Roberta Sheffield: Cardboard horse bedding review

Roberta Sheffield: Cardboard horse bedding review

The following blog post was written by one of our fantastic brand ambassadors Roberta Sheffield, Canadian Para-Equestrian Paralympic Team member and dressage rider.

Back in the mists of time, I used a prototype cardboard bedding so when I spoke to Nick and Vicky of Best Animal Bedding and they hinted at sponsoring my horses I leapt at the chance! I remembered cardboard making a fabulous bed but, to be honest, in the two decades since the last time I had forgotten just how good.


Obviously, there are the big reasons for cardboard – it’s highly absorbent, dust-free and a sustainable product. However I want to tell you about the little ‘ah-ha” awesomenesses that have become apparent over the last month.

One of the first things I noticed was the BAB cardboard bedding doesn’t stick to my socks and fill up my shoes. Whether it’s my socks full of barley straw needles biting my ankles after mucking out or taking my shoes off at the end of the day to unleash half a bag of shavings onto the hallway carpet, it’s such a pleasure to just wear socks in my shoes. And my vacuum cleaner thanks me for it!

It must be nicer for the horses to have a bedding that doesn’t weave itself into their rugs. I can use fleeces and Thermatex rugs after bathing without “the fear”. If you know, you know!

Because BAB cardboard bedding is SO dust free, the horses stay cleaner. They don’t have that fine dusty film in their coats, the roots of the horse’s manes and tails.

I’m a stickler for not brushing tails more than absolutely necessary, to preserve the fragile long hair strands. Fairuza has very expensive tail extensions for competing as Mother Nature was slacking when she handed out her tail.  With BAB bedding we don’t need to comb or brush her tail most days (risking loosening the extra bits or breaking her own precious locks) for her to look presentable. The cardboard shreds don’t stick in her tail, a quick shake and any pieces have gone. Same goes for when she’s had a naughty little roll after I’ve braided her mane!

Obviously I can’t make any veterinary claims but I have found that the super clean BAB cardboard bedding is brilliant for a sensitive-skinned horse like Fairuza. The virgin cardboard has no sticky tape or staples in it and minimal chemical coatings. The cardboard has minimal dyes to rub off and stain her white legs. It keeps her skin and hooves so dry and there are no resins, pesticides, herbicides or sap to irritate her. 

I won’t lie, I was concerned that the cardboard would squish into a kind of manky papiermache in her feet, becoming a breeding ground for thrush, white-line disease and other nasty stinky tootsie situations. However, even in this recent horrendously wet weather, my horses’ feet are drier and fresher than they were before. My farrier is super happy.

My mucking out has been revolutionised! The yard sweeping time has been halved as the cardboard flakes don’t blow around like other bedding. And the bedding doesn’t ball up in the horses’ feet, ready to be deposited on that freshly swept concrete.

The cardboard shreds hold together like a jigsaw so you don’t need such a deep layer for it to stay under the horse and they don’t migrate under the loose rubber mats as much as other bedding has done even when my young horse is enjoying playing around in his bedroom.  And, of course, there’s less dust flying about to make me sneeze and wheeze as well. 

There are so many little bonuses to switching over to Best Animal Bedding, many I hadn’t discovered until the beds were down and we were living our new cleaner, cardboard stable life.

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