Animal lick salt or mineral lick is a deposit of salt combined with other naturally occurring trace minerals. Animals frequently use these salt licks to compensate for their daily dose of required salt. These salt licks can be naturally occurring or made artificially.
If you own horses or deal with them closely, you may be well aware of how important salt is for horses. Since it is not possible to meet the daily required dosage of salt for horses merely through the feed; salt licks for horses are designed at convenient places around the land.
Why Your Horses Need Salt?
Horses require salt because their growth and many functions of the body need it in small quantity. Unlike humans, horses are unable to fulfill their salt cravings by munching on salty snacks. Instead, they start acting strange so that their owners can understand their salt needs.
Salt is a compound of two elements sodium and chloride and it helps to carry out some important functions in the horse’s body.
1. When sodium and chloride get infused into the blood of the horses, they ionize and help in transmitting electrical signals in the body. This is essential for the nervous system to function properly.
2. Remember, when scorching and dry weather makes you crave lemonade with a pinch of salt to quench your thirst? Well, this is because your body feels dehydrated and you need water for your body. Same is the case with your horses. When a horse is dehydrated, it sends signals to the brain. Sodium is vital for sending thirst signals to the brain so that horses can drink water.
3. Sodium is also helpful in managing the flow of glucose around cell membranes. This assures the functions that require glucose are working properly. Improper glucose movement can cause fatigue and issues in muscle development.
Keeping the importance of sodium in light, salt licks for horses must be set up around the living places of horses.
What Happens When A Horse Is Facing Salt Deficiency?
In case a horse meets with salt deficiency, the first signs would be of him not missing a chance to lick objects that contain even the slightest traces of salt. This is to meet their salt deficiency. Some signs include loss in appetite, a decrease in water intake and decreased skin vitality. Other major signs include difficulty in chewing, loss in gait, and loss in basic coordination.
Himalayan Salt Benefits For Horses
On average, a healthy horse requires around 30 to 50 grams of salt per day. Since this is not possible to be met with the normal feed; salt licks are set up for horses. A difficult choice for horse owners is to decide which salt is the best for their horses? Horses are pretty picky eaters and they will not lick a salt lick twice if they do not like it. It should not be extra salty in taste.
The safest choice in such a scenario is something that is 100% natural and pure. Himalayan salt is the only salt that fulfills the aforementioned conditions and hence should be the ultimate choice for setting up mineral salt licks for equines.
Himalayan rock salt is extracted from salt deposits that are found in Pakistan. The Himalayan rock salt consists of 84 trace minerals which are extremely beneficial for your equines.
The Himalayan salt licks for horses are a hard solid block of Himalayan salt that ensure the horses don’t bite off chunks of salt from them. This lick salt has a densely packed crystalline structure that can only be licked to save your horse from excessive intake of salt.
Another noticeable benefit of setting up a mineral salt block made with Himalayan salt for horses is its ability to sustain harsh weather. You can set up a mineral lick for your horse and forget about it until your next salt lick setting-up time arrives.
The benefits of Himalayan salt licks for horses are plenty. It would not be wrong to say that by far, this is hands down the best option available to be used for salt licking.
It is important to note that horses have comparatively soft tongues than cattle. Their tongues tend to get sore with too much licking. Keeping this in mind, the Himalayan salt feed additive can be mixed with their feed to meet their daily dose of salt.
Can A Horse Eat Too Much Salt?
Horses have an innate ability to regulate their salt needs. They make up for the salt deficiency by licking natural salt licks. In case a horse consumes more than the required amount of salt, it is excreted through the urine.
So, salt toxicity is the rarest issue that comes up. A horse loses around 20 grams of salt per day even if it spends the complete day standing in the paddock. The amount of salt loss increases with sweating and workload. This explains why a horse can rarely consume more than the required dosage of salt.
Salt Lick For Horses — Mistakes To Avoid
Himalayan rock salt licks for horses can be set up anywhere. They can be set up in the open area or for each horse in their personal space inside the stable. It is crucial to note that in case a mineral lick is placed inside the stable, the horse may end up licking too much of it and will require too much water to get rid of the excess salt. This will result in too much urination of the horse and a messy place.
In case a horse ends up consuming more than the required amount of salt, it will need lots of freshwater. Failing to find water may result in serious health consequences.