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3 Reasons Why Your Horse Isn't Listening To You

1.  Your Cues Are Not Working If you are having to repeatedly use the same cue or you hold the cue for a period of time, your horse will...

Friday, 3 May 2019

How to Get Your Horse To Lose Weight The Healthy Way *FREE DOWNLOAD*


If you are like me, you own a horse that seems to never keep the weight off.  He has grass bloat and puts on weight from the tiniest piece of food.  

The problem comes in when inexperienced horse owner think that starving a horse will help the horse lose the weight.  The only thing this will do is upset your horse's stomach.  

You can easily get your horse to lose excess weight WITHOUT compromising your horse's health.  

A black horse with a white star eating grass

Nutrition For Horses

Forage For Horses


While your horse is on a 'diet' you must make sure that you're still giving him everything he needs to be healthy.  It is super important that you don't restrict your horse's forage, you only make him eat slower.  

Horse's are made to 'trickle feed', eating small amounts but almost constantly.  This means that horse's who are fed unlimited haylage have super healthy tummies but they can also put on weight.  This is mainly because of the type of forage that we provide our horses now.  

Forage is now way too rich and it actually has too many nutrients for our horses.  The horse travels miles and miles every day in the wild so they can get a range of forage to provide the correct nutrients over time.  In the wild, the horse is used to eating low-quality forage.  This is why our horses can get a 'grass stomach' which is bloating due to high-quality forage.  


Vitamins and Minerals


It is so important that although you can cut hard feed from your horse's diet, you cannot cut your horse's vitamins and minerals.  The best option is to use a pelleted balancer OR a paddock lick every day to give your horse what he needs.  

A balancer is used to be fed along with forage to top up on all the essential nutrients that your horse may be missing out on with his forage.  


A bay horse with a white blaze and sock eating out of a bucket

Testing Your Forage


Finding a forage testing company to analysis your grass and hay is a great idea.  You can also ask the person who is selling you hay to get it analysed before you buy it.  Testing your grass and/or your hay is important so that you can supplement the correct nutrients that are low.  

A horse's muzzle eating a mouthful of grass

Weight Loss Plan For Horses


First of all, you need to get some things together.  You should first get your grass and haylage tested.  Next, you should get some haynets with small holes (this will help to trickle feed).  You can also use a grazing muzzle if you like.  

Now work out a grazing and stable plan.  Obviously, if your horse is turned out you will not be taking him in but you can use electric fencing to strip graze the horse.  

When a horse needs to lose weight it is always advised to only allow grazing for 4 hours per day or less.  I personally think this is completely unnatural to a horses behaviour.  I allow grazing for 12 hours and then they are in a big run attached to their stables for 12 hours.  

If you cannot stable your horse don't worry, you can use a grazing muzzle if there are no more options and the horse isn't losing weight.  


A bay horse's nose while eating a mouthful of hay


Horse fitness plan

There are plenty of different fitness plans for horses that you can find on the internet so I will just go over a brief plan.  

You need to include lots of hill work, interval training and pole work BUT make sure he is also getting enough rest days.  It is also important that you start off slowly, taking a few months to work on hard work if your horse is out of work.  

Monday - Hill Work (Hacking) 

Tuesday - Interval Training 

Wednesday - Rest Day 

Thursday - Lunging over raised poles 

Friday - Schooling with poles 

Saturday - Hill Work (hacking) Or Interval Training

A bay horse being ridden without a bridle in a grass field

Sunday - Rest Day

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*disclaimer* 

I am not a horse trainer or any other equestrian professional.  I only give advice on horsey topics that I have experience as a horse owner in.  Please don't follow my advice without contacting a relevant equestrian professional.  

TheRider'sReins 

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