You don’t have to be a horse owner to know that horses are naturally covered in hair. Though this hair is usually short, some breeds have more than others. Many new horse owners ask themselves the question: should I clip my horse? Continue reading for an answer from the experts. 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.
Answering The Question: Should I Clip My Horse?
There are many reasons why you need to clip your horse’s hair. The most obvious reason is due to the weather. Even though hair insulates horses from the cold, if you work your horse during the winter you should actually cut their hair short. This allows body heat to escape, which prevents the horse from becoming too sweaty. If not properly cooled down after a ride, your horse will sweat and become chilled. A horse that becomes chilled may be more prone to colic, colds, and other serious health conditions.
In general, grooming a horse with thick hair is more strenuous. Clipping your horse can significantly cut down on time spent grooming. Aside from grooming, clipping your horse can have health benefits as well. For example, during the Colorado summer when it rains, trails often get muddy. Keeping the legs and fetlocks clipped short can help prevent conditions such as scratches and mud fever since the mud will have no hair to cling onto. The last thing you want is your horse to have dirty and matted hair. Clipping dried mud clumps is very hard and often results in you nicking your horse with the clippers. Removing the hair before this can occur is completely worth it!
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.
Grooming your horse is very important when it comes to their well being.
Grooming your horse regularly can be very time consuming. Depending on the type of equestrian property that you own, and the state of the weather of course, your horse can wander back to the stables after feeding very dirty. Colorado Horse Property advises horse owners to spot clean your animal with a towel so that when it comes time to give your horse its regular cleaning you can finish quicker. As a horse owner, we know what your time is important, but your horse shouldn’t have to suffer when it comes to hygiene. Cleaning with a towel when spots or stains occur, it quick and easy. The moist heat and rubbing action of the towel will help lift the stain out. The quick evaporation of the water will keep the horse from becoming soaked or chilled. Here’s how to do it.
- Gather Materials—You should use a clean bucket, an electric teakettle for heating water, and rubber gloves. Make sure you have a lot of towels on hand as well.
- Hot Water—You will need to pour boiling water from the kettle with water in your bucket. You will know that it’s hot enough when you can just stand to put your gloved hand into it.
- Soak Towel—Now you have to get your towel wet for cleaning your horse. Dunk the entire clean towel into the hot water. You don’t want your towel dripping water all over your animal, so wring the towel thoroughly to remove as much of the excess water that you can.
- Rub It—Quickly rub the stain or spot on your horse and don’t stop until the towel stops steaming.
- Repeat—Repeat steps 2-4 until the stain has been thoroughly wash out.