Good Neigh-bors! How To Take Care Of Your Horse

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A lot of people grow up dreaming of owning a horse. Getting to ride through the field with it, raising and taking care of it. As romantic and wonderful as that sounds, a lot of people simply assume that there’s no way that could ever be a reality. People assume that in order to properly look after a horse you essentially need to turn that into your full-time job. Well, fortunately, that’s not the case. Make no mistake, looking after a horse is a lot of work and it’s something that you’ve got to be willing to commit to in the long run. But people who do decide to make that commitment often find that it’s one of the best decisions that they’ve ever made in their lives. To give you an idea of what it’s like, here are a few ways that you’ll need to look after your large, four-legged friend.

Feeding

Large quantities of grass usually make up the vast majority of a horse’s diet throughout the day. Fifteen to twenty pounds of good quality hay is a good average, but you should make sure that they always have plenty to eat and that they don’t run out. You should also make sure that the water in their trough is clean every day and that it never runs dry.

Grooming

Use a rubber brush on your horse’s coat to loosen up dirt that may have become caught in it then use a dandy brush to remove the dirt. You should use the dandy brush in a flicking motion to avoid irritating your horse’s skin. After that, a body brush is a great way to keep your horse’s hair soft, smooth, and shiny.

Safety

Obviously, you’re going to want to keep your horse safe at all times. Make sure that their tables are securely locked any time that you’re not around, both to prevent intruders but also to stop the horse from escaping. As with any pet, insurance is pretty much a necessity, and companies like Stoneways specialize in horses. You should also make sure to clean out their stables regularly to ensure that they have a sanitary environment. A dirty stable is one of the most common reasons that horses become ill.

Bonding

This is something that’s going to take a fair amount of time. The best thing that you can do is just to be a presence in your horse’s when it’s not working for you. That way it can become familiar with your company. Just sit on the fence of their paddock and watch their behaviour. Not only will this let you know if they’re comfortable with your presence but also lets you get a better idea of what they’re like when they’re not working. Over time you’ll be able to approach your horse slowly and calmly. Talk to them softly and let them sniff your hand. This way you let them know that your presence doesn’t inevitably mean they’re going to be saddled and ridden straight away. Over time you’ll be able to build the bond with your horse until it’s as strong as with any other pet.

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