Can You Recognise Heat Stress In Your Horse?

Can You Recognise Heat Stress In Your Horse?

Recently, the east coast of Australia had a week-long spell of unusually hot weather for October/November. While it is relatively easy for us humans to cool ourselves down, horses aren’t quite so lucky. It is very important to recognise the signs of heat stress in your horse and steps you can take to prevent this.

Signs of Heat Stress:

  • If riding your horse, try and do it first thing in the morning or late in the afternoon. Not only is it less likely to send your horse into distress, but it reduces the risk of your harm as well, from sunburn and dehydration.
  • Make sure your horse has ample access to cool water. If there is no choice but to have water in an area that receives full-sun, why not try adding some large ice blocks made out of soft drink bottles into the trough or bucket to assist in keeping the water cooler?
  • Adequate shade in their paddock is vital, or a well-ventilated stable or structure. Some people don’t know it, but it is actually considered neglect if a horse doesn’t have some form of shade in their paddock to get out of the sun. Having one of these, especially during our summers, is a no-brainer and should be a priority.
  • When hosing your horse to cool them down, always scrape excess water off them. If the water is left on their coats, it can heat up itself once the horse is outside and actually make them hotter! Some horses will roll after being hosed. To us, it makes them dirty again; to them, it’s adding a protective coating to repel heat getting to their skin.
  • For horses with medical conditions such as Cushings Disease, you need to be extra careful. One of the symptoms of this disease is a horse not being able to self-regulate their body temperature through coat shedding, among other things. If you suspect a horse heat stress is not from direct exercise or other outside conditions, get them checked by a vet.

How do I recognise the signs of heat stress?

  • Horse is sweating profusely, or alternately not sweating at all, along with:
  • High breathing rate, even panting to try and get more oxygen circling their body
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Skin to touch is dry and hot
  • Higher than normal temperature

If your horse is showing some of these signs, you need to act quickly. Move them into the shade and hose them off with cool water and scraping after. Always seek veterinary attention, particularly if your horse is severely distressed. Untreated, it can cause organ failure and the inevitable death of your horse.

Protect Your Horse From Flies

Protect Your Horse From Flies

How CAN you protect your horse from flies? It’s that time of year again. The warm weather and wet season bring an influx of the bane of a horse’s existence! For whatever reason, flies and mosquitos seem particularly attracted to a horse’s legs and face. They can cause anxiety and fidgeting in horses on the ground and while being ridden, and in some cases cause illness and injury through blood loss and itching.

Today we will outline some steps you can take to minimize flies, mosquitoes and other biting insects around your paddock and stable, and causing misery to your horse.

Fly Prevention Tips

  1. Clear Away Manure – flies LOVE horse poo! One of the best ways you can help discourage flies is to regularly clear out paddocks and stables of manure. It is also a great idea to have your manure pile as far away as practically possible from where your horse spends most of its time.
  2. Put On A Mesh Horse Rug – putting a light mesh rug on your horse is a great way to protect them just about everywhere except their legs! While some might think that horses would get too hot with a rug on, the fabrics created today can actually reflect heat, keeping them cooler. The added protection from biting insects is also a plus! You can find a wide range of summer rugs on our site HERE.
  3. Repellents – applying fly repellant regularly to your horses’ legs will provide temporary relief. There are many varieties to choose from, with varying prices. Rotating different types of repellents will help you find the one most effective for your situation.
  4.  Keep Water Fresh & Aerated – ensuring your horse has plenty of clean, fresh water is a given. It should be cleaned out and/or topped up each day. Make sure any empty containers that get filled with water don’t sit for too long and go stagnant. This is the ideal breeding ground for insects. By removing these, you’re giving the insects less opportunity to breed.
  5. Use A Flyveil – if flies are bad while you’re out riding, consider putting a fly hood or veil on your horse’s head to give them relief. If your horse has never had one on before, then proceed with caution and acclimatise them to one. It could make training and trail riding a much nicer experience for both of you!

In Summary

Flies and mosquitoes can make our lives a misery, but at the same time, they can provide a valuable service to nature. We hope these tips have helped give you ideas on how to protect your horse from flies this summer. If you ever have any questions about our range of horse rugs, don’t hesitate to contact us.

 

Spring Is Here

Spring Is Here

With the majority of the cold season behind us, it’s time to pack away the heavy doona rugs and bring out the lighter ones! Why not check out our range of horse rugs to find one that will suit the upcoming warmer temperatures. The right rug will not only keep your horse cooler, but it’ll protect their coat from being bleached by the sun. Other benefits are keeping midges and other biting insects from causing itching and rubbing on your horse. Stay tuned for some upcoming info on how to help keep your horse comfortable throughout the incoming hot season. If you ever have any questions about our products, you are always welcome to contact us using the form, or messaging us on our Facebook page.

Ever Ridden The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail?

Have You Ever Ridden The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail?

If you live anywhere around Wulkuraka in Ipswich up to Yarraman, you have definitely heard of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail. Why not check out the trails on horseback? It’s 161kms of beautiful trails that are accessible to all, and steeped in history! You can find out more by going to the official website HERE.

Even if you don’t own a horse, you are able to cycle or even walk. There are multiple options to stop for refreshments or even camping overnight. Why not check it out as something to do one weekend with your best horsey pals?! Do remember though, that being

In the meantime, if you’re looking to start putting away the doona horse rugs for the upcoming spring and summer, why not check out our range of summer horse rugs that we have available and on sale now? You can always contact us if you’re not sure on something and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

 

Happy Birthday Horses

Happy Birthday Horses

It’s time to celebrate every horse’s birthday in the Southern Hemisphere! Traditionally, the universal birthday for Thoroughbred horses is the 1st of August, regardless of when they were actually born! This was because mares often come into heat with the warmer spring weather, meaning most foals were born around August. In this day of artificial insemination, a foal can be born almost any time of year now. This makes it not as common anymore.

Even if it’s not anywhere near your horse’s actual birthday, it’s still a great excuse to give them a treat and celebrate their being!

Should You Rug Your Horse?

 

Winter has been well and truly here for the last few weeks! While QLD rarely sees the types of freezing temperatures as our southern friends do, there are occasions where your horse might appreciate a snuggly rug overnight.

The question is, though, how do you work out if rugging them is actually beneficial at this time?

Here are some tips on how to work out if you should rug your horse or not.

  1. What breed is your horse? Most breeds, especially ponies, grow quite adequate coats during winter that protect them quite well. More refined breeds such as pure Arabians and Thoroughbreds not as much. If you have one of these breeds who tend to have a thin coat all year round, then rugging is probably a good option.
  2. What’s the weather like? Is it cold but fairly dry, or is it constantly wet and muddy or even snow? If it’s the last two, then it’s a good idea to rug them just to help give them a break from the wet and cold.
  3. How frequently is your horse worked? If you have a horse that is ridden every day or competes frequently, then you want to reduce the amount of fluffy coat that you have to deal with. Rugging is a good way of limiting hair growth, but it is something you would have to keep doing regularly. On the other hand, if the horse is only ridden every so often then it might be better to allow them to grow out their coat. Just take extra time to dry them off when you do work them.
  4. Does your horse lose condition easily? If you have a horse that drops condition quickly and requires hard feeding all year round, then rugging is definitely a good choice. This means he won’t burn energy and fat trying to keep himself warm.
  5. What rugs do you have available? If you only have a heavy thickness winter rug, then you probably only want to use it when it is really wet and cold and miserable overnight. If you have a variety of different rugs for the seasons, then maybe a lighter rug overnight might be a good option. A rug like that could also be left on during the day if needed.
  6. Are you able to remove the rug during the daytime when it’s warmer? If you’re unable to regularly rug and unrug your horse depending on the temperature, then it could be an idea to not rug them. Horses can also overheat quite easily with a winter rug on during average daytime temperatures here in QLD, so for their comfort, maybe being left unrugged will be better for your horse.

We hope this has given you some guidance on whether to rug your horse this winter season. We have a great variety of horse rugs available at the moment that can cover most weather options, so why not check it out?

Welcome to Our Blog

Welcome to our very first news post!

Supplying the best quality horse rugs at the best possible price is the primary aim here at Bang For Your Buck Horsegear.

We thought we would take this opportunity to use this blog to keep you up-to-date on any website changes we’ve made, special deals that are happening as well as general horse-related fun and information!

We will be building this up over time, so if you ever have any ideas on what we should post, let us know!