February 26, 2014

Entertaining the Mare

Here's a post I had ready to post the day after Echo got hurt. I had been putting together for the week prior to her injury. I still need input from everyone! I've since broke down and bought her a JollyBall which she is terrified of and wants nothing to do with. 

So I've been toying (no pun intended) with the idea of decking out Echo's environment with toys. She's obnoxious and mouthy and I feel like that's the perfect combination for a horse that needs something to mess with. Either to add stimulation to work her brain in a good way, or it will boggle her mind.

Nose-It - Pricey but the food factor might help keep her interest. Plus looking at my options the price isn't all that bad. I can get a good size food nugget to put in there so it wouldn't be all treats. Something 'healthy'. My previous mare that I owned, Jitterbug, has one and she appears to like it. If anyone read's Jitter's Chronicle of the Horse column we know how particular she is about life so her review and approval is something I don't take lightly. I did own her for 4+/- years after all. Seems to be the USA version of the Elico Equine Decahedron that I know Aoife showed with me a while back. There are also two more roll and food is dispensed toys out there. I'm not sold on these since they don't seem as rolly and she's not always food motivated. There's the Amazing Graze and the Pasture Pal. but neither look like they roll and move as easy. 

Horse Playball - Cheap and small. If she does nothing with a toy I wouldn't feel as much pain if she cared less about it. However it looks like it could be easily flung around or targeted at things when she got going which if that happened I'd feel for anything in a 20 foot radius of her. I've seen her swing empty buckets around. They fly. Possibly not too durable. Schneider's also carries one that's pretty much the same thing and have one 2" bigger. 

There is always the classic Jolly Ball? I feel like this is one that you can just never go wrong with. They've been popular and around for so long. I think Dakota had a small one at one point, if he did, who knows what happened to it.

We learned last week the basic Likit is just pointless with her. I can try it again and just let her destroy it when she has a fit or get her the Boredom Breaker version which looks much more inquisitive. Plus lots of fun flavors I could try with ding-dong Echo. Likit also makes the holder / ball combination or a stall mounted "tongue twister" version. There's also the Pas-A-Fier that can be stall mounted. Anyone ever use this? I've never seen one in action.

The Mega Jolly Ball - This option is most intriguing to me. Mostly because when I think of it, all I picture is this video of a colt being an idiot. I'm sure my 6yo mare could duplicate his charades. I would probably get it with a cover since it since it would hopefully make the thing last longer with her. Then there's the risk of her being a complete idiot and injuring herself. Lots of pros cons and risk, but the potential of a lot of entertainment and laughs for me might be worth it. 

Thoughts? Any other options I'm missing? Suggestions on which to try first? 


  1. I didn't know JB had a t'internet presence! Sadly I don't have an fb account so can't follow her, but would love to hear what she's been up to since you parted ways.

    You know I like that angled treat ball, sadly it only keeps Kika busy for a fraction of the time it should as she is like a dog-with-a-bone when it comes to it and kicks & noses at it until she gets every last treat/carrot/apple piece out of it - as for sharing the ball with the others...forget about it!!

    I haven't tried any other toys for horses, so I'm afraid I'm no use. But I have noticed a lot of jolly ball-type things hanging in stables around my yard for horses on box rest. Sadly we have a lot of injured ponios on my yard of late (fingers crossed mine stay imune); I'll ask them what they recommend and better yet...what to steer clear off.

    1. Actually just thinking after posting...does she have a haynet? I know it is not ideal to have horses eating from a "height" and that it is more natural for them to eat off the floor; but we have haynets with smaller slits for the field which force them to get smaller amounts and work harder to get hay out so they eat slower. Our three have it sussed for the field though, we have them hanging so the swing...supposedly making more work for them to eat - but they are too smart for us and one stands on either side and they work together...once more I'm bested by my equines!
      I shall try to get media footage if you want to see