Summer is a great time of year for horse riders, as the days get lighter and longer, you know that you get to spend a little more time with your horse, or perhaps perfect a certain aspect of riding. But despite the luscious weather and warmer temperatures, it can be a difficult time of year for horses, particularly as increasing numbers of pests mean they’re more prone to both irritation and disease. We’ve compiled a list of horse-riding equipment to help you and your pony saddle up for summer.
As the weather warms up, many species of fly move in on your horses, drawn in by the smell of food and manure. Far from just being annoying, these pests can carry diseases and make themselves at home on a horse, laying their eggs in their hair and causing skin damage. One of the biggest areas of concern is around the eyes, as flies try to drink the moisture and potentially spread harmful bacteria into the eyes. To avoid this, purchase a fly veil as part of your horse-riding equipment, a mesh-like a mask that protects the eyes from unwanted critters and harmful UV rays, while still allowing them to see.
Another side effect of warmer weather is that a horse is more prone to sweating, particularly when riding or exercising. When a saddle is fastened to a horse, perspiration can accentuate chaffing and rubbing, potentially causing sores on the skin beneath the saddle. A saddle pad sits underneath, protecting the skin from damage but also increasing the comfort for the horse, so is a valuable investment in your horse-riding equipment.
During the summer months, it’s likely that your horse will spend more time out in the fields than in the stables, where they tend to graze. If you’re trying to slim the horse down for a competition, control their intake or even just encourage them not to gorge out of boredom, it may be worth adding a muzzle to your horse-riding equipment. These face contraptions guard the mouth to prevent grazing, or some styles contain feeding holes in a range of sizes to help to slow the horse down.