Best Wood for Horse Stalls

Horses are beautiful and intelligent animals. If you plan to keep a few of them, you’ll need to build a barn for them. A common question that many horse owners ask is how to build a decent barn for their horses? The first thing you’ll need is to pick out an excellent piece of wood to build your barn.

The sturdier the wood, the stronger your barn’s stalls will turn out. It’s vital to have strong stalls so that your horses don’t break out of them at any given time. The good news is that there are many wood options you can explore and choose from while building horse stalls.

We’ve made a list for you to know the best woods to build horse stalls.

Best Materials for Horse Stalls

Wood comes in different categories, each having varying traits. You should know that horse stalls can be made from different materials, and you don’t have to stick to one specific type of wood. Your material choice will depend on what you’re looking for in your horse stall. Let’s explore a few different materials to build your horse stalls.


As the name suggests, wood types belonging to this family are soft, making them easy to work with. While this quality may make softwoods great for making other items, they are not suitable for horse stalls. The only softwood considered worthwhile for horse stalls is yellow pine. Softwoods are generally not very dense, which can be a benefit or a drawback, depending on what you’re making.

Domestic Hardwoods

Hardwoods are much more expensive than softwoods and even more challenging to work with. However, they offer extreme density and strength, contributing to their worldwide success. Domestic hardwoods are perfect for horse stalls as they’re durable and sturdy. You should know making a horse barn will cost you money, so it’s better to be prepared.

Exotic Hardwoods

The difference between domestic and exotic hardwoods is that the latter is an upgraded version of the former. Exotic hardwoods are denser, stronger, more durable, and costlier than domestic hardwoods. An example of exotic hardwood is Brazilian hardwood. A horse stall made from this wood would last longer than a stall made with some other wood variety, and you’ll never have to replace it.

Plastic (HDPE)

Plastic (HDPE) infills are an excellent alternative to wood. They are much cheaper than wood and are also environmentally friendly. Plastic infills are considered more sanitary than wood as they’re easier to clean. Using plastic infills can be beneficial for building your horse stalls as they’re strong and offer plenty of longevity. Also, they look like wood, so nobody will know that, in reality, it’s plastic.

Best Wood for Horse Stalls

Let’s return to the main section of this article. Allow us to shed light on some of the best woods to make horse stalls. These woods come from the softwood and hardwood (domestic and exotic) families. Each of these woods will benefit you somehow if you employ them appropriately.

Let’s explore them one by one.


Cherrywood is a popular wood because of its stunning appearance. It comes in dark reddish-brown colors and can further be stained as much as possible. This wood may be expensive, but it’s undoubtedly one of the best as it provides the strength and durability a horse stall needs.

Cherrywood is also easy to work with, so you won’t face a hard time working with this piece of wood, especially if you’re a beginner. Hence, we suggest you invest in dark red cherrywood to build your horse stalls.

Douglas Fir

This piece of wood is commonly used in furniture-making due to its brilliant qualities. Even though it belongs to the softwood family, it’s considered hardwood due to its traits. This quality makes Douglas fir a relatively versatile wood than other woods.

Many use this wood type to build tables, chairs, doors, and windows, but it can also ideally aid while building a horse stall. You should know that you’ll need to maintain it, though, as it’s prone to get eaten by insects and termites. Overall, Douglas fir is a durable wood that will benefit you plenty.


Another excellent piece of wood you should consider using to build your horse stalls is mahogany. You’ll find many variations of this wood type in the market, but you might face difficulty finding a genuine piece of mahogany as it isn’t readily available.

However, this piece of wood is famous for a reason. Many people prefer using mahogany to build their horse stalls due to the incredible strength and durability it provides. The stronger the piece of wood will be, the better your horse stall will turn out. So, it’ll be best to fetch some mahogany wood pieces to make your stall.


This piece of wood falls under one of the most (if not the most) expensive wood. Oak has a remarkable physical appearance and also happens to be highly sturdy and durable. People who buy furniture made from oakwood go for a sophisticated overall appearance.

The same can be said for people who use oakwood to build their horse stalls, as they want their stalls (and horses) to speak volumes about their character. So, if you’re one of those people who have a refined taste should undoubtedly go for oak.

Red Cedar

Red cedar has a stunning color and an even incredible scent. Woods that smell nice are rare. So, if you find some red cedar, we suggest you buy it right away and start building your horse stall. This wood smells so great that even horses love it.

Red cedar’s pleasing smell can be a disadvantage as your horses might nibble or chew away the stall gates. So, you’ll have to be careful regarding the wood’s maintenance. As long as you maintain your horse stall, you won’t experience any difficulty with red cedar.

Our Final Thoughts

All of these wood varieties mentioned above are excellent for building horse stalls. Use the ones you feel meets your requirements and create a barn for your horses.

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