAT and not daily feed schedule.

So many people here are also successful with simply adding Kosher Salt as a top dressing to regular feed, or salted carrots & apples on their feed, then also we've used warm wet Beep Pulp, moistened hay, Heated Water, etc....all the things you mentioned, too.

AGREE: Yes, the Soupy, Hot BRAN MASH BREAKFAST cereal should NOT be used on a REGULAR BASIS, only as a TREAT when they may need to soften those hard stools, should they get hard, which happens at times - like a laxative. It REALLY FLUSHES OUT EVERYTHING! Afterward, my own small heard seems so thirsty and go through lots of heated water. (I do slightly salt my feed, too, which seems to make them drink better.)

The rapid drops in Temps from warm weather in the Autumn are when I notice most problems down here. Rest of the winter, try to CAREFULLY OBSERVE all of our horses as INDIVIDUALS, just as you said. :-)

I had a Hormonal mare, also, who had to be watched closer than any other for the SLIGHTEST change in behavior. You had to act quickly with her! Since she could not tolerate any discomfort, I knew she required immediate action.

My hormonal mare's painful cycles made her more prone to not drink enough water, too! Like a young girl with severe cramps, she did not want to drink, eat, or be touched at this time. Thank goodness she has mellowed out with age!

DITTO! You have to watch your horses carefully, and learn each one like they are your own individual children.

Hope all of our postings, comments, and other "input" can help other horses and owners out there across the country.

Keep Writing!!! Enjoy these sites so much!
MsTnArabs

    Bookmark   March 3, 2007 at 9:10PM
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goodhors(z5 MI)

Bumping this up, to keep from reposting it.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2008 at 7:45PM
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jrhaeberle

We have noticed in the past that some of our horses would not drink from water tanks that had electric water heaters. They acted as though they got a shock when they touched the surface of the water. We finally determined that they were getting a low voltage shock even though we had a large gauge copper wire in the tanks connected to a copper rod driven six feet into the ground. Turns out the problem was a "ground loop" (i.e. the service ground was not at the same potential as the water tank ground). This can happen when a long cord is run from the house/barn to the heating tanks. The induced voltage in the tanks will occur anytime an UNSHIELDED AC voltage electrical wire or device is placed in a water tank, even if the device and cord are completely waterproof. The solution is simple; just connect the extension cord ground to the ground rod. The effect was dramatic; all the horses now drink without hesitation.

Obviously you want to be very careful when connecting the extension cord ground wire to the copper ground rod any contact with either of the two live wires in the cord would be very bad. I sell a device ($15 plus shipping) that connects between the heater cord and the extension cord; it has a ground wire that can be directly connected to the ground rod. In our tanks, this device reduced the induced AC voltage from 750 mV PP to 1-2 mV PP, and as I mentioned, all 19 horse now drink freely from the tanks.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2008 at 9:26AM
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mpsolar

Greetings,
At my wife's request, I've developed a solar-powered livestock water heater. I'm considering bringing it to market. Originally installed in CO, it routinely produced 65F water on 20F days. I'll test it here in NY this winter. Initial costs were in the $1000 range. I hope to reduce that. This cost would include the cost of the livestock water tank, the collector and a PV panel to power circulation, so it's entirely self-contained (except for the water!) Please feel free to contact me at tlampros@verizon.net.
Regards, Tom Lampros

    Bookmark   December 4, 2008 at 10:12AM
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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

jrhaeberle as I read your post I really wanted to say that you were full of it, but I figured I wouldn't, until I saw that you were selling something. You sir are full of it. Unless you are using distilled water and the horse is much closer to the faulty electrical device than the copper ground rod is, or the copper ground rod is insulated some how (making it a useless as a ground rod) the resistance of the horse will be so great compared to the copper that the current through the horse will be so very low that we would need some extremely precise equipment to detect it (and no, horses do not have magical electric super senses, they can probably detect better than we would be able to, because the thinness of the skin in their mouths versus our hands, this does not mean that they could detect levels too low for us to measure). The differential ground should not matter in this instance, because while there may be a slight charge from the ground in the outlet to the ground in the barn the horse is grounded in the barn too, so if you ground the water through the cord and in to the house you are actually creating the potential to shock the horse rather than eliminating it. A good high quality heater will not leak any voltage in to your tank.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2008 at 3:49PM
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goodhors(z5 MI)

jrhaberle, your fencer is not correctly grounded if horses are getting low voltage shocks. Have you still got the instructions that came with it?

My fencer instructions calls for 8ft ground rods and we need more than one to do the job right. We have the THREE ground rods in the dirt that are recommended, wired to the fencer as required. These are one piece rods, no connector parts because the connectors fail over time. The local utility company using the 2-part ground rods, had to pull and replace them all with solid, one-piece ground rods, to have the grounding needed for lightning. Very expensive in labor and material, but needed for safety protection of the customers.

Another common failure point is the clamp from wire to ground rod, or wire to ground rod. The metal oxidizes, reducing the contact ability to pass current between the two metals, so the grounding ability fails.

Horses are EXTREMELY sensitive to any kind of electricity, and stray voltage will cause all kinds of problems with equines. Horses getting shocked at the water tank will not drink, then you get to deal with impaction colics. You are actually training horses NOT to drink when they get shocked.

If you have horse drinking problems, an electric fence, old water tank heater, you probably have stray voltage. Sometimes conditions have to be just right for it, muddy ground, but no problem when dry or frozen. Needs the horse touching dirt and water, to make the connection. You touching with your rubber boots, doesn't give you any shock or you can't feel what the horse feels.

Sometimes just getting the Electrician out, having your equipment checked over, will find and fix the problem fast. YOU are not spending hours hunting the trouble in the cold, still not finding it. Not coming up with weird "make-do" fixes that work some of the time, not others. Bad electric wiring, overloaded circuts, cause fires. Barns burn because of "make-do" repairs every year, especially in winter when overloaded with heaters, extension cord runs. The few dollars Electrician cost, will be much lower than the Vet bill for treating Colicky horses. And horses still die from colic, not all recover even with the Vet visit. May save you from a fire too.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2008 at 7:19PM
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londi_2008

I am looking for more information on the solar heater being tested in NY from CO. How do you protect the livestock from the antifreeze??? We all know the poison value associated with this...4 horses and a herd of cows and goats coming in spring, need to perfect before then as this is a great amount of water to keep free from ice for everyone.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 11:11PM
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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

You keep the antifreeze separated from the water with good leak proof joints.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2008 at 1:13AM
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Need help with a ground cover grass that is fast growing
I'm looking for some input on what kind of wild grass...
broguearcher
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