Colorado Horse

Jan 02 2011

Caring For Your Horse

Published by under Horse Care

You need to be dedicated and have an affection for your horse in order to care for your horse on a daily basis. All animals require preventive care to ensure they don’t contract infectious and generally maintain their overall good health. Horse need clean fresh air , water and food in order to thrive. You should always ensure that the stable is clean and that clean fresh water is always available.

A well nourished horse eats 3% of its body weight daily. Feed you horse with grass , hay or hard feed. Ideally you should combine these food groups with 70% of the horse’s intake consisting of grass or hay.

Try to only use the best quality feed , grass and hay. Rotten fermenting hay can result in stomach ache and flatulence. Fiber is an essential component and you should ensure that their is sufficient fiber and bulk in the hay you feed your horse. Make sure that the all the utensils used in preparing the feed are clean. A horse requires regular feeding , so if you aren’t able to commit to the time investment , then keeping a horse is not for you. Feed your horse at least an hour before its regular exercise program.

Horse feed typically consists of any of the following , oats, barley, bran, nuts, sugar beet, linseed or a mixture of various cereals. Don’t let the horse eat to fast as this may result in choking. One way to prevent your horse from wolfing down its feed is to mix large rocks in its bucket of feed. This will slow the horse down.

Foot care is one of the most important components of the horse’s care regime. Depending on the condition of the hooves , they will require treatment every four to six weeks. You should also remove and scrap any stones or mud out of the hooves on a daily basis. Proper care will prevent infections and lameness.

Just like humans horses require an annual dental check-up. Sharp teeth can cause problems for the horse. The vet usually rasps or files the teeth to remove the sharp points.

You should also consult your vet about a proper de-worming program. This may need to be administered every 8 to 13 weeks depending on the type of worms. De-worming medication is usually mixed in with the horse’s feed.

Horses are susceptible to lung worm , pin worm , , tapeworm and red worm so it is important to de-worm on a regular basis. Bot Eggs can also be found on its coat as well as other skin infestations such as ringworm.

You should actually consider investing in a first aid kit for horses. You would need a thermometer, petroleum jelly, salt or saline solution for wounds, animalintex, gamgee, scissors, bucket, sponge, antiseptic cream or gel, bandages, medical gloves, towel, soap and brush. You also need to vaccinate your horse against equine flu , tetanus and other diseases.

The Equine infectious anemia is a serious health problem that amounts approximately to 500 cases each year. Another dangerous infection is EIA which is a viral disease that affects the horse’s immune system. This often results in other opportunistic infections such as bronchopneumonia. Unfortunately there is no cure for EIA. You can test your horse for the EIA virus through a serum test.

Another serious killer to be avoided is Laminitis , which affects the horse’s feed disrupting the flow of blood. It is caused by toxins in the animals body , high fever and even digestive problems such as chronic colic.

Watch out for symptoms of heat in the hooves , increased heart rate , pain in the feet and lameness. Its is treated by administering medical fluids and putting the horse on a restrictive diet.

Watch out for syptoms such as loss off appetite , reduced stamina , irregular heartbeat , sweating , red eyes and depression. These are likely signs that you horse may be sick. To prevent serious problems always call out the vet when these symtoms persist – you will save yourself many problems and even save your horse’s life.

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