The second question is easy to answer. You need a collapsible bucket so your horse isn’t trading spit with every other horse on the ride. Who knows which horse is healthy and which is in the process of coming down with something horrible that can be passed to your horse? Even the most careful owner can’t know what’s coming before it shows clinical signs.
The first question — where do we get collapsible buckets? — is a little more difficult. Here is what I know.
Camper’s Village has a 2 US gallon bucket for $10.00. Nice price, but it’s only 9″ across at the top. Will your horse use it? (Maybe, if you want to get this one, you need to practice ahead of time, maybe putting some sugar or molasses or apple cider vinegar in the water.)
Lee Valley has, essentially, the same bucket, only it’s $16.90. (Doesn’t even have the name “Lee Valley” on it, so I don’t know why you’re playing the premium price!)
Welsh’s Saddlery (Edmonton) has one for $16.95. Can’t tell you about the size.
Outfitters Supply (www.OutfittersSupply.com) has a bucket (item #WPH161) for $17.95. (This is a US company, so you’re going to pay for shipping, handling and the money conversion.) It’s a nice looking bucket. Holds 3 gallons, so a little bigger than the others. Doesn’t give size though, so can’t guarantee it’s more than 9″ across the top opening. This company sells to some Alberta companies. Their products (some of their products?) are available at: GR Custom Saddles andThe Horse Store (Calgary), Frontier Western Shop (Claresholm), Country Outpost (Coaldale), Keddie’s Tack and Western (Grande Prairie), Jones Boys Saddlery (Ponoka and Red Deer) and Cole’s Western Wear (Vegreville).
Me again. I just got off the phone from Jones Boys Saddlery in Red Deer. They are REALLY helpful people. They have a number of different collapsible buckets. Yes, they have the one from Outfitters Supply, but their price is $29.95! I asked how these buckets work. Without some “form”, how do they hold the water once you set the bucket on the ground? She didn’t know. They have a couple of types that have a wire rim. I can see that helping, but I still don’t understand the physics of this … so … I’m off to Red Deer on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday and I’ll check in with them then. We’ll fill every bucket with water and set it down to see what it does. Then I will report back to you. (My money is on the flat back bucket from Pro Equine. It’s 14″ across the back and stands out 10″ from the wall with a drop of 12″. I can see a horse putting its face into that more easily than into a 9: round hole. It can be used for water, but also for grain. Price: $24.95.)
If anyone else has info about where to get buckets, please add it to this post. (And I’m sorry about the grid below. I can’t seem to get rid of it!)