Make 2018 Your Horse’s Healthiest Year Yet!
Written by CRM
Thursday, 25 January 2018 18:11

SmartPak Introduces the Horse Health Challenge

Everyone has new year’s resolutions, and SmartPak’s goal is to make 2018 the healthiest year ever for horses from coast to coast.SmartPak is introducing the Horse Health Challenge, and is asking riders and horse owners to join!

“At SmartPak, we work hard every day, striving towards our mission of changing the world, four hooves at a time - but we're not able to do it alone,” said Sarah Mann, SmartPak’s Vice President of Brand and Customer Experience. “We're encouraging riders to take charge of their horse's health, and change their horse's world for the better, and we've got a number of easy and approachable ways they can get started. And because we believe doing the right thing deserves a reward, there's something in it for the riders, too! Be sure to check back on SmartPak’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages for exclusive deals, and even a chance to win a grand prize!”

SmartPak’s Horse Health Challenge consists of 11 parts, and a few of them are included below. To read all of the challenges and for more information about how to enter for a chance to win the Ultimate Horse Health Challenge prize package (up to a $1,500 value!) visit SmartPak.com/HorseHealthChallenge.  

Challenge #1 – Rethink Your Horse’s Diet
The modern horse’s diet is often at odds with how he was designed to live and eat, but there are realistic steps you can take to build your horse’s ideal diet from the ground up. Instead of continuing to reach for the feed scoop because “that’s how we’ve always done it,” challenge yourself to rethink your feeding program and check “better diet” off your horse’s list this year. (Don’t know where to start? Have no fear - SmartPak can help! Read all of the tips on how you can rethink your horse’s diet at SmartPak.com/HorseHealthChallenge)

Challenge #2 – Face The Facts On Joint Health
Horse owners often don’t think about their horse’s joints until there’s a problem.  But when it comes to joint health, waiting until there’s a problem may be too little too late.

Joint deterioration is permanent and progressive, which means once It starts, it will only continue to get worse.  All horses are at risk - a 1999 study in the Equine Veterinary Journal identified joint changes in a herd of wild mustangs. The researchers concluded that the degenerative process was naturally present in horses. If your horse is in regular work, his joints are more at risk for early joint deterioration that could affect his comfort, soundness, and future performance.

No matter your horse’s age, discipline, or workload, the best time to start supporting healthy joints is now, with a joint supplement targeted to his unique situation. Joint supplements provide your horse’s body with the key ingredients he needs to maintain healthy cartilage. Ideally, this means the best time to start a joint supplement is before your horse starts showing signs of stiffness and discomfort. However, horses already displaying signs of discomfort may also benefit from joint supplements, as they can help support healthy articular cartilage, synovial fluid, and a normal response to inflammation.

Visit SmartPak.com/HorseHealthChallenge to read all of the joint health facts and to take a joint health quiz to unlock an exclusive offer.

Challenge #3 – Take A Stand Against Colic
There are a number of common, unavoidable barn events that can increase your horse’s risk for colic. But that doesn’t mean you have to stand idly by and wait for your horse to become the next statistic. Your first step is to educate yourself about the risk factors for colic because, unfortunately, what you don’t know can hurt.

Changes in hay, including switching types or feeding a new cut (even from the same field!), can increase your horse’s chances of developing colic by 10x! Change hay as gradually as possible, ideally blending the old and new hay for 7–10 days, to ease the stress on your horse’s hindgut. Studies have also shown that horses fed large amounts of grain (more than 5lbs/day) are at a greater risk of developing colic. Make sure your horse is receiving 1–2% of his body weight in forage every day. If he still needs grain, feed the minimum amount possible in multiple, small servings throughout the day. Of course, make sure that your horse has access to clean, fresh water at all times as well. Want a custom assessment of your horse's colic risk? Visit SmartPak.com/ColicRiskQuiz to see the results and get tips on how you can help!

When it comes to serious problems like colic, you want as much support as possible in your corner. That’s why the second step in your stand against colic is to protect yourself and your horse with ColiCare™. ColiCare combines the comprehensive support of clinically proven digestive health ingredients with a veterinarian-directed wellness program for the ultimate digestive health care. Best of all, it provides up to $7,500 of colic surgery reimbursement should your horse ever need it. Learn more at SmartPak.com/ColiCare.

Challenge #4 – Take Four Steps Toward Four Healthy Hooves
Healthy hooves are grown one day at a time. Just like human fingernails, the hoof wall is composed of dead tissue, so it can’t mend and heal. Instead, damaged sections have to grow out and be replaced with new, healthy tissue. Even with the best care and nutrition, that’s going to take time. While you can’t fix your horse’s hooves overnight, you can start taking four steps in the right direction today!

Start by setting up a regular maintenance schedule with a qualified hoof care professional. Second, try to limit environmental shifts, from wet to dry and vice versa, as the changes can take a toll on hoof health. Next, promote exercise and activity - the hoof depends on nourishment provided by good circulation, and exercise helps promote good blood flow. Finally, support healthy and resilient hooves with proper nutrition. Hoof health supplements provide the key building blocks your horse needs to grow strong, healthy hoof wall all year long, such as biotin, lysine, methionine, threonine, copper, and zinc.

Challenge #5 – Find Inner Peace For Yourself And Your Horse
The barn should be your happy place, but sometimes nerves — whether they’re your own or your horse’s – can make your riding time more stressful. However, there are ways to help your horse stay cool and confident.

An excitable, spooky horse can totally take the fun out of your barn time, so it’s an important problem to solve. Start by working with your trainer and veterinarian to get to the root of the problem, whether it’s medical, physical, or behavioral. If you’ve worked with your veterinarian and your trainer to cross off the possible health and management reasons for your horse’s bad behavior, adding a calming supplement to your horse’s diet may be a smart choice.

There are three types of calming supplements to consider; nutrient-based, herb-based, and those for moody mares. Nutrient-based formulas are designed to bring your horse’s dietary levels into the optimal range for a correctly functioning nervous system by providing ingredients like Vitamin B1, Magnesium, and Tryptophan. If you’ve tried a nutrient-based supplement and didn’t see the results you were hoping for, consider trying an herbal formula, which provide additional ingredients like Valerian, Chamomile, and Vervain to help support tense, anxious horses. Finally, if your sweet mare turns into a moody monster during or around her heat cycle, there are formulas that include ingredients like Raspberry, Cramp Bark, and Chasteberry that support balanced hormones and an even disposition.

Take The Challenge
Are you ready to take the Horse Health Challenge? Visit SmartPak.com/HorseHealthChallenge to read all of the challenges, to take quizzes that unlock exclusive offers, and to learn more about how you can enter for a chance to win the Ultimate Horse Health Challenge prize package!


Press release provided by SmartPak. About SmartPak: From the feed room to the tack room, SmartPak offers innovative solutions to help riders take great care of their horses. SmartPak was founded in 1999 with the introduction of the patented SmartPak supplement feeding system. The revolutionary, daily dose SmartPaks are custom-made for your horse, individually labeled and sealed for freshness. With the success of this simple and convenient feeding system, SmartPak has continued to expand its offering of quality products, including its own line of more than 55 supplement formulas called SmartSupplements, and a wide variety of tack, equipment, and supplies. The company has grown rapidly each year and is now the largest retailer of equestrian products in the United States. SmartPak’s success has been powered by a passion for delivering an unbeatable customer experience, and the company has been recognized with a Bizrate Circle of Excellence award seven years in a row, as well as receiving an “Elite” rating from STELLAService. A nine-time Inc. 500/5000 honoree, SmartPak is the only equine company ever named to the Inc. 500 list.