Horse stall fronts come in many shapes, sizes and designs and are available from many manufacturers. Each type has it’s own distinct advantages and disadvantages. It is key that you understand these differences when selecting which style of front is best for the needs of you and your horse, or the horse(s) you may be caring for.
The simplest and most commonly used design on the market today is the sliding door. A simple door placed over the front of the enclosure, it is typically made out of aluminum and placed on runners to facilitate easy opening and closing. The doors are typically made of solid metal on the lower half, so as to ensure they can withstand hoof blows and keep bedding from being accidentally knocked out. The upper half is usually a grate or other see-through design which permits easy viewing of the horse.
A more traditional design known as the “Dutch Door” is also used, primarily in older barns or barns constructed in a traditional manner. A “Dutch Door” consists of two small doors, each one half the height of the opening. The doors are strong and reinforced so that they may take the weight of the horse should the horse lean on them or kick them. This design permits the stall to have a firm wall when the doors are closed, and the use of two “half doors” makes it easy for a caretaker to open the top door to give the horse food and water, without permitting the horse a means of escape.