Poll Recap: Hauling Hay

Of the 1,112 respondents, 514 (46%) said they haul and stack their own hay.

Photo: Thinkstock

Hauling and stacking hay is just one of the many chores that must be completed on a horse facility. Do you haul and stack your own hay? We asked our readers in last week’s online poll on TheHorse.com. More than 1,100 people responded, and we’ve tallied the results

Of the 1,112 respondents, 514 (46%) said they haul and stack their own hay. Some 130 readers (12%) said they haul and stack their own hay with assistance from unpaid help, while another 88 individuals (8%) said they hire someone to help them haul and stack their own hay. Additionally, 250 respondents (22%) said they have their hay delivered or hire someone to deliver and stack it. Another 126 individuals (11%) responded indicated that they board their horse and are not responsible for moving hay, while four respondents indicated that they do not feed their horses hay.

Additionally, more than 140 people left comments about hauling and stacking hay:

Poll Results

Many people commented that they haul and stack hay on their own:

  • “I Used to have it delivered and stacked, but now do it all myself.”
  • “I get in about six tons of 75-pound per bale of grass hay. It keeps me very fit for 66 yearsold!”
  • “Hubby and I haul and stack. I admit he does more lifting than I do.”
  • “We normally haul and unload compressed alfalfa bales on our flatbed trailer. The growers load for us.”
  • “I'm 62 and can still do it! I'm pretty happy with that and I don't need a gym!”
  • “I'm 65 years old and proud to say that I still stack a half-ton of hay bi-weekly—alone! The store loads the truck.”
  • “I haul short loads in early summer.”
  • “I grow hay for myself and to sell.”
  • “My husband and I haul our own hay during hay season. We buy for the entire year.”
  • “My husband and I haul hay and straw in our pickup and stack it ourselves in the barn.”
  • “Yep, my husband and I (haul and stack). It gets hot and is labor intensive, but its so nice when loft is full.”
  • “We bale our own hay, but also have to buy some which we haul and stack ourselves.”
  • “I always haul my hay so I see what my horses eat before it's bought.”
  • “I can get 100 bales on my truck and in gooseneck trailer. It saves $200 over delivery.”
  • “My husband and I haul and stack it.”
  • “I own just one horse. I'm 70 years old and I still haul and stack my bales at least six times a year.”
  • “I just picked up 200 bales out of the filed and stacked it. My hands are a mess!”
  • “We go to the farmer's and load it on the trailer, then bring it home and unload it there.”
  • “My husband and I do the work.”
  • “My husband and I haul and stack together.”
  • “I haul and stack small bales of alfalfa, but pay to have large rounds of grass hauled and stacked.”

Others commented that they haul and stack their own hay, with unpaid help:

  • “My husband, daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren help stack it. I haul it.”
  • “My unpaid help is my non-horse-loving husband, who hauls and stacks our 70-pound bales.”
  • “I call in the husband favors when it's time to move hay!”
  • “My husband hauls and stacks.”
  • “We make our own and family helps.”
  • “We get help from friends and relatives.”
  • “My family helps me! Its a family chore!”
  • “My daughters help stack our hay.”

Some respondents said they hire someone to deliver the hay, but stack it on their own or unpaid help:

  • “Our hay's delivered, but we stack it on our own.”
  • “I have it delivered and we stack it ourselves.”
  • “I have hay delivered, but often buy smaller amounts (200-300 bales) and hand stack them myself.”
  • “We have it delivered by truck loads, then stack it ourselves.”
  • “I get hay delivered and stack it myself with unpaid help. I also help others with stacking their hay.”
  • “My hay is delivered in a stacker and left out side the barn. I have to stack it inside.”
  • “Our hay is hauled to our farm by the baler. We stack with occasional help.”
  • “My hay is actually delivered but I have to stack it in the barn.”
  • “I have the hay delivered, and have unpaid help to stack it.”
  • “I Have it delivered and help stack it.”
  • “I load and stack about 37-40 bales per pickup load with daughter's help...or alone if necessary.”
  • “My friend helps stack hay.”
  • “It is delivered, but the provider and my husband both work to stack it.”

Several people commented that they hired help to deliver and stack hay:

  • “The hay producer delivers and stacks my hay.”
  • “The farm I buy my hay from delivers and stacks it.”
  • “The price we pay for hay includes delivery. We used to pick up and stack our own, but it's too hard with a bad back.”
  • “My hay guy delivers and stacks it in the loft. Bless him!”
  • “I used to pick it up and stack. Age-related stuff has set in so now I pay for delivery and stacking.”
  • “I buy the hay and pay someone to put it in the barn.”
  • “I order hay from a producer/dealer who delivers the hay and stacks it in the barn.”
  • “We buy from the hay farmer who delivers and stacks it in the loft—phew!”
  • “My hay is stacked by the feed store driver.”
  • “I have my own hay delivered on a wagon. I have my field cut, raked, and baled, and unload and stack it.”
  • “I have round bale hay and haylage delivered by a local organic farmer and keep four horses at home.”
  • “The hay delivery company also stacks it. We used to do it ourselves but this is so much easier!”
  • “I use big square bales so my hay supplier delivers and stacks them for me.”
  • “I have it mostly delivered and hope they bring enough help with them to help stack it.”
  • “Although it is delivered, I do help my hay guy stack it.”

Some commented on the equipment they use to stack hay:

  • “We use big round and big square bales so it's all done with a tractor—no hand stacking!”
  • “We recently switched to the cheaper 1-ton bales. Now the stacking has to be done by a machine!”
  • “I purchase by the semi load and a squeeze truck unloads it.”
  • “We have an attachment for our tractor which will pick up eight small square bales. Invaluable!”

Still others left general comments about hauling and stacking hay:

  • “This seems to be part of the horse ownership exercise.”
  • “We put up about 7,500 small square bales, annually, on our farm.”
  • “The older I get, the heavier the bales get!”
  • “I have a great hay source  just down the road. I give him a little extra and he stores it.”
  • “Since I have only one horse I only buy five or six bales at a time and that ensures it stays fresher longer.”
  • “It is good for your health.”
  • “I buy 10-20 bales at a time that average 100-120 pounds each.”
  • “Nothing is more gratifying than accomplishing a hard days work and a job well-done.”

You can find more information about feeding and selecting hay for horses by visiting the “hay” topic page on TheHorse.com, including how hay is made, and how to sample hay for analysis.

This week we want to know: how often do you rinse or bathe your horse? Vote now and share your comments at TheHorse.com!

The results of our weekly polls are published in The Horse Health E-Newsletter, which offers news on diseases, veterinary research, health events, and in-depth articles on common equine health conditions and what you can do to recognize, avoid, or treat them. Sign up for our e-newsletters on our homepage and look for a new poll on TheHorse.com.

About the Author

Jennifer Whittle, TheHorse.com Web Producer

Jennifer Whittle, TheHorse.com Web Producer, is a lifelong horse owner who competes with her Appaloosas in Western performance events. She is a University of Kentucky graduate and holds a bachelor’s degree in Community Communications and Leadership Development, and master's degree in Career, Technical, and Leadership Education. She currently lives on a small farm in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky.

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