Personally, I do adore straw due to the price, the volume of the bed per bale & it's a very good insulator BUT if the stable doesn't have drainage built in, the bed can get disgusting quickly & does leave a smell of urine on clothing.
I'm not a fan of wood shavings but I do use a form of flax and I wouldn't go back, highly absorbent, no smell, dries out in warm weather, quick breakdown on muck heap & easy to muck out.
I dont know alot but i remember my trainer telling me that when one of her horses had to go to OSU for collic, his collic got even worse because he ate the straw, if your sure your horse wont eat the straw
I like to make a mixture! I find if you take a bag of pellet bedding put it in the lowest spot or where they urinate the most. About a half inch thick then lightly wet it to open them up. After that I cover it up with medium sized flakes.
I prefer pellets! They last longer and it's easier to keep the bed clean and dry, for mares it's the best bed to have! I use a mix of pallets and wood shavings to keep the beds more fluffly!
I understand that straw is better for them, as they keep chewing all day, but a good amount of hay in the morning and in the afternoos lasts almost all day and it's way better nutritionally than straw..
Another disadvantage of straw is the smell if the beds are not always super clean.. With pallets or shavings that is not a problem!!
And for those who have grey/white horses (I have two, I know the pain of keeping them clean) pallets/shavings is so much easier, straw leaves yellow stains that are harder to get rid of!