If you own a horse, you can attest to the fact that caring for them during the winter season is challenging. Horses might be able to withstand the cold weather, but horses cannot tolerate strong winds as well as moisture. Therefore, you should let them stay indoors. Read on as we provide tips for bringing your horses to the bard.
Have your horse’s blankets cleaned in advance. Bring them to the barn before they are needed and make sure they are labeled. To make it easier for staff, if they are doing blanket changes, you can use plastic tags and write your horse’s name and the weight of the blanket on the tag, making it a lot easier to swap them when required.
Communicate with Barn Owner
Make sure you have good communication between the barn owner, manager, and stable hands. When boarding, especially during this time, it’s important to be comfortable in the care your horse is receiving. Due to weather, you may not be able to get out to the barn nearly as often as you would like to. Knowing that your horse is in safe, capable hands is essential. Have their contact information, know their schedules, and be open with questions.
Evaluate Your Horse’s Winter Needs
Evaluate your horse’s winter work schedule and whether or not their coat needs to be clipped. There are several things to be considered: is the barn heated, how about the indoor? Does the facility have an indoor? Does your horse sweat a lot? You don’t need to do a full-body clip and wrap your horse in six blankets if you only ride for an hour one or two days a week but with horses who work hard multiple days during the week (enough to break a sweat) clipping in some form maybe your best option. Not only does it make things easier for you, but it can be more comfortable for your equine partner.
Have a Plan in Case of an Emergency
Your barn manager will have one, and you should too. The weather is very unpredictable, and anything can happen. Keeping a weather app on your phone is essential to know just what kind of weather is coming. If you don’t know you’re going to get ten inches of snow, starting at 2 am, you can wake up to an un-blanketed horse or a horse in a blanket that is too light and end up finding yourself rushing in an attempt to make sure that your four-legged friend is alright.