Advancements in technology are revolutionizing the world. Lucky for us, they’re also improving our capabilities in the horse world. Whether you’re worried about your horse having an emergency while you aren’t there, or want to improve the effectiveness of your training program, chances are that there’s a new type of technology that can help you with that.
These three apps, programs, and devices can help you monitor your horse’s health for improved safety and even improved care for the horses in your barn.
Nightwatch, deemed the world’s first smart halter, can alert you to signs of distress in your horse when you aren’t there to witness the signs yourself. The halter monitors real-time data about your horse’s vital signs and behaviors via electronics that are embedded in the padded leather crown. Then, the system can summon help for a horse in distress.
The Nightwatch technology monitors your horse’s heart rate and respiratory rate, and can also assess your horse’s activity, motion, and posture. If the system determines that your horse is in distress, it will simultaneously text, call, and email up to five caretakers to summon help. The Nightwatch halters also feature LED lights on their ID plates; these lights change color to visually signal that a horse is in distress.
Equisense Motion is a system that helps you to monitor your horse’s health and soundness during workouts. A sensor attaches to your girth to record your training data, then sends it to an app that guides you on how to measure your horse’s progress.
Equisense Motion monitors factors such as:
- The time you spend at each lead and at each gait during a session
- The number of transitions and jumps you make
- Your horse’s symmetry at the trot, which can indicate emerging lameness issues
- The cadence and regularity of your horse’s gait
- And more
The app stores the data about each session, so you can review it, tailor your future sessions, and get the most out of your training. You can also record information about vaccines, farrier appointments, and vet procedures to create a record of your horse’s health. The app even has free training exercises to keep your rides interesting and productive.
Orscana takes the guesswork out of blanketing your horse. This device can be hung on any blanket, and can tell you which blanket you should use based on the data it collected the previous night, weather forecasts, and whether your horse is indoors, in the paddock, or being shipped.
Orscana collects valuable data about your horse’s health, including:
- The temperature beneath your horse’s blanket
- The amount of sweat beneath your horse’s blanket
- How much time your horse spends standing up or lying down
This information gives you insight into your horse’s health, and, when Orscana pairs it with your local weather forecast, it can help you to choose the right blanket for your horse.
The Right Technology for Your Barn
Each of the devices mentioned above comes at different price points. Many of them require particular internet connections, and you’ll also want to verify that you can use any required apps on your phone. Ultimately, finding the technology that’s right for you will depend on your needs, your budget, and just what you want to get out of the device.
Photo credit and courtesy of Nightwatch.