How To Care For Your Horse When It’s Hot

By Palani_CML

Since your horse can’t exactly come inside in the air conditioning, it’s important to keep his safety in mind as the hot summer weather rolls on. Use these tips from a Santo vet to make sure your horse stays cool and healthy.

Exercise and Work During Cooler Hours

By working or exercising your horse in the early morning or late evening hours, you’re avoiding the hottest part of the day. If it’s at all possible, have your horse be active during these times. During the middle of the day, leave him stabled where it’s cooler.

Keep Horse Hydrated

Of course, your horse should have cool, fresh water available at all times. Check the bucket or trough frequently to see if it needs refreshed or refilled. If you have multiple horses, provide each one with their own water supply.

Spray or Sponge

On especially hot days or shortly after your horse has worked hard, try spraying or sponging your horse down with cool water to bring down the body temperature. Focus the water on the inside of the legs, the neck, and the belly area. Make sure not to spray near the eyes, ears, mouth, or nose.

Provide Shade

When your horse isn’t in the stable, it’s important that he has shady spots to cool off under. If there are shade trees in your horse’s pasture, these should work well for your horse. If there aren’t, consider setting up a structure of some sort to provide shade.

Watch for Heatstroke and Dehydration

Check your horse periodically for dehydration—pinch a small fold of skin along the neck. If it snaps back into place quickly, your horse is fine. If it sags back down slowly, your horse is dehydrated and needs water quickly.
Horses will exhibit profuse sweating, weakness, depression, and elevated pulse and respiration if they’re suffering from heatstroke. Take prompt action to cool your horse down, and call your Santo veterinarian immediately if you see these signs.


Texas West Animal Health

16367 South FM 4,

Santo, TX 76472

Phone. 940-769-2222

Fax. 866-632-3365