Horses are loyal and intelligent pets and hardly ever let their owners down. They have insight into a person’s senses and emotions and can pick up changes easily. However, if you are thinking of getting a horse, there are certain things you need to be informed about, such as the basics of horse care. Horses are high maintenance, and you cannot just learn on the way like you do with cats or dogs. You need to know everything related to horses before even considering buying one. Horses and their care is expensive, so only buy a horse if you’re sure you won’t get short on cash along the way. Here are some guidelines for taking care of your horse if you are a novice.
1. Prep Your Surroundings
Horses require ample space to move around. They are grazing animals, so they need flat pastures with healthy grass. You’ll have to ensure that the field where you’ll let your horse wander around and graze is away from roads and traffic and is on high ground. This way, you’ll be able to keep an eye on them, and they’ll stay safe from accidents.
Be sure to scout the area for poisonous plants. Many plants can appear harmless to you but trigger dangerous reactions in horses, such as bracken fern or ragworts. Brush up your knowledge about plants toxic to horses and keep your horse away from areas where they may grow.
Consider installing a fence around the grazing region, so your horse doesn’t wander off. If your land doesn’t have a barn conjoined, start constructing one. Keep your horse’s bulk in mind and design the barn accordingly.
2. Go Over Food Basics
Horses are grazing animals, and they’ll hardly regulate the amount of food they intake: you’ll have to be vigilant about their feeding schedule. Different breeds can have varying nutritional needs, so it would be best if you consulted an experienced caretaker or a vet. Decide a feeding schedule and get your horse used to it. Usually, you’ll need to provide the horses with food twice daily. Schedule their grazing time as well; it should be set in such a way that it gives your horse ample time to digest their food.
Keep checking on your horse throughout the day, and be sure to fill up on their water supply. Horses require a lot of water or may face dehydration, so be careful. For food, you can use horse fodder or hay, both readily available in the market and even online. Give your horse a treat from time to time, such as apples, sugar, or carrots. This improves their mood and will let you bond better with them.
3. Take Care of Their Health
Horses are sturdy animals, but this doesn’t mean they don’t get sick. Be sure to keep a close eye and get them regularly checked, even if they look well. One of the main reasons behind the health decline of horses is their environment. Unhygienic, dirty surroundings can cause a multitude of problems, such as heaves, a respiratory disease caused by allergens such as dusty and moldy hay. The symptoms of heaves in horses are severe cough and labored breathing.
To avoid such complications, you’ll need to maintain clean surroundings. Make sure you clean your horse’s stall regularly as Manure is a prime feeding ground for flies and can assist in spreading diseases.
Horses are incredibly understanding and encourage an active lifestyle. They are also great as farm animals. However, caring for a horse requires time and effort and can be a little heavy on the budget. You must assess your schedule, holdings, and financial situation properly before you get one.
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