Feb 12, 2018

Winter Weather Tips for Your Horse

This educational article is brought to you by Standlee Hay Company, the Official Forage of the USEA. 

Horses do not like ice in their water. During winter, many owners notice their horses becoming dehydrated, despite the fact that they've provided their four-legged friends all the H20 they can drink. When a horse drinks cold water, it causes their bodies to become colder. This means they have to expend additional calories to heat their bodies back up. Horses will naturally drink less water if it's too cold. Warming water using insulated or heated buckets will allow your horse to drink more. Research has shown that horses drink the most water when the water temperature is between 45 and 70º F.

Fiber plays an even larger role in a horse's diet. Fiber obtained from hay is necessary to keep the digestive system of your horse functioning properly which helps your horse keep warm during cold weather. Without enough fiber, horses literally become possessed beavers. They'll start gnawing the wood off anything from fence post to bedding in order to make up for their lack of fiber.

Horses should be eating at least 1.5% of their body weight in fiber per day. That means about 15 pounds for a normal, 1,000-pound horse. If the fiber is high quality, your horse can consume up to 3% of their body weight per day (30 pounds for 1,000-pound horse). That's why here at Standlee, we carefully manage every aspect of the growing and harvesting process to ensure our fiber is of the highest caliber.

Your horse also needs protein, trace minerals and vitamins. Pastures are often a great source of these essential nutrients for your horse, but during the winter, most pastures will disappear. A common source of supplemental protein, vitamins and minerals comes from fortified grain concentrates. However, when choosing a product, it's crucial that you choose the feed that is intended for your type of horse. Make sure your horse is getting adequate nutrition with the Standlee Feed Calculator.

Mar 06, 2021 Association News

Bonus Episode: When Nicole Met Boyd

On this episode of the Equiratings Eventing Podcast, show host Nicole Brown talks to Pan American Games gold medalist and U.S. team stalwart Boyd Martin about his career to date, highs and lows, and coming back from injury.

Mar 05, 2021 Eventing News

US Equestrian Live Webinar: EHV-1 Outbreak Information

On Monday, March 8 at 5:00 p.m. Eastern, USEF will host a member webinar providing updates on the impacts of the case of EHV-1 (neurological) reported in Ocala, Florida. This case is similar in nature, but unrelated to the neurological strain of EHV-1 impacting Valencia (ESP) and other European countries.

Mar 05, 2021 Competitions

The Entry Fee is Only the Beginning: Part Two

As competitors rise through the levels, they often see the costs associated with competition rise and, unfortunately for most organizers, this can’t be avoided. With fewer competitors requiring more jumps, officials, footing management, etc., the expenses for running higher levels – especially FEI – are greater than lower levels.

Mar 04, 2021 Education

Pressure Proof with Daniel Stewart: The Anxiety Cycle is not a Bike!

Our sport is going to present you with many amazing opportunities, and some equally amazing challenges. While you’re sure to enjoy the opportunities, it sometimes takes a little more effort to enjoy the challenges. Contrary to the common misconception (from non-equestrians) that our sport is easy, it’s actually one of the hardest and most demanding sports of all!

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