Every horse has specific needs, but Solmonsen offers up advice to avoid common pitfalls in the warm-up pen.
One of the most important things we can do to prevent sports-related injuries in our horses is to keep them properly conditioned. For barrel racing, that’s conditioned for four sprints and three turns in varying ground conditions. While long trotting or even loping around the pasture is great for overall physical and mental conditioning, it doesn’t prepare a barrel horse’s muscles and soft tissue for the demands of the sport.
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Many horses are on routine drug therapy to manage chronic arthritis pain caused by performance stress, injury, poor conformation or old age. These therapies typically include joint injections and NSAIDs—non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. However, these drugs can have negative effects on the horse’s body and may even be career-ending.