Can Healthy & Fit Horses Handle the Heat Well?

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FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, NC Postponed for Good Reason

Published April 18, 2018

There are healthy horses and there are less healthy horses, either due to illness or the natural aging process. We fuss over them because we understand that they need special care and extra attention. Equiwinner™ patches have helped so many of these horses become healthy again. When electrolytes work properly, that’s usually what happens.

All horses, however, from the weakest and oldest to the healthiest and fittest in the world, can be challenged by the environment such as the high heat and humidity during the summer months in southeastern States. In fact, the dates for this year’s FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon, NC were actually postponed1 from August because two scientific studies commissioned by the FEI stated that climatic conditions would be significantly more favorable in North Carolina during September, particularly from a horse welfare perspective.

Problem solved? Not for horse owners and trainers who care for, ride and compete horses in locations with extreme heat.

So, if you and your horses live in a sunshine state, pay attention to the young and healthy horses too. The heat and humidity in the summer months will require efficient sweating just to keep a horse comfortable at rest. A more comfortable horse will have more energy to work and perform, not to mention more willingness to work. You’ll also see faster recovery from work. And if a horse isn’t in training or competing or is retired, efficient sweating will keep him more comfortable even without an electric fan.

When it’s hot outside, a horse at rest with access to shade and with proper thermoregulation will maintain a normal body temperature of 99.5° to 100.5° F (37.5° to 38° C). Check it often.

So how do you get efficient sweating?

Sometimes, the sodium and potassium salts in the horse are thrown off balance, and he will not sweat efficiently. Because these salts circulating in the body are strictly controlled, the imbalance can’t be corrected by simply adding extra electrolytes to his feed. The key is making sure that those electrolytes are balanced and working properly. Equiwinner does that and it’s cheaper than flying north for the summer!

The Equiwinner patch is a non-invasive, all-natural dermal patch that is guaranteed to restore optimum electrolyte balance to promote proper thermoregulation through efficient sweating. It only takes 10 days and just a single treatment can last for up to one full year. Nothing physically enters the horse’s body, so there are no side effects or concerns about testing positive if you’re in a competition.

UPDATE: September 13, 2018
The Endurance ride at the World Equestrian Games in Tryon, NC was cancelled today2.  The decision was made soon after there were 13 metabolic eliminations from 29 horses presented.  Conditions were unusual, because after a bad start, the race was restarted later in the day when it became very hot and humid.  When the ride was cancelled, there were riders still in the race with healthy horses.   So competing in hot and humid weather can be a success, but there's less room for error.  Riders have to be very good at pacing correctly and the horse's thermoregulation must be working perfectly.

Lilith Boucher, a National Steeplechase Association trainer in South Carolina, eventually recognized that Class Bopper wasn’t sweating well enough and here’s how Equiwinner helped him.

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