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The guy which takes my sawdust for his horses doesn't want the great deal of walnut shavings we've accumulated of late. But I was wondering, it the whole walnut and horses thing real or myth? And does anyone know if it is ok for dogs?
The problem is called laminitis - Google has it. No myth.
Apparently it affects hooved animals, so dogs should be OK.
I have supplied local horse farms with shavings for years, but always separated out the Walnut so as to not let any of it go to the barns.
Yes, definitely real, as David states. If you knowingly disregard the horse owner's warning, you are risking a law suit, a big one. At our plant, we occasionally run Walnut and we take active measures to make sure any Walnut chips and sawdust get thrown in the dumpster and not into our barn bedding.
Same here. We don't run much walnut but when we do we pull the trailer out and put the dumpster in its place.
There is a blueberry farmer that takes my shavings and dust, he will not take walnut .
Same here. Walnut has a higher toxicity than most woods. We seldom run walnut but when we do we always keep the walnut shavings separate - we make sure walnut shavings never go for horses...which is what all of our shavings go for.
In fact, we ran a small walnut order this week...and i ended up with a nose bleed the next morning. Has happened before. Whatever is in that wood is not good for people (or horses).
Nice wood when its all done - but not the nicest for working with.
Walnut has an herbicide in the wood and bark which is why the area around the tree is free of grasses, etc. So, generally, walnut is not good for mulches and soil amendments. This applies to butternut as well, as the two are closely related.
Now that my neighborhood has changed from raising horses to building vinyl villages, I use most of my shavings as mulch for the 400 trees or so I have planted.
But since Walnut likes to make it hard on neighboring plants, I use it for footpaths and no weeds will grow.
I did not know that about Butternut, though. I have a job in that coming up, so will take care.
A buddy of mine took some for his chickens. His chickens quit laying eggs. Cleaned up the walnut, chickens back to laying eggs.
Walnut contains Juglone which is a natural herbicide. It causes allergic reactions in humans and animals, and can lead to high levels of toxicity and result in death. Juglone is a primary ingredient in Atrazine. Google Juglone or read about it on Wikipedia. After many years of woodworking (30ish) and building a new custom shop I just learned I am highly allergic to Juglone. Best thing to do with walnut dust/shavings is to bag it and burn it. Small trashbags make it into a nice bundle you can toss in a woodburner and it burns slow.
I always segregate my black walnut shavings and dust from all my other scrap - I give the non-walnut chips to vegetable farmers and walnut will kill any plant in the deadly nightshade family.
I really like walnut and work a lot of it, but care must be taken with the green wood and all of the chips and dust.
All the above agree with my experience over the last 30 years. Ranchers tell me that the horses will munch on the shavings when they are fresh and it gives them colic but the more frequent problem is when they urinate on the walnut shavings and then stand in them it makes their hooves sore and infected and absorb toxicity into their bloodstream.
We work mostly Walnut, and in light of this discussion, I plan on shipping all our shavings to North Korea.
I find the lawsuit claims whenever this comes up funny. At least around me, people take chips at their own risk. I dont offer them. I dont sell them. I tell them what is in them, what we use, what we dont use. After that its on them.
I read some places on the internet (so it must be true! hehe) that the problems with walnut are NOT there with KD walnut sawdust - just raw wood sawdust.
We've left it in the mix that gets thrown in the gard and have not haa any problems that I am aware of, but I've not tested it in a controlled fashion.