Can we take a moment to chat about something that is really important to me? I mean, more important than the fact that there is a Chick-Fil-A less than two miles from my house and on the way to the barn (which should give you a clue about how important this is!).
Seriously though. Lets talk a bit about hydration….not my hydration, but Willow’s. When we moved down here, I didn’t quite realize just how hot it would be. People warned me, but I wasn’t fully prepared to sweat straight through the months of June and July (and probably August, September, and October as well). Willow had it even worse, and I was in neurotic Mommy mode. Her paddock doesn’t exactly have central air like my house. Not only was her comfort important to me, but have you ever opened a colic bill? It’s an activity that I don’t like to make a habit of.
As a result of my neurosis, I spent way more money than I should have on salt licks, electrolytes, and Gatorade. Of course, would the normally treat hound, food snarfing Willow touch any of it? Ha! Tacos, sure! Electrolytes, no thanks. Her feed always ended up looking like this…
Yea. That’s grain left behind, folks. It looks like this no matter HOW I doctored it. If I added it into her water, she wouldn’t touch it. *headdesk*
Then, it happened. The wonderful folks at Equine Aid contacted me and asked if I’d like to try out some samples. I did some looking into the product before I said yes, and then jumped at the chance to give it a shot. Mike can attest to the happy dance that I did when I got the package in the mail.
So what is it? According to their website, “Equine Aid is a blend of natural, organic ingredients that horses love. By simply flavoring a bucket of water with Equine Aid you encourage your horse to drink, giving him the water he needs and the wholesome flavors that will make a big impression.” `
Off to the barn I went, with my wonder packets in hand! I will admit, after having Ms. Prissy Palate turn her royal nose up at everything else that I’ve tried, I was a little bit skeptical that it would work. The ingredients are really pretty simple, totally organic non-GMO (whoop!) alfalfa, molasses, brown sugar, and pink Himalayan rock salt… that’s it. It doesn’t get much simpler than that and I was hoping that simple was the key. When I compared it to the labels of the supplement that I was currently trying to feed I was wicked excited that I could actually PRONOUNCE everything in Equine Aid. Not only that, but I knew what everything was. Double score.
I even gave it a taste (it’s human grade!), and I was kind of jealous. Yum much? And really, if I was so inclined, I could have dumped some in my water bottle. It’s totally safe for me AND for the little bundle of kidney boxer I’m currently dealing with. I wasn’t going to get greedy though. 😉
I had decided I was going to set up a bit of an experiment to see how well it actually worked. We’ve been at the new barn for about a week now, and while Willow wasn’t drinking nearly as much as I would have liked, averaging about 5-7 gallons overnight, she was used to the water. I added one packet of the Equine Aid into one bucket, stirred, and left her to her own devices.
Normally I get a glare and a ‘leave me alone to eat my hay” snort. This time, though, Willow was huffing and puffing over my shoulder as soon as I ripped the packet open, so you know that she was into what was going on. It smells delicious!
I couldn’t get a picture of her without her nose in the way! Despite her obvious interest I was a little bit skeptical weather she would drink, since it looked a little pea-soupy even once I mixed it for a bit. I mean, the piglet has left grain behind to avoid eating sugar smelling powder, so I wasn’t too optimistic about the fact that she was going to drink something that looked like pea soup.
Before my back was even turned though…
Bam! Half a bucket…gone! Just like that. And she doesn’t even LIKE drinking out of that bucket. I was totally floored and a little too excited. A product that Miss Priss actually LIKES?! Heck to the yes!
I didn’t want to get too excited though, so I refilled the bucket (and didn’t add more Equine Aid) and we left to go out to dinner. I figured I would have Mike snap a picture of the results in the morning when he fed her before work, but then I realized that I had left her apple core in the center console and well… homeslice needs her daily apple core! I’m glad we went back, because I was greeted with this…
Another almost empty bucket. Umm… score much?! She just drank her twelve hour average in about two. I refilled the buckets (what a wonderful problem to have!) again and gave her the promised apple core and a snuggle for the night. She was totally thrilled, I promise.
Now, I did still have a few concerns about Equine Aid. Introducing anything new to Willow makes me a little bit nervous, because not only does she have a colic history (hence my water drinking neurosis!) but she also can be really sensitive to sugars in her feed. Even a handful of the wrong cookies can send her into orbit. Since there is molasses and brown sugar in Equine Aid, I was a bit wary that it would give her a little extra ‘oomph’. Since she’s 17.1 and I’m 30 weeks pregnant, the last thing I need is ‘oomph’. I was totally wrong. Home girl has been outside all day (ALONE) with nary a bellow. She’s stayed totally level-headed and sane.
So, lets recap- Equine Aid is one of my new favorite products (yes, I’m even more excited about it than I am about Horze tendon boots, Chick-Fil-A, and bling browbands). Not only is it a great tool to have in your kit for any sweaty situation, but I also plan on keeping a few packets in my tack box for flavoring water for when we move barns. The Army keeps us in motion and knowing that I have a fail safe to keep my girl drinking, no matter where we end up, is a huge load off my mind.
And (AND!!) It comes in single packets, so no more opening the container and making sure that mice, bugs, dirt, the barn cat, and my toddler stay out or worrying about it staying fresh. Just open a packet, dump, and done. The packets are super sturdy, so no concerns about them opening up by accident.
It’s affordable too! I compared it to a few comparable products, and at roughly $1.60 a packet (if you buy the 15 packet bundle, $1.99 per. packet if you buy individually) Equine Aid make my wallet (and my husband) smile! It’s easier to feed too. And again, just look at the ingredients. I’m much happier giving my horse something that is simple (and organic!) than a host of things that I can’t pronounce.
Finally, maybe you have a horse that is even pickier than my girl (I’d like to meet you, if you do). That’s cool, too. Just feed it dry. Willow loved it and was all up in my grill (did I really just say that?) for more. I blame the alfalfa. 😉
I’m all about what is best for Willow, and Equine Aid is the answer to all my “Willow, just drink the water so I can sleep tonight” prayers.
If you have any other questions, their website is here and I’m sure that their kick butt customer service will help you out! Equine Aid is also all hooked up on Facebook and Twitter (@EquineAid). If you check out their Facebook, you’ll see that not only is this company dedicated to hydration, but they are also into young riders and have just awarded an awesome scholarship to a very lucky young lady! You go guys!
I’ll stop gushing now and leave y’all to go order your packets!
**I was not monetarily compensated to write this post. Equine Aid sent me some sample packets to review, and I’ve given my totally honest opinion of their product.**