Instructions and Tips
Hay Hutches are designed to be easy to use. Once you have used them a few times, you will soon find the best way for you.

Please note: Hay-Hutches should only be presented to stock for feeding. Leaving empty Hay-Hutches in fields during periods when not being used can result in damage to the Hay-Hutch as well as presenting possible danger if used as a "toy".

There are four lugs which must be aligned with four matching recesses underneath the lid rim to remove the lid. There are notches on the lid and the body which, when aligned, mean that the lugs and the recesses are matched up for release.

Unless on restricted feed, it is best to fill the Hay-Hutch up with the fodder fairly compact. Do not stuff so tightly as to distort the body or foul the lid - this particularly applies to the Large.




Align the lugs and recesses. The lid is snug and may have to be popped over the recesses like a biscuit tin lid. Once over, place a foot on the base to steady it and rotate the lid a 1/8th turn.

Hay-Hutches are designed to prevent livestock opening them and so the lid can be a tight fit. It might need a little practice to get used to lining up the lugs but it will soon become an easy task.

HayHutchLockBoltThe Lock Bolt

Very occasionally, persistent, "naughty” stock can work the lid off the Hay-Hutch. If this becomes a problem, an easy solution is to use the optional lock bolt (supplied).

Please note that your Hay-Hutch arrives with the lock bolt fitted.

The bolt attaches to a receiver (nut) embedded into the plastic of the Hay Hutch.

You will need to remove the lock bolt so that you can twist the lid to open the Hay-Hutch.

For most stock, you probably will not need the lock bolt. Keep it safe just in case.

If you find that your stock succeed in removing the lid, fit the lock bolt as follows:

Put lid on and rotate until the Lock Bolt hole lines up with the embossed arrow. Look down through the hole to ensure that the path for the Lock Bolt to the embedded nut is lined up. 

We supply an easy-to-grip "spade" topped bolt as well as a conventional hexagon topped bolt. If you believe the spade topped bolt represents any risk to your stock, use the hexagonal bolt.

Nested Hay-Hutches

To optimise transport and deliver best value, multiple orders of Hay-Hutch units may be 'nested’. If so, a few minutes will be needed to assemble the Hay-Hutches before use.

The only tools you should need are a coin and your fingers.

Large and Mini Hay-Hutches are never nested.

Small and Medium Hay-Hutch Assembly

If you have ordered Small and Medium, you will need to be able to identify the matching tops and bases.

Medium top piece has the feed aperture spaced midway between the joining flange and the top. Medium base is taller and adds to overall height.

Small top piece has the feed aperture nearer the lid than the joining flange. Small base is shorter and forms the floor only adding an inch (2.5cm) or so to overall height.

Offer the base up to the appropriate top piece of the Hay-Hutch. Align the four holes. Insert the retaining bolts and tighten with twenty pence piece (not supplied!) and your fingers to prevent the nut rotating as you tighten.

Please note: The nuts and bolts should be observed and checked regularly to make sure that they have not become loose. Should bolts become loose and fall out, the stability and safety of the Hay-Hutch can be seriously affected.

Should bolts be lost, we are happy to send replacements and they are available at most DIY stores. Take one along as a pattern. In the unlikely event that bolts will not stay tight, let us know by e-mail us and we will send special self locking nuts. 

Hay-Hutch Net fitting

The fitting is fairly simple and should not take too long. You need to drill the holes in the Hay Hutch by which the Net is secured.

You will need a felt tip pen and a drill fitted with an 8mm bit. It can be a bit suitable for wood, steel or plastic. Some sort of clip or grip to hold net in place whilst drilling fixing holes and when attaching the Net may be handy.

1) Unpack the net and place it over the OUTSIDE of your Hay Hutch. Please note that the Hay Hutch Net for Mini, Small and Medium are conical. Please make sure that you have them the right way up. The Net for the Large is cylindical and can go either way up.

2) Use engineers grips,  bulldog clips or tape to hold the net in place at the top so that it does not move whilst holes are being drilled.

3) Carefully drill one hole for each Net aperture around the neck of the Hay Hutch.

Be very careful to avoid tangling the Net with the drill or risking injury to hands or fingers. For added protection, consider wearing gloves. Also consider marking the drill points with a felt tip pen, removing the Net and then drilling the holes with hands and Net clear.


4) Stretch the Net down, if necessary, and carefully drill a hole for each Net aperture around the base.

5) Place Net on the inside of The Hay Hutch. For the conical nets (Medium, Small, Mini) be careful that the Net is the right way up. Use engineers grips,  bulldog clips or tape to hold the net in place at the top so that it does not move whilst threading retaining cords  through.

The retaining cords for conical Nets (Medium, Small and Mini) are two different lengths. The shorter cord should be used at the top and the longer at the bottom. Thread the retaining cord through the Net apertures and the the holes drilled top and bottom.

6) Tie the cord with a secure, non-slip knot. You may need to drill one extra hole to get both ends of the cord end back inside.

7) That’s it! You can now fill up and use your Hay Hutch as normal.

If you would like to download these instructions to print out, please click here.

Please note: The judgement as to suitability of using the Net for your horse lies with you, the owner. We have not had any problems with the Hay Hutch Nets with our own horses but cannot be held liable if you do.