Photo: Sarah Rieber and Metropolis try to stay cool during their lesson in the summer heat
By TPH Intern Izzy Feinstein
Although summer is the ideal time for riding with its long days and warm weather, it is important to keep your horse cool during the summer heat and humidity. Here are some tips to keep your horse happy and healthy this summer!
- Ride in the early morning or later in the afternoon. Try to avoid riding in the middle of the day when the heat is most intense.
- Give your horse a cool bath or rinse him/her down after your ride to remove sweat, help your horse cool down, and keep them hydrated. Pay attention to their chest, neck, and any other areas that may become excessively sweaty such as the saddle and girth areas. Make sure to scrape the water off as quickly as possible so it does not become hot and form a layer between your horse’s skin and the air.
- Turn on ceiling fans if available in your barn or put box fans to the outside of your horse’s stall so the circulating air can help them cool off.
- Turnout your horse as early as possible in the morning to avoid heat or after sun goes down at night. A shaded turnout spot or turnout with a run-in shed are ideal if accessible.
- Clip your horse’s coat and keep their mane and tail trimmed.
- Use safe sunscreen on horses with a pink noses to help prevent sunburn.
- Replenish salt that may be lost during sweating by giving your horse electrolyte supplements. Horse treats such as Snaks 5th Avenchew’s Electrobytes can also be incorporated into your horse’s diet to encourage hydration and replenish electrolytes.