Bankings - Yes or No?

A horse can get cast while in the stable. This happens when a horse lays down or rolls too close to the stable wall. Being too close to the stable wall can restrict the horse’s movement, which causes them to become cast. The horse will be unable to re-position themselves or get back up.

Recently, we asked our customers, do bankings in the stable help prevent a horse becoming cast? If so, what type of bedding do you use in your stable?

Here are a few of our customer responses:

'I think if a horse/pony is going to get itself stuck it will get stuck. Banks being there can help my being dug out from under a cast horse creating room, but it’s all personal preference and opinions. I’ve banked my stables for as long as I can remember (I’m 30) and never had problems.'

'From my own experience, I think banks do help prevent a horse from getting cast, or at least prevents them from more injuries if they were to get cast with no banks. I prefer to keep my mare on straw, however she’s currently on shavings as a few months ago she decided her straw was nicer than her hay so she ate that instead.'

'No, it just makes the stable even smaller probably making it more likely for them to be cast.'

'Mine has really thick straw banks that are solid......... she got cast a couple of months ago...... she now uses them as a pillow......'

We have researched some alternative methods to bankings in the stable that have been recommended to use alongside or instead of bankings. Let's see if you agree with any of the below: 

  1. Fix a wooden batten or rubber anti-cast strip around the stable walls, roughly one metre from the floor. If a horse becomes cast the wooden batten or anti-cast strip enables the horse to push themselves over and back into the centre of the stable safely. Some even believe it is the most efficient anti-cast mechanism.
  2. The use of a tie stall. A tie stall is when the horse is tied when in the stable, so they cannot lay down. There are some modern tie stall systems, which gives the horse more freedom to move and lay down, just not next to the wall.
  3. Adding grips to the stable wall; this is best used alongside banking. The most recommended way to add grip to the wall is by attaching rubber matting to the wall.
  4. While in the stable, a horse can wear an anti-cast surcingle. The anti-cast surcingle is designed to prevent the horse from rolling over. It would not work if the horse decided to lay down with their feet and nose towards the wall.

Overall, there are pros and cons to all of the above. Every horse is different and what might work for one horse may not work for another horse. This has been a hot topic recently in the equestrian world and it has been discussed worldwide. We wanted to research into this further and ask our customers what they prefer to use in their stables.