Ideas for Decreasing Heat Stress in Horses

As summer drags on, heat can become a serious problem for many horses. The primary way horses cool themselves is through sweating. While the exact mechanisms for inducing sweat production in horses are not yet fully understood, some experts believe that prolonged, consistently high sweat rates can lead to a kind of “exhaustion” of the sweat glands in horses which may result in anhidrosis (the inability to produce sweat adequately). Recommendations to help address anhidrosis center on finding ways to keep horses cooler, decreasing the need for sweat production. Here are a few ideas you may want to try to keep your horses cooler this summer.

  1. Adjust feeding management
  2. Reduce stress/postpone procedures
  3. Provide shade
  4. Provide sprinklers, baths and fans
  5. Exercise in the evening or morning
  6. Monitor water intake

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