19 Jun An ounce or two of Silver is worth a pound of cure
You ask: what’s the big deal about stall mats? Well, it is a big deal from the point of comfort, bio-security, and cost if your horse spends any amount of time in their stall or in a trailer. Mats act as a barrier between the stall flooring – be it dirt, wood, concrete, or gravel – and your horse. Good trailer mats provide cushioned support and reduce the vibration during transport. However, stall mats are not created equal.
North America has been slow to employ the use of silver with horse health. SilverTec™ Therapeutic Stall Mats are the first mat in North America to use colloidal silver embedded into the top surface. While silver has been used to fight infection for thousands of years (Hippocrates first described its antimicrobial properties in 400 BC) it’s only recently the precious metal is being incorporated into manufactured products such as socks, surgical wrappings, and air filters to name a few.
Silver is a natural antibacterial which safely destroys bacteria, fungi, and yeast – all of which can cause infections. Silver ions work by making the cell membrane more permeable and by interfering with the metabolism necessary for respiration of these microbes.
“We’ve had therapeutic mats in our previous barn,” says Linda Filanti, Medicine Hat, Alberta. “But I much prefer the SilverTec™ mats in our new barn. These mats are easier to clean, lock together tightly to prevent seepage, are super easy to cut and fit into a stall, and the silver gray color really brightens up the floor area.”
SilverTec™ Therapeutic Stall Mats are 25 mm thick, interlocking on three sides, made of a therapeutic non-permeable foam rubber, are non-slip, light at 35 lbs each, and have a 5 mm colloidal silver surface layer embedded to control microbial growth and staining. The mats are made with an embossed bottom surface that lifts the mat off the ground and allows water and dirt to wash out from underneath, and provide airflow.
Good mats are an investment in horse health and barn economics. The concussion support provided by therapeutic mats is an important factor in leg health, and anytime we can add a natural antimicrobial into barns – we’re all winners through the associated reduction in bleaches and cleaners which off-gas into the air which handlers and horses breathe.
From a cost basis – there is up to a 60 percent reduction in bedding used in stalls which have non-permeable mats. The bedding simply absorbs the urine – and the mats provide a comfortable surface for standing or laying down. The addition of silver to stall mats takes barn biosecurity up a notch and gives new meaning to the age-old expression, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”