Prevention Is Better Than Cure – Top Tips For Protecting Your Horse from Injury

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Prevention Is Better Than Cure – Top Tips For Protecting Your Horse from Injury

Horses are often said to be prone to injuries, but in many cases, their injuries can be prevented with a common sense approach. Two of the most common causes of injuries in horses are overexertion and ill-fitting equipment, both of which are easy to avoid.

Overexertion

While exercise is an essential aspect of horse care, it is important to prevent overexertion. All horses should be allowed to exercise for at least 30 minutes three to four times a week. However, the exact amount of exercise required will depend on a number of factors, including your horse’s age and breed. You can exercise your horse up to six times a week if required, but to prevent overexertion, you should always allow him to enjoy at least one full day’s rest each week.

Before exercising your horse, it is important to remember that, like humans, horses must stretch their muscles. To begin warming up your horse, you will need to take him for a walk, either on a trail or in a riding ring, and make occasional lefts and rights to ensure that he is able to stretch his neck. After about ten minutes of walking, you should move into a trot so that your horse is granted the freedom to stretch out completely. Following ten minutes of trotting, you should canter him for a further ten minutes to help to increase his lung capacity. Following cantering, your horse should be ready to tackle jumps or riding practice.

Ill-Fitting Equipment

Saddle sores, as their name suggests, are wounds caused by ill-fitting saddles or girths. To prevent saddle sores, you should ensure that your horse’s equipment fits correctly. If you notice any saddle sores, you should stop riding your horse and bathe the wounds with an antibacterial wash. You should not resume riding your horse until you have purchased new equipment.

While it is impossible to protect against all injuries, it is possible to reduce or eliminate the chance of your horse requiring costly treatment from a veterinarian. Once you have taken the time to understand the cause of some of the most common horse injuries, you will be better able to prevent them. Any injuries you cannot reasonably prevent should ideally be covered by your equine insurance policy.

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