Letters: 10/03

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Hoskins Waterers Can Go Inside
In reference to your August 2003 article on automatic waterers, you stated our waterers were “outside use only.” This is incorrect. Our 26” high waterers can also be placed inside the horse’s stall.

We have been building waterers since l966. Our horse models are the HC7-26 and the HC14-26, both designed for use inside stalls and in outside pens. The HC7-26 is 17 inches x 14 inches for single-stall installation. The HC14-26 is 28 inches x 14 inches for installation between two stalls. Our waterers are very sturdy and replacement parts are seldom needed. The valve and heater are easily accessible when needed for adjustment or repair. The bowls are stainless steel and easily cleaned.

-Richard Doffin, Sr.
President, Hoskins Mfg.
Nebraska

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Skin Disease
I wanted to thank you for the extremely comprehensive, useful article in the August issue on skin disease in horses.

My new Paint mare had developed an area on her neck that was so sensitive she flinched when I touched it.?? The hair fell out, and the skin was red and irritated. I had the vet out, no diagnosis, and the cream she prescribed didn’t work, either.?? The problem kept getting worse.

After reading your article, I started using the recommendations for sweet itch. I saw improvement almost immediately.??Now the area is regrowing hair.??

This is an article I will keep referring to.?? There were a lot of good tips and product recommendations that I have found over the years through a lot of trial and error.?? How wonderful to have all the information gathered into one place!

-Karen Havis
North Carolina

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Installing Horse Waterers
We??just read your August 2003 article on horse waterers and thought that??we would offer our experiences with automatic horse waterers and their installation.

We were tired of filling buckets and throwing away half the water each day in our stalls, and we were looking for a better way.?? When we built our new barn, we ran half-inch plastic water line underground to each stall and ran a standpipe up in the corner opposite of the feed tubs.??

We placed foam-waterline insulation around the standpipe and then slid a two-inch plastic pipe around that to provide some protection against kicking.?? We mounted the automatic waterers on the walls and used half-inch unions to connect them to the water line.

We were also concerned that we wouldn’t know if our horses were drinking or not, as the waterers were always full.????We solved that problem by ordering water-use meters from a plumbing-supply company.?? These are the same type of meter used by water companies to record water use to residences.????We took the supply line and made a manifold to supply each stall and mounted the meters vertically on the tack room wall.??

Now, in the morning and evening,??we take a clipboard, record the readings, subtract the previous reading from the current reading and??we can tell to the tenth of a gallon how much water each horse drinks.??

The waterers have worked well for four years. However, some of the galvanized bowls rusted so badly that??we replaced them with the enameled version, which seem to work better for us.

To clean these waterers, we take a medium-sized plastic scrub brush and a small plastic tub and scrub the units every other day, spilling the water into the tub and then draining that down the drain in the wash rack.

This system has worked well for us.?? We live in Western Washington State and we have only had the waterers freeze over once on us.?? If??we lived in a location where??we had to worry more about freezing,??we’d place??heat tape between the waterer and the mounting bracket away from the horses.??

-Dave and Marla Hamilton Lucas
Washington

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Stallions Article On The Money
I wanted to commend your August article about stallions. Having stallions is a joy, a headache, an adventure and a test for your patience.?? They’re little boys, trying to maintain their cool and still be the kingpin.??

Just the other day, my stallion, a Percheron and Quarter cross, decided he wanted to visit everyone in the pasture.?? In his zeal to get to the mares, he forgot to calculate his size in relationship to the distance in the wire fencing.??Caught — and of course way too cool to rectify his mistake — there he stood in the fencing.??The other horses knew he was busted and stayed their distance while I??calmly freed him and returned him to his own pen.

How could I be mad'?? No harm done.??He just wanted to be close to his herd.?? He obeyed me and allowed me to put to his halter on. I untangled the wire from around his legs and the world was perfect once again.

Thanks for the article. Now the rest of the world knows how much “fun” stallions can be.??

-Sabrina Zackery
Infinity Ranch
Nevada