Horse Calisthenics

Photo by Wes Walker on Unsplash

The dictionary broadly defines calisthenics as exercises for a strong, trim body, requiring minimal gear or complicated moves. These maneuvers support a horse’s active exercises, promoting strength and gracefulness. Best performed at the session’s start or during confusion, they aid gymnastic muscles, preventing faults and poor habits. Calisthenics complement normal schooling, enhancing efficiency and success in training efforts. Continue reading for more on horse calisthenics. 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.

Defining Horse Calisthenics

Calisthenics exercises serve as invaluable tools in equine training, targeting areas often overlooked in a horse’s daily regimen. Calisthenics offer a holistic approach to enhancing a horse’s strength, flexibility, and overall well-being. Their benefits include activating dormant muscle groups and heightening sensory perception. It also refines proprioception and resolves muscular imbalances and asymmetries. Another benefit is the expanding of joint mobility. This comprehensive approach not only optimizes physical performance but also aids in injury prevention and rehabilitation.

Given these advantages, equine professionals advocate for incorporating calisthenics at the outset of training sessions. By doing so, riders and trainers can preemptively address any ingrained neurosensory patterns. This allows for more effective engagement with the exercises and maximizing their impact. Moreover, starting with calisthenics sets a positive tone for the session, promoting mindfulness and intentionality in the horse’s movement and the rider’s cues.

Furthermore, it’s noteworthy that certain exercises may seamlessly transition between serving as part of the schooling regimen and fulfilling the role of calisthenics. In such cases, the speed and intention with which the exercise is executed become pivotal in determining its specific effect and outcome. This underscores the versatility and adaptability of calisthenics within equine training, showcasing their ability to cater to the individual needs and goals of both horse and rider.

Equine Skin Care

Photo by Chris Bair on Unsplash

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.

Equine Massage Therapy

Photo by Jeremy Cai on Unsplash

As horse lovers, we know that caring for you horse is very important. However, taking your horse to the clinician or large animal veterinarian can be very expensive. There are a few things that you can do to sooth your horse that also have physical benefits. Horse massage therapy can prevent your equine from sustaining serious injury. Continue reading for a few techniques that might help your horse, including trigger-point therapy and myofascial release. 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.

Horse Massage Techniques

Remember, before practicing these techniques have a professional horse chiropractic guide you first. Trigger-point therapy is a focused massage on sensitive spots causing pain in soft tissues because of contracted muscles. These trigger points or knots are small, firm areas within the muscle. They are often the result of hard work, stress, or injury. When practicing trigger-point therapy, apply direct pressure to relax the muscle. This will release lactic acid, relieve spasms, encourage blood flow, and improve oxygen supply.

Another soothing technique is myofascial release or MFR. This includes massaging the fascia surrounding the musculoskeletal system. This part of the horse anatomy can cause problems when it becomes tight and restrictive. Just like trigger-points this is often the result of trauma, disease, or hard work. If you spot these issues, your horse needs to stretch to release the tension and restore free movement. Again, a trained horse therapist can help you identify and remedy these issues.

Horse Care For Severe Winter Storms

Photo by Leonard Laub on Unsplash

Colorado is no stranger to cold weather. Also, our horses are just as resilient when it comes to dealing with more severe winter storms. However, climate change has made things a little more difficult. No, we’re probably not going to see another ice age. But polar temperatures finding their way down to Colorado like it did this February could occur more regularly. Continue reading for some things to think about when preparing for winter storms. 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.

The Water Supply During Severe Winter Storms

The biggest worry for your horses during severe winter storms is water. The average horse needs around 5 to 10 gallons of water a day. This becomes a problem when the water freezes. If your pasture has a larger stock tank than your stables, then it might be smarter to turn your horses out. The more water, the longer it takes to freeze. Another upside to this tactic is that you can probably use a vehicle to bring more water to the trough. This will be easier than lugging buckets to the barn in negative degree weather.

Another problem that arises is that older well pumps don’t like to work in severe winter storms. But if you have snow, you have water. If it comes down to it, you can melt snow to refill your troughs. However, a 5-gallon bucket of snow does not yield a 5-gallon bucket of water. This job can be labor-intensive, so ask a family member or neighbor to help you. If warmed water is unfeasible for all water supplies, there’s an alternative. Consider using a water heater in your barn. Warm small batches for water and rotate your horses through to offer them warmed water. It’s a hard job, but remind yourself that the weather will warm up and things will get back to normal.

Stubborn Eaters

Photo by Åsmund Gimre on Unsplash

Many horse owners see their equine companions as family; even as their children. Just like children, horses can be very stubborn eaters. Finding a diet that’s nutritious and stimulates the horse palate can be very challenging. Here are a few simple tips that you can use to get started when dealing with your stubborn eaters. 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.

Again, just like us, horses have specific preferences for the tastes, textures, and smells of the things they eat. However, nervousness can also play a large role in your horse’s picky habits. This presents a whole new set of challenges. First you must find what is causing your horse’s nervousness. Is it a physical problem? Issues like ulcers or dental problems could cause a horse to turn away from specific foods. If your horse is not nervous, then it could just be your horse’s preferences coming into play. For example, when it comes to grain some horses prefer pelleted feed. Other horses prefer their grain to be more textured.

And there’s more than just texture your horse might be fussing about. Did you know that many feed manufacturers add aromas and flavors to their products? Though these additives are meant to entice your horse, it could be doing the opposite. The answer here is to sample different products to find what your horse prefers. Horses often chose sweet flavors over sour ones, such as lemon and orange. In some cases, some horses have been known to not like grains at all. Nothing says your horse has to eat grain, but they’d have to make up the rest in forage. Remember, an average 1,000-pound horse requires 15-25 pounds of forage every day. If you are having issues with a stubborn eater, always check with your horse’s clinician for nutrition options.

Horse Care Essentials

Photo by Philippe Oursel on Unsplash

Horse owners will be the first person to tell you that taking care of an equine is no simple task. Thankfully there are commercial items that horse owners can buy that makes their lives a little easier. Below are some of the horse care essentials we’ve heard about over the years from the amazing horse owners that we’ve worked with in the past. Are you looking for a horse property for sale in Colorado? Colorado Horse Property has the largest database of horse properties in Colorado. We also have a staff of horse-person realtors ready to help. Contact Colorado Horse Property today!

Colorado Horse Care Essentials

Some horses tend to hold heat in the legs, that can make physical activity difficult. If you have this problem, Icetight should be in your tack room. This is a medicinal clay poultice that can help reduce the heat. Another great product to have on hand is AluShield. This is a liquid bandage. Accidents do happen and a one-size-fits-all bandage doesn’t always work for horses. Liquid bandages are great for wounds in hard to reach places. They keep the flies away and protects the area from getting dirty. These products are great, but not all horse care essentials need to be name brand.

If you train with your horse, a cooling liniment is great to use in between sessions. Similar to Icetight but not as strong, cooling liniments help horses heal after training. If you only take your horse on well-traveled trails, then your horse might not be shod (don’t have horseshoes). You should have a pair of horse boots around just in case you find yourself riding on rocky trails or pavement. Even shod horses can accidentally lose their horseshoes, so having horse boots on hand can help in emergencies.

First Aid Kits for Horses: The Alternatives

First Aid Kits for Horses

Did you know that just like us there are first aid kits for horses? A well-stocked first aid kit in your tack room is important. Horse owners should always be prepared for equine injuries and illnesses. While the standard essentials like gauze pads and a thermometer are always helpful, in some situations more unusual items may be the key to helping your horse. First aid kits for horses should be updated periodically. When updating for kit, consider adding these less common items. They could just save your horse’s life.

Unusual Things for Your First Aid Kit

Consider adding the inner tube from a bicycle wheel to your first aid kit. I know that sounds weird, but hear me out. You can cut a bicycle inner tube in half and use it as a tourniquet to help prevent blood loss from a leg injury. This stretchy material can make a great seal to a wound. Flashlights are essential in any first aid kit, but the winter cold will drain their batteries, and holding a flashlight while you’re treating your horse isn’t practical. Glow sticks offer an advantage because they don’t rely on battery power and can be placed anywhere.

Another item that you should always have in your first aid kit is duct tape. It might seem peculiar at first, but there are so many ways duct tape can help in an emergency. Not only is it great for temporary fixes with tack, it can also be used as a temporary bandage. If your looking for more horse safety tips, call us today. Colorado Horse Property is the leading horse property listing site in the entire state.

Horse Riding Safety Apps

Horse Safety Apps

With the summer in full swing in Colorado, horse owners will be taking their four-legged companions out of the pasture. Horse riding safety is very important, especially if you ride regularly. It is safer to have someone ride along with you. However, with social distancing still a main priority, that might not always be possible. It is more important now that ever to note that falling poses a real problem for equestrians. But don’t worry. We’re in the 21st century and technology has your back. The free apps below could help you if you were to fall off your horse and were unable to phone for help.

Safety Apps for Horse Riding

The main app you’ll want to have on your smartphone before riding alone is the Ride With Me app. This app was developed by SmartPak. When you set up Ride With Me, you’ll be prompted to enter in some emergency contacts. The app will monitor your movement and if it detects that you’ve stopped moving, it will sound a warning alarm. If you’ve stopped moving on purpose, then this alarm can be turned off easily. However, if you don’t stop the alarm, the app will text your GPS location to your emergency contacts, letting them know that you need help.

You should also consider the Road ID app. Much like Ride With Me, this app tracks your location as you ride and its Stationary Alert Notification can notify your friends and family if you stop moving. Your emergency contacts can see your progress on any web browser. You can create a lock screen that includes emergency contacts, allergies, medical conditions, and your blood type for emergency responders in case you fall. Looking for horse properties for sale in Colorado, contact Colorado Horse Property today and speak with one of our horse-person realtors.

Can Horses Contract Covid-19?

Pandemic Horse

The pandemic brought on by the novel Coronavirus that is sweeping across the world, has impacted every American is one way or another. The pandemic can also affect our beloved animals. Can horses contract Covid-19? The short answer is no. There are no reported cases. However, the more important question is: how does the Coronavirus affect horses? The Coronavirus affects animals in two different ways, directly and indirectly. The direct way that the pandemic is affecting animals is through contracting the disease Covid-19. This has been reported in a few cases, mostly cats and dogs, though it is very rare. The broader, indirect way that our animals have been affected by this pandemic is due to limited access to supplies and interrupted care.

How To Stay Prepared

Now that you’ve answered the question “Can horses contract Covid-19,” you should get prepared. In order to reduce the affects of the pandemic on your horses is to stay prepared. Ensure that you have stocked up on extra supplies. This includes medications, forage/feed and other necessities. Stay in contact with your local feed store. If they are open, you may be required to wear a mask and gloves before entering the store. If they are closed, there may be other options for you to stock up on what you need. Talk to your feed store owner about ordering online or by phone, putting your order outside the door of the store as you arrive or other alternatives. Be proactive and less reactive. Write down specific care instructions for your horses. If you get sick, someone will be able to jump in and follow your plan.

If you are sick, you should not go out to collect supplies. Rely on the strong Colorado Horse Community around you. Contact your friends, over the phone of course, and see if they can lend you supplies. They can even help arrange to bring in food to leave at your gates/steps. If you have any other questions about how you can help reduce the affects of the pandemic on horses and other animals, contact Colorado Horse Property today.

Winter Horses

Winter Horses

Horse owners are naturally going to over-prepare their horses for the winter. It’s inevitable. Though closing the barn windows and turning up the heater seems like a good idea, it might not be. All horses are winter horses; they are equipped to handle most winters.

For instance, horses are naturally claustrophobic and their mental well-being suffers when confined. Though they will need to take shelter some times, horses instinctively need open spaces. Standing in a stall for long periods of time can be damaging to your horse’s health. Just like humans, it is not good for horses to be sedentary. It leads to ulcers, colic, and other digestive disorders, not to mention obesity. Good horse owners will know that having some sort of shelter is a must. However, using it should be your horse’s choice, not yours. Winter horses will always take shelter when they need to.

Are Horse Blankets Necessary?

Drive through any horse community in Colorado, like Elizabeth or Salida, during the winter. Some horses will have blankets on and some will not. Putting a blanket on a horse will vary from situation to situation. Overall, your horse’s coat is fully equipped to keep it insulated against the cold in most cases. As long as they can go into their stall during strong winds and wet weather, your horse is able to keep sufficiently warm in the coldest weather. Starting thinking of your horses as winter horses.

So, when are horse blankets necessary? Horses who shiver in the cold, are underweight, aging, ill, or otherwise frail, may feel better with extra covering. However, keep a check on your horse. Are they sweating under the blanket? You don’t want to inhibit your horse’s coat from its natural ability to protect against the cold. So, if your horse is sweating or exhibiting signs of discomfort due to the blanket, make sure to take the blanket off. For more information, contact Colorado Horse Property today.