Team Sweet – Importance of fresh water

9th February 2023

Table of Contents

Team Sweet talks about the importance of fresh water for your horse:

We caught up with Clare from Team Sweet to discuss some facts about fresh water for your horses.

Clare asked, ‘Have you ever thought why your horse prefers to drink fresh water than water that been stood in a stable? Have you noticed that murky film that lies on top of the water?

Once a bucket of fresh water has been left in a stable for a few hours, dust, including urine particles will have landed on the water which then creates this film. The water then becomes unpalatable and some horses simply won’t drink.

Why is fresh water so important?

Providing constant fresh water both in the stable and in the field can reduce the risk of colic, help to maintain a healthy digestive system and body condition.

Water quantity?

The amount of water a horse will drink depends on the size, breed and age of your horse. But the amount can range from 5 – 10 gallons a day (a standard stable bucket will hold between 3 – 5 gallons).

Drinking in a natural position?

Try and ensure your horses drinking position is as natural as possible to prevent the risk of choking and respiratory issues.

Water temperature?

Giving your horse access to ambient water temperatures will increase their drinking frequency especially in colder weather.

Water containers?

All water containers: buckets, troughs and automatic drinkers, should be kept clean and hygienic. Scrub them regularly to remove build-up of green algae.

Natural water sources?

If your horse has access to a natural water source, make sure the water is not stagnant but always flowing. Stagnant water can become dangerous to your horse’s health. It may be worth having an alternative water source available for your horse.

Signs of dehydration?

Depression, weakness, dry mucous membranes, increased heart rate, sunken eyeballs and slowed capillary refill time.

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