With growing numbers of local Coronavirus cases, many horse owners have begun to realize the impact this can have on their day-to-day horse care routines.
Whether you keep your horse at home, with a friend, or at a boarding stable, it’s important to be prepared to help keep your horse safe and healthy during this difficult time.
Along with staying calm and rational, these tips will help to minimize potential problems.
Don’t be left scrambling for hay, feed, or first aid supplies.
While you do want to avoid having an unnecessary stockpile, make sure you have at least a months supply of everything you need.
If you don’t keep your horse at home, check in with the barn staff to insure they are well prepared. If you have any doubt about your horse’s care during a potential quarantine, now is the time to address it!
In the event that you aren’t able to care for your horse, insure that you have several options available.
This means connecting with neighbors, family and friends (preferably with horse care experience) to help support each other.
Find a local horse group on Facebook (or start your own) to build a network you can rely on.
To make the process easier on everyone, create a detailed list with your horse’s daily schedule, health details, and emergency contact numbers, and keep it in an easy-to-find location.
More Reading: Drop-In Horse Care: Set Yourself Up for Success
Simplify Your Routine
Now is the time to make your horse care routine as efficient and flexible as possible. Here are a few options to consider:
- For horses that are brought into the barn every night, consider leaving them turned out 24/7 (weather permitting).
- Try a slow feeder to keep your horse grazing and help stretch out feeding times.
- Use large troughs to avoid constant bucket filling, or set up an automatic water system.
- Slowly phase out any supplements that aren’t a necessity.
- Let go of your usual standards for mucking and cleaning. The horses will all survive, even if the barn isles aren’t swept everyday!
Make a Budget
While it’s impossible to predict the full economic impact of COVID-19, it’s clear that nearly everyone’s financial situation will be negatively affected.
For those of you already on a tight budget, now is the prefect time to re-access your spending and make some changes.
For some this might mean half-leasing your horse or selling used tack, and for others it could be offering your services in exchange for reduced board.
Whichever options you choose, sign up for the 7 Day Horse Care Challenge below to help get your plan on track (and a free savings worksheet).
Making regular visits to the local tack shop for your favorite products may not be an option, so be prepared to try homemade solutions.
Here’s a list of easy-to-make DIY recipes to help get you started:
For more DIY recipes check out the Savvy Guide to DIY Horse Care.
How are you preparing for COVID-19? Share your horse care plan below!