I received my first Porta-Grazer near the end of November. I purchased the XL size with 4″ holes (the biggest size openings) for Phoenix because he was spreading hay all over his stall and making it hard to clean all while wasting a bunch of the hay. I didn’t want to limit his hay. One of the best parts of horses at home is being able to offer them free choice hay and having them get over that crazy angst of waiting for the next meal.
The instructions that came with the Porta-Grazer say you should offer regular hay in addition for 5 to 10 days to allow the horse to acclimate. Interestingly enough, Phoenix quickly began choosing the hay in the Porta-Grazer over the hay I had put on the floor. Honestly it was shocking how quickly he figured it out and just happily ate away. I will say the biggest surprise to me what just how much waste it actually saved. Normally cleaning P’s stall used an entire muck tub before getting the Porta-Grazer. I now use one muck tub to clean both stalls most days. That’s with the horses in for roughly 12 hours a night currently. Instead of driving the poop out to the pile ever other day, I do it ever third day. If that isn’t awesome enough, it saves me so much time cleaning since I’m not trying to save good hay that’s all mixed in either.
After that experiment went so well I started getting annoyed that Stampede had hay everywhere at one end of his mega stall. Now Stampede is usually a pretty neat horse who believes in pooping only along the back wall and in the one corner (unless he’s feeling traumatized by something in life) so cleaning and hay weren’t usually an issue. However I usually had to pick the hay off of the shavings and pile it up in order to even things out which meant I often tried to figure out how much hay he would eat and not give him much extra. So a couple of weeks after getting Phoenix going on it, I removed the Porta-Grazer from his stall and put it in Stampede’s to make sure he would use it. We all know Stampede is special and he certainly could have decided to refuse to use it. However, the morning after his first night with it, he had eaten a ton out of the feeder and a bunch of hay remained stacked in the corner.
So right away I was back online shopping for one for Stampede. While looking around I realized that while I had thought the XL size was the biggest (because XL), the Corner size is actually bigger, and also totally usable on the wall or corner. So Stampede and his large appetite for hay got the bigger size feeder, also with the 4″ openings.
The corner version is definitely my favorite of the two, not just for the size, but also the ease of lining up the pan to pull it out. Lastly, because the corner size has 8 openings and the XL only 6. Amount of openings depends on the size of the openings for each feeder.
Here are some pictures of my final installations of the feeders in the stalls. I used eye hooks, plastic chain, and the same lockable carabiners I use for my outside hay feeders. I read something about a horse that got a carabiner through its lip – there were pictures – and I don’t need that experience.
In the above picture you can see just inside the handle opening there is a triangle/arrow. You line that up with the hole in the pan pictured below in order to be able to pull the pan out.
Lastly I wanted to show just how much the horses love their feeders. This hay is what remained when Stampede got his corner feeder on December 22nd. He will not eat it. He just walks over to his Porta-Grazer and starts munching instead.
Obviously you can tell I love these feeders. I wish I had bought them sooner but the price tag really backed me off, especially when I was unsure if my horses would use them. Honestly frustration with cleaning Phoenix’s stall is what finally pushed me over the edge. After getting the first one my husband told me to just buy another because the difference was so obvious. This may have been slightly self serving on my husband’s part since he often drives the poop (I work the gate – teamwork) and he also has to listen to me complain and rush around being late to go ride Maestro. Regardless, these things have greatly improved my barn life and the horses also seem to love them.
The XL size feeder runs $259 and the Corner feeder $319. I paid $38 and $53 for shipping to Michigan respectively. I did find via google a $25 off code that I used.