Day At The Track

Equine Guelph winter health news flash

08:08 AM 09 Jan 2014 NZDT
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Horse in snow(1).jpg
Cold and still can equal stiff
Below freezing temperatures can make hibernation look tempting but inactivity in horses can lead to many issues.

A breath of fresh air 

Equids are equipped to deal with the cold. With certain precautions, maximizing turn-out time can be the healthiest option for your horse. Stall bound horses incur a higher risk for respiratory ailments that can impead or halt your horses athletic career. Read tips for cleaner air in your stable courtesy of Equine Guelph's Management of the Equine Environment course.
Shivering seniors
If your senior steed is looking cold this winter, it may be time to feed more fibre and consider a blanket.

Top Seasonal Tips
Colic alert - Horses need water 24/7. When moist grass is replaced by dry hay the need for water in digestion becomes even greater. Don't allow water sources to freeze. Use Equine Guelph's interactive Colic Risk Rater tool to assess your risk. Safe passage - You put winter tires on your car but how will your horse fare in icy conditions? Keep pathways clear with a handy mix of wood chips, sand and rock salt.

Hair raising experiences - Beware the dangers of throwing a winter blanket on a sweaty horse. If your horse is not clipped, cooling out time will increase. Horses' lose the ability to insulate themselves against the cold when hair is wet and laying flat. More tips...

Winter weight - what is going on under that blanket? Check your horse is maintaining condition. Horses should still receive a daily once over in the winter including hoof picking, wound checks... and weight loss or gain.

Fire safety - keep warm but not with household extension cords and heaters in your stable. For 38 more fire safety tips...

For more information on online educational courses - click here

Submitted by Equine Guelph, University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada
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