Hydration Measures

Awareness of the outside world. Salt: A World History, by Mark Kurlansky, Penguin 2003. “Until about 100 years ago, salt, the only rock we eat, was one of the world’s most sought after commodities. Wars were fought over it, other wars were financed with it, colonies were settled to get it. It secured empires and spurred revolutions. Then, fairly suddenly, it lost its value.” MK>Books>Other Non-Fiction>Read More. In my TBR pile, along with Paper by the same author.


We have decided to work on Milton’s water intake. He’s never been a stellar drinker. While we’ll won’t know what specifically ailed him two weeks ago, we wonder if constipation played a part. [Poop Watch]

Plus, a horse who has had colic surgery has an elevated risk of recurrence. Can’t hurt to do these things. All good things to do anyway.

Here Milton, want a drink of nice, fresh water? Sure you do.

Things We Already Do

Buckets of water in the barn, despite a perfectly good trough in the field. Previous Horse and Mathilda did fine with the trough. The current two have always preferred water in the barn. Of course, when they were kept up, that’s what they got. We’ve stayed with it.

Spit bucket. At vet clinic. Milton got used to a low bucket near the food service area. We gave him one while he was stall-bound. Now he has one in his corner on the wall in the run-in area. Yes, this is in addition to the perfectly good buckets 10 feet away that are in addition to the perfectly good water trough that is 50 yards away. Oh well. He seems to enjoy dunking his hay.

Soak feed. Mush not soup.

Plain salt block & a mineral block. Previous pair preferred the red mineral block. Milton likes the plain, white salt block. He will often go have a lap after work.

Hot water. Tea service continues. [Winter Protocols, Tea Service Has Begun & Stall Rest Chronicles 29 March, Changes]

Things We Have Added

A second, shiny new salt block over where Milton likes to stand.

Started summer electrolytes early. Able to do immediate. Had some from last year. Good thing about salt, it doesn’t go stale. That’s kinda the point of salt.

Rigorous dumping & cleaning of buckets. Easy to let an extra day or two go by, particularly if it means dumping a three-quarer-full spare bucket. Now, out ya go!

Carrots & apples instead of commercial treats. We were feeding small, inexpensive treats. We figure they were likely to be mostly filler.

Commercial treats sparingly. One at a time, not handfuls.


Flavored water. Tried apple juice. Big nope. Even though liked it on dinner & from bucket by itself. Never touched the water with juice in it. I keep reading about this. Have never seen or know someone who actually does it. May try again, may not.

Wet hay. Do not want to go there unless necessary for health reasons. A complete PIA and changes the hay nutrition.


Better treats? Once we are done with the current stockpile, We may upgrade to fancy treats, especially if we are feeding fewer of them.

Second smaller trough near barn? Closer. Smaller so easy to clean more often.

Any other ideas?



4 thoughts on “Hydration Measures

  1. Sounds like you’ve given them everything except personal thermos bottles.

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