Hydrotherapy for Horses

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Have you ever heard of hydrotherapy. It includes swimming, underwater treadmill work, and other rehabilitation techniques. Hydrotherapy for horses works in the same way that it works for humans and other animals. Continue reading for how this type of treatment works for equines. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

How Hydrotherapy for Horses Works

Exercising in water reduces physical loads and concussive forces on the body. This is important when it comes to rehabilitating from an injury.  Muscle injuries occur with repetition on forces on the body. The buoyancy from water limits these forces. The science is simple. Water is more dense than air. Horses work harder at slower speeds during aquatic exercise. This leads to improved cardiorespiratory fitness and muscle development. There are a plethora of benefits to hydrotherapy for horses.

Weight reduction promotes greater range of motion and strengthens flexibility. This is the best benefit of all because it reduces the risk of future injury. With every treatment method, there are some shortcomings. Hydrotherapy requires horses to acclimate to aquatic conditions. This takes more time than other rehabilitation methods. However, hydrotherapy has been proven to help. In this case, the benefits often outshine the drawbacks. For more information on hydrotherapy for horses, talk to your equine veterinarian today. There may be this type of therapy center fit for horses near you.

Equine Skin Care

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Did you know that horses can get dry skin resulting in a poor quality coat? This can certainly happen in Colorado due to our low humidity and dryer climate. The best thing horse owners can do for equine skin care is to make sure the horse is eating the proper nutrients. Continue reading for more information about what nutrients your horse needs for defending against dry skin. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Equine Skin Care Treatment

Before we get into the nutritional aspect of this topic, here’s a good tip. If your horse has dry skin, take a look at the shampoo you’re using. Also, shampooing your horse too frequently removes naturally occurring oils. Use a simple shampoo with fewer detergents and alcohols. Biotin helps horses’ skin and coat. Biotin is tricky because there are no guidelines for how much to use. However, research suggests twenty to thirty milligrams aid in hoof quality, so we can assume similar levels help with the skin and coat.

Zinc also helps with skin quality. Epithelial cells that make up skin require zinc for reproduction, maintenance, and repair. Zinc is found in forages, but it still might not be enough. In this case, use a supplement to make sure they’re getting everything they need. Copper is also very important for equine skin care. Copper maintains the structural integrity of the cross-linkages that provide strength to collagen in the skin. In conclusion, check with your vet to see if biotin, zinc, and copper supplements are right for your horse.

Taking Care of Your Pony

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Taking care of your pony may be more difficult than you thought. Healthy adult horses typically eat up to 2.5% of their body weight per day when foraging on a pasture. However, many ponies can eat up to 4% of their body weight or more when foraging.  Therefore, you must monitor your ponies eating habits more closely. Continue reading for some tips on taking care of your pony. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Tips on Taking Care of Your Pony

Ponies are very cute and great for kids, but they have a reputation for misbehaving. Depending on where you got your pony and how much training it received beforehand, this behavior is manageable. If your horse is particularly bad, you’ll want to get them training as quick as possible. Even in small equids, bad manors can lead to real safety hazards. It goes without saying that kids love ponies. A pony that snaps, bites, kicks, etc., isn’t cute but is also a danger to small children. So be careful when they’re around untrained ponies. Just because they’re small doesn’t mean they’re not a threat.

Like many animals, bad behavior could be an acting out due to health problem. Therefore, you should rule out sources of pain that might cause bad behaviors. After a check up from the vet, then you can assume it’s just a learned behavior. There are ways to correct bad behavior that owners at any skill level can do. Using techniques such as well-timed positive and negative reinforcement, you can teach you pony good behaviors just like the professionals can with large horses.

Potty-Training Your Horse

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Did you know that you can potty-train your horse? Maintaining a clean barn stall and pasture is an important step in keeping your horse healthy. Horses have anywhere from 15 to 20 bowel movements a day. This can generate up to 50 pounds of manure!  Continue reading for some tips on potty-training your horse. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Steps in Potty-Training Your Horse

First, pick a few designated areas that you want your horse to use for relieving itself. Make sure these areas aren’t too close to where your horses eat, walk, or sleep. Keep in mind that having more than one designated area is to make sure they’re close to the herd. Then move fresh manure to the areas that you have chosen. This will tell your horse that this is a place they can go. Now that you’ve come up with your planned area, the real training can begin.

Unless your horse has been trained before, they will not pick up on what you want right away. Therefore, you’ll have to move any manure they produce to correct spot. Make sure to have your horse’s favorite snack on hand. Reward the correct behavior is the best way to reinforce it. This also means that you’ll have to be in the pasture with your horse for a while. Because for the best results, you’ll have to praise them immediately after using the area that you’ve designated. This is important so that your horse will be able to associate these two events.

Taking Pictures for Your Vet

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In the case of emergencies, ask your vet if you can send them a picture of your horse. This can include images of wounds, abnormalities, or lamenesses. This is called telemedicine and can be very useful especially if you live far away from your horse clinician. Here are some tips for taking pictures for your vet. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Tips for Taking Pictures for Your Vet

One of the most important things to think about when taking a picture for your vet is the lighting. Even during the day, barns are often dark. If your barn has overhead lighting this can throw shadows. Use the flash setting on your phone to give the image more light. However, the best solution is to take the picture outside. Natural lighting is the way to go. Also, try not to send your vet a blurry picture. Your vet will have a hard time helping you with a diagnosis if they can’t really see the wound.

If you have newer phone, then take a step of two back from the wound before taking the picture. This will help your vet see precisely where the wound is while still having the ability to zoom in. If you have an older phone in which zooming in on a picture makes it blurry, then you may have to send more than one picture to your vet. One picture from a distance and one picture up close. Sometimes it’s useful to use a reference object in the photo to show scale. Doing so will give your veterinarian context and perspective. You can use a coin, pen, or anything that you can easily hold near the wound. For more tips, talk to your vet.

How to Lower Your Horse Insurance

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Are you a horse owner and looking to save some money this year? Veterinary medicine has advanced substantially and the costs of horse ownership have risen. Fortunately, the horse insurance industry has seen some recent changes that could help you keep money in your pockets. Here’s what you need to know. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Ask Your Horse Insurance Agent

Ask your horse insurance agency about their co-insurance options. This is where the owner and insurer share veterinary bills. For example, there are new insurance plans with a twenty percent clause. This clause means that the owner will pay twenty percent of veterinary bills and the insurer will pay the rest. A few years ago plans like these were only offered for small animal insurance programs. So this is a wonderful change in the industry for horses. If your insurer doesn’t offer this yet, talk to them about how you can at least lower your rates.

Similar to the car industry, if you can show you’re taking care of your horse then you should be able to get lower rates. In order for this to work, you’ll have to prove some stuff to your insurer. You must demonstrate that you are a proactive and engaged owner that works with a veterinarian and farrier on a regular basis. Healthy horses are easier to insure. Also, if you are working with a trainer and are a member of your Provincial Equine Sports Organization, then you’re going to get the most favorable rates.

Senior Horses and Winter

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Not all horses are the same, but generally speaking senior horses need a little more care during the winter months. Now is a great time to get your horses examined before the real cold gets here. Your vet can assess your horse’s weight and make specific recommendations for their nutritional needs. Continue reading for some more tips on how to get your senior horses ready for winter. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Keeping Your Senior Horses Warm

Diet is important in keeping your horse warm. Within minutes of eating a meal, the horse’s digestive processes begin to generate heat and warm the body. Also, a lot like humans, calories that aren’t immediately absorbed are stored as fat. Fat is the ultimate insulation for horses. Older horses tend to have less fat on them, so make sure they have plenty of hay to eat this winter. Did you know that most horses consume 2% of their body weight in hay per day? For a 1,000-pound horse, that’s 20 pounds of hay! In winter you’ll probably need to increase that amount for your senior horse.

It’s a common misconception that horses have to have blankets on when it is cold or snowing. Rain and wind are actually worse, so make sure your senior horses have access to shelter. Shovel a path and put down straw, hay, gravel, or shavings to make it a safe surface for walking. But here’s the bottom line. An older horse with the proper weight and no health issues probably does not need a blanket. Leaner senior horses or horses with health issues should be blanketed. Shivering is a sign they definitely need a blanket.

Do You Soak Your Hay?

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Did you know that soaking your horse’s hay can help horses diagnosed with certain diseases? Well, now you know. That’s right, soak your hay for 15 to 60 minutes in water to reduce water soluble carbohydrates, potassium and dust. Here are the details. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Reasons to Soak Your Hay

Soaking hay in water is a common way to care for horses diagnosed with a wide array of equine ailments. These include Laminitis, Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy, Hyperkalemic Periodic Paralysis, and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, also known as the Heaves, is often abbreviated as COPD. However, it is different from the COPD that humans can be diagnosed with. The equine COPD is similar to asthma in humans and is a common reason for some horses persistent coughing. This can be tough to diagnose because affected horses do not have a temperature and they appear well.

Reducing your horse’s intake in carbs can help reduce their risk of developing these diseases. The experts suggest complete rations should contain less than 10-12% nonstructural carbohydrates. This is especially so for horses with laminitis and Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy. Also, horses with Hyperkalemic Pulmonary Disease need complete diets less than 1% of potassium. For more information, talk to your equine clinician soaking your hay in water.

What is My Saddle Made of?

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Ever wonder what your saddle is made of? The easy answer is probably leather, but so much more goes into it. Modern horse saddles are divided into two broad categories, the English and Western saddle. Depending on which you use, the materials that compose it may differ drastically. Continue reading to find out what goes into making saddles. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

What My Saddle is Made of

The three main parts of the saddle are the accessories, the saddle tree, and the seat itself. The accessories like flaps, girth straps, and stirrup leathers are typically made from animal skins. Depending on the saddlery, this could be from cattle, pigs, sheep, or deer. However, cowhide is the most common skin used for saddles. Saddle trees are composed of several different raw materials. These include wood, fiberglass, plastic, laminate, steel, aluminum, and iron. Seats are usually made from canvas, felt, and wool.

These raw materials are used for making all saddles. However, Western saddles have more requirements because they are used for working. These saddles have a wider and longer panel than the English saddle. This is so they disperse more of the rider’s weight over the back of the horse. They also have a roping horn on the pommel which is used for roping cattle. These extra pieces are usually equipped with extra D-rings, or tie-downs, to hold the ropes and other items.

Restoring Old Saddles

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Whether you are a new or experienced rider, leather saddles are a favorite in the horse community in Colorado. Though durable and great looking, leather saddles do deteriorate over time. This is why many new riders opt for a more synthetic brand. But did you know that restoring old saddles is actually easy to do yourself? Here’s how it’s done. Also, if you are looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Restoring Your Old Saddles

The first step is to take apart your saddle. You will need a screwdriver and nippers to do it. To get a good clean, remove the girth, stirrups and conches. Also, loosen the back and side jockeys. Use your screwdriver and nippers to take out any nails. Wash the leather pieces with traditional soap and saddle soap. Clean the surface with a soft-bristled brush. When you’re done. rinse rinse everything off with water and let it air-dry. Remember, you may have to do these steps more than more.

If the saddle that you’re restoring if very old, then regular soap may not work. In this case, use a leather detergent concentrate. There are many great solutions that you can find at your local saddlery shop or online. Dilute your detergent with water and scrub it onto the leather with a soft-bristled brush as you would with soap. If your saddle is hard or brittle, use oil to soften it up. Their are also some great oil-based “rejuvenators” on the market that can help. With a little bit of time and effort you can turn that old saddle back into the beautiful piece of art it once was!