By preparing your horse for winter, you’re ensuring that he will be healthy and better able to deal with the cold weather.
Check Your Horse’s Weight
Having good weight on your horse will give you peace of mind as you head into winter. Putting weight on a horse becomes more difficult as the temperatures drop, so now is the time to weight tape your horse and get an idea of what he weighs. If you find that your horse is underweight, then it’s time to make some dietary changes to help him gain weight. Increasing your horse’s intake and adding a weight supplement are some of the things that you can do to help prepare your horse for winter.
Check Winter Blankets for Fit and Functionality
If you blanket your horse now is the time to get his winter blankets out and check them over. Try the blankets on your horse to make sure they fit, and look for areas which are damaged, such as tears or broken buckles. If your blanket needs to be repaired, then either send it out or start looking for a new one to ensure that your blankets will all be ready when you need them.
Deworm Your Horse
If you follow a rotational deworming program, then make sure to deworm your horse. If your horse has worms, he will get less nutrition from his food, and a worm load can lead to weight loss. Deworming can help your horse retain his weight as the cold of winter hits.
Make A Clipping Plan
Do you plan on clipping your horse this winter? If so, take a few minutes to decide when and how to clip. There are several clip styles based on your weather and your riding. It’s a good idea to get your clippers out and ready now. Make sure that your clippers are working well, and that the blades are good and sharp.
Have the Vet Out for a Check-Up
If you haven’t had your vet out to perform fall shots, then make sure he or she comes out to check up on your horse soon! A late fall or early winter check-up can help prepare your horse for the challenges of winter, and it’s particularly important if you have a senior horse. During a check-up your vet should evaluate your horse’s weight and should take a look at his teeth to make sure he doesn’t need dental work. Making sure that your horse’s dental work is done can help him to chew the increased amounts of hay that he will require during the winter.