Aside from the stresses of a longer journey and stabling in a new environment, the dietary disruption that comes with staying away from home with your horse, means you need to be meticulous with your management to minimise the risk of upsets.
- Most horses and ponies will be used to some daily turnout so being stabled 24/7 can be a challenge. Plan periods of hand grazing and walking into your horse’s days, to mimic that turnout time.
- If grass availability is limited, offer plenty of their normal forage (hay/haylage) and consider alternatives, like Alfalfa Blend and Fibre-Beet, in the stable, to encourage natural foraging behaviour and fibre intake.
- Hand walking or gentle hacking is good, in between competition phases, to encourage gut motility.
- Stick to your normal feeds and routine as closely as possible.
- Balancers are useful for those with limited appetites as they provide important nutrients to support performance and recovery, in a small volume.
- Digest Plus prebiotic can be fed before, during and after times of stress, to support gut health.
- Giving Aqua-Aide electrolytes, whenever your horse or pony sweats, either in water, water with a handful of chop/soaked beet or in wet sloppy feed, will help support recovery and encourage the thirst response
- Make sure your horse has access to fresh clean water at all times.
- Dunking or soaking hay will provide additional moisture. Fibre acts as a reservoir for water and electrolytes in the hindgut, so maintaining forage/fibre intake is doubly important, at a multi-day event.
- Listen to the Baileys Podcast on the use of electrolytes.
For advice on feeding your horse or pony when staying away from home, contact our Baileys Horse Feeds Nutrition Team.