Thursday, July 30, 2009

Hot Weather Riding

It's been ridiculously warm here in the Seattle area, which has put a bit of a damper on my usual summer-fun riding.  Too hot to ride outside?  Seriously??  I gave Dylan 2 days off in hopes he might acclimatize (well...maybe in hopes that I would acclimatize!), then rode him yesterday, when it was 100+ degrees in the barn.  I couldn't believe how spunky he was - my plan was to have a nice quite walk and do our lateral work, a few circles at the trot, and a nice long walk to finish up...that got thrown out the window in a hurry.  Needless to say, it took about an hour to get him fully cooled back down after probably 20 minutes of riding - whew!    Better today, it was cooler, and I tried to work on activities that would work his brain a little more, and his body a little less.

I tried a product we had originally purchased for my previous competition partner, who was sometimes a bit finicky about water on the road - "Equitea".  It's basically electrolytes in a slightly sweet base - the idea is that the horse gets used to the taste of it at home, and therefore has no problems drinking it on the road.  I tried it with Dylan as he was doing a lot of sweating, and not a lot of drinking or salt-licking.  He absolutely loves it.   LOVES it.  Like...pushing me out of the way while I'm mixing it to get at it.  And...drum he drank a lot more "regular" water, too - yahoo!  The things we celebrate as horse owners!  He pooped and drank lots of water, I'm a happy horse mom :)

What do you all do with your horses in hot weather??  I'd love tips & ideas!!

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