Let’s admit it, having horses throughout the winter months can be a real effort. If there’s any tips to make life easier it’s worth giving them a go, right? So, we’ve come up with our top yard and stable hacks for winter. We hope it makes that 5am alarm that little bit more bearable!
We hate coming up in a morning and seeing that all the buckets and water troughs have frozen up overnight. To try and stop this from happening, you can pop tennis balls or other objects which float into the water. The fact that it will bob and move around will help prevent the water from completely freezing over.
It may be that you’re having a clear out or that you have some old bedding that you no longer need. Rather than throwing it out, save some of it to use as insulation over your pipes at the yard. By doing this, you can help prevent the taps and pipes from freezing up and having no access to fresh water.
Nobody can stand having cold, wet feet, can they? Well, if your yard boots are a bit past their best, they can sometimes become less waterproof or form holes. Sadly, this means your feet are going to get wet the minute you step in a muddy puddle. A good interim solution to this is to pop carrier bags over your socks and tie them in a knot before putting your boots on. This means your feet will at least stay dry!
Thermals are all well and good, but actually a cheap pair of thick tights from your local supermarket can actually do just as good a job. Plus, if you wear skirt and tights for work you can just whip the skirt off and throw a pair of jodhs on over the top to make life easier when you finish for the day.
If it’s been seriously cold and you’ve had snow, then spraying a bit of cooking oil into your horses’ feet can help to stop balls of ice forming. They’re a nightmare to get out and also causes your horse to become off balance which could result in a nasty fall!
You’re probably using your turnout rugs a lot more than usual, so there may come a point where some of them need repairing. If you’re a dab hand at sewing and you’re happy to repair them yourself then consider using dental floss as your thread to sew patches on. Its waterproof, far more robust than normal thread and you’ll find it will pull through your heavier rugs easier!
We find shavings are amazing for winter around the yard! If you have a wet weather spell and your yard begins to flood, you can pop a line of shavings all around your stables to stop the water from coming in. Also, if you have any slippery ice patches on the yard you can put shavings down to make them less slippery. If you don’t have any shavings, straw or even the end of your hay bales would work instead.
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