4th of July Precautions for your Horse

4th of July fireworks can cause panic in horses (and dogs and cats), especially if displayed nearby. Here are some helpful tips to keep your horse calm during the 4th of July, from University of Minnesota Equine Extension Program.

1. Keep your routine as consistent as possible. Sometimes moving the horses to a different location or separating them from the herd can cause just as much fear.

2. If you plan to move your horses to a different location (or inside the barn), give them about a week to acclimate to the new surroundings.

3. Check your paddock or stalls for possible issues, including uneven ground, sharp edges and broken boards. Try and limit potential injuries.

4. If your horse is housed inside, try playing smoothing music to drown out the noise from fireworks.

5. Try using a slow-feeder to divert the horse’s attention.

6. Some horses will tolerate ear plugs that can help reduce noise.

7. Do not try to comfort your horse during the fireworks. It will be safer for you and your horse if you are not inside the paddock or stall.

8. Start desensitizing your horse to loud noises. It might not help for this year, but may help in the future.

9. If necessary, talk to your veterinarian about the possibility of a sedative or a herbal supplement. Keep in mind some of these products may be prohibited at some shows.

MVP offers pastes to support your horse’s stomach and ease nerves during periods of stress. Check out our performance pastes such as Gastro-Plex, Calmex V, or Edge 180.