Your horse spends a lot of time in the stable, and your stable is intended to keep your horse safe. But in truth, many stables can actually negatively affect your horse’s health. These six tips can help you to make your stable healthier for your horse.
Allow for Interaction with Other Horses
Many stables separate horses entirely with full wooden stall partitions. While this may be necessary for some aggressive or excitable horses, many horses would benefit from the ability to interact with their neighbors. Horses are social by nature, and allowing them to see other horses can help to reduce their stress.
Many stables have poor ventilation due to their construction. Horses have sensitive respiratory systems and can get sick because of the dust present in the stable’s air. Opening windows and doors as much as possible can make your stable healthier for your horse’s respiratory system.
Feed Your Horse From the Floor
If possible, feed your horse from the floor. Eating from the floor is a more natural feeding position for your horse, which allows him to easily clear his respiratory passages. This can reduce the chances of your horse getting sick. Rather than using feeders attached to the stall wall, using feed tubs which you place on the floor can be a healthier option.
Provide a Large Stall
Try to give your horse the largest stall possible. A cramped stall restricts how easily your horse can move around, and this can be particularly painful for horses with arthritis or other injuries. A larger stall encourages your horse to move about, which increases his circulation and even improves his digestive health.
Clean Stalls Multiple Times a Day
When horses are in their stalls, they have to stand in manure and urine. This can cause thrush and respiratory issues. Make sure to clean your horse’s stall multiple times a day, especially if he is staying in his stall for long periods of time.
Stables can be dark areas, especially during the winter. If you’re able to build a stable, then be sure to include many windows and skylights to take advantage of the natural light available. Many horses do not enjoy dark places, so a bright stall is more appealing to your horse than a dark stall is.
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These are just a few suggestions to get you started. In what other ways have you made your stable healthier for your horse?