Keeping Your Horse Healthy and Strong – 7 Essential Practices for Horse Owners

Are you looking for ways to keep your horse healthy and maintain a strong bond? Look no further! Take a look at these 7 vital practices! 

Horses are incredible creatures; their beauty, grace, and magnificent presence make it impossible not to love them. And horse owners have the benefit of creating a special bond with their horses and this is noticeable to outsiders too.

They dedicate all their time and most of their resources and life to care for these ethereal creatures. The commitment is truly worth it and well deserved because horses are great and loyal companions.

So, you might be a horse owner with a farm, or you’re into competitive horseback riding, either way, you are responsible for ensuring your horse is strong, healthy, and breathtakingly beautiful.

Fortunately, this is where we step in – we’ve accumulated 7 of the most essential practices that’ll help maintain your horse’s strength and good health.

Let’s dive right into it, shall we?

1. Frequent or Daily Exercises

To start, let’s talk about daily or frequent exercises. For instance, you hardly ever exercise your horse like heavy training or doing heavy tasks. So, you might think that frequent exercise is not necessary, and you do not keep up with their regular exercise routines.

Sadly, that is wrong. You must give your horse the time for them to gallop or walk around every day. Not only is this essential to keep them healthy, but it also helps to maintain their weight. 

You can learn more from vets. Seek their advice and find out how much time is ideal for your horse’s daily exercise. If you’re wondering how long do horses live, find out more!

2. Necessary Vaccination

We cannot stress how important it is to get your horse vaccinated.

Vaccinations are vital when it comes to protecting your precious steed from potentially crippling life-threatening diseases like the West Nile virus, rabies, and eastern equine encephalomyelitis.

There may be some misconception that horses don’t contract any sort of diseases, but at the end of the day, they are also prone to infectious diseases as well.

Your vet can help with setting up a schedule for the vaccinations. This can help you to stay on top of everything, so don’t hesitate to ask questions! It’s crucial to note that vaccines can help boost your horse’s immune system and help to be less prone to common diseases or illnesses.

3. Check Your Horse’s Temperature

The third practice we’ll recommend is to make a habit to check your horse’s temperature. This is essential during the summer because horses are known to get overheated very easily.

Besides that, even during the winter, they can heat up after a good workout. Monitoring their temperature will help you to effectively maintain the proper way to do cool-down exercises.

So, keep a thermometer close by and note down your horse’s temperature. It’ll help you immensely. We will discuss cool-down exercises further along the way so sit tight!

4. Massage Before Any Workout

Just as we warm up before starting our workouts, horses need to be properly massaged before they are performing any type of exercise or work.

You can learn the proper massage techniques yourself or go to a skilled equine massage therapist. It’s known that long massages can help to prevent injuries and at the same time promote swift recovery.

However, if you’re looking into massage therapists, short massages with a massage gel also give you a very similar result. This is because the gel releases localized heat which in turn helps to loosen up tensions in your horse’s muscles. 

5. Cooling Down Your Horse Properly

As we mentioned before, getting your steed’s temperature, respiration rate, and pulse rate down to normal after a workout is not only crucial but is also a must.

Keeping Up With the Weather Changes

In case of a hot day, start by removing the pad and saddle. Hose your horse down to get their temperature back to the normal level and afterward, dry them with a towel.

If the weather is windy, you can use a cooling blanket on your horse after removing their saddle and pad. Make sure your horse is also drinking enough water. 10-15 gulps of water is perfectly fine.

You can also massage or rub your horse as well. All you need to do is concentrate on their neck, flanks, and the place where you place the saddle.

During the cold weather, we recommend a Turkish towel for the massage or rub down.

As for walks, have them walk at a normal speed to prevent their body temperature from dropping too rapidly. Use a wool collar during your walk if the weather is freezing.

6. Grooming is Essential

To help improve your horse’s coat and skin, grooming is key.

Grooming has been known to reduce your horse’s chance of contracting several common health problems.

It will also help to strengthen the bond with your horse. The horse will develop a level of trust, which is vital when it’s time for day-to-day activities.

Grooming has also been known to successfully reduce your horse’s stress after they’ve gone through a terrible ordeal.

7. A Worming Session

Lastly, let’s talk about worming sessions. This worming session helps to ensure your horse has good health and keeps parasites away.

Avoid the Risk of Contamination

You might be wondering how often your horse needs to be wormed. This completely depends on your property’s management system. Some horses may need to be wormed more than others. Of course, you should avoid over-working as it can lead to resistance.

If you have many horses staying close together or other horses are moving in and out of your property, then there’s a higher need for worm control. Otherwise, there might be a risk of contamination.

You’ll have less need to worm your horse if there are a few horses around on your property. If you use basic paddock management techniques like paddock rotation, manure removal, and proper grazing with other animals, then the risk of contamination is super low.

Consult with your vet to find out how often your horse(s) need a worming session.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, we’d like to say that we hope the practices we’ve talked about in this article help you to ensure your horse has a long and healthy life.

Horses are gentle animals who need a lot of care and attention. As a horse owner, you must look out for your horse. Grooming sessions, frequent exercising, and proper massage techniques are vital and should not be neglected.

Let us know if any of the practices mentioned above help you to grow a strong bond with your horse. Don’t forget to share these nifty tips with your other horse owner friends and family!