Poll Recap: Water Sources for Horses

Poll Recap: Water Sources for Horses

Of the 1,476 respondents, 643 (44%) indicated their horses have access to a stock tank for water, while 414 (28%) said their horses have individual water buckets.

Photo: Photos.com

Keeping your horse supplied with a supply of fresh, clean water is important, especially during the summer. In last week’s poll, we asked our readers what water sources their horses had access to. More than 1,450 people responded, and we’ve tallied the results!

Of the 1,476 respondents, 643 (44%) indicated their horses have access to a stock tank for water, while 414 (28%) said their horses have individual water buckets. Another 281 respondents (19%) replied that their horses have access to automatic water fountains, and 109 people (7%) said their horses have access to natural water sources, such as ponds and streams. The remaining 29 respondents said their horses have access to “other” water sources not listed in the poll.

Additionally, more than 70 people left comments about their horses’ water sources:

Poll Results

Many people commented that their horses had access to multiple water sources:

  • “My horses have a stock tank in the pasture and buckets when in the stalls.”
  • “My horses have waterers in paddocks and buckets in stalls.”
  • “I have a 100-gallon tank, cleaned regularly, for three horses (in the pasture), and buckets in stalls.”
  • “My horses have a stock tank with a float (in the pasture) and auto-waterers in stalls.”
  • “My horses have two sources available so they always have access to clean water.”
  • “My horses have pails in their in-and-out stalls and a stock tank in the indoor ring/drylot combo. They're never without water.”
  • “My horses have a stock tank in pasture and buckets in stalls.”
  • “My horse has a stock tank and a heated bucket in winter. He also loves slush water in the winter.”
  • “While there is a small lake in the pasture I keep their stall buckets and a large metal tank full.”
  • “My horses prefer drinking from the stock tanks in their runs, but they also have auto-waterers in stalls.”
  • “Mine have all of the above available depending on where they are.”
  • “My horses have a tank, individual buckets, and their favorite: a clean muck bucket.”
  • “My Standardbred has the option of drinking from fresh water troughs or drinking from the pond.”
  • “I have one horse on automatic waterer and two on individual buckets to monitor water intake.”
  • “My horses have stock tanks outside and buckets inside, and don't forget the occasional mud puddle.”
  • “I keep both in the stalls in case the automatics go out. The same in their outside turnouts.”
  • “Both automatic water inside the walk-in area in the barn and a stock tank outdoors.”
  • “My horse has an auto-waterer in his paddock and two buckets in his stall.”
  • “He's a bit spoiled so has Nelson Waterers in his stall and all his pastures, plus two hanging buckets.”

Others commented on their stock tank use:

  • “I'd rather fill up outside tanks each day so I can see how much (they drink) and (be sure) it is fresh.”           
  • “We built an awning over the tank. It keeps the water really cool here in South Carolina in the summer.”
  • “My horses have a stock tank with constant water flow for freshness”
  • “My two horses and five sheep have a 50-gallon tank that's checked and cleaned often, and heated if needed.”
  • “I have three stock tanks, one per pasture, and a small duck pond fed from a well that they sometimes use, too.”
  • “Since most of my horses are out to pasture, a stock tank is easiest. When I need to monitor intake, I go to individual buckets."
  • “I have a 50-gallon tanks in each pen or pasture.”
  • “My horses' tank is under shade with a small pump moving the water for mosquito control.”
  • “My horse has access in his paddock to an individual water trough.”
  • “My horses have a large tub that's scrubbed and refilled regularly.”

Several said their horses had access to water buckets in various shapes and sizes:

  • “One horse, one large bucket”
  • “My horses have shared buckets in their pasture.”
  • “My horses use individual buckets and drums."
  • “I use large muck buckets”
  • “My horses have several larger communal buckets.”
  • “Our horses have buckets in their stalls, but again, we're lucky--we have a stream running through the turnout”
  • “My horses used to have access to natural sources but both became ill. My vet advised me to only use buckets for water.”
  • “In the paddock my horses have one to two clean muck buckets; they have individual buckets in their stalls.”
  • “My two have their own large barrel-sized buckets.”
  • “My horses have city water changed daily in buckets.”
  • “I have two 20-gallon buckets for three horses.”
  • “I used to use a stock tank. I'm down to one horse so I use a clean, new muck bucket.”
  • “My horse's water buckets are freshened two to three times per day.”
  • “My horses have a 16-gallon water bucket and a heated 16-gallon bucket in cold weather.”
  • “We use water buckets to monitor intake. All buckets are cleaned daily to protect water freshness and palatability”

Some people described their horses' water containers:

  • “Here in Arizona, our 'buckets' are 30-gallon half-barrels.”
  • “My horses drink from cast iron claw-foot bathtubs.”
  • “We use 55-gallon poly barrels.”
  • “My horses have a bathtub that gets dumped and rinsed daily.”
  • “I used an old claw-foot bathtub.”
  • “I have three 50+-gallon plastic drumsper pasture.”
  • “We use 25-gallon barrels which are dumped, rinsed, and refilled daily; in the Arizona heat the horses drink a lot!”

And a few people shared their horses' “other” water sources:

  • “My horses get fresh ground water pumped by a windmill.”
  • “My horses drink cistern water.”
  • “My horses' water comes directly from a dug well.”

You can find additional information about water sources for horses, how to keep horses hydrated, and other resources about water for horses at TheHorse.com!

This week we want to know: How did you begin using your current veterinarian? 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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