A research study carried out at Hartpury University’s Equestrian Performance Research Centre has looked at the absorbency of five different types of equestrian bedding, to establish which material provides the most absorbency. With horses spending more time in their stables it has become increasingly important that the environment they are being kept in is healthy and clean. Absorbent bedding is a key part of this.
Led by Becky Tinnion, a final year BSc (Hons) Equestrian Sport Science student, with the help of Hartpury Senior Lecturer Dr Hieke Brown, the study set out to compare the effectiveness of different bedding types including Nedz Advance, Nedz Pro, Nedz Original, traditional straw and wood pellets.
To compare the absorbency the five different beddings underwent the same rigorous method for the experiment, which was repeated three times within a seven-day period.
The results of the study showed that the Nedz Advance bedding had the highest absorption rate when water was added to the sample, with little to no liquid left in the collecting tray after 12 hours. This was compared to the wood pellets which still had a small amount of liquid in the tray.
Traditional straw fared the worst with liquid running through the bedding quickly, pooling in the collecting tray. Nedz Pro and Nedz Original had a medium amount of liquid in the tray, although the top layer of both bedding types remained dry at the end of the 24-hour period showing the liquid to be drawn downwards.
The research report proposes that the absorbency of Nedz Advance is likely due to the physical structure of the bedding material, being a dense straw pellet with a lower surface area, which allows for quicker absorption of water compared to other formats such as chopped straw.
Dr Hieke Brown, who is also Programme Manager for the BSc Equine Science degree, said: “Projects like this provide fantastic opportunities for our students to gain experience from real-world activities, whilst making valuable connections ready for their career. Becky did a brilliant job completing the research. The project was undertaken under practical conditions in her yard and the results have proven to be both hugely interesting and valuable.”
“We pride ourselves on the quality and extent of our industry research partnerships and are grateful to Nedz for trusting us with this project. We look forward to developing this research partnership in future,” she added.
“Research like this is incredibly important in understanding different bedding types and how they can help to maintain a clean, dry and safe environment for horses, something we at Nedz pride ourselves on” said Lisa Cooper from Nedz. “Our Advance product was developed to be extremely absorbent, so it is great to see the results have proven this.”
Absorbency recently topped a survey by Nedz as the most important factor that horse owners look for when choosing bedding for their equines. It is well-known that horses in damp stables are more likely to develop conditions such as thrush, with damp bedding also being linked to the development of dermatitis in horses as well as respiratory issues. With that in mind horse owners can rest assured that Nedz offers the best absorbency for their equines.