Choosing Saddle Pads

8:03 am
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In an ideal world, the only thing between your horse and your saddle would be a simple cotton cloth — the better to keep your saddle from getting too sweaty and dirty.
In the real world, no horse is built the same, and no saddle can fit every horse, which makes the vast universe of gel pads, half pads, therapeutic pads, keyhole pads, and every other sort of saddle pad imaginable such a profitable enterprise. It’s a rare tack room that isn’t stocked with at least a dozen different saddle pads. So what’s the best way to choose […]

Stable Relationships: Dogs and Horses

8:58 pm
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Dogs and horses just go together — at least, it seems like they should. Art over the centuries has certainly romanticized the dog/horse/human companionship as the epitome of the sporting or outdoor life. But do dogs really belong in the barn (or in the pastures, or on the trails, or in your arena?)

The answer depends, of course, on the dog and on the horse. If you’re considering introducing your dog to your horse, here are a few steps to help ensure the meeting goes well.

Obedience: Before you take your newest pound puppy to the […]

Tips for Winter Horse Grooming

11:30 am
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Do you have a fuzzy horse in your barn this winter? Will you be blanketing as covered in my earlier post, http://equinefacilitydesign.com/equine-care/horse-winter-blanket.htm? Long coats call for special grooming strategies. A long winter coat is perfect for beating the winter wind and snow off your horse’s back, but it calls for extra attention when you’re exercising and training during the cold months. Long coats can hide dander, dried sweat, and dirt — which can make your horse itchy and uncomfortable. You’ll need the right tools for the job if you want […]

Preparing Mares and Stallions for Breeding Season

10:00 am
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North America, it’s time to prep your mares and stallions for breeding season. Are you ready for spring?

Although the calendar says it’s still fall, and the first snowfalls are only just appearing on weather maps across the country, the spring breeding season begins early for many horsemen. With breeding sheds opening in February, the time to make sure horses are in optimal shape and hormonal balance for breeding season is already upon us.

Physical Fitness: Just getting a mare to ovulate and conceive requires an excellent body condition. Thin or overweight mares are poor candidates […]

Five Winter Horse Care and Riding Tips

9:25 am
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Snowflakes are already flying around the country! It’s hard to believe, but winter is going to be here sooner rather than later. We’ve compiled some of our favorite winter horse care and riding tips, to help you have a warm, happy winter at the barn.

Warm Hands, Warm Heart: You want to maintain a soft feel with your horse’s mouth, but you also want to keep your fingers frostbite-free. Riding gloves are nice, but after a little while out in the freezing cold, even insulated gloves can let the cold in. Keep your fingers […]

Winter Feeding Tips

6:13 am
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The winter season can make serious changes to the way your horse lives and exercises. This, in turn, changes your horse’s nutritional requirements. From the type of feed you’re providing, to the nutrients found within, let’s take a look at winter feeding for horses.

Less Exercise. The horse who is used to daily workouts or spending most of his time outside might suddenly find himself stalled for days on end during bad weather. Many horsemen will automatically cut back on grain. After all, the stalled horse doesn’t need the same energy level provided by […]

Does My Horse Need a Winter Blanket?

3:06 am
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Here comes winter! Well, it’s starting to feel like fall in many parts of the country, and that means shaggy horses. If you’re clipping winter coats, you’re probably starting to go through your blanket inventory. If you’re leaving your horses fuzzy this winter, you might be wondering if your horse needs a winter blanket.

Well, he might not need a winter wardrobe at all. A healthy horse with a winter coat, a good diet with plenty of calories, and a windbreak with shelter probably doesn’t need a blanket until the cold gets extreme — as low […]

5 Horse Toys for Your Bored Horse

8:22 pm
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Is your horse stall-bound? Or does he get turned out alone, and spend his days walking the fence, whinnying, and generally being a pain? Some horses need more entertainment than a pile of hay or a swath of green grass. Luckily, modern horses can alleviate their boredom with horse toys. Here are five horse toys to liven up your bored horse’s life!

The Jolly Ball. It’s been around for decades, and the Jolly Ball (www.horsemenspride.com/products/) is still making a certain segment of the equine population (mainly the mouthy boys) very jolly indeed […]