By Kasha Ford, Silver Buckle Services
Cold Weather Tips to Have Your Horse Ready for Spring Better Than Ever! Contributed By ForeFront Equine™. Better Performance. Quicker Recovery. Improved Focus.
If you’re in an area that gets significantly cooler or wetter in the winter and for those that spent much of the last two seasons competing, trail riding and training hard, a winter respite may be something you and your horse are looking forward to. However, though the temptation may be to reduce your horse’s level of activity during inclement conditions, it’s important to continue appropriate nutrition, including on-going supplementation, and at least a modest level of activity, if you expect them to return to their regular routine when spring inevitably returns.
During winter, it’s likely your horse will spend more time in the barn. However, just staying dry and warm isn’t enough. Often there’s a temptation to either decrease or altogether stop adding supplements to your horse’s diet when they’re not working at their peak level. However there are a number of considerations to be aware of when your horse has “down time”.
When horses are stalled for extended periods of time they are prone to stocking up and any joint conditions they exhibited during the warmer seasons, whether age, injury or performance related, will likely be exacerbated as days become chilly. It’s important to continue with joint support, with a product like ForeJoint™ or AllStar™, even if your horse isn’t working as hard. This is particularly true if you expect them to return to their previous level of activity when spring comes. Maintaining their existing joint regimen will not only keep them more comfortable while stalled, but will also reduce the time necessary to leg them up when they return to work.
When weather is cooler horses tend to drink less – especially if water is cold or frozen. Drinking less, combined with prolonged periods of stall time may lead to impaction colic. Ensure that your horse is drinking adequately by, not only giving them access to warmer water and ensuring troughs don’t freeze, but by also continuing to include electrolytes, like ForeLyte™, in their daily diet.
Staying warm and cozy in the barn is great, but stomach and lung conditions, like heaves and ulcers may also become problems with prolonged periods of stall time. Ensure that your barns receive adequate ventilation, dust is controlled and that you manage any ammonia odors. If your horse is younger or tends to exhibit stall vices, like weaving, cribbing or worrying, do what you can to keep them from feeling isolated. Consider giving them a “barn buddy” like an older horse, a miniature horse/donkey, or even a goat. Support their GI tract with digestive supplements like ForeDigest™ and Colostrum and help maintain good lung function with ForeRespiratory™.
About ForeFront EquineTM:
ForeFront Equine™ offers not only an all-natural, American made, comprehensive line of top-shelf supplements for horses, they also offer a line of Canine products. ForeFront Equine™ is a Vermont-based, family owned and operated business, who understands the level of devotion and energy it takes to properly care for animals. By recognizing the increasing need to provide advanced supplements to deliver the nutrition, both competitive and pleasure animals require for good health and to reach their maximum potential, ForeFront’s™ team embarked on a passionate and extensive industry research journey. Since then their team of professionals with over 150 years of equine experience and 75 years of animal nutrition experience have sourced, formulated and manufactured a selection of the highest quality animal supplements available.
www.forefrontequine.com, (888) 772-9582 | Dealer Inquiries Welcome.