The Best Care For Your Horse
Horses are wonderful animals and their give their owners so much pleasure and even company at times. So it goes without saying that they need to be looked after and cared for in return as well. Here are some tips to keep your horse happy and healthy regarding their food, shelter and more. Horses must have the right food in the right quantities. Horses love eating just like us. Horses like good pasture, hay or dried pasture and grains and pellets. Pasture is not always rich and nutritious and must be supplemented with other foods. Some supplement of grain or concentrates must also be given with pasture.
Work horses are normally fed hay. Good alfalfa hay is nutritious and is often used for both equestrian and race horses. Good quality hay can practically cover all the horse's nutritious needs. Always find a reliable provider for the hay. Hay however, does require proper storage. It must be stored in a dry and well ventilated barn or shed. Moldy hay can cause toxin build up and other health complications. A diet of hay must be supplemented with some good grain or concentrates.
Horses love grains especially oats. Grains are good for them and must be given in measured quantities along with hay after consulting with the vet. Too much grain can make for a fat, lazy horse. Extra rations of grain must be given to high performance horses like racers or to mares when they are pregnant or nursing. The concentrates, usually sold as pellets are also supplements to the hay or pasture and must be given like a treat in the quantities recommended by the vet. Again, an extra ration of concentrates may be given to high performance horses and pregnant and nursing mares.
A well fed horse, not over fed, is a happy and healthy animal. Personally feeding the horse is a good way of bonding with the horse and it will love you for it. Horses need up to ten gallons of water daily, so there must always be plenty of fresh clean water available nearby. In harsh winters, the water must be warm and kept from freezing.
The horse must have a salt block to lick on in its stable for the salt and minerals. The vet should be consulted on additional vitamin supplements, especially when recovering from an illness or antibiotic treatment. Horses love sugar but use it as a rare treat in order to prevent diabetes.
Horses must be exercised either by riding or by making them work. Exercise, strengthens the muscles and helps prevent old age arthritis. The vet can help on a workout schedule.
Both hooves and teeth must be examined regularly and cleaned to prevent disease and injury. The hooves must be picked and cleaned before and after each ride and the teeth checked on a weekly basis with a thorough six month to yearly veterinary check up of the whole mouth.
Groom your horse yourself using the proper grooming tools. They just love the grooming. It's like a massage at the spa. So spoil your horse and groom it daily with special additional grooming for shows. Your horse will love you for it and with all this care, is sure to put its best foot forward when you ride it.