Laminitis isn’t fun for any horse! It makes them sore and miserable. The tissue in the hooves that connect the coffin bone and hoof wall become inflamed. Your horse will be noticeably sore if he has acute or chronic laminitis. Follow these tips to avoid this condition!
1. Careful with grazing: Fresh grass has high levels of sugar. You’ll want to make sure your horse doesn’t overgraze on grass high in fructan. Early spring mornings are much riskier than late evenings. Grazing muzzles can help limit your horse’s intake.
2. Weight control: Overweight horses are more prone to laminitis. Let your horse roam around paddocks to get exercise, rather than being locked up in a stall all day. You should also keep a close eye on his weight by looking for fatty areas on his body.
3. Hoof care: Regular farrier care is very important. Keep his hooves in great shape by keeping him on a trimming schedule, monitoring his nutrition, and investing in a supplement if necessary.
4. Grain management: Certain sweet feeds and grains can trigger laminitis in horses with metabolic disorders. Avoid sugars and simple starches, especially if you’re dealing with an overweight horse.
5. Stall bedding: Black walnut can cause this disease in as little as eight hours. Know what kind of bedding you’re using and be careful! Better yet, turning your horse outside for the majority of the day can actually help horses prone to this condition.
It’s essential you know if your horse is at risk for laminitis. Certain horses and ponies are more prone than others! If you discover that your beloved equine partner is at risk, then you need to follow these tips and carefully monitor the nutrition, weight, exercise levels, and grass intake of your horse.