The Dangers of Feed BucketsWritten by Samantha Goldstein
**Warning! Graphic images**
Feed buckets, though essential for proper horse care, can be extremely dangerous! We all know how horses eat; so excitedly it becomes almost violent, as if they can’t finish their food fast enough. Research indicates that many horses have had multiple unpleasant experiences with these buckets, during feeding or just accidentally during the day.
A few serious injuries from feeding are ripped eyelids and punctured or ripped nostrils. The metal piece that wraps around the bucket isn’t necessarily sharp, nonetheless horses are prone to injury. Minor damage encompasses scraped bodies, tails stuck in buckets, or pieces of broken bucket being stepped on. While horses are turned loose in the pasture, or barn corral, they move around constantly. They may simply stand comfortably, frolic playfully, or back into the fence for a relieving scratch. Sometimes the feed bucket is where your horse positions its body along the fence, giving your horse a nasty gash or trapping the hair of its tail in the metal parts.
A few precautions can be taken to prevent these injuries. The easiest way to save yourself from an expensive vet bill is to simply wrap your feed bucket handle with inexpensive electrical tape. Yes, some buckets come with a rubber stopper near the “problem piece”, but it does absolutely nothing to keep your horse from being injured, because it doesn’t cover the sharp metal loop. Taking the time to wrap the handles will eliminate the risk of your
horse getting stuck or hurt. Another way of preventing injuries is to place the bucket someplace that is easily visible, so you can see if the bucket is damaged or missing. This will prohibit your horse from messing with it without your knowledge.
Horse care is very important, which explains why we spend so much time fussing over our beloved animals and their habitat. Even the simplest of fixes, such as wrapping the feed bucket handles, can go a long way for your horse’s safety. Knowing that even the smallest of things can be a big problem, makes us even better equestrians.