Life is hectic, and that’s just a fact. There’s always school, or work, or one of what seems like a million things to do. From my perspective, that just means that it is oh-so very important to take time away from busy schedules in order to have fun. After all, things will always be busy. But life’s about those moments that stand out.
The barn is a place that tends to be my sanctuary. It’s just a little slice of heaven that is tucked away from the craziness of everyday life. After a particularly busy day at work, there is nothing quite as good as coming home to find one of my horses standing at the gate with their ears pricked up. The accompanying nicker that just makes me smile, no matter how challenging the day might have been.
While my horses help to keep my spirits high, what makes them happy? Horses seem to have pretty basic wants and needs most days. Keep them fed and watered. Clean out their stall. Turn them out. Give them a couple of treats. Spend some time with them. They tend to be pretty low key about things.
Horses have their good and bad days though, just like people. Sometimes if one of my guys is in a “funk” on a particular day, I just bear with them. But sometimes, the funkiness lasts for longer. Just this past winter, Ripley went through a period of seeming downright depressed for several weeks. So I made adjustments to his routine to try to, well, cheer him up.
Since they do such a terrific job at keeping their people happy, it’s easy to forget that our horses have their own emotional and psychological needs to be met. Head over to The Horse to check out a really interesting blog post on how to create a “happiness plan” for your horse. It all starts by identifying challenges, and taking small and manageable steps to create positive change. You can check it out here.
And then check out the rest of the headlines from this week in Horse Health News, presented by Absorbine:
Joint Supplements for Young Horses: Can starting a young and growing horse on a joint supplement really make a significant difference in your horse’s health in the long run? Researchers at Texas A&M University have done some work that suggests that young horses, particularly those still growing (such as yearlings) may get the most benefit from supplements containing glucosamine. [Practical Horseman]
Risk of “Shipping Fever” in Horses: Shipping your horse for long distances over an extended period of time does have a level of risk associated with it. The principal problem that comes along with long-distance travel (particularly with international air travel) is “shipping fever”–which is a combination of pleurisy and pneumonia. [Horsetalk]
Speed Up Your Horse’s Shedding: Are you tired of walking away from a grooming session covered from head to toe in your horse’s hair? Well, you might be glad for a few tips to help speed up your horse’s shedding…so that you can stop finding hair. Everywhere. [EQUUS Magazine]
Testing Hay’s Nutritional Content: Should you test your horse’s hay? Particularly if you are buying in small batches, from different suppliers? Take a listen to this podcast over on The Horse by equine nutritionist Nettie Liburt. [The Horse]
Protect Your Horse from Heat Stress: Those extra hot days of summer are just around the corner.. The combination of elevated temperatures and humidity levels can be hard on horses…so at what point should horse owners exercise extra caution? Read up on what signs you should keep a watch out for, and what steps you should take for your horse when the temperatures jump upwards. [Practical Horseman]