Friday, March 18, 2016

How to Care for Your Horse During Summer

To most equine lovers, summer is the best time to bond with their horses. Farms and ranches abound with horse shows and competitions. And sunny days lend themselves to pleasurable trail rides downhill and uphill. All these factors encourage them to engage their horses in more outdoor activities than usual.

While there’s nothing wrong with this, a responsible horse owner must remember that summer heat can expose horses to serious health problems. Therefore, knowing several simple ways to keep horses cool and healthy during summer is important. Here are a few tips which you should observe to help your horse beat the summer heat.

1) Know your horse’s normal temperature, heart rate and respiratory rate. This information will help you recognise whether or not your horse is suffering from heat stroke. She may experience heat stroke while exercising under the sun or when simply standing inside a hot stall. Transfer your horse to a cooler environment and call your veterinarian as soon as she shows signs and symptoms of heat stroke.

2) Stick with your horse's normal schedule. Drastically increasing your horse's daily activities can make her feel tense and experience colic (gastrointestinal problems). If you need to add physical activities or make changes to her schedule, do this gradually so that your horse will have enough time to adjust.

3) Provide a run-in shed. A run-in shed offers horses a quick escape from the sun while they’re grazing or exercising outdoors. If you can’t provide a run-in shed, turn her out early in the morning to avoid excessive heat from the sun.

4) Buy your horse a suitable electrolyte supplement.
Severe loss of electrolytes happens during excessive sweating. It can cause colic, fatigue, muscle cramps and can create other health risks for horses. If you can’t stop your horse from sweating excessively, give her some supplements that will replace the electrolyte or salt loss in her body.

5) Observe proper ventilation in your barn. Install a misting fan near your horse’s stall. This will keep her cool as she rests. Also, leave the doors and windows open to allow air to flow inside the barn.

If you want additional tips on keeping your horse in good shape this summer, read this detailed infographic from Horseland.

Horses need the utmost care not only during summer. They need proper care every season. Click here to discover other insights and different tools you can use to keep your horse healthy and happy through out the year.