Hosing hot horse - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 44 Old 07-12-2015, 07:27 PM
Join Date: Dec 2010
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" The initial water actually acts like a raincoat and does not allow other water molecules to contact and cool the skin, so the horse can in fact become hotter even while being cooled off."

Even if that happens - and I tried without success to find it in the literature - the additional water would take heat away from the water layer next to the skin. While it may be more efficient to water and scrape and water some more, as long as the water is flowing, the heat should be transferring. If you just do a sponge bath, then the water will heat up and stay. I'll wet the brushes down and use that to give them a quick "sponge bath" after a ride, but that is to get the salt in their sweat cleaned off. In Arizona's 10% humidity, I let the breeze dry them off.

I go out to the corral on hot days and spray them down. Not a sponge bath, but a pressure nozzle. Our mustang "Cowboy" thinks it is a Water Pik. He comes up, opens his mouth, and moves his teeth back and forth against a tight jet of water at full pressure! I really need to get a picture some day...

But the backs of Bandit & Cowboy get pressure sprayed. Trooper moves away, so the best I can do is get him wet. They all roll as soon as the water stops, which may squeeze the old water off anyways. Or maybe the spray that takes the new dirt off takes the old water with it. Or maybe...well, I don't know. Trooper tolerates it now, but acts like it is an imposition. Cowboy and Bandit will come across the corral to get close to the hose. They both seem to enjoy it.

When I took lessons some time ago, the standard was to hose them down thoroughly after the lesson. I was told to keep the water flowing.
"When your horse is hot, look for shade and breezes to help cool it down...suggesting the best way to cool a horse quickly is to rinse the horse’s body repeatedly with cold water and scrape off the excess water....“You can cool the horse two degrees in 10 minutes this way: pour on the water, scrape it off, pour on more, and just keep repeating it,” says Lindinger. “The scraping part is important because otherwise the water will be trapped in the horse’s hair and will quickly warm up. By scraping and pouring on fresh, cold water you keep the cooling process going.”
When the Rider is Hot, the Horse is Hotter - At Guelph
Sixteen horses were studied in a crossover design on 2 consecutive days. Immediately after exercise, horses were randomly assigned to the hypercooling protocol (cold water on entire body surface) or the conventional protocol (tepid water on neck, shoulders, torso, underside and legs). Hypercooled horses (Group 1) had significantly lower rectal temperatures at 15, 20, 25 and 30 min after exercise compared to conventionally cooled horses (Group 2). In a supplemental study, an additional 19 horses (Group 3) were hypercooled after exercise. Mean rectal temperatures were significantly decreased from the immediate post exercise rectal temperature at 10, 15, 20 and 25 min after exercise. Based on physical examination and serum AST and CK concentrations, myopathy did not occur in any of the horses. These results suggest that application of cold water to the entire body surface relieves mild to moderate exertional hyperthermia quickly under hot, humid conditions; and that myopathy is not a common complication of this cooling approach."
Comparison between two post exercise cooling methods - WILLIAMSON - 2010 - Equine Veterinary Journal - Wiley Online Library
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Last edited by bsms; 07-12-2015 at 07:34 PM.
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post #12 of 44 Old 07-12-2015, 07:44 PM
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I don't know about any studies, or scientific ways to hose down a horse, but this is what I have been doing for decades. First, you don't need a sweat scraper, I have every type, shape and brand of them as well, OP, if you lived close to me, I would give you several! I only use scrapers if I am bathing for a show, I remove the excess water from the horse's coat to apply coat polish, if I am just rinsing off a sweaty horse, let them drip. I hose the horse down in all the sweaty, dirty spots, give the nag a drink from the hose and let them go roll. Ask my horses, they love that.
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post #13 of 44 Old 07-12-2015, 07:55 PM
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All this technical stuff about wetting down a horse. When we rode in hot temps, usually at a walk, the horses headed for the river and loved to go in until doing the floaty walk. This is the natural way for horses to cool off. We didn't attempt to wipe the excess water off as no one is available to do it when they run wild. Horses love to follow this with a roll in the dirt and the mud on them helps protect them from biting insects. So, if it's hot and you're trying to cool your horse down, get the water on it any way you can. A big sponge helps, starting on the neck on both sides.

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post #14 of 44 Old 07-12-2015, 11:05 PM
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I've never found a scraper to be necessary. Ever noticed when wetting down for bathing that when you start sudsing at their neck by the time you get to the back it's pretty much dry and you have to rewet?

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post #15 of 44 Old 07-13-2015, 07:24 AM
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I was first taught that hosing a hot horses legs can be as effective, and safer, than directly cold-hosing his hot large muscle groups. This makes sense, although it is probably not as fast as might be necessary for over-heated horse.

I have definitely noticed a quick re-heating of a hosed-down hot horse, and instinctively scrape the water using anything available including my hand or the back of my mane comb.

The thinner the water layer on the horse the faster the evaporative (and thus cooling) rate is. Especially noteworthy on days that are also very humid.
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post #16 of 44 Old 07-13-2015, 08:46 AM
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if you have spare time give a bath! That will clean him up and cool him down! The water will run off but with you taking off the soap and stuff your hors will get wetb :) Welcome to the forum btw x
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post #17 of 44 Old 07-13-2015, 12:27 PM
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Keep in mind, horses aren't born with sweat scrapers but are one of man's inventions along with the goofy ideas that accompany it.

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post #18 of 44 Old 07-13-2015, 12:31 PM
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Honestly I just spray my horse down, starting with the legs and slowly moving up. He hasn't had any issues. I do towel dry his face though so that sweat doesn't get in his eyes

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #19 of 44 Old 07-13-2015, 12:35 PM
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Cooling down with running water and removing the sweat that attracts the bugs is good
Always hose the top inside of the back legs, under the stomach and under the neck as well as the top parts of the body - a lot of the large blood vessels run in those areas so cooling it down there will help cool the rest of the horse down.
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post #20 of 44 Old 07-13-2015, 12:36 PM
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Just use your hand as a scraper. If the water stays under their coat it will hold the heat and make them hotter
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heat , hosing down , hot , scraper

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