The forecast is calling for snow, which means you’ll have some extra work at the barn. Most horses do just fine in cold, snowy weather, but some preparation is usually required. Basics like shelter, food, and fresh water need to be offered at all times. It can get tricky with inches of snow on the ground! Hopefully, these tips help.
Snowy Weather Horse Tips
- Your horse should have access to some sort of shelter. If that’s not possible, consider blanketing them.
- Their paddock should be cleared of deep snow. Depending on the depth, you may need to use a skid steer to move snow out of common areas.
- Ice is also a concern during wintery weather. Spread sand, salt, or even manure to increase traction in areas your horse will be.
- Feed extra hay when temperatures dip low.
- Use a heated bucket or provide warm water at all times. The ideal temperature is between 45 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Check for snowballs in their hooves. You should invest in snow pads or remove your horse’s shoes, especially if you live in a snowy area.
- If you plan to ride with snow on the ground, take things slowly. Don’t ride in areas where you don’t know what’s underneath the snow. You’ll also want to spend extra time warming up and cooling your horse down.
Luckily, most horses are hardier than we give them credit for. They do just fine outside in the weather. As their caretaker, you’ll want to set them up for success though.