The effect of design, and management regime on the respirable particle concentrations in 2 different types of horse stables

Moore-Colyer, Meriel and Auger, E-J (2014) The effect of design, and management regime on the respirable particle concentrations in 2 different types of horse stables. In: Proceedings of Equi-meeting Infrastructures Conference, October 2014, Lion D’Angers. France.

Full text not available from this repository. (Request a copy)


Respirable particles (RP) of <5 µm in size, found in the stable environment have a major negative impact on respiratory problems in horses and can cause the debilitating allergic condition known as Recurrent Airways Disorder (RAO). The level of dust is influenced by the management regime, e.g. choice of bedding, forage, ventilation rate and stable management activities. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between respirable dust in the breathing zone (BZ) of the horse and the general stable zone (SZ) under different management regimes, in either American Barns or straight-block stables. Ten different American barns (housing 38 individual stables) and 34 individual stables in 9 different straight block designs were used for data collection. Samples of respirable dust were collected from the area close to the horse’s nose (breathing zone ) and the middle of the stable (stable zone) using a cyclone personal air sampler (Munro personal sampler AS 200) for each management regime of either 1. Steamed hay and shavings; 2. Dry hay and shavings; 3. Haylage and straw; 4. Dry hay and straw. Stables were sampled between 15.00 and 16.00 during quiet periods in the yards. RP were captured on nitrocellulose membrane filter papers, which were fixed with triacetate and RP counted using a microscope and eyepiece graticule. Results were calculated per litre of air and the data analysed using a Wilcoxon Matched-Pairs test (Genstat 15) with significant differences between means set at P<0.05. The lowest respirable particle concentrations (< 360 RP/l air) for both stable designs across both zones were found when the management regime was shavings and steamed hay. Straw and dry hay produced the most amount of dust in the SZ and the BZ of 6250 and 5079 RP/l air in American Barns respectively and was significantly greater than the 2901 and 942 RP/l air measured from the straight stables. In contrast, straw and haylage produced significantly more respirable dust in both zones in straight stables compared with American barns. Shavings and dry hay produced significantly more dust in the BZ than in the SZ in both stable types, while straw and haylage produced more dust in the SZ compared with the BZ across both stable designs. Forage and bedding type have major impacts on RP concentrations in horse stabling. Shavings and steamed hay produce the lowest level across both zones and stable types and thus is the preferred management regime for stabled horses. Dry hay and bedding on straw significantly increased the dust in both the BZ and SZ, particularly in American Barn systems. Using dry hay and or straw cannot be recommended as a suitable management regime for stabled horses.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Lecture)
Keywords: Dust, respirable particles, stable, Recurrent Airways Disorder (RAO)
Divisions: Equine Management and Science
Depositing User: Ms Susan Baker
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2020 10:52
Last Modified: 24 Oct 2022 11:28

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item