Monday, January 12, 2009
Keeping Them All Warm In The Frigid Cold
1) For the horses, since I do not have a barn and mine would not be happy in stalls anyway (I'd probably have more than my fair share of injuries) , I do , however, have a three sided shelter available. And they do use it. I keep it clean and I have heavy mats layed down within it, which makes for easier clean up. They can be fed within that shelter and there is plenty of room for them to stand or lay, both of them.
2) Always keep a steady supply of heated water. Snow does not provide the needed water for horses.
3) When it is really cold, I throw a little extra hay to keep their furnace running.
4) A decent blanket over them doesn't hurt either, especially when the frigid air starts in.
5) I allow them plenty of turn out area without opening the pasture. I do this by connecting the paddock with the arena, which gives them room to exercise as evidenced by Miss Kola acting silly in the above picture.
6) I have also provided a wind break from the north by using tarps, both canvas and heavy plastic. It double serves me as a tail protector from the goat boys.
7) Speaking of the Goat Boys, I've provided a calf shelter for them. It sits over a rubber mat and I've tucked it full of straw. They too have a constant supply of warm water and occasionally receive an extra flake of alfalfa.
8) The pups, since I cannot get boots to fit Spot's long toes, Steve is on the hunt for dog safe salt to use on the steps. Their feet get so cold that often Steve and I have to lift them indoors after a round outdoors for a potty. I immediately wipe their feet free from salt and snow or ice. So far so good.
9) Some people use coats or sweaters for their dogs. Mine just tear them off. And once again I'm lucky as they have pretty good winter hair on them. (I'm constantly vacuuming.)
10) Providing shelter and keeping them healthy during the frigid winter weather we're about to get into up here in Wisconsin is surely a challenge, but by now I have had some decent practice at it.
11) I'd also like to add that if your water spigot is exposed to cold as is mine. Keep your hose indoors, unravel the hose, connect it to the spigot when watering and when finished disconnect the hose and reel it up, turn off the spigot so that the water will recede back down to the well and not freeze. Important tip!
I invite anyone out there to add any tips or advice that they have or have learned over the years.
Posted by Callie at 9:59 AM