A proper cool down is always important, but with summer rides taking place in hot and often humid weather, your horse is more likely to become overheated while working. Make sure to keep an eye on the heat index (combination of temperature and humidity) and tailor your rides accordingly so both you and horse exercise without overdoing it. After a ride, follow these general guidelines on how to cool down a horse to ensure your horse is comfortable when you put him back in his stall or pasture this summer. Continue reading
With plush, green pastures, bright sunny skies and warm temperatures, summer can easily be your horse’s favorite time of the year for turnout. While chilly temperatures are gone, and winter blankets have been sent off for washing or storage until next season, your horse may still benefit from being covered with a fly sheet. A fly sheet does more than just ward off flies, so before you decide your horse is fine sheet-free, consider these reasons he might need one: Continue reading
Who doesn’t love treating themselves to a massage? With the relaxing effects, the great feeling while it’s being performed and the even better way your muscles feel afterward, it’s no wonder athletes especially benefit. One of the greatest athletes you know is likely your horse, and with over 60% of his body weight being made up by muscle, equine massage therapy may be an appropriate way to support your horse’s wellbeing. Continue reading
With the arrival of spring comes the arrival of biting stable flies, nuisance house flies and other insects around the barn. Nice weather doesn’t necessarily mean you and your horse have to suffer the presence of flies. With just a few simple, preventative steps, you can drastically limit the fly population around your horses and their environment before they start to become a problem. Continue reading
Spring is right around the corner, and in between dreaming about riding outside in beautiful weather most riders are also thinking about taking care of their horse’s spring vaccines. There are a range of common horse vaccines available that owners can select from to help protect their horses. Here is a list of the most common horse vaccines that you may be considering for your horse this spring. As always, be sure to consult with your veterinarian on what is appropriate for your specific horse, especially in cases where a mare may be pregnant and with young horses. Continue reading
Parasites, including varying types of worms and bots, are present in your horse’s paddocks and living areas and can make their way inside your horse, affecting him throughout their life cycles. Left untreated, internal parasites can cause weight loss, itching, lethargy, digestive and gastro-intestinal problems, malnourishment and even colic. Fortunately, controlling internal parasites in your horse is fairly easy with an appropriate horse deworming schedule developed with the help of your veterinarian. Continue reading
As the evenings are dropping in temperature, your horse’s coat is likely changing and growing in thick for the winter. If your horse is in regular work and tends to run hot enough to work up a sweat, you may be considering body clipping. Body clipping allows the horse to dry off quickly after becoming damp or sweaty, reducing the chance of it catching a chill and becoming ill. Not all horses need to be body clipped, and if you only ride your horse leisurely or not at all, he should be fine keeping his coat. There are a variety of types of horse clips to choose from, and depending on the amount of work you will be doing with your horse and how hot he runs, some may be more appropriate than others. Take a look at these popular types of horse clips to see what might work best for you: Continue reading
As we head into fall, many horse owners are starting to think about blanketing and which layers they will need to keep their horses warm and dry this season. A turnout sheet or light blanket can be important elements to add to your horse’s wardrobe to protect from mud and rain as the weather starts to cool, and is equally useful in the spring when weather is warming but still retains a chill. A turnout sheet is a lightweight, waterproof sheet with no fill, which is great for turnout to protect from mud, rain or wind. A light turnout blanket will protect from mud, rain and wind as well, with the additional benefit of having a light fill to provide additional warmth. Each of these horse clothing options are not necessarily required, but are great options in certain conditions.
Flies around the barn are unavoidable. All day, while your horse is turned out, he is likely being pestered by biting and nuisance flies. A liberal coating of fly spray and a fly mask are pretty standard, but the less frequently used fly boots and fly sheet can really complete the fly barrier package for those roughest months.
When your horse injures its leg in one way or another, cold hosing is one of the most common go-tos for treatment assistance. It can be one of the most useful and beneficial ways of reducing inflammation and controlling swelling and pain. If you dread standing in the wash stall cold hosing for what seems like eternity, ice boots offer a time-efficient, alternative solution, and can help you get some of that valuable barn time back. Ice boots can be wrapped around the horse’s legs and left on for about 15 minutes while you do other things, like clean stalls, organize your tack, or groom your horse.