How Do I Keep My Horse Cool? 5 Ways to Beat the Heat
When summer rolls around, there's not much we can do to escape heat waves. If you're secretly dreading your next outdoor show or wondering “how can I keep my horse cool?", here are five tips on how to beat the heat.
Score Some Shade
The early bird gets the worm (or the shady overhang). So when you're heading to the show, be sure to arrive early to try and snag a spot with shade so you and your horse can rest out of the sun. If there isn't a suitable spot, you can always raise an awning or tent to “build" some sun protection.
Turn Around Turnout Time
At home, changing turnout schedule can also help to keep horses out of the peak heat times. It's also more comfortable for hydrating! Outdoor water bucket temperatures can quickly get uncomfortable in midday sun, whereas night water is drinkable. If you do turn out during the day - keep the water in shade!
Most barns allow you to hang box fans in front of your horse's stall to promote air circulation, but just be sure that horses can't play with the cord as this can be dangerous. A standing fan for horses is also a good option to keep air flowing. (However, be aware that unless a fan is specifically a sealed-motor fan, such as for agriculture use, it carries an automatic fire hazard as dust will build up inside the motor.) Some barns also have misting systems that can help cool down your horse, reducing barn temperature by as much as 20-30 degrees Fahrenheit. If shipping to an event, open windows (with bars to keep heads inside) and small fans can also help to reducing sweating during transport.
For horses and humans alike, staying hydrated and replenishing electrolytes is critical to surviving the summer heat. When drinking water alone is not enough, consider adding or offering the minerals and electrolytes that can help replenish what's lost during sweaty heat waves. Cool, clean water is naturally the go-to for horse hydration, and paired with a salt or mineral lick they'll be able to stay balanced. You, however, may need to pick up an electrolyte booster or sports drink to help keep you grounded for that upcoming class!
Sweat-Proof Isn't Just for Makeup
Moisture-wicking products help keep your show look in top form, like the Pearle High Performance Show Blouse. While you may opt to grab some setting spray for your makeup, don't forget your show clothes should look and feel fresh, too! For horses, some blankets and wraps on the market can also help to cool your horse by using high-tech evaporative material.