The only thing that has been in Dianne Boomhower’s Stuart, Florida barn longer than NibbleNet® hay bags are Arabian horses. “I was among the first to try the NibbleNet,” says Dianne, who has owned and ridden Arabian horses for more than four decades. “That was the summer of 2007. I had two Arabians, Maji and Tor, who were wicked about wasting hay. They basically used it for a litter box.”
She rescued Maji (Majid Barakat) as a yearling and in 2020, the bay gelding (sired by Egyptian Arabian grand champion stallion, Thee Desperado) will turn 18. “My baby. Smartest horse I’ve ever known.” His partner in hay-wasting crime, the “fabulous” and beloved Tor (Aladdinn’s Victor), was laminitic and on a restricted diet.
Her good care included orchard grass hay fed twice daily. Watching it go to waste under their delicate but destructive hooves was frustrating. When another Florida horse owner, Deb Rusden, asked if Dianne would try out her new idea for a hay bag, she thought, why not?
“They took to the NibbleNet instantly! My first impression after using it was, there was no wasted hay. None! Instead of ‘hoovering’ it in half an hour, both horses were still nibbling two or more hours later! Eventually, when they started to realize they almost always had hay, they stopped trying to finish it all at once. They’d eat, meander out to graze or nap, then come back to snack a little more.”
Dianne lost Tor in November 2012 to EPM. She got Maji, in need of a companion, a palomino Miniature Horse named Dandy.
“Maji is an Egyptian Arabian, and has a tiny muzzle. He has received his hay exclusively from a NibbleNet for over twelve years now. His teeth are in perfect condition. He is consistently at a very healthy weight.
“Tor did have a weight issue, so NibbleNet was super beneficial for him. Maji has never had a weight issue. He is extremely active and I sometimes struggle keeping weight on him. I think NibbleNet helps with that as well. I can hang one higher so Dandy can’t reach it, to ensure Maji gets his fair share.”
Because that other tiny muzzle comes with a big appetite: “Dandy is an absolute pig! If he could, he would eat until he exploded. NibbleNet helps me keep his weight under control. Maji likes his NibbleNet so much that I can fill his bag, hang it, then throw a flake on the ground, and he will still go to his NibbleNet instead of the loose hay. He also loves the NibbleGoRound I use daily to gather spilled hay. When it’s full, I hang it up and he enjoys the challenge. Dandy? Not so much. He’d prefer I just hand him the whole bale.”
With over 20 styles and three sizes of squares among its custom webbing choices, horse owners like Dianne can find a bag to fit every situation (and muzzle): “I like that different size holes are available. As an owner, there are times when it’s necessary to adjust the amount of hay I’m feeding, and it’s easy to change to a different bag. I think I have every model. I have bags with large holes, and small holes, for different times of year depending on pasture growth. I’ve used them for over a decade and still have some of those first NibbleNets, still in usable condition! Maji can destroy a Jolly Ball in minutes flat but has never damaged a NibbleNet.”
“This is the best way to feed hay. Very little waste, mimics grazing behavior, easy to control how much hay your horse gets, keeps them busy longer. I recommend NibbleNets not only for Arabian horses but all types of animals. I’ve fed goats from NibbleNets, too!”
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