So your horse is put on a box rest by his or her vet. What do you do to escape boredom? There is no way you can take him out even though you desperately want to. You are also disheartened that your horse - along with you - is confined to the four walls. However, it’s necessary for your horse to rest for some time to heal their injury, especially when it’s recommended by the veterinarian. Read on to find out some tips on surviving box rest – for both you and your horse.
FOR THE HORSE:
- Ensure that your horse is given proper bedding (as per the vet’s instructions) that allows their injuries to properly heal.
- Give them plenty of fresh water to keep their gut moving and avoid the occurrence of colic.
- Invest in some toys that will entertain the horse such as a ball that they can roll around or some toy that is hanging from the roof of the barn.
- Groom the horse by giving them a good massage (if allowed) each day. The contact between you and your horse will relax them and beat boredom for you.
- Consider the preference of your horse. Would they like to stay isolated or along with others? Sometimes it is better to keep them alone in order to avoid the risk of more injuries, while others are calmer in situations where they can see activities going on around them.
- To heal the injuries of your horses, it is important to keep them settled and restrict them from roaming around, even in the stables. If your horse refuses to settle, consider sedating them with vet’s consultation.
- Another tip to surviving box rest is to keep a portable music player in the horse’s pen. It will keep them relaxed and calm during their period of rest.
- Unbreakable mirrors are also a good option that will allow your horse to look at themselves and play hide-and-seek with their image for enjoyment.
TIPS FOR YOU:
- Keep yourself fit by engaging in other physical enduring activities.
- Stay busy by taking care of the horse.
- Give them medicine on time and in the proper way according to what the vet has prescribed.
- Teach the horse some new tricks.
- Take up some other horse-minding activities such as judging a local horse competition or taking part in horse clubs.
- Use the free time to clear out space in your barn.
These were just some of the tips that can be tried out to beat the horse box blues. However, before you try any of them, make sure to consult your veterinarian to assess the impact it will have on the horse. Surviving box rest is not difficult. With the right attitude and the right tips, you too can make the best of it. Do let us know how you managed.
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