Keeping a horse on long term box rest can be a challenge. Our equine nursing team share a few tips on how to keep your horse entertained even when on a diet.
- Using small holed haynets such as an elim-a-net and tricklenet, or simply double netting haynets slows down how quickly your horse eats. This will help prevent boredom and means your horse isn’t standing for long periods of time without any forage.
- Weigh out your haynets and split this amount into several haynets. Place these haynets around the stable. This will prevent boredom and keep your horse mentally active.
- Some toys which do not involve treats or licks – such as jolly balls can help keep horses amused.
- Non calorific licks – such as salt licks can also keep horses entertained.
- Companionship, another horse in a stable next door or opposite, even for a few hours a day will help with demeanour.
- If it’s safe to do so and your horse is allowed outside the stable. Standing with or tying up horses who are friends up for a mutual groom, allows them to carry out natural behaviours even though they are on box rest.
- Giving your horse extra TLC. A good groom allows your horse to interact with you when they can’t interact with other horses.