Paddocks can provide a space that brings much needed rest to your horse’s usual pasture, without having to keep them confined to their stable. Even though your pony will only use them occasionally, regular paddock maintenance is a must, to ensure your horse remains safe, secure and healthy. That’s why, here at The Insurance Emporium, we’re sharing this handy guide on some hazards that can be found within horse paddocks, so you know what to look out for!
Whilst 90° corners might look neat, they can prove dangerous to some horses. If an unconfident horse has an aggressive pasture-mate, they might find themselves being pursued or harassed. Tight corners could prove difficult to escape from in such a situation. Laying paddocks out with rounded fencing might lessen the chances of this happening – or horses may need separate paddocks if one is posing a threat to another.
They are an essential part of keeping your horse safe and contained, but old, worn gates could be a problem when leading horses into and out of their paddock. If you have to lift or drag gates, you might be paying too much attention to that instead of your horse! You could risk losing control of your animal, leading to them getting loose or causing injury to either you or themselves.
This might be an obvious hazard, but if you don’t have a secure enough fence surrounding your paddock, it could cause your pony to escape! If you do have areas that a horse could worm their way through, you might not need to go so far as replacing the whole fence! It could be easier to just replace any panels that are worn or add new ones to fill in any gaps.
After winter or periods of heavy rainfall, mud can become a serious paddock problem. A slippery surface can make it more difficult for your horse to gain a secure footing, as well as encouraging bacteria to multiply, which could lead to health problems or hoof injuries. One way to try to prevent excessive moisture in the paddock is to introduce a top layer of woodchip or gravel – or even a combination of the two!
There are certain plants that can be toxic to horses if ingested, so it’s important to ensure your paddock is kept free of them. Some of the most common include: yew, sycamore, maple, privet, acorns, buttercup, rhododendron and ragwort. Also, make sure you don’t have any kindly neighbours leaving their garden waste in the paddock as a snack for your horse, as they might be unaware of the problems it could cause!
Being aware of these common paddock hazards could ensure your horse is protected from harm, and can give you real peace of mind! If you’re a proud equine owner, you might want to consider taking out horse insurance. At The Insurance Emporium, our Pick ‘n’ Mix Horse Insurance includes Death, Theft Or Straying as standard, and can be tailored to suit you and your horse with a range of Optional Benefits, such as cover for Vet’s Fees up to £5,000 per incident*. You could also grab up to 30% discount^. Head to The Insurance Emporium today to find out more!
* Vet’s Fees cover up to £5,000 per incident is available on lunar monthly policies where the Optional Benefit has been selected.
^ The 30% discount is made up of 20% Introductory Discount plus 10% Multi-horse Discount (if appropriate). The Introductory Discount is available for the first 12 premium payments on lunar and calendar monthly policies or one premium payment on annual policies.
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