If you own a horse, you already know they require a lot of work. However, one area you may have overlooked is a great horse shelter. A horse shelter protects your horses when the weather gets bad or too hot. If you would like to learn more, check out these four benefits of a great horse shelter.
1. Provides Shade
The sun can provide warmth and comfort, but on particularly hot days, everyone needs a break from the heat, including your horse. A horse shelter provides an excellent source of shade for your equine friend. Plus, since shelters are fully open on one side, it provides great ventilation to help air better circulate, so it doesn't get stuffy in the shelter.
Overheating is a real hazard for horses and other types of livestock. In fact, a horse that is suffering from heatstroke could experience a body temperature increase of up to 50 percent. Other factors that contribute to a horse's body temperature include the size of the horses' body and the carbohydrate/fiber-rich diet they eat.
2. Shelters Against Wind and Rain
Naturally, you wouldn't let your horse outside in the middle of a thunderstorm, but sometimes, it's hard to predict the weather. For example, you put your horse out on a beautiful spring morning only to find that it started raining as soon as you started working.
With a horse shelter, your horse can just seek out the shelter themselves. Of course, this is beneficial for the horse. High winds could cause dangerous debris to hit or scare your horse. Heavy rain can turn the ground to mud, making it hard for your horse to walk, increasing the risk of an injury. However, a horse shelter is beneficial for you too. Instead of checking in on your horse every time the weather changes or physically taking your horse inside each time it starts to rain, you can trust the horse shelter to do its job.
3. Protection From Pests
A horse shelter can also provide some protection against pests, which are extremely problematic for horses. First, horse flies and other big bugs can simply annoy your horse by getting near their eyes or biting them. Unfortunately, unlike humans who can scare bugs away with hands, horses only have a tail with which to swat bugs.
However, pests don't just cause mild annoyance; they can spread disease. Some common diseases spread to horses from pests include equine encephalomyelitis, West Nile virus, and equine infections anemia. Pests can also lead to sores on your horse. These skin lesions become a home and food source for infective nematode larvae. When the horse licks the wounds, it eats the larvae to begin the cycle again.
4. Makes Cleaning Easy
Since horses usually only use the facility for limited protection, horse shelters don't usually get as dirty as barns or stables. When they do get dirty, you can usually easily clean them with a tractor because of the open wall. Plus, the open wall makes it easy to see right inside, so you can spot when the shelter needs cleaning.
This is incredibly important because a dirty shelter can cause problems. The more horse manure, the greater the risk of pests, especially the previously mentioned nematode larvae. However, a dirty shelter can also increase the risk of other diseases and illnesses. This disease may not only affect your horse; it may spread to your or your family.
Your horse needs a lot of attention and care, so it's easy to forget some things. However, without a horse shelter, your horse may be suffering, especially during the winter and summer. If you would like to know more, contact a horse shelter contractor in your area today.