1. True or False: During the fall, you should keep your horse on his regular health maintenance program.
2. Why are horses more likely to colic during the Fall?
a. Horses don’t like cold weather.
b. The change in weather can cause them to not drink enough water.
c. Horses don’t colic because of outside circumstances.
3. True or False: You should be aware of your horse’s body condition before the weather gets colder so you can make any necessary adjustments.
4. Why is it sometimes necessary to increase your horse’s caloric intake in the fall?
a. Horses have more energy in the cold weather so they are playing more.
b. You should never increase their caloric intake.
c. Horses burn calories when trying to keep warm.
HOW’D YOU DO? (Answers below.)
1. True – You don’t want to drastically change anything in your horse’s routine without a little warning. It’s also a good idea to keep them on their same vaccination, deworming, and dental schedule to prevent any issues in the cold weather.
2. B – In the fall your horse is more likely to eat dry hay than wet grass. If they aren’t getting enough water, their digestive system slows down, putting them at risk for colic.
[For tips to avoid Fall colic: Your Fall Health Checklist]
3. True – Fall is a good time to make sure your health is as healthy as possible so he has a good chance of having an easy winter. Colder weather and working more during the fall can cause weight loss that will be hard to fix during the winter.
4. C – Horses naturally burn calories to keep warm so even if they aren’t working more, they’re still likely to lose weight. It’s sometimes necessary to add a few extra pounds to their weight to prepare for the inevitable weight loss.
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