Bricole Reincke Equestrian Horse Horse Health Southwest Ranches

Author of this blog, Bricole Reincke, pictured with her German Warmblood horse.

Horses require basic care and costs but they are so worth it in the end.  You need to check on your horse every single day, typically very early in the morning. You want to make sure that nothing happened overnight and also that the horse is in good health. He will most likely need to be groomed and fed and exercised during your check in.

Horses can’t just sit in a barn all day long without exercise. When you commit to getting  a horse, you must commit to providing an exercise regiment for them as well. If you aren’t going to be the one executing the exercise, you must find someone else who will. Conditioning is paramount  to whatever  activity you choose for your horse. For example, if you put them in a competitive sport, they may get injured, meaning they will be laid up for a while and require hefty vet bills. These are all things to consider before even purchasing a horse. 

What does a horse eat and how do you ensure its health?

When feeding horses, it is important to recognize that there are six basic nutrient categories that must be met: carbohydrate, protein, fat, vitamins, minerals and water.

You can meet the nutritional needs by providing hay/ straw for your horse, clean water at all times, and grains. Grains usually come in the form of oats or barley for horses. You can keep the hay accessible to them all throughout the day as well as fresh water. 

You may be thinking, how do you know how much forage  to provide for your horse? You can assume that if they are out (to pasture) for eight hours, they will eat approximately one-third of their daily intake, so the remaining two-thirds of the day they are in the stall, they could eat the remaining, roughly 13-14 pounds.”  This is the best case scenario for the horse. If they will not be getting eight hours in the pasture a day, you can adjust their food intake accordingly.

In addition, horses need a  little fat in their diets. Feeding high-fat diets is a relatively new trend in the horse industry. It has been demonstrated that horses can tolerate a fairly high level of fat in their diet. 

You may be feeling overwhelmed at the prospect of all of this time and care for a horse. It is a huge commitment that you must be prepared for from the start. However, if you take the care of your horse seriously and make it a priority in your life, it will pay you back in dividends.