Barn Hack: Clif Bars

The humble Clif Bar turns out to be the perfect medicine-hiding vessel for equines.

Photo by Maria Wachter.

Photo by Maria Wachter.

Clif Bars: while I’m not a big fan of the flavor or texture (if Survivorman, MREs and space food got together and had a baby, I feel it would be a Clif Bar), I do appreciate how easy they are to pack in your saddle bags when you’re too lazy to pack a lunch. They also seem to last forever and do fill you up when you’re starving. Plus, after choking down half of one, I’m normally so over it, I offer the rest to my horse or mule — I’ve never met an equine yet that’s turned one down. They all think they’re the best treats in the world. I’m not sure exactly how healthy they are for them, but I haven’t killed one yet from feeding it a Clif Bar.

Clif Bars also double as wonderful medicine-hiding vessels. You just need to rip off a chuck of a Clif Bar, mold it with your hands, plop in whatever choice of equine-hated poison (pills, powders, bute, banamine) you’re trying to sneak into your horse, fold it over into a ball and poof, you now have the perfect medicine hiding vessel.

Clif Bars are much less messy than mixing medicines with apple sauce and forcing it down their throat with a syringe. The horse thinks he’s getting a treat, so it’s a win-win situation. This is especially good for horses who hate to eat medicine or supplements on their feed.

I’m sure there are some animals out there that might turn their nose to a Clif Bar, but I haven’t met one yet.

Closing pro tip: the peanut butter flavor tends to be a favorite. I try to avoid the chocolate chip flavored ones because I’m not sure exactly how safe chocolate is for equines.

Got a barn hack you want to share? Shout out in the comments section!

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