We often get questions about the relevance of the seasons to horses so here is a brief run down on why seasonal supplements are a great idea and how they can benefit your horse.
Horses – their bodies and their temperaments are very much in sync with the seasons. There’s huge variation in what can be harnessed from the horse at each time of the year and also as the seasons shift – renewed energy, increases or decreases in hormones and certain metabolic processes, boosts to immunity, greater focus, and the list goes on.
We know that at certain times of the year, parts of the body don’t function as effectively as at other times, or need extra support to ensure that horses can be at their best. This is true both in terms of general health and in terms of performance. Most importantly, the gut of the horse has different requirements throughout the year that are affected by such things as:
- the immune system
- nutrient intake and bioavailability
- physical availability of feed
- access to grazing
- soil quality
- the endocrine and lymphatic systems
The health of the gut is delicately intertwined with every other bodily function and then inherently linked to the seasons as are many other body systems.
For instance, the lymphatic system usually struggles in the Spring following the winter in which less water is generally consumed causing a build up of a variety of substances that need ‘flushing’ out. Work usually starts up again in the Spring which can lead to renewed lactic acid production and access to lush, green grass can cause excitability, not to mention digestive upset. That’s a lot of adjustments the body is trying to make and cope with! Every season is different allowing the body to thrive in some ways but also exposing it to stressors.
As horse owners, we should all be mindful of these factors. Think about the way you feed and support your horse’s health through the seasons and the fact that as the seasons change, so do the needs of your horse.
Doing Our Bit:
We’re here to help all horse owners embrace the seasons with respect to horse health, nutrition and management and allow their horses to cycle naturally through the year. In our experience, this approach increases overall health and well-being and makes for smoother seasonal changes for your horse
For more information or if you have any questions you can contact us.