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Your Horse and the Summer Heat

Updated: May 4, 2021

It’s going to be a SCORCHER this weekend with temperatures expected to get around 100 degrees F. If you’re planning on doing anything with your equine companions, here are some things you should consider to help them out during the heatwave: Water: always ALWAYS make sure your horse has unrestricted access to clean drinking water. Wetting hay or giving bran mashes are great ways to get more water to your horse. Electrolytes: if you're working your horse, give 1/2-1 full tube of electrolytes once daily to help facilitate drinking. If they’re working lightly or just hanging out, you can add 1 tablespoon of salt to their feed to help facilitate drinking. You can mix these into a bran mash. Do not supplement or add salt or electrolytes to your horse if they do not have unrestricted access to water, as this can lead to dehydration and other complications. Cooling off: cold hosing goes a long way in cooling your horse off after a workout. If your horse is working excessively (think: just finished a cross country course), or if you have limited access to water, mixing 5 gallons of water with 1 quart of alcohol and applying externally can help facilitate lowering body temperature.

Be sure to watch for these signs of hyperthermia. If they occur, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Written by Jordan Trevor

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