Trail riding is a fun adventure for both horse and rider, but if you’ve explored all the options nearby, you might opt for equestrian camping to allow you time to blaze more distant trails. While camping with your horse isn’t exactly a new idea, it’s not as common for horse owners today. It can be a fun experience for both you and your horse, however, and is gaining popularity with those who want more interesting experiences than you can get spending just a few hours on a trail.
If you think equestrian camping is something you might be interested in, here are a few tips to help you have a successful first experience.
As exciting as it might sound to spend a weekend or longer hacking around with your horse, it’s best to just get your feet wet by starting with just one night of equestrian camping. There’s a lot to think about and plan for when camping with your horse, and you’ll get it better figured out with experience. Keeping your first trip to a single night prevents you from being too far from home if you forget something important, and it gives you the security of a short trip if you feel unsure.
If you’re used to trail riding for just a few hours, or even just day trips to shows and local trailheads, you may not have ever really had to deal with the issue of a horse that refuses to drink. Many horses won’t drink water that smells and tastes different from what they’re used to, especially if they’re not accustomed to trips that are long enough to require them to drink away from home. If your horse tends to hold out until you get home again before drinking, you should plan on bringing at least five gallons of water from home, more if you have a water storage tank on your trailer. Another trick is to flavor your horse’s water with Gatorade for the week or so before you leave, and then flavor any water you give him on the trip as well to disguise the difference in the taste.
You may opt for a special treat for yourself while you’re camping, but it’s important to stick to the same feed as usual for your horse. Abrupt diet changes can cause digestive issues, and that’s the last thing you want to be worrying about during your fun camping trip! Instead, pack enough of his usual feed for dinner and breakfast. This is when an easy-to-pack complete feed like Sacate’s pelleted feeds can come in handy! Hydration is also really important, so it’s okay to plan to give your horse a hydrating mash such as beet pulp while you’re camping.
If your equestrian camping trip will be with other horses your horse knows well, it’s okay to bed them down together for the night, but don’t plan on throwing your horse in with unfamiliar roommates for the night. You want your horse to be well-rested in the morning, and if he’s trying to work out a new pecking order all night, the last thing he’ll get is sleep.
The key to getting comfortable with equestrian camping is to make sure you take it slow to start, and to travel prepared with all the feed and tack you’ll need. For more information about how pelleted feed makes travel easier while still meeting all of your horse’s nutritional needs, contact Sacate Pellet Mills today.