My horses stall flooded a little during our last thunderstorm and her stall is wet, although I’ve taken out all the shavings. It still smells where she pees and just doesn’t smell as fresh anymore. So, I went to the feed store and bought some lime to spread on her stall floor. While I was putting it down, I breathed in some by accident and it got all over me. I have been coughing somewhat and have a tickle in my throat now. Is lime treatment toxic in any way? I know to put plenty of shavings in my horses stall so she doesn’t ingest it, but can it be toxic to me since I breathed it in?
Lime is calcium carbonate, which also means that it is ground limestone. It makes an effective stall deodorizer, but it does have some drawbacks. One of the most obvious is that it can BURN horses’ skins if they are exposed to much of it. That’s why lime isn’t recommended by most vets any more. Lime can also cause respiratory problems in both people and horses- you should have worn a breathing mask when you were using it. There are less toxic alternatives available, including things like Odo-Ban and Sweet PDZ. Neither of these products causes burns, and they both can be applied to the stall floor without the need for you to wear a breathing mask. Most of the major feed and tack retailers sell these two products- you can go online and order them, or ask at your local store. Another thing to remember about lime is that it does NOT act as a drying agent. It’s just a deodorizer, and nothing more. If your mare’s stall flooded, that’s an indication that you have a drainage problem, and no amount of lime is going to correct this. I think you probably need to have a contractor come and look at the stall, and give you an opinion as to whether or not the floor can be leveled in such a way as to prevent flooding in the future. I would also ask about stall MATS, too. Mats are a wonderful thing. They level the floor, they stop horses from digging holes, they provide extra cushion and traction when it’s wet. But the best part of having mats is that they drastically reduce the amount of bedding you need to use to keep the stall dry and to keep the mare from either getting cast or from suffering hock and elbow sores. Lowered bedding usage means lowered costs, too. Most of the major breeding farms in places like Kentucky and Maryland use stall mats. That helps them save money on bedding, and it also means that the stalls are easier to disinfect and keep clean, which is important when it comes to foaling stalls.
One last little caveat for you before I end: ground limestone powder is an ingredient in most of the comercially sold horse feeds. Purina, Southern States, Manna Pro, Agway, and Blue Seal all use ground limestone powder ( which is lime) in their feeds. That’s the main way they add calcium, in fact. So yes, horses can consume it internally without problems.
Lime, or calcium carbonate, has been used for years as a stall cleaning and deodorizing aid. It works very well, most of the time, but has one serious drawback- it can burn a horse’s skin if they lie on it for extended periods of time. If you use lime, you must bed the stalls deeply to avoid burns and skin problems in your horses. It is also essential to make sure that the barn is ventilated properly- lime is an odor neutralizer, but excessive amounts of it can be irritating to the horse’s lungs. Good luck !!
I have used it often to clean up stalls like yours.
It is not toxic, just dusty. You should be fine, as long as it was just some airborne dust, and not large quantities of lime.
Always use slackened lime. Unslackened lime will heat when water is added.
Someone mentioned sawdust. Too dusty. We always use shavings around horses, and dampen them slightly before the horses are brought in.
Lime… like ground up lime stone in powder form?
We use that at the barn I go to, and we ALWAYS wear a mask for that exact reason.
On the bag, it says it is an irritant, however, before we started to use the masks, I accidentally inhaled a bit. It tickled for a few days, but then it went away.
If you are in discomfort, then I would call a doctor, but for now, just see how it goes.
Fennec- In dairy barns, they put it all over the ground floor. And we also put the lime directly on our horses to cure scratches, use it as medication for heaves, and as a dewormer. It works very well.
You’re only supposed to sprinkle it on the smelly wet spots, not coat the entire stall floor with it.
The horse will be just fine. We use lime on all the stall floors at work.
By ":coat": I mean it shouldn’t look like you’re walking through snow.
its not ":toxic": bit is known to cause respiratory problems. you may want to wear a mask when using it.
Alittle. If it’s flooded put sawdust it should help alot