stall cleaning tips

Stall Cleaning Tips


Your horse can tell you a lot about his health when you are cleaning stalls – his manure and urine patterns are habits that may change if he’s not feeling well.


stall with half shavings and half mat
Sometimes you need to really hunt for the wet spots… You can also sometimes get away with skimpy shaving in some situations. More on that here.

Stall cleaning tips


  • Clean stalls frequently, several times a day if you can. This helps with fly control, and your horse has less manure to swirl around.


  • I have a definite routine for stall cleaning. One, I like to do it when my horse is OUT of the stall. This allows me to move around easily and not risk getting kicked, swatted, or stepped on. And there’s that one time that the horse jumped over the wheelbarrow for some fun times sprinting around the property. If you must clean when the horse is in the stall, make sure your wheelbarrow handles poke OUT into the aisle. Otherwise, you are making a small space smaller.


  • First order – the manure. Depending on your horse’s housekeeping style and the bedding, this is easy to find or you are hunting and sifting. Many folks toss a fork full of shavings on the wall to watch the manure roll away for easy picking. If the manure gets trampled and obliterated into the bedding, it’s your call on when to pick up all of the bedding to get every last shard of manure.


horse in stall with rice hull bedding and broom across door

The deep litter bedding system works for lots of horses. The bedding is packed and packed over time. Step by step instructions can be found here.



  • For urine spots, I like to carefully peel away any upper layers of shavings. Then I use a snow shovel or other lightweight shovel to scrape it all away. Ammonia is horrible for lungs – everyone’s lungs. It’s the dangerous and stinky smell that comes from urine. Hazardous to lungs and not pleasant to be around at all! If the urine spot is really saturated, I might cover the wet area with fresh shavings to soak it all up before scraping again.



straw bedding for horses

A great example of a deeply bedded straw stall.

  • Urine spots can also be treated with zeolite granules or powder to eliminate ammonia and dry up any remaining moisture. When you are replacing your horse’s bedding over any holes or thin areas, you have some options. How you do this depends on the results of your experiments. You might pull shavings down from a banked stall wall to fill in gaps. You might just swirl things around. You might fill in holes with a brand new bag.



sweet pdz zeolites being spread in a stall

Zeolites are an easy way to get rid of ammonia!


  • Every situation will be different, and how often you need to clean your horse’s stall depends largely on how much time he spends in there, the bedding, and how messy or neat he is.


  • You may also find that you like to use a broom and dustpan to get up urine-soaked spots, you may find that using fewer shavings in the corner where your horse poops makes them easier to pick out.


  • You may find that you need pellet shavings for the urine, big flakes on top for comfort. Have fun with the stall cleaning experiment. You will find a good system as you learn to predict where the urine and manure will land.


  • Do routine maintenance on the stalls as you go. Dust ledges, check floor mats, make sure there’s not a water leak, and inspect walls and surfaces for loose screws and other sharp edges.


go shopping button for horse products


If you want to try some zeolite ammonia eating goodness, you can order here. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases, at no extra charge to you! And thank you, this helps me keep this boat floating along.

Sweet PDZ Horse Stall Refresher Powder, 40-Pounds

Sweet PDZ Horse Stall Refresher Granules


Thank you!