The ultimate list of 12 of the best horse care tips and tricks for feeding a horse – from tipped over buckets to troubles soaking hay, all the answers are here…
Top horse care tips and tricks for feeding a horse…
1) To save time during the week, stock up on hay nets and fill them at the weekend ready for the week ahead.
2) Two hooks on the wall, at about hip/waist height a couple of feet apart, can make filling hay nets a lot easier – open the net and hook it on both hooks and it’ll help keep it open and save you stoopingtps.
3) To weigh your hay nets, invest in a hay weigher and hang it from the rafters. Then to stop hay falling out, tie a quick release knot in the string and hang it from there.r
4) For horses on restricted hay, or ones that bolt hay down, you can double or triple layer small holed hay nets to make them eat slower and keep them occupied for longer.
5) To keep the hay net(s) under the water, you can make a hole on each side of your soaking tub just above the water level and thread a broom handle through as a barrier, or weigh the nets down with a brick (or even improvise with a bucket of water if it will balance!). Soaking hay for a good few hours or overnight will strip nutrients and reduce sugar, which is great for horses that need to lose weight, or ones that are prone to laminitis. If you don’t need to soak for weight control, quickly dunking hay immediately before feeding will help to reduce the dust.
6) To save the floor of your stable getting absolutely drenched, drain hay after you’ve soaked it – the best way to do this is to either put some hooks on the wall and hang up the soaked nets (line wooden walls with some rubber wall matting to protect them), or to save water, put a mesh/grate over your soaking tub and place the nets on top.
7) When tying hay nets up in the stable, make sure the knot of the string is by the net loops so the bit you use to tie is knot free. For safety, loop the net’s string through bailing twine attached to the metal ring, rather than straight onto the metal ring. And tie the net up with a quick release knot at about chest height for the horse, with no string dangling down that they could catch their legs in.
8) For feeding a horse that bolts it food, you can slow them down by putting a large rubber brick, or a swede, in the middle of the feed bowl (you can also buy feed bowls designed to slow down eating) .
9) Save money and plastic by reusing packaging tubs – most supplement/feed products are available to buy as refill bags which are cheaper (tubs are also handy for organising small items like plaiting bands, etc).
10) If your horse has been prescribed medication to be added to feed, but won’t eat it, adding a dash of apple juice or watered down golden syrup can help encourage them to eat up and disguise the taste of the meds.
11) If you find your horse tips over water and feed buckets in the stable or paddock, putting the bucket in a rubber tyre will help prevent this.
12) Wooden spoons are great for mixing feeds – have a different one for each horse and, either wrap colour-coded tape around them, or write their names with a marker pen on them, to avoid cross contamination.
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