Horses have the ability to stay outside during the winter season due to their strong metabolism which provides them enough calories and with the time they grow hair which protects them during the winter.
But yet horses have a limit to tolerate the cold temperature that is as low as -40 degrees Celsius. The most comfortable temperature for them is between 18 degrees and 54 degrees Fahrenheit relying on the hair coat.
So here we are to suggest to you some measures that need to be taken care of for the horses during the winter season.
Edibles: Food is the primary source to keep the horse warm as it produces more calories which helps them to survive the cold months. During winter the horse requires 25 to 30 pounds of hay per day to acquire the necessary nutrients to keep the body temperature moderate.
Hydration: During winter, horses have the tendency to eat snow or ice but it is important to provide them enough water in the non-frozen form to keep them hydrated throughout the season.
The temperature of the water should be slightly warm in the winter as it is good for their body and helps in digesting.
It is necessary to take care of the horse who sweats in winter while riding or working by completely drying out the sweat as it can make the horse shivery and chilled.
Shelter: Though the horses have their natural hair coat to protect them in winter, yet they need proper shelter to keep their body temperature mild during harsh and severe winter months.
For this, the horse owner needs to arrange a proper place that is covered from all sides and acts as a barrier from the cold winds. Apart from this, the shelter should be spacious to make the horse feel comfortable.
Protective Sheet: Although the horse has a hair coat after a certain time period you need to shave their hair in order to keep them cool and make it easy for them to work in the snow. For this, you should always keep stable rugs.
Stable rugs are made of quilted synthetic material, especially for horses. It is designed to keep the horse warm but it is not waterproof and hence cannot be used outside the shelter (in snow, or rain). They are comfortable to breathe in and come with different color options.
Health Check: To keep your horse healthy during winter it is important to get a proper check-up of the horse and make sure it takes all necessary vaccinations before the transition of the season from autumn to winter.
It is also necessary to take care of the hooves with snow pads to keep snow from getting collected inside the bottom of the hoof. Apart from this, the food should be stored in a sealed container in order to protect them from pests.
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