Keeping our Equines Properly Hydrated
Summer heat and humidity make us question, "What’s the best way to keep our horses safely and properly hydrated?"
Electrolytes can be helpful in an urgent situation, but are they safe and ideal long-term? Do they provide horses with as much of the minerals they need to stay hydrated? What are our alternatives?
Popular electrolyte products often do not offer the proper variety of minerals, nor do they offer enough sodium, so ideally should be offered in conjunction with salt. They often include dextrose and sucrose sugars, artificial flavors, gmo citric acid, and other synthetic or potentially problematic ingredients. They can be harsh on the gut and therefore should never be given on an empty stomach or there is risk of the horse developing ulcers.
Our favorite combination to offer our hot and sweaty ponies is Redmond’s loose salt (or kelp) + free choice hay + ample fresh water - scrub those troughs, guys! We typically include kelp in the morning feeding and Redmond's loose salt in the evening, as to not over-salt them, but if your horse is exercising & sweating, you may want to increase the Redmond’s salt according to their recommendations.
Hay typically provides horses with plenty of key electrolytes such as chloride (which is necessary for potassium regulation & the production of stomach acid, which is needed for healthy digestion), potassium, magnesium, calcium and other beneficial minerals. What hay does not provide is sodium. Sodium is critical for maintaining a proper electrolyte balance and therefore a hydrated horse.
Because a hard working horse can sweat through much of their natural mineral stores, and hay quality and quantity can both be an issue (some barns do not offer free choice hay and some may not supply high quality hay), we recommend supplementing with kelp and Redmond’s salt for a diverse supply of bio-available, beneficial minerals which are vital to life! Kelp also offers naturally occurring, non-radioactive iodine, which nourishes the thyroid and every other function of the immune system.
Between the sodium and 60+ trace minerals from Redmond’s, the iodine and 60+ trace minerals from kelp, the minerals in hay forage & ample fresh water... your horse should be well prepared to withstand the heat and maintain healthy digestion, balanced blood pH and water flow in and out of his cells!
You can head over to our online store for organic Icelandic Kelp. It’s affordable ($0.16/day) and beneficial to your horse all year round!🌿