Most horses will spend more hours in the stable at this time of the year, and many will get little or no turnout due to wet ground. What are the best ways to keep your horses occupied and stable reduce boredom? We asked our sponsored riders for their top tips:
Rupert Batting, Event rider has the following tips:
‘We always do the following to keep the horses relaxed and happy during the day….
- Always have the radio on!
- Feed the horses little and often, so they have forage four times a day plus their two hard feeds.
- We always ensure that the horses leave their stables at least once in the morning and afternoon, whether to be ridden, turned out or on the horse walker.
- On a horses day off they will go on the walker twice a day and always go in the field for a couple of hours.
- A horse is never left alone on his part of the yard, we make sure he can always see at least one other horse.
- On an indoor stable system we open the windows so they can look directly outside.
- Last winter, I gave my own horse Yoshi a herbiLIX for his stable and he loved it!
‘For horses on box rest at home, we have also used treat balls with polos and chaff mixed in , and tied up gorse for them to pick at. It also helps to give them a view from their stable so they have something to look at during the day.’
Rachael Claridge, International Endurance rider has the following tips:
- Ab lib homemade meadow haylage in a hay rack plus a haynet so they can scratch on the net or bounce the nets with their head/noses!
- Lump of wood – log from the Beaufort estate to reduce cribb biting.
- A laundry conditioner bottle half filled with water and hung on a cord.
- Rock salt block in a bucket plus water bucket.
- Swedes hung on cords or sprout stalks!
Edward Chanin, Para Dressage Rider has the following tips to keep roddy entertained whilst in his stable:
- He has Tara ( hunting mare ) in the next stable for company
- He gets ridden everyday or has an hour or two in the field.
- He has a mirror in the stable to admire himself.
- He has a HerbiLIX mineral block.