Horse wet weather survival guide

Horse in muddy and wet field

Although horses are naturally well-equipped to deal with bad weather, there are a number of steps horse owners should take to ensure their animal is as happy as possible during periods of rain and wet ground.

Tips for preparing horses for wet weather

  • Pig oil – sprayed lightly on legs before turnout stops mud sticking
  • To hose muddy legs or not to hose muddy legs – best to bandage loosely or put on wraps and let the mud dry.  If you do hose off then legs must be dried off thoroughly ( this only really works on clipped legs)
  • Put your horse at full livery and let someone else do all the work
  • Provide boredom busters if they have to stay in 
  • There aren’t any flies in the winter, so keep the tail well-trimmed to stop it getting too muddy
  • Rubber grooming mitts are great and come like new after a trip in the washing machine
  • If putting out hay put it in lots of piles or lots of haynets away from the gate to stop the gateway getting even boggier
  • Remember – wet weather usually means its mild – so don’t over rug or over feed your horse
  • Make sure they have somewhere to shelter or get out of the rain and wind

Yard preparations for horses in wet weather

  • Grass mats in gateways work for some fields
  • If possible, have a second gateway to use when the first gets muddy
  • Loose schooling and turnout in school where grazing limited by wet ground
  • Have lots of old towels
  • Use electric fencing to create a second gateway to stop more poaching
  • Doesn’t look that neat, but laying straw on mud / wet areas can help

How horse riders can prepare for wet weather

  • Throw away all your holey gloves and get ones that work
  • Wear a hat
  • Wear fleece lined waterproof trousers that dry really quickly
  • Get rubber mats for your car and a plastic boot-liner
  • Keep moving in deep mud – if you stop you’ll get stuck

— Page last updated 9/11/2016