A great deal of effort goes into caring for a horse. Not only do horses live long lives compared to many other animals, they also have specialized dietary and health needs. However, while taking care of a horse may present a number of challenges, it’s by no means impossible. Provided proper care is taken, your horse can live for several decades. Anyone who’s new to caring for horses would be wise to put the following tips to good use.
1. Groom Frequently
To keep your horse’s coat nice and shiny and prevent the spread of fleas, it’s strongly advised that you frequently brush your horse. In fact, many horse owners perform brushings on a daily basis. You’ll need to start with a rubber brush, which will loosen up the dirt, and follow up with a dandy brush, which will remove the dirt. Additionally, you can prevent matting by using a body brush to smooth out the animal’s hair. Giving your horse periodic haircuts is another effective way to prevent matting. However, haircuts are best administered by a professional groomer, as certain tools can startle horses and result in injury.
2. Purchase Equine Insurance
Being large animals, horses can easily rack up a small fortune in vet bills. This is why it pays to purchase both horse insurance and equine liability insurance. The former will prevent you from emptying out your bank account whenever your horse falls victim to a medical issue, while the latter will ensure that you’re covered in the event that a third party is injured by your animal. In addition to being a pet, a horse represents a large investment – one that’s in your best interest to protect.
3. Feed Frequently
Since horses are grazing animals, they’re used to eating small amounts of food throughout the day. For this reason, it’s recommended that you feed your horse multiple small meals instead of a single large meal each day. Most horses’ diets are primarily composed of hay and grains, although a steady supply of fresh water and a saltlick should be available to your horse at all times.
As any seasoned horse owner can confirm, caring for these animals is practically a fulltime job. Failing to provide a horse with the care it needs stands to compromise its health and dramatically reduce its lifespan. To ensure that your horse leads a long and healthy life, engage in frequent grooming, purchase equine insurance and adhere to a healthy feeding schedule.