Caring for Our Equine Friends

Is Horse Care More Complicated Today?

By Karen Pickering


The topic of equine wellness is on my mind a lot lately. I’m down to two horses—April and my mini, Chloe. It seems my current horses have more health issues than those I owned as a kid. My parents didn’t have money to spend on supplements or any extras. We fed the basics: hay and cob. I administered my own shots and worming.

Photo credit Hal Cook Photography

It’s not the same these days. As an adult, I’ve spent untold dollars on supplements and tools to take care of my horses. I seem to have more issues with respiratory problems, lameness and colic than ever before. What is causing this?

Part of the challenge of living in the Pacific Northwest is our lush pastures. Would my horses do better in a drier climate? Probably so. Still, today’s issues seemed non-existent for me 35 years ago. Has our weather gotten wetter (not counting this unusually dry year)? Could it be the breed of horses I’ve had in the past? Arabians and Standardbreds versus Quarter Horses?

Both my horses are improving but I’m cutting back on everything and making it simple again. As a kid I rode more. Now, I’m busy. I leave my riding until the end of the day, which means my horses don’t always get ridden. I think my lack of consistency getting my horses worked has played a big part in their health problems. So what’s the answer?

The answer for me is to be more attentive to testing and isolating new products and feed. I need to make one change at a time, evaluate, and decide whether to keep it or discard. As publisher of this magazine I have the opportunity to try many new products, which is awesome…but I have to be careful and take more time to test each thing and see if it really makes a difference. Not every product will work with every horse.

Watch for information on another product I’m testing. I’ve just received a Haygain Steamer. I’ll be reviewing this product and bringing it with me to the expos in 2019.

I am glad we have the resources to research and connect with people with similar issues. My desire is to give you helpful information each month supported by some of the best products in the industry. Enjoy this issue as we’re featuring a brand-new company to our magazine, Spurr’s Big Fix. This amazing product is something you’ll want to try. Read about them on page 6.

Enjoy the beautiful fall weather and remember to ride!

You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.

Jim Rohn -1930-2009, Author and Speaker


Published October 2018 Issue

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