Think building an indoor arena is an indulgence you can’t really justify? Not so! There are several financial and horse care reasons why it makes sense.
Thrush, a disease of the horse’s frog and other tissues of the hoof, has a very strong odor that comes from dead, rotting tissue and usually a dark-colored slimy substance along the edge of the frog. A case of thrush is not life-threatening, but left untreated the infection can spread to under the sole and penetrate the soft tissue of the hoof, including the laminae.
If you decide to blanket your horse this winter, there are literally hundreds of choices out there – stable sheets, turnout blankets, coolers and more. Most horse owners have an extensive “wardrobe” for their horses – something for every occasion. But you can easily get by with just three essentials - a “capsule wardrobe” as they say in the fashion world.
Horses can actually do quite well without a blanket in even the most harsh winter storms. Their coat fluffs up like a blanket providing extra warmth and insulation. But there are circumstances when your horse really does need a blanket. Here are some things you’ll want to consider:
By preparing your horse for winter, you’re ensuring that he will be healthy and better able to deal with the cold weather.
Caring for older horses can be different than regular horse care, which is why it’s important to learn what older horses need and to find a boarding facility who is willing to meet those special needs. For example, most senior horses don’t process their feed as well as they did when younger. Typically older horses are on a senior feed and many facilities buy their feed in bulk so if you want something different, ask if you will need to provide it yourself.
If you have a horse with gastrointestinal (GI) issues such as chronic colic or gastric ulcers, you may need to look at how you manage him compared to other horses. Most of the research that goes into designing feeds and feed supplements is based on the “healthy" horse. But what about feeding those special needs horses with a GI or recovering GI problem?
While you may think spring is the best time to fertilize your pastures, it’s actually fall when grasses take in the most nutrients to store for the winter.
Colic can occur at any time of the year, but fall and winter seem to offer additional horse care challenges..
When taking your horse on the road to a show or trailhead, think of your horse trailer as a "barn on wheels" for your horse's comfort and safety.