Horse's winter weight
 
 

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Horse's winter weight

This is a discussion on Horse's winter weight within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Horse concerns in negative temps and negative windchills

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  • 1 Post By usandpets

 
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    01-06-2013, 11:20 PM
  #1
Started
Horse's winter weight

What do weight do YOU try and get horses to for wintertime?

I personally keep them at an average weight, same weight they would be during summer. But that's only if I plan on blanketing(light, waterproof blanket) them (I'm in Sounthern California and think 40*F is cold which means my horse is blanketed most nights. Especially when the weatherman calls for rain!)

Since my dad's horse doesn't get blanketed (he destroys EVERYTHING! His blankets, my horse's blanket, the pipe corral...) I like to keep him fat. Which isn't hard at all cause all he does all day is eat and sleep (My dad bought the horse and hasn't done anything with him since).

Anyways, what do you guys aim for? What temp do you throw on the blanket? Do you blanket?
     
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    01-06-2013, 11:30 PM
  #2
Green Broke
Our horses are outdoors 24/7. We try to have them at a BCS of 6 in the winter and 5 in the summer. We don't blanket even with the temps in negative numbers and windchills even worse. We don't even have a leanto or shed for them to go in. They do use the trees for shelter and a windbreak. The only time I've seen them shiver was as the temps changes from 50's one week to 30's the next and we had rain. We give them free choice hay 24/7 and they do just fine.
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    01-06-2013, 11:40 PM
  #3
Started
Quote:
Originally Posted by usandpets    
Our horses are outdoors 24/7. We try to have them at a BCS of 6 in the winter and 5 in the summer. We don't blanket even with the temps in negative numbers and windchills even worse. We don't even have a leanto or shed for them to go in. They do use the trees for shelter and a windbreak. The only time I've seen them shiver was as the temps changes from 50's one week to 30's the next and we had rain. We give them free choice hay 24/7 and they do just fine.
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I know horses do fine without the blankets and shelters, it just makes me feel better when my guy has a way to escape the weather if he wants to (he isn't the type to stand out in the rain). And my horse doesn't have a winter coat. He's pretty much the same as he was during summer, which is also why I blanket him.
     
    01-07-2013, 12:21 AM
  #4
Yearling
Our horses are out 24/7 also, it's been a mild winter for here so far this year but it can get down to -40C=-40F with windchills here. Our's have a windbreak of trees, bush and a run in to get out of the wind if they choose. None are blanketed either........our's have hay 24/7 and when it is cold they eat more too.....
     
    01-07-2013, 12:34 AM
  #5
Green Broke
I live in the next province to the west of Thunderspark so experience similar conditions. I do put mine in the barn at night - no blanketing, unheated barn; run in shed and free choice hay in the day. The main purpose is to put my chubster on her yearly diet by limiting her night time feed. She's an easy keeper and by getting her weight down a little over the winter months she's good to go for summer grazing and doesn't have to be separated from her buddies (who, incidentally, don't have the same worries about their respective waistlines).
     
    01-07-2013, 12:35 AM
  #6
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Icrazyaboutu    
I know horses do fine without the blankets and shelters, it just makes me feel better when my guy has a way to escape the weather if he wants to (he isn't the type to stand out in the rain). And my horse doesn't have a winter coat. He's pretty much the same as he was during summer, which is also why I blanket him.
We have three horses that don't look like they have a winter coat. The outer hair looks just like their summer coat. The undercoat is actually pretty thick but doesn't show. The other horses look like wooly mammoths. Just saying.

There's nothing wrong with blanketing and nothing wrong with not. Most of the time it is more to put our minds at ease.
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    01-07-2013, 11:49 AM
  #7
Banned
My horses get fat on hay in the winter, so I don't worry about their weight going into winter...
     
    01-07-2013, 02:13 PM
  #8
Foal
The only problem with blanketing in the winter is...once you start, you have to continue through the winter. The only time we blanket ours (primarily spring and fall it seems) is when they have lost some winter coat and a cold rain or wet snow is forecast. If they get wet, they can get cold fast. I have seen horses shiver off 50-100 pounds in a couple of days if they are wet and cold long enough. I too like a BCS of around 6 in the winter and our Appy does that pretty easy but my Rocky edges toward 7-8 if the weather is nice enough. He gains weight like his owner. LOL.

Cheers
Les
     

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