The Suffolk Horse is a popular English draft breed that is renowned for its energy. While other breeds have their peculiarity, the Suffolk horse is exclusively developed for agricultural and farm work. Recently, this draft has now evolved to incorporate talents that are evident in other areas which makes it versatile enough for different kinds of purposes.
Owning a Suffolk horse gives you the opportunity to use them to perform a lot of tasks. This is because Suffolks have very strong and well-muscled neck as well as broad shoulders. They also have wide backs that can come in handy for luggage. While these features may seem natural, they require proper care and maintenance to bring them to give their best.
We have outlined in this article some tips to help you care for your Suffolk horse breed. Please read on as we explain more.
What is Required to Feed a Suffolk Horse Breed?
This kind of horse is fed 1.5-2 pounds of hay for each 100 pounds of weight. Suffolks also require a good source of protein, minerals, and vitamins in their meal. These nutrients are given with a pellet for ration balancing, although this should be with the recommendation of an equine vet.
This draft breed needs a good measure of food to keep its large size in good shape as they are powerfully built. When they are provided with diverse nutritional intake, they are supplied with a good measure of energy.
How to Care for a Suffolk Punch Horse
The following are some tips to help you care for Suffolks:
As outlined earlier, Suffolks require good and regular food to stay strong for the nature of the tasks they perform. Regular feeding demands that you have to feed them grain or hay morning and night. Also make sure that you check their level of response to food when you serve them. A slow response could mean that something is wrong and it will be ideal to inform your vet of the development.
Clean water is very important for the maintenance of your Suffolk’s health. When you serve them contaminated water, you are exposing them to health risks that may affect them in the long run. Be sure that you verify the source of the water before you serve them.
Regular Mucking of Stalls
To ensure that Suffolk breeds stay healthy, you need to muck out the stalls regularly to prevent any form of infection. Mucking refers to the removal of waste products and it is important if you don’t want to be a regular visitor to your vet for medication.
Ensure that you replace the bedding with fresh ones and clean the old one before it can be reused. Also remove blankets early in the morning and ensure to replace them in the evening especially during winter months.
Daily exercise is important for the maintenance of good health. You need to take your horse out for exercise daily so it can stretch its legs, walk around, and get exposed to some sunshine and fresh grass. Suffolks need to be exercised several times in a week to bring them up to the right state of health for the kind of tasks they perform.
Common Health Problems Associated with Suffolks
The following are some health challenges this breed may experience:
Equine Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy
Most large draft breeds of horses are affected by this disease. It is a metabolic disorder that causes high levels of glycogen in the muscles. Notable indications of this condition include stiff muscles, short strides, muscle tension, and pains experienced during exercise. This disease is the most popular disease that affects horses and every horse owner should have good knowledge of it. If you want to read more about it, you can check here: https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/horse_health_webinar_polysaccharide_storage_myopathy_explained
Azoturia refers to a metabolic disorder in which horse muscles secrete enzymes into the blood. This puts additional stress on the horse’s kidneys, meaning the enzymes can’t be filtered out.
Symptoms of azoturia include dark urine, fast heartbeat, excessive sweating, and muscle stiffness. Some experts assert that azoturia is connected to equine polysaccharide storage in horses (EPSM). EPSM can be prevented by a low-carb diet, so this could be an option for your horse.
Shivers refers to a neuromuscular disorder that leads to muscle spasms. This may be as a result of nerve lesions, inherited genes, or trauma. The major cause of the disorder is unknown and the symptoms may include tremors of the buttocks, inability to walk backward, and tail thumping.
It can be treated with acupuncture, massage, exercise, and adequate amounts of vitamin E and selenium.
We have outlined some important tips that will be helpful for the care and maintenance of Suffolk horse breeds. You can also search the internet if you need more tips. Additionally, there are people who find it difficult to identify horse breeds. If you find yourself in this situation, you can check here for an extensive list of different breeds and what they look like.
Suffolks have a long history of being energetic and performing tasks that will ordinarily be difficult for other breeds. If you take proper care of this horse, they have a long lifespan that will be useful for the purpose you intend to use them for. Now that you know some of the details about this breed and how to care for them, you can go ahead and get one for your stable.