As we head into autumn, we reach for our body warmers – but does that mean that our horses need their coats on too?
The fact is horse owners hugely overestimate how cold their horses are feeling.
“Many owners are over-rugging,” says Dr David Marlin, a scientific and equine consultant, “mostly because they think horses feel the cold like we do. But they don’t.”
The risks of over-rugging your horse include:
Rubbing and friction, especially if he’s sweating.
Fungal infection due to the moisture trapped between him and his rug.
Reduced levels of calcium and phosphorus (needed to keep bones strong) due to the vitamin D he normally gets from sunlight not penetrating the rug.
Becoming overweight as he’s not using his energy to keep warm.
To read more about over-rugging and how keeping your horse more naturally could make them healthier, read the full article in issue 457.
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