People look after horses for different reasons, such as companionship or to use the horse in riding and other tasks. Regardless of why you own a horse, they should receive proper care and attention to remain healthy. If you intend or already have a horse, here are essential things to consider when caring for them.
1. Horses Require a Balanced Diet
Horses are grazers and require access to grass or hay numerous times a day. This means that horses should always have access to feed. Their diet needs to be primarily made up of roughage, such as hay and grass. You can also provide haylage or a substitute to resemble their natural grazing habits.
However, these should be high quality, clean, smell fresh, and be free of dirt, molds, and other impurities. Furthermore, you may supplement their hay-based diet with concentrated feeds like grain mixes or pellets that contain nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and protein.
The quantity of concentrate feed should be adjusted based on the horse’s activity level, age, and size. Feeding needs also vary depending on the climate and the time of the year. In addition, feeding them forage at a floor level, provided that the underlying ground is clean.
2. Grooming Horses Is Important
Brushing your horse’s coat helps remove dirt, burrs, and other particles that can build up on their hair and stimulate blood circulation in their skin. This also prevents mats from developing, which can rub and irritate your horse’s skin.
It is also important to regularly trim their hooves to prevent them from cracking, splitting, or wearing down. Also, bathe your horse with a light shampoo and cool water every few weeks. This will help keep the layer clean and free of dirt, insects, and debris.
3. Regular Exercise Is Essential For Horses
Exercising your horse on a regular basis is essential for maintaining their general health and fitness level. It prevents them from becoming bored, tense, or obese, which can cause behavioral issues like cribbing or weaving. An appropriate exercise plan must be customized to your horse’s demands and physical fitness level.
Their exercise has to include walking, trotting, cantering, and galloping at various speeds. In addition, it is vital to incorporate some variety in their exercise program by introducing activities, such as obstacle courses or cross-country jumping. Doing so aids in maintaining their joints flexible and muscles strong.
4. Horses Need Adequate Shelter
Given that horses are kept outside, you need to provide a suitable shelter for them in inclement weather or extreme temperatures. A small barn or shelter should give protection to them from sun, wind, rain, and snow. The structure should be huge enough to provide shade in hot weather and insulation in the winter months. It should also have good airflow and dry flooring material, such as dust or sand, that can absorb moisture.
5. Vaccinations and Deworming Are Important
Like cats and dogs, horses need to be immunized against a number of diseases, such as tetanus, encephalomyelitis, and rabies. Vaccines must be administered following your veterinarian’s recommendations or the local government guidelines. Deworming is also important because it helps protect horses from parasites that can lead to health issues. On the other hand, if you own other animals like cattle and need veterinary care to keep them healthy, you should look for a cattle vet in Hohenwald who specializes in this type of animal.
6. Horses Need Regular Veterinary Care
Regular vet checkups are important for preserving your horse’s wellness. Veterinary care should incorporate regular physical checkups, vaccinations, oral exams, and preventative care such as hoof trimming or deworming.
In addition, if you notice any unusual behavior in your horse or suspected illness, contact a vet immediately to have it checked out and treated. Similar to small animals like dogs and cats, they may also need surgery or medication.
Finally, horses should also be monitored for signs of stress and anxiety, such as too much pawing or stargazing. If you notice any changes in their behavior, contact your vet at once. Besides horse veterinary care, those who own small mammals as pets but seem to be unsure of how to care for them should seek the advice of an exotic vet in Hohenwald.
7. An Equine Veterinarian Is Needed
When deciding on an equine vet, look for one who is qualified and experienced. Find a vet who can offer quality care, listen to your worries, and clearly address your questions. It’s also best to research the Hohenwald vet clinic where the veterinarian works.
Ensure they have proper facilities and machinery, such as an in-house diagnostic lab, ultrasound machine, and X-ray device. They should also be updated with current industry standards. Furthermore, always ask for recommendations from other horse owners prior to choosing a particular veterinarian.
Caring for a horse involves knowledge, passion, and perseverance. Giving your horse routine workouts, nutrition, grooming, vet care, and shelter is very important. Additionally, choose a certified, experienced, and knowledgeable veterinarian to provide professional care. They will be your partner in aiding your horse to remain in good condition and happy.