Why does my horse get so sweaty so easily?
   

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Why does my horse get so sweaty so easily?

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  • Spooky horse sweats a lot
  • Makes horses sweat alot

 
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    04-10-2011, 07:01 PM
  #1
Foal
Why does my horse get so sweaty so easily?

I started working my horse in the arena about 2 months ago. Before that he'd only been a trail horse, but I decided to branch out, and he's been doing great! :)

However, he gets sweaty SO easily, no matter how cold it is. To the point where after 5-10 minutes of trotting his shoulders and chest are covered in sweat. Even walking seems to get him hot. He's not in terrible shape but I suppose not in great shape either, but I seem to remember him having the same problem back in the fall when he was ridden regularly outside.

I've been riding him 3-5 times per week for about a half hour each time. It's frustrating on cold days when I have to dry him off...I end up spending more time drying off than I do riding!

Do some horses just naturally sweat a lot? It seems strange, and I've never seen this happen before. I really want to start working him harder but I'm afraid to get him drenched in sweat! Is there some other problem I may not be realizing?
     
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    04-11-2011, 02:39 AM
  #2
Trained
Does he have a super thick coat? Not sure where you're located, but it might be worth giving him a trace clip if he's getting that hot so easily. Taking some hair off allows the sweat to evaporate more easily and cool the horse down quicker. Liken it to going for a run in a thick woolly jumper!
     
    04-11-2011, 05:43 AM
  #3
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by VEDressage    
However, he gets sweaty SO easily, no matter how cold it is. To the point where after 5-10 minutes of trotting his shoulders and chest are covered in sweat. Even walking seems to get him hot. He's not in terrible shape but I suppose not in great shape either, but I seem to remember him having the same problem back in the fall when he was ridden regularly outside.
With their winter coats, our mares can get sweaty even in the winter just running around playing in the pasture for 15 minutes. It really depends more on how humid the air is and how fast the sweat evaporates than anything else. After a ride, you really don't need to spend a lot of time drying them off completely...if you use a towel to fluff their hair back up and let air get back to the skin, they'll dry off naturally in no time.
     
    04-11-2011, 08:22 AM
  #4
Yearling
My horse is a sweater. He is in great shape, but he just tends to sweat a bit more than the others.
When I first got him, the previous owner was feeding a fair bit of oats. He seemed to sweat less once I cut the oats right back, and today he is on a senior feed, but he still sweats up fairly easily. As long as you know you are not over doing it with your horse, I think he is fine.
     
    04-11-2011, 09:04 AM
  #5
Green Broke
Horses get sweaty for two reasons. One is because of physical exercise. The second is a mental sweat. Is your horse foaming between the rear legs? If so, it is physical and he is out of shape or you are pushing him hard. If it's just on the neck and chest, that's a mental sweat. He's having to concentrate on what he's doing and really having to think about it. A mental sweat also occurs when he gets worked up, like trying to run back to the barn and you are holding him back. To fix a mental sweat from getting his mind worked up, he needs to be taught to be more submissive.

One of ours gets a bad mental sweat from just being in an arena. I think something bad had happened to him in one before we got him. He's fine in an indoor round pen and would do what we asked in the arena, but he really doesn't like arenas. That might be the case for yours too.
     
    04-11-2011, 09:12 AM
  #6
mls
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by usandpets    
Horses get sweaty for two reasons. One is because of physical exercise. The second is a mental sweat. Is your horse foaming between the rear legs? If so, it is physical and he is out of shape or you are pushing him hard. If it's just on the neck and chest, that's a mental sweat. He's having to concentrate on what he's doing and really having to think about it. A mental sweat also occurs when he gets worked up, like trying to run back to the barn and you are holding him back. To fix a mental sweat from getting his mind worked up, he needs to be taught to be more submissive.
Interesting. The calmest horse I own sweats the most readily. If I followed your logic, she should be an out out shape basket case.

Some horses - like some people - simply sweat more readily than others. Sweating is a good thing. As long as you are cooling the horse properly after the workout and ensuring the horse has plenty of water and salt, you have no need to worry.
     
    04-11-2011, 09:17 AM
  #7
Trained
Usandpets.... yes and no... works for some horses. Foaming between the back legs is also a 'good' sweat when the horse is working correctly and using the hind legs. I like to see my horse sweating more through the hindquarter area than forehand.
Neck and shoulder sweat, yes it an be mental sweat, it can also be because the horse is on the forehand, among others. Some horses will just sweat more than others... just like people. You can't generalise ;)
     
    04-11-2011, 10:07 AM
  #8
Green Broke
My post does have generalized info. We can't see how the OP is riding and what she is doing with the horse. I was just trying to point out things she might not have known. When I ride a horse it will usually come back with a mental sweat because that's the way I ride. I make them think. My wife will come back with a completely dry horse from the same ride. We can also come back with completely drenched horses from a hard ride.

There are a lot of factors that would cause a horse to sweat: temperature, humidity, condition of the horse, the way the horse is worked, the way the horse is rode, the time of year and the horses coat, the horses mental condition, the horses attitude and possibly others. I've also seen horses standing in a pasture sweating. They aren't working or having a mental sweat from eating, so I guess there goes my logic, huh?

A horse that sweats all over is likely from physical exercise. A horse that is sweaty just on the neck and chest is likely from a mental sweat. Maybe the OP doesn't realize if the horse is sweaty between the legs. She didn't say anything about under the saddle being sweaty either. Maybe she didn't know about mental sweats. Maybe the horse is working on the front end. Maybe she's making the horse think but doesn't realize she's doing it.
     
    04-11-2011, 09:13 PM
  #9
Foal
Hmm these are all very interesting responses. Sorry, I guess I should have elaborated more; he gets sweaty all over (under the saddle, between the legs, etc) but his chest and shoulders are where he sweats the most.

I live in a climate where it gets VERY cold in the winter and VERY hot in the summer. He's rough board and he develops a pretty fuzzy coat. This could be the problem but it happens even in the summer when he's all shed out.

As for the mental sweats, that's a very interesting possibility, as arena riding and dressage are very new concepts to him. However he sweats even on the trail, which is what he knows and what he's comfortable with.

I suppose he's just a sweaty horse! As long as there's no health problems or anything like that that may be causing it, I guess I'm not too worried.
     
    04-12-2011, 12:40 PM
  #10
Foal
I learned in the past, can't remember where I picked it up, but feed can cause horses to sweat more also. Especially the sweet feeds/grains, and depending on the quanity given.
     

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