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What Are The Best Stable Toys For Horses?

Imagine being a horse. You are stuck in a stable for several hours a day, when you are used to being a roaming, free, wild animal. You’re going to get bored, right? Wrong! If you have a selection of toys and things to keep you entertained, that is.

There is a wide variety of things you can do to keep your horse amused during those long hours of stable confinement. Whether yours has to be in for a portion of the day due to yard rules, or because of limiting grass intake, or because of the weather, there is a lot you can do to make those hours pass more quickly.

Best Stall Toys For Horses Reviews

We have discovered a great selection of what are the best stable toys for horses to keep your friend amused for as long as possible, and those things are:

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Toys for Horses

Price

Jolly Pets Amazing Graze, Teal TOP PICK: Horseman’s Pride Treat Toy

A good sturdy treat ball.

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Shires Horse Ball Feeder Blue Shire’s Horse Ball Treat Feeder

A treat ball for the most natural way of feeding.

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Horsemen's Pride 10" Horse Jolly Ball Apple Scented Horseman’s Pride 10” Jolly Ball

A great throwing toy that will entertain your horse.

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1. Horseman’s Pride Amazing Graze Treat Toy Review

Jolly Pets Amazing Graze, Teal

This is a great way of preventing stable boredom and encouraging a calm, laid back attitude in your stabled horse. It’s great for the horse who is a thinker, as the double-ended treat dispensing encourages lateral thinking. It’s a sturdy bit of kit that can withstand some knocks and kicks, and the occasional standing on!

Pros

  • Great quality – This is fantastic for the inquisitive horse that likes to put their foot in things, so to speak, as it is robust enough to stand up to a kicking foreleg.
  • Keeps them occupied – It’s a treat dispenser that requires a bit of work, meaning that it should keep them quiet in the stable for a few hours until they’re allowed out to roam freely again.
  • Ideal for any treat – Whether your horse’s favourite tipple is a carrot, polo or an apple, you can find space in the treat ball for it.
  • Treat opening is big enough to prevent frustration – With some treat balls, horses give up because they can’t get the treats out quick enough. This one allows treats to be removed easily – but not too easily!

Cons

  • Can get mucky – As the horse will be pushing it through the stable, chances are it will pick up a bit of grime along the way.

Recommendation

A good sturdy treat ball, this one should keep your stabled friends occupied for long periods, preventing boredom and door kicking!

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2. Shire’s Horse Ball Treat Feeder Review

Shires Horse Ball Feeder Blue

This is a good treat feeder for either the stabled horse or for in the field. The shape of it makes it easy for them to push it around with their noses, being rewarded with treats along the way. It’s also a great way to encourage the lazy horse to exercise in the field, if they have a tendency to stand around doing nothing.

Pros

  • Incredibly resilient against abuse – This is a very hardy toy, made of strong plastic which can stand up to being pawed, stamped on and kicked!
  • Great for neck stretching – Ideal for making your horse stretch his neck down and along, exercising muscles as he searches for treats.
  • Ideal for field exercise as well as stabling – This treat ball is perfect for any situation, whether in the stable or the field.
  • Perfect for horses that cannot forage – The horse’s natural environment is foraging for food, and this toy allows them to do just that.

Cons

  • Can be difficult to clean inside – Keeping things clean for your horse is paramount. It has been reported that this stable toy is hard to clean out on the inside, meaning it could harbour bacteria.

Recommendation

For a treat ball that encourages the most natural way of feeding possible, choose the Shire’s Horse Ball Treat feeder.

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3. Horseman’s Pride 10” Jolly Ball Apple Scented Review

Horsemen's Pride 10" Horse Jolly Ball Apple Scented

If you’re looking for a fun, engaging and engrossing stable toy, the Horseman’s Pride 10” Jolly Ball is for you. Featuring a handle that can be used for throwing, picking up and dropping, and chasing around the stable or the yard, this toy is perfect for keeping horses entertained, from the youngsters to the old timers. The handle is also convenient for you to hang it up out of the way when it’s not being used!

Pros

  • Will not deflate – Made of sturdy material in order to withstand flying hooves and chomping teeth.
  • Apple scented – This is ideal for those horses who are extra sensory and like a pleasant aroma as well as something good to play with.
  • Will not break the bank – If you are bored of spending money on toys that get destroyed within a week, you will be looking for a toy that is inexpensive, and you have found it with this one!
  • The scent will not fade after a week – If the delicious scent is partly what keeps your horse interested, you will be pleased to hear that this will linger for a long time.

Cons

  • May contain chemicals – If you are looking for an all-natural toy this may not be the option for you, as the scent is artificial and is not actually achieved by rubbing apples all over the toy!

Recommendation

If you have a horse who is on a limited diet so you can’t use a treat ball but you still need something to entertain him in the stable, the Horseman’s Pride throwing toy may be your answer. It can engage the busy brain as they learn to pick it up and drop it, hours of fun!

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Stable Toys For Horses FAQs

1. Do you have to spend a lot of money on the best stable toys for horses?

No! Although it is certainly possible to spend a great deal of money on store-bought toys for your horse, this is not at all necessary. There are many options in homemade toys for horses. Most of them do not require any exotic supplies or special skills.

2. What is the cheapest and easiest DIY horse toy?

Many horses are very happy to kick and throw around a 1 gallon plastic milk jug with a few pebbles inside. This sort of toy may not last a long time, but it is easily and freely replaced.

Just wash out your milk jugs and allow them to dry. Toss in a handful of pebbles and screw the lid on tight. Set it in the middle of your horse’s stall or paddock and see what happens!

3. Can you make a treat dispenser toy for your horse?

Yes! There are a many different options for making treat dispenser toys for your horse. Here are two to get you started:

Make a carrot feeder

Get a sturdy, plastic container such as an ice cream bucket and use a drill or a sharp, hot nail to make some holes about an inch from the top. You’ll want to run some sturdy twine through these holes to make a hanger that you can use to hang the contraption from the rafters of your barn.

Use a very sharp knife or box cutter to cut a few X-shaped holes near the bottom of the bucket. Don’t make them too big because you want to be able to poke carrots through them in a way that keeps the carrots in place.

Tie the contraption securely from the rafters of your barn so that it hangs at about withers level. This way your horse can reach it without having to stretch his neck upwards.

Be sure it is not too close to the wall because you don’t want your horse to be able to pin it against the wall and eat all carrots in one fell swoop. Also be sure that it doesn’t hang so low that he can paw at it and get a hoof caught.

Make a fruit and veggie kebab

This is an easy idea that requires nothing more than a length of sturdy nylon rope, a collection of fruits and veggies and a sharp, pointy object (like a screwdriver).

Tie a big knot in the end of the rope and then string up some of your horse’s favorite fruits and veggies. Some good examples include apples, sweet potatoes, thick pieces of watermelon rind and anything else that is sturdy and favored by your horse.

You’ll need to poke holes through the centers of the fruits to be able to string them on the rope like big beads. Once you have about half a dozen pieces of fruit and veggies in place, just hang your kebab from the rafters as described for the treat bucket above.

Horse boredom buster

Another edible toy you can “make” for your horse is simply a large, round fruit or veggie such as a pumpkin, cateloupe or watermelon. Many horses enjoy kicking these big, edible toys about until they break, and then it is perfectly safe for your horse to eat them!

You may also consider giving your horse a Himalayan salt lick on a rope in addition to his regular salt block. Himalayan salt doesn’t really give your horse all of the minerals he needs, but they are nice addition to your horses diet. The ones that you can hang from the rafters by a rope are both fun and tasty!

4. Can you make a ball toy for your horse?

It’s easy to make a ball toy for your horse using an old hay net and an old sports ball such as a soccer ball or basketball. It’s good for the ball to be a little bit soft.

You can just place the ball in the net and hang it from the rafters of the barn for your horse to bang around a bit. Alternately, follow the detailed instructions in this video to make a combination ball/treat toy.

5. Can you repurpose everyday objects to make stable toys for your horse?

Use your imagination to think of ways that you can create safe fun for your horse with existing items. For example, your horse may enjoy a standard tetherball hung from the rafters of the barn to bang around. As always, be sure that it’s not hung so low that your horse might get tangled up in the cord.

Another object that makes a very popular horse toy is a highway cone. If you’re able to snag one of these, do so and give it to your horse! Highway cones are practically indestructible.

Old sports balls such as basketballs, volleyballs and soccer balls can be fun on their own. Just toss one into your horse’s paddock or stall and it may become his favorite toy.

6. What about soft toys?

Some horses like to throw around old T-shirts, burlap bags and the like. You may wish to try giving them some of these items, but watch carefully to make sure they don’t become entangled.

Another alternative for a soft toy is to take a length of very thick cotton rope and tie big knots in it. Your horse may enjoy throwing this around just as dogs like playing with their rope toys.

Sturdy old stuffed toys can be fun, but be careful to remove any choking hazards such as eyes, buttons, tags and ribbons. Also, be aware that when the toy begins to disintegrate it will make a big mess.


Conclusion

Treat balls and stable toys are a lifesaver for those horses who have to remain confined for a portion of the day, as confinement can make horses grumpy, bored and even aggressive. Yes, a great shampoo for horses or a grooming kit are important parts of overall horse care; however, don’t underestimate horse toys. Toys can encourage your horse to think, to exercise, and stretch muscles that need stretching, and will prevent bad habits like weaving and door-kicking.

If you need a treat toy for the extra-smart horse who needs a bit more to think about, then go for the Horseman’s Pride Amazing Graze Treat Toy. For a toy that is suitable for the stable as well as kicking around the field, the Shire’s Horse Ball Treat Feeder is your best option. For a toy that doesn’t dispense treats but is still hours of fun, try the Horseman’s Pride 10” Jolly Ball Apple Scented.

Sam Ellis
Sam is a founder and editor of Horses & Foals. In personal life he is a proud father of a boy and twin girls. He believes it is more important than ever before to encourage children to experience the joy of horse riding. Horses make as much sense as the sunshine in our world.


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