Even if you’re not familiar with Himalayan salt, you’ve probably seen it. Hanging on ropes in the feed store, on the health food store shelf, or even as a lamp. But do we really need Himalayan salt for horses? And is it worth the cost? Short answer: Maybe. And here’s the long one:
What is it?
Himalayan salt is a rock salt, mined from the Himalayas in Pakistan, and is believed to be one of the purest salts available. Extracted from the mines by hand, it is then hand-crushed, hand-washed, and dried in the sun. This leaves the natural minerals intact, unlike heavily processed “table salt” which is mostly just sodium chloride.
Why Use it
If you’ve ever have a regular salt block sitting untouched for months, you’ll want to give Himalayan salt a try. Most horses love it, and seem to prefer over any other option. This can be especially useful in the summer months when your horse is sweating and needs the extra sodium, or in the winter if you want to encourage drinking. It also contains small amounts of natural minerals and trace elements.
How to Use it
Himalayan salt can be fed in block form or loose and added to feed. Blocks are ideal for horses that are turned-out in a herd, and because the salt is weather resistant it won’t disappear in the rain like regular pressed salt blocks. For horses in a stall, blocks attached to the wall or hanging from a rope are great for reducing boredom and won’t break apart with chewing. If your horse doesn’t seem interested in a block, adding loose Himalayan salt to their feed is a good alternative (horses typically need 1-2 oz daily).
Is it worth it?
Maybe. If your horse already loves their regular salt block and you have no concerns about their intake you can probably skip it. But if you’re looking to increase intake, want the benefits of a weather-and-chew resistant block, or just to keep your horse busy, it’s certainly worth it!
Tip: If your horse seems to devour the first Himalayan salt block, don’t worry! Their enthusiasm should taper off after a couple of weeks. Just make sure to have plenty of fresh water available.