Natural Horsemanship 101
Looking after horses can be an extremely rewarding experience.
Food, Forage and Water:
The primary step involved in caring about horses is concerned with providing food, forage and water in adequate amounts.
Grains are available in different kinds of forms like textured, pellets, etc. Grains which are usually compressed are granulated to turn into pellets whereas the textured grains or sweet feed are different in a way that their texture allows us to visualize the oats, molasses and corn.
The decision of selecting a particular grain should be taken based on the preferences of your horse. Depending on the horse’s performance level, nutritional needs and general health we should decide about the grain amount which should be fed to the horse.
Several varieties of hay are available for us to select from such as orchard grass, timothy, alfalfa, coastal and something which is a mixture of two varieties. Depending on the variety of the hay and its quality and the specific needs of the horse, the feeding amount is decided.
Horses usually require huge amounts of water. Hence, their buckets should be regularly cleaned as a number of horses have a habit to dunk their grain as well as their hay while eating, into their bucket of water.
Both, overfeeding as well as underfeeding are harmful for the horse’s health. Hence, a veterinarian should be consulted for managing the weight of the horse.
Daily cleaning the stall of the horse after it has completed eating its good is an important activity for maintaining the horse’s general health and cleanliness.
Several types of bedding can be utilized such as straw, sawdust and shavings. Using sawdust is comparatively easier. The manure and wet spots can be taken care of and easily removed while the clean bedding is being sifted out.
Look out if your horse has any kind of allergic problems towards dry sawdust for preventing them from developing problems. Straw is often known to cause hives.
Coat conditioning is beneficial for horses as it helps in loosening old hair, removing dirt and bringing natural oils over the surface of the skin making it look glossy.
Toweling after workouts or baths also serves this purpose. Stiff brushes can help in flicking away loosened particles whereas soft and tender finishing brushes are required for the horse’s face. A woman’s comb or hairbrush can be useful for the tail and mane. Braiding them is also a good idea.
Take care of your horse!