Above photo by Kate Houlihan Photography
Do you regularly groom your horse? Here are some of the benefits and best tools that you should be using.
Why You Should Groom Your Horse
When it comes to taking care of your horse, regular grooming should be a key part of your routine in order to ensure that their coat is healthy.
You may have spotted that when horses are playing together, grooming each other can be a common behaviour. This is because grooming is mutually beneficial to both horses (and you – their owner!) and can provide both with mutual feelings of happiness and comfort.
In this article, we’ve shared the key benefits that your horse can experience when they are being groomed, and a selection of useful tips that can help make the routine enjoyable for both you and your pet.
Benefits of horse grooming
When horses are brushed, blood flow is rushed to the skin’s surface which helps it to become healthier. Along with the obvious benefit of being cleaner, grooming your horse can provide them with many other benefits. These include:
Comfort and bonding
When you’re grooming your horse, it helps to create a bond between you and the animal. One this bond has been formed, you may find it easier to interact with your horse. This is why horse grooming is recommended for new owners to get to know their new pet before they begin riding or training them.
Grooming is also comforting for a horse and is why they have been known to groom one another when playing in a paddock or in the wild.
Checking for health issues
Because grooming requires you to get up close and personal with your horse without scaring them away, it’s a great opportunity to check for any health issues that they may be experiencing.
Many health-related conditions in horses can present symptoms that can be noticed on the skin. Injuries that they may have picked up whilst in their paddock can also be spotted during their daily grooming routine.
Remember to have horse insurance to protect both you and your pet against any health issues that you may find if they require medical attention.
When dirt and other material gets lodged in a horses’ fur, it can cause irritation and develop into a skin condition. Grooming regularly helps to remove this dirt and decrease the chances of your horse itching and damaging their skin.
How often should my horse be groomed?
Even if they are kept mainly indoors, horses should be groomed at least once a day. However, features such as hoof-picking do not need to be done every day and should be completed every few days.
Useful grooming tools
Whilst there are many different tools that you can experiment with throughout your horses’ grooming routine until you find a selection that is pleasant for both you and your pet, the following tools are recommended:
• Hoof pick – to remove dirt, debris and other items that can be lodged in the hoof.
• Body brush – to remove excess hair and dirt from the horse’s body.
• Curry comb – to remove dirt that is closer and stuck to the horse’s skin.
As you can see, grooming your horse is an important step in their care routine and can provide them with many benefits. Now, it’s up to you to develop a routine that both you and your horse can enjoy and bond over!