Holiday decorations such as wreaths and garlands are often made from types of evergreens. Most species of evergreens are…
With the solstice upon us, winter is good and truly here. The holidays are imminently upon us as well, so while we begin the winter horsekeeping rituals of breaking ice in buckets and troughs, feebly attempting to unfreeze double-ended snaps, and suffering through the feeling of frozen finger tips at least we can be festive about it, I guess? This Week in Horse Health News we’ve got an array of winter and holiday horsekeeping tips to help keep your equine pal healthy and happy this season!
Think twice about decking the stalls with boughs of holly. Many people enjoy bringing the Christmas sprit inside the barn, but be mindful that you hang decorations well outside the reach of horses! As described in the graphic above, that holly and many other greens and berries commonly used in Christmas decorations are toxic to horses. In addition to creating the above graphic, HorseDVM has a handy, easily searchable, super useful guide to toxic plants that you should be sure to check out. [HorseDVM]
Peppermints are a favorite and festive treat, but aren’t the safest treat for all horses. Everyone loves giving their horse a candy cane this time of year, but if your horse has or is prone to insulin resistance, laminitis, polysaccharide storage myopathies (PSSM), or ulcers feeding them the simple sugar found in peppermints may not be a risk worth taking. Feeding a few peppermints or candy canes to a healthy horse shouldn’t cause enough of a spike in blood sugar to warrant any concern, especially when you consider the amount of sugar in a single candy candy is relatively low compared to the sugar in daily hay consumption. But for a horse dealing with any of the above complications a sugar-free candy or cookie would be a safer treat. [The Horse]
Take some winter horse keeping advice from eventing legend Mary King. A previous winner of Badminton, Burghley, and Kentucky and a member Team Great Britain at two Olympics garnering team medals, you can bet Mary has some good tips for keeping horses feeling their best during the off season and shared them as a recent guest on the USEA Podcast. [USEA]
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