First off, I want you to know that I have no affiliation with this device.
(I have no affiliation with anything which kinda bums me out since I spend so much money ‘testing’ equine items… but anyway, I wanted you to know that I have no affiliation with this company either.)
Funny, I said the same thing! I thought the Porta-Grazer was a feeder for your trailer.
But, it isn’t just that…
To me, it is a perfect way to slow feed my pastured horses.
To others, it can be a way to slow feed a Cushings horse, a hay saver, a food soaker, a traveling water and grain tub, a pellet slow-feeder, a stall slow-feeder or the perfect way to keep a horse on a diet and happy.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
It is an ingeniously simple design – a smaller plastic barrel with handles. The plastic insert has holes cut into it. The horse cannot remove the insert, so he feeds slowly through the holes. The Porta-Grazer holds 25lbs of hay or 50lbs of pellets.
If it tips over, the horse can right it.
They can’t break it.
It is easy to take with you wherever you go and the portable version has a lid that is also a mini water trough.
I saw these for the first time at the Horse Expo here in Sacramento.
The manufacturer (and owner) is local so he and his wife were manning the booth. (Here is the website.)
Y’know when you walk past a booth and everyone is clamoring around so YOU want to clamor around? Well, that is what was happening in this booth. EVERYONE was cramming and pushing to see this device, including me.
I ended up speaking to the wife because the husband had an audience of about 35 and she was standing alone. So, I sidled up to her while watching the husband demonstrate to his captivated audience…
The wife told me that her husband designed it all by himself. They’ve had horses all their lives and they knew there was a need for an easy, affordable and simple slow-feeder. So, he went into the garage and worked on this, literally, night and day until he had it right.
After much thought and revision, his final design is the PORTA-GRAZER. She glowed when she told this story… she was very proud and admiring of her husband. I wanted to pick her up and kiss her.
Horses are grazing animals designed to graze with a lowered head and to eat small amounts continuously.
Unfortunately most horses don’t eat in this manner. Many are fed a large amount two or three times a day (that is what I do). So often, horses will gobble up the entire meal in a short time and then wish and anticipate the next meal all day.
Wishing and hoping leads to many bad habits borne out of boredom like cribbing, weaving, wood chewing and food aggression. But, worse than the behavioral issues are the physical issues – no constant motion while looking for food, can lead to colic. Horses are meant to walk around all day and graze. The walking aids digestion of their small, continuous nibbles throughout the day.
‘Slow feeding’ is more in tune with how equines are meant to eat. Although the Porta-Grazer doesn’t force a horse to move while eating, they can play with it while eating. And, for sure it restricts how quickly they can eat. Any dirt and sand that may be in the hay will naturally fall to the bottom of the barrel – instead of inside your horses’s gut. The horses are eating on a clean, parasite-free surface.
If you have an insulin resistant horse or an allergic horse and you must soak your hay, the Porta-Grazer is perfect with a drain spigot!
For stalled horses, the Porta-Grazer is a dream come true. It will give them hours of food and something to do as well as keep their food from mixing with everything else in the stall. And for the owner, less hay ruined by being mixed up in urine and manure is wonderful! Win-Win.
Here is a video I grabbed from the website. It shows the Porta-Grazer design and then it shows horses using it. I liked the way the manufacturer tipped all the Porta-Grazers over so the horses had to right them. Good to know! Here is the link.
My horses are not stalled, but they don’t have any grass in their pastures half of the year.
They never leave any grain uneaten, no matter, so I never waste grain or pellets.
But, their hay gets trampled, blown away, stuck in mud and pooped upon.
This Porta-Grazer would be a benefit to me in so many ways but ‘no waste’ is HUGE with the way hay prices are around here. I can just imagine how wonderful it would be to put a few flakes of hay into a Porta-Grazer during a wind and rain storm – and know that all if it will be eaten and not lost to Mother Nature.
And, to walk outside and not have 10 sets of eyes begging me for food in-between mealtimes would be so wonderful…
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