In February of 2020, France went into ‘confinement,’ or you may understand it as ‘lockdown.’ My family and I duly followed the rules and congratulated ourselves on our decision 13 years before to buy a farm in rural Deux Sevres, France, where we live in splendid isolation with our horses at Haras Du Ritz.
Holistic equine care considers the interconnectedness of everything involved in the horse’s health. That explains why Kuehler Veterinary Services carefully considered what their patients would live on and stand on during treatment at their new KF Equine Fitness and Rehab facility in Auxvasse, Mo.
Keep Your Horse Healthy & Happy in the Hot Months Ahead
Made In the Shade: Horses should have access to shade throughout the day, especially during peak heat. The shade of trees can be ideal if it puts your horse in the path of natural breezes, too. And man-made shelters are good, so long as there’s ventilation.
Fresh, Clean Water: Hydration is important all year for digestion and the function of all cells. It’s even more so in summer because of water loss through perspiration. Dehydration can also aggravate conditions on the Equine Asthma Spectrum by thickening the mucus in the respiratory tract that occurs with respiratory conditions.
Monitor water troughs or buckets regularly and refill them as needed. Automatic waterers are convenient, but can make it tough to monitor how much your horse is drinking. In general, horses should consume about 5% of their body weight in water every day – more if it’s hot, they’re exercising, or both. Horses enjoying juicy grass pasture will get more of their water needs met by grass, whereas horses on dry hay will typically need to drink more.
All water sources should be kept clean. Check them when you feed, because horses typically drink the most within a few hours of eating. (Steamy tip: Haygain Steamed Hay can have up to 3X the moisture content of dry hay!)