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February 22, 2021
Your horse’s health and athletic performance depend on his respiratory health. Whether he already has a respiratory condition or you want to prevent potential issues from arising, these seven simple steps can help to keep him breathing easily.
Avoid Round Bales. Horses tend to stick their noses deep into round bales, inhaling dust as they eat. Avoid feeding round bales in the pasture, and don’t use any type of hay feeder that creates large piles of hay. Instead, feed hay on the ground, and spread it out to minimize dust. It’s best if you can feed hay in thin layers on several stall mats out in your pasture, keeping it up out of the mud but allowing horses to pick through it.
Use this same method when feeding horses indoors. Avoid hay nets and hay feeders, and spread hay on your horse’s stall floor instead.
If you have a hayloft, avoid tossing down hay when horses are in the barn. This generates a tremendous amount of dust that can stay in the air for about a half hour. Schedule times to toss down hay so that the air has time to clear before your horses come inside.
Soak or Steam Hay. Dusty hay can increase coughing and irritation, so purchase the best hay you can find. Soaking or steaming hay can cut down on dust and irritants. Either option can take time, and soaking can be difficult in the winter. A heated tack room and a system like the Haygain steamer can make this easier.
If you can’t soak or steam your hay, consider using other types of hay products. Soaked hay cubes or hay pellets can help minimize dust. They also offer the benefit of helping to increase your horse’s water intake, which can be particularly valuable during the winter.
Grain is another potential source of dust, especially if you’re feeding large amounts of pelleted grain. Wet down your horse’s grain just before you feed it, or add it into soaked hay cubes or pellets.
Feed BleederShield. If your horse has EIPH and undergoes intense exercise and training, BleederShield can support healthy lung function and help reduce bleeding. BleederShield promotes the repair of lungs and supports both the lungs and blood vessels during workouts and competitions. It’s ideal for racehorses, harness racers, barrel racers, eventers and more — and it’s 100% drug-free.
You can try BleederShield risk-free, thanks to BRL Equine’s 90-Day Money-Back Guarantee. When incorporated into these other six healthy lung management tips, it can help promote respiratory health in your horse.
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