What Your Horse Really Needs To Stay Warm

Sure, horses have a layer of fur. But what really helps them fight the cold is their own little, internal heaters. When all the pasture grass has frozen over, horses can't get the forage they need to stay warm. Here are 3 basic things your horse needs to fight the cold:

Water is essential for keeping your horse happy and healthy. Without it, your horse's dry feed can get stuck in their digestive system (impaction colic). Often, horse owners provide their horse with clean water during the winter but don't check the temperature of the liquid. If the water is incredibly cold or even frozen over, your horse might not drink enough to stay healthy.
Forage is critical for horses especially during the winter months. As the microbes in the hindgut breakdown fiber to create energy they also create heat which can serve to help keep your horse warm. It's recommended that your horse eats between 1.5% and 3% of their body weight in dry forage per day. For a 1000lb horse this equals between 15 and 30lbs of hay per day or 450 to 900lbs per month. If your winter lasts from 4 to 5 months, you're looking at 1800 to 2250lb of hay (based on 1.5% BW).
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Essential Nutrients
In order to stay warm, your horse burns calories. In cold conditions, horses frequently burn more calories than they eat. This can lead to an unhealthy reduction in weight. Low quality hay often doesn't have enough calories for a horse to stay healthy in chilly weather. Forages such as premium western Alfalfa and Alfalfa mixes are higher in calories to keep your horse happy and warm.
Learn more about Standlee's Premium Western Alfalfa and Alfalfa mixes by clicking below. 

Alfalfa Forage Alfalfa Blends

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