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HI Spy: How do you beat the heat at the barn?

Share your tips for staying cool in the barn, on the trail and at shows.


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Learn how to keep your horse cool in the summerBy now you've probably stashed away your horse's heavyweight blankets and your insulated riding boots. The trees are budding, the flowers are blooming, and the perfect, warm spring days are upon us.

Of course, this just means that the sweltering days of summer are right around the corner.

Long, summer days provide ample warmth and daylight hours for extended trail rides or training sessions. In most parts of North America, the summer months are prime competition season when riders want their horses to be in peak condition. At the same time, heat and humidity can pose more of a threat to your horse's health and well-being than even the most miserable winter conditions. Enjoying summer's weather while still ensuring the health of your horse and yourself takes careful planning.

What do you do to make sure your horse doesn't get overheated in the middle of a long trail ride? What's your secret for dealing with hot, dusty arenas during mid-July training sessions? And it's not just about the horses. We want to know how you keep yourself cool and comfortable at the barn, on the trail or at a show. Share your tips with other visitors by clicking "Submit a Comment" below. Some of the answers may appear in a future issue of Horse Illustrated.

Fresh Aire Cony Hay FeederThis month, one selected response will win a Fresh Aire TM Cone Hay Feeder from Tarter Farm and Ranch Equipment!  This feeder holds up to 4 flakes of hay and allows your horse to feed the natural way, reaching down instead of reaching up. Corner mounted; bolts to the corner of any stall or attaches to a paddock fence. Retail value: $247. Please include your e-mail address if you would like to be considered for the monthly prize (e-mail addresses will not be displayed publicly.)

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HI Spy: How do you beat the heat at the barn?

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Reader Comments

Philomena    Dickinson, ND

6/10/2012 10:08:32 AM

To beat the heat at the barn, I usually wait until the worst of the summer heat, especially during the day, is gone. Then I usually ride either in the late afternoon or else in the coolness of the evening. That way neither my horse or I get hot and sticky.

Mattie    Tolar, TX

3/6/2012 8:22:34 PM

Baths!!! Every horse needs a bath right? Well every human could use a good way to cool off, and your horse appreciates it soooo much!!!

Lindsey H.    Berlin,, MD

1/16/2012 6:14:03 AM

The way I beat the heat at the barn is swimming! We have a pond near our stables, so I go bareback and swim in the pond to cool me and my horse off!

Laura    Doylestown, PA

7/30/2011 10:29:12 AM

I bathe every horse I can get my hands on! Especially the ones living out in the pasture with the sun beating down on them. The dirtiest ones get a full shampoo, while others get a nice, cold hose-down. Then my friends and I go play in the sprinkler!

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