Horse Care

How to Care for Horses As Pets

Horses are very gentle creatures. They have the capacity to love and obey their masters. The animals are good companions because they can bond to humans. Besides, horses are strong animals. They can do heavy tasks to please their masters.

Care for Horses

Many people take horses as pets. Usually, they are the same ones who join equestrian competitions or simply enjoy a good ride around the farm. Properly take care of your pet horse by doing the following things:

1. Feed your horse with the proper food.

Horses feed on grain-based plants. But they do love fruit and sugar as well. You can give your horse these treats every now and then. If you decide to put out your horse on a pasture, specifically check that there aren’t poisonous plants around. Yew, laurel, buttercups, and horsetail are some examples of the weeds horses should never take. Once they ingest it, the results are going to be harmful. Always provide your horse with fresh water all the time. Refill its water bucket twice everyday or whenever it runs dry.

2. Exercise is important.

Never keep your horse in the stable for days. Horses need exercise. Their muscles should be stretched out on a regular basis because they are active animals. Take it out for a ride. Or leave it wandering off a fenced area. However, you have to make sure that the whole area is properly sealed off. Horses can easily jump, run, and escape. You can use regular wire for a fence. Never use barbed wire, though. The horse can hurt itself with it.

3. Horses need companion.

While horses are generally gentle and tame, they can be wild and discontented if they don’t feel the company of humans or other horses. Like people, horses are social animals. They don’t really want to be kept by themselves. They want attention and love, either from their masters or from another horse. The simple act of patting the horse, touching its mane, and riding on its back should be enough to make the horse feel loved.

4. Make sure that the horse’s shelter is well maintained.

Horses need to be protected from the elements like the sun, wind, and rain. Therefore, you have to make sure that the barn is always in tiptop condition. Keep it clean all the time. Stables should be cleaned three times in a day. And make sure that the horse has proper the bedding for the night.  Put fresh straw on the stable on a regular basis. Straw is the most preferred bedding for horses because it is cheap, comfortable, and warm. There are minimun standards on how to look after horses indoors. This is absolutlely essential if you want your horse to compete in any kind of competition that it is looked after in the best way possible.

5. Groom your horse regularly

Daily grooming for horses is required, especially if it is kept in the stable most of the time. Grooming keeps the horse’s coat healthy. Leaving your horse out in the pasture periodically would allow natural oils from its body to work its way towards the coat, leaving it warm and healthy.

Just follow these tips and your horse would be the happiest pet in the world. And your pet would definitely enjoy running the tracks and jumping the hurdles with you.

6. Make sure your horse transportation is of the up-most quality. Transporting your horse by air is the most efficient way to move a horse internationally. Horse Service International are one the most prominent and most respected companies at doing this. We advise to transport your international racehorse safely with HSI, as they have many years experience on the job and be counted on to look after the welfare of your animal, but also the paperwork and contracts. If you are the owner of a valuable, prized racehorse, you will want to use the best provider who may not always be the cheapest to us. You can read the HSI blog, what their standard procedure is.

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What Horse Care Products Do You Need For Your Barn?

If you own a horse, you really need to keep a variety of standard horse care supplies and products in order to properly care for your horse.  While the obvious needs of quality food and clean water are easy to see and obtain, the other products may not seem as apparent to the new horse owner.

You can sort the products into several general categories, such as grooming, first aid, tack and tack maintenance, and general/utility supplies.

Grooming supplies will include the necessary brushes and combs to get your horse clean and remove loose hair and other objects from the horse’s coat.  You should brush your horse with curry comb or brush first to remove any dirt and help get rid of the shedding that your horse does in the spring.  This should be followed with a stiff brush and then a softer brush to smooth the coat.  Use a softer brush to work on the face and around the eyes.

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The mane and tail requires a wide tooth comb or hair brush.  This will help remove the shavings and get rid of tangles.  Start at the end of the tail and work your way to the base of the tail to get all of the tangles out.  Do the mane the same way.  You can use a regular hair brush for this, or you can invest a lot more money and buy “the special equine hair brush”.

You should use a good shampoo to help keep the mane and tail tangle free and glossy.

Grooming your horse is a great way for the two of you to bond.  Most horses really enjoy the special attention and the extra fussing that you give them when they are being groomed.

It is also important to have a good first aid kit available.  Most horses will manage to get a cut or a scrape and you need to treat these minor wounds to keep them from becoming major injuries.  A good wound ointment, such as Neosporin, should be the first thing you put in the first aid kit.  Some hydrogen peroxide to flush the wound, some bandages and wraps to keep the wound clean should also be included.

You should also include a pair of scissors and a sharp knife in your kit as well.  Add a bottle of rubbing alcohol and you have a good basic kit.

The type of tack you have depends on your riding discipline.  But you should have some cleaning rags and supplies to keep your expensive gear clean and flexible.  It will add life to your tack and make it more comfortable for you and your horse.

A barn can be a dirty place, with the dirt floors, dust, bedding and other things.  So you need some good basic cleaning supplies and products to clean up your feed tubs and water buckets.  You should have bleach on hand at all times; it will clean up and sanitize all the buckets at the barn.

By the way, most horses do like to lick the edge of the bucket that has been cleaned with bleach.  This will not harm your horse, but just do not leave puddles of bleach lying around, because excessive amounts can harm your horse.

Obviously, every barn needs brooms, rakes and wheelbarrows.  Depending on the number of horses you have and the size of your farm, you may need tractors, manure spreaders and other implements.  This is not meant to be an all inclusive list, just some of the basic horse care products you need to care for your horse, after a while, you will want to include additional items as you need them to your barn kit.

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Natural Horse Care – The Simple Things Usually Work Best

It always amazes me that horses have lived in the wild as long as they did and thrived.  This is because my horse is always finding a way to injure himself; I guess he managed to acquire the injury gene.

But one thing I have learned from having my poor, lovable, injury prone horse is that the natural things usually work just as well, if not better, than the other, more expensive treatments.  Believe me, we spend a lot of money on vet care, and if he gets a serious injury, we are calling the vet immediately.  But we use common sense, and natural treatments that we have learned from our vets through the years.horsecarenat

The first natural treatment is having good quality food for your horse.  Get a quality feed.  This is where becoming friends with the feed store folks comes in handy.  They will recommend the best food for your horse, considering age and other factors.

Horses are grazing animals.  Make sure they have plenty of forage.  If possible have a pasture for him to graze in.  I know, it is impossible in some locations to have a pasture, I’ve been there, but it is always best to have a pasture when you can get it.  If not, feed good hay.

Remember, horses are an eating machine.  It is natural for them to eat all day, so we feed ours several times a day.  We feed a small amount of grain three times a day, along with his hay.

The other important natural thing, have plenty of fresh water.  Horses drink a lot.  If you notice your horse doesn’t drink as much water as normal, you need to start being concerned.  A horse can dehydrate very quickly and this can lead to serious problems.

Another important aspect of good health, is good grooming.  A clean horse is a healthy horse.  If your horse loses his shiny healthy looking coat, he may have worms or another parasite.

If you have to give medicine to your horse, give him molasses.  Our horse loves it, and it makes it easier to get the medicine down.  Horses are a lot like kids in that aspect.

One of the best natural care tips is just spend time with him every day.  By spending time with your horse on a daily basis, you will notice the minor changes in his temperament and you can head off serious illness before it can cripple your horse.

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Treating Simple Injuries On Your Horse

horsewoundsEvery horse owner should be able to treat minor injuries on their horse.  These range from cuts and scrapes to minor puncture wounds.  Major cuts and wounds that require stitches need to be looked at by a vet immediately.

The first thing you need to do is clean the wound.  Hydrogen peroxide is good for washing the wound without causing a pain burn like alcohol.  You should not wash the wound everyday with hydrogen peroxide, as this will actually slow down the healing process.

Next you should put an ointment on the wound, something like Neosporin works great, it keeps the bacteria out and promotes healing and minimizes scaring.  If the wound is on his leg, you should wrap the injury with a leg wrap, as this helps keep dirt and bacteria out of the wound. Keep in mind, some parts of the horse just can’t be wrapped.

One of the most important things you can do is keep the wound clean.  After the first day, just wash it with cool water to get rid of any dirt or build up of ointment.  Apply new ointment and place a bandage on the injury.

For many injuries, just running cool water across it will provide some relief to your horse.  The cool water will lower the temperature and inflammation in the injury.  This is especially true for a leg injury.

Start at the lower extremities, down by the hoof, and slowly work you way up the leg.  This will help with the rehabilitation of many injuries.  Do not be surprised if your vet recommends that you give your horse a bath everyday after he has injured himself.

Again, these wound care tips are for minor injuries only.  If it is bleeding, or has a gapping hole, get your vet out immediately.  If it is going to need stitches, get your vet.  Use common sense.  Most first aid treatments you would use for minor wounds for yourself are the same type of treatment you would use for your horse.

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Your Horse’s Feet Are Important To His Health

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Everyone is familiar with the terrible injuries in horse racing where a horse breaks a leg or damages his tendons so badly that he has to put down.  Fortunately, injuries of this magnitude are not very common.

However, it is quite common for a horse to injure his hoof and come up lame.  Sometimes, these are minor injuries that only require a little stall rest and your horse will bounce right back.  Other times, what seems like a small injury can turn out to be quite serious and can result in permanent injury and even death to your horse.

It is important to check on your horse’s hoof on a daily basis.  If he pulls up lame, you need to check and see if he has stepped on a stone, or worse, cut the soft sole of his hoof he will be “head bobbing lame”.  This is where every time he takes a step; his head will bob as he tries to keep from putting weight on his sore foot.

Check his tendons, make sure he hasn’t pulled one or strained it.  Run your hand up and down his leg and check for swelling, tenderness or heat.  One of the best things you can do for this is running cold water on it several times a day.  This reduces the heat and helps the swelling go down.

If you don’t see any injury to his leg, it probably is located in his hoof.  It may be a stone bruise or other bruise where he kicked the wall or fence.  It may be an abscess.  You can check for this by tapping on the hoof, if the horse pulls back when you tap in one place but not another, it likely is an abscess.

The treatment for this is to soak the hoof in warm Epsom salts.  You may try to pack the hoof with a poultice of Epsom salts to try and draw the abscess out.  For most horses, this is an exercise in frustration; they never seem to leave the bandage in place for very long.

If your horse is seriously lame, you need to have the vet see him as soon as possible.  Remember, a horse’s foot has to support his entire weight.  A small nagging injury can lead to serious consequences. More tips treating horse injury, go to http://www.horsecapture.net/2016/08/18/treating-simple-injuries-on-your-horse/

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