Why is the ease of maintenance the important factor that influences the choice of stabling’s bedding?
Paper, cardboard and pelleted newspaper are used as bedding. Ward, Wohlt, and Katz (2001)
reported that pelleted newspaper had less breathable dust than shavings and straw bedding but also that horses ingested less of the paper bedding than straw or shavings bedding. However, the paper is not widely available and can be difficult to clean out. Rubber matting is commonplace in stabling. Rubber matting reduces the amount of bedding necessary. Reducing bedding can reduce the levels of respirable dust. However rubber should not be used alone without bedding.
Dust in the equine environment can be exacerbated by the management approach taken. Removing horses from stabling while carrying out activities aids the reduction of inhalants (Fleming, Hessel and Van den Weghe 2009). Daily mucking out is the most common way of keeping the stable clean, but a significant RDC cloud is created. Kwiatkowska-Stenzel et al. (2017), found a time lapse of three weeks of measuring for levels of dust to stabilize in straw bedding. Adoption of more deep litter bedding in horse stabling, therefore, is a consideration. Less mucking out and disturbance of the bedding results in less dust. (Fleming, Hessel and Van den Weghe 2009).