How to Disinfect a Stable
How to disinfect astable by Aqueos
Disease prevention - it’s acrucial aspect of horse care. You follow a strict vaccination programme, wormyour horse regularly, have his teeth checked and his feet trimmed – all aspects of maintaining hishealth and welfare.
Yet many carers overlook a vital part of disease control – disinfecting stables.
Consider for a moment the diseases that can hibernate withinthe walls of your stables. These diseases can not only survive outside livinganimals, but can multiply on moist surfaces, or in organic material. Includedin this group are strangle, salmonella, Equine influenza, Equine herpes virus,Equine viral arteritis, and ringworm.
However, with the right disinfectant, it is possible to winthe war, but you will need to put some work into it.
These bugs love organic matter, so throwing somedisinfectant over a dirty surface just won’t cutit. You are going to have to get down and dirty, and scrub out the stablefirst.
Remove all the bedding, including rubber matting (which willneed disinfecting separately), then get a long yard brush and scrub down allsurfaces, including walls and ceiling, to remove cobwebs and loose dust anddirt. Brush all the debris out, and cover up all the electric fittings withthick plastic and electrical tape.
When as clear as you can get it, hose it down, preferablywith a pressure washer, being very careful with electric fittings. Brush thefloors again, to get rid of all the further muck that the water has broughtdown from the corners.
When your stable is as clean as you can get it, it’s time to disinfect.
Some heavy-duty disinfectants are very effective at killingoff pathogens, but may not be the safest products to use. You’ll have to kit yourself out withprotective gear before applying, which makes you wonder the effect they willhave on your horse.
Instead, choose a disinfectant that is safe to use, yetkills bacteria, fungi and viruses in seconds, as well as inhibiting the growthof mould and fungi. Not only that, but one that goes on working after you’ve applied it, keeping your stablegermfree for longer.
Dilute the disinfectant as instructed, or use aready-prepared product. Some disinfectants now come with a hose fitting at thetop, ensuring that water and product is mixed at the right ratio. Whichevermethod you use, spray or brush your stable thoroughly. Do not forget theinternal and external drains (having cleaned them thoroughly first). Ifspraying the ceiling, make sure your wear protective googles to stop splashesgetting in your eyes, even if using a gentle product like Aqueos.
Long term protection
To offer long-lasting protection, leave the stable to dryand then fill in any big gaps were germs love to fester, using a suitablegrout. Then apply a waterproof light varnish, which will make the surfaces muchmore repellent to dirt, and easier to clean.
Make sure rubber mats are also scrubbed in the same waybefore returning to the stable. Bed down with clean and fresh bedding, beforestanding back to admire your handiwork. Never mind putting the horse back in – you’ll wantto curl up in it yourself!
But when your equine friend does return, you’ll be comfortable in the knowledgethat you have done your bit to add an extra layer of protection to his healthand well-being.