Hay everyone!

July is right around the corner, so it looks like it’s time to break out the red, white, and blue! The 4th of July brings a lot of excitement, celebration, and of course, planning. (I help plan the meals because I need to make sure Dr. M put donuts and hot dogs on her shopping list!) Taking the time to prepare is not only important for your party, but it’s also important for the safety of your horse. Let’s chat about some ways you can help out your four-legged friends on Independence Day.

One of the biggest concerns a lot of horse owners have about the 4th of July is the variety of loud noises. The first thing that comes to mind is fireworks, but this can also include music or parades. I’m sure you’ve noticed that your horse’s ears are a lot bigger than yours! This is one of the main ways they get information about their environment, and those ears are always on the lookout. Sharp, piercing noises like the explosion of fireworks or the sirens from parade fire trucks can be quite overwhelming.

Tip #1: Throughout the next week, check for online posts about events happening in your local area. Look for information about parade routes, locations of firework displays, and the time that these events are happening.

If you know that your horse is easily spooked by fireworks, consider keeping them inside or providing a form of shelter during the show. This may not be a normal routine for your horse, so make sure you “practice” for a few days before so they get used to being inside at a certain time of day. Some horses may attempt to flee when they get spooked, so it’s also a good idea to chat with your neighbors about this possibility. We don’t want to spook them with a surprise visitor!

Tip #2: Throw in some extra hay! Providing your horse with some extra material for munching in their stall or shelter can help them stay calm. Besides muffling the noise and vibrations from explosions, hay is a great distraction and chewing can help promote relaxation.

Speaking of eating, 4th of July parties and barbecues might be something your horse wants to attend (with your permission of course). If you or your family are planning on hosting a cookout, picnic, or BBQ, be sure your horse gets their own special safety package with their invitation. Parties can bring a lot of new sights, smells, and stress to your horse’s home, so provide them with their own “safe space” away from guests.

Tip #3: If you have curious guests that want to say hello to your horse, post a sign about the “dos” and “don’ts” for your horse. This might include asking them to not feed your horse or reach over a fence to pet them.

Lastly, one of the best things you can do to help your horse is provide them with a consistent routine. Acting like July 4th is just a normal day can keep anxiety levels down and prevent unnecessary stress.

Thanks for the hot dog Dr. M!


Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!

Your friend,

Lord Nelson

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *