• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Leave him out? Or Bring him in???

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Leave him out? Or Bring him in???

    I have a 25 yo draft x gelding. He is my horsey soul mate and after all these years, he owes me nothing. In fact, if hubby would agree, he would come in the house.

    Over the last year, he is getting stiffer, creakier and lamer. I talked to the vet to try something different in joint supplements to help him out, but here is my question. Is it better for him to stay out and keep moving or come in at night? I have a blanket on him, he is pretty hairy, I have a shed that he could go into. He also has a friend. He is in good health. I always bring the horses into the barn in rain, wind and bitterly cold weather, especially the sudden drops. Is it better for him at his age to be in at night, muching on hay and being warm, or moving around at will in the cold? Am I bringing him in just for me to feel better? Tonight it's around 25 degrees, no wind and I just brought him in. And if anyone has tried any supplements that they swear by for joints, I'm willing to try anything for him to be more comfortable.


  • #2
    I would honestly leave him out. My older ponies do SO much better when left in a large area rather than cooped up in a corral. Unless your barn is heated I don't think it would be much warmer inside. Walking around outside will keep the blood flowing in his legs and probably keep him warmer than if he were inside just standing there. I really do think that the best thing for older creaky horses is movement.
    My horses past and present....


    • #3
      It's a toss-up, and it may be at a temperature lower than 25 where he's better off in, standing around, than out, moving. You'll have to play with that.

      I'd start him on a good hefty loading dose of MSM for a few weeks (like 30gm/day if he's 1300lb+) and see if that helps at all.

      Beyond that, Cosequin is at least proven to get where it says it will, analysis guaranteed (unlike a LOT of others), and is really pretty cost-effective compared to a lot of others.

      Beyond *that* there is Adequan, which as the benefit over joint injections of affecting the whole body, which may be what he needs
      The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


      • #4
        My 23 yr old arthritic TB is out 24/7 and prefers to be there even when I decide he should stay in the barn (at 15*F or below at night and any time we are are getting a wicked ice storm).

        He wears his blankie to protect him from the wind, rain, and snow. Other than that he eats his hay and prefers not to be bothered He does come in twice a day for grain where he gets his MSM and Flex Free (he's been on Flex Free for YEARS - he's the type of horse that does best on the same supplement and every time I've tried something else I've had poor results so he stays on the flex free).

        If I were you - I'd leave your guy out until he says he wants in. I've had mine say he wants in on those fall days where it's rained so much I swear I should build an ark! He honestly prefers to be out otherwise.
        Lord Stanely, Lord Stanley - come back to Pittsburgh!!!
        *** I LOVE PUIKA FAN CLUB***


        • #5
          If you are in a situation where you can try it, and put him back out if it doesn't work out, I might recommend trying it. My vet recommended bringing my near 20 year old in at night for winter. I was really hesitant. He has lived out 24/7 all his life. Recently diagnosed with hock arthritis but doing fine. We brought him in primarily so we could monitor his hay intake (which is about nill) and keep his weight on which we worked so hard to put on last spring. We give him soaked cubes and some hay "scraps" that are easier for him to chew. I too was very concerned about him standing around at night, etc. but for him, the vet felt the benefits would outweigh any negatives, esp. because he is ridden and worked several times a week - so I agreed to stall board with the exception that on warm nights and nice weather, he still be out.

          He is doing very well, and perhaps I might say, even better. It's clear he lays down to sleep at night. I ride him several times a week and he has much more get up and go. He has more energy (it could be the cold weather but it is coincidental.) I also sleep much better at night on very cold nights, or windy or rainy weather, knowing he is inside, warmer and out of the elements.
          There was a run-in out there but of course his stall is warmer and out of the elements. He missed his field buddy the first week but nothing horrible. They just called to each other a bit, and now there's a new field buddy out there for his friend so I don't feel as bad. I am also on top of how much he eats, and he is eating his hay some nights so I can continue to monitor that. I also like knowing I have a place for him should he need medical care.

          So for us it worked, and believe me, if it didn't, I would have put him back out, even if it meant paying the extra money for the stall as backup or for only snow/rain. I board, so I can't flip flop "stall for winter, field board for summer" but as long as I pay for the stall (which was only $50 more in my case), I can turn him out 24/7 if I choose.

          Hope that helps


          • #6
            I found that blanketing my older horse made a big difference in his creakiness. He was creaky in his hocks and ankles but I think the blanket kept the rest of him warm enough that his hocks were better. It was a very visible and instant change from one night to the other in the way he came out of his stall.


            • #7
              my 24 draft cross has been on 24/7 turnout for the last 2 years and is doing better than when she was turnout day and stalled nights. She eats hay fine and no worries about her weight.

              I do find that keeping a blanket on her really helps her move more during the winter. I like using a fleece liner under a turnout for nights and just us the turnout on windy/cold days.


              • #8
                I have an 18 year old mare who has had arthritis is both hocks for years (injury). She always hated being in. She would paw and fuss and want out. All my horses come in at dark, eat sleep etc. And then some go back out again around 9. I find those that go back out lie down to sleep at this time, and I am sure its good to get off those legs for a bit. She is one of the in then out again horses, and it seems to work very well for her.


                • #9
                  I think it is going to depend on the horse. i thought 24/7 turnout would be best for my 18 year old but I am beginning to think that he would rather be in for at least part of the time. He is very submissive and I think it just gives him some time to be peaceful and to munch on hay. Sometimes I will turn him out and he will walk outside turn right around and come back, even if he has been in for a couple of days because of the weather.
                  You'll be able to tell what your horse wants if you have the chance to try it for a few days.


                  • #10
                    I got a stall for my oldest guy a couple years ago, and without it I don't think he'd make it through the winter. Even blanketed, he seems to need those hours out of the elements to hang out and EAT (he's an incredibly hard keeper) and recover from whatever the day brought (wind, rain, cold, heat, flies, pesky 2-year-olds). He is also very social and loves his stall, front and center in the main barn aisle, with a stall guard so he can stick his nose into everybody's conversation. If he has to spend a night outside because one of the others needs the stall in an emergency, he pouts!

                    Arthritis isn't a big problem for him. We have two TB's who are around 20 and much more arthritic than he is, and I do see a difference when they are stalled at night. The whole crew of older guys gets the injectable Acetyl D every 2 weeks and I think it helps more than any of the oral supplements we have tried over the years.


                    • #11

                      I agree with tpup. Try it. My old TB mare (recently died at 33) did much better coming in at night. She did sleep better, she drank and ate better. But again try it, it's not for some horses and he can't be the only one in either.
                      Sorry! But that barn smell is my aromatherapy!
                      One of our horsey bumper stickers! www.horsehollowpress.com
                      Add Very Funny Horse Bumper Stickers on facebook


                      • #12
                        My 22 year old arthritic mare lives out 24/7, and does best on this schedule because she keeps MOVING. She gets stiff if cooped up too log. She has a wardrobe of blankets and a cozy stall when/if she needs it, but she clearly does best if allowed to be a horse.


                        • #13
                          i have a retired 22 year old grand prix jumper that i too keep out as much as possible.. he wears heavy duty blankets and is in a pasture with his buddy. he is arthritic and in agreement that he does better when out and moving.. however i am finding, that he doesnt sleep well enough when out 24/7, so am now opting to bring him in every 4 days and let him stayi n his stall for a day or two and let him sleep and rest.. poor guy almost fell asleep last nite when the farrier was trimming his feet ..


                          • #14
                            I think he should come in the house My guy stays outside. He seems to prefer it. He doesn't even spend great amounts of time in the shed. We put mats in the shed to make it easier on his legs. I see him lay down and snooze. If a big snow fall or ice is predicted, he's brought in.
                            Epona Farm
                            Irish Draughts and Irish Draught Sport horses

                            Join us on Facebook


                            • #15
                              I have two senior geldings, a 24 yr old OTTB, and a 22ish yr old QH. They both do much better in a paddock with a run in stall. (it's more closed in than just a 3 sided shed). If they can move around they are usually better able to keep themselves warm. Both of mine are arthiritic and have some other age related stiffness. I have them on Aniflex Complete and it seems to be working well. Although I will footnote that by saying my vet thinks it's good to switch up their joint supplements every few years.

                              TPUP - have you looked into the chopped hays offered by Lucerne? They make a chopped Denghi that has served some of our seniors well. My QH is heavey so if I can't get second cutting, I'll use that.

                              I think you'll just have to experiment.


                              • #16
                                Thanks TB! We don't have Lucerne around here but I just called one of the feed stores and they have a few different chopped Denghi's. I may try that!


                                • #17
                                  It's really a toss up and I think you'll have to experiment to find out what works best for your horse.

                                  I would probably go w/very good blankets (I stick w/Rambo, Rhino and Bucas, the Holy Trinity IMO, but others here are very happy w/other brands!) and a high dose of MSM, like JB suggested, first. I say that because a change of routine for an older horse can be much more tramautic than for a younger horse.

                                  The only truly old horse here is 32. He lives out and actually WILL NOT go in a building unless he is sedated first (can you say dementia?!!) so I manage him completely w/good blankets and good feed. It helps, I am sure, that he is built like a tank, an easy keeper and hairy like a yak. We love him terribly!

                                  If you don't see an improvement with that plan then you can try stabling him and seeing how it goes.. one step at a time would be prudent, I think.
                                  "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.


                                  • #18
                                    Out. Locking in stall = bad for arthritis. It's also easier to keep warm if you can walk around vs being locked in a tiny room at the same air temp. Drafts are also usually pretty cool-weather tolerant. Do give him free choice hay during this weather.

                                    I have drafts in their teens and 20s+. They do fine out. That being said of course each horse is an individual and you'll have to see what works best.

                                    Can you leave a stall door open to the outside and see if he prefers in/out?
                                    Veterinarians for Equine Welfare


                                    • #19
                                      can you get him a run in for his turnout area? My guy has a run in and actually pouts if we lock him in. They prefer their freedom and will come in if needed.
                                      Appy Trails,
                                      Kathy, Cadet & CCS Silinde
                                      member VADANoVA www.vadanova.org


                                      • #20
                                        IMO, in general if they have run-in option and safe access I think they're better out unless there's multiple horses (more than 2). I've found the older horses tend to be bullied and can be really miserable. So, if he's got run-in and one compatible companion, out is almost always best. More than one, bring him in at night to protect him.

                                        Horses are almost always better out, even in mud (miserable!!). The modifiers to that statement are wet (I've seen them shivering in 40 degree weather), windy, no shelter, and bullies.