Keep Your Horses Safe This Winter
We at EcoGrit are dedicated to providing the pet-safest, environmentally-friendly, natural deicer on the market because we care about the planet and all its inhabitants. Salt from common road grit is toxic to animals as it can damage their paws, or hooves, and end up in their bodily systems through ingestion. Choose our animal-friendly deicer this winter to defrost icy areas, and ensure optimal riding conditions.
Use a product that does not contain any harmful chemicals, like sodium chloride or urea, so that you can minimise the risk of injury to your steed. Regular use of non-toxic resources will keep your ground slip-free.
Dealing with ice in paddocks can be anxiety-inducing as it can become very slippery and dangerous for all. The ice can damage any grass underneath too, reducing the amount of available grazing for the equines. Using a harmless deicer like EcoGrit can help manage icy conditions in no time.
It is important to inspect the pastures and barn grounds as well as stables and livery yards to keep your animals, visitors and workers injury-free. A salt-free deicer will keep your horses’ hooves healthy in the throes of winter. Here are a few ice-busting tips to keep your training grounds safe.
Is it okay to leave horses out in the cold in the winter?
Horses are resilient in cold temperatures, and as long as they have access to shelters such as stables or barns, they can pretty much comfortably withstand cold conditions.
Is calcium chloride safe for equines?
Calcium chloride is not a suitable option as an ice clearer as it can irritate the horses’ hooves. The salt can dry out the hooves and cause local discomfort. Not to mention the further damage it can do if the salt is ingested by animals.
Is rock salt a harmful deicer?
Rock salt, also known as sodium chloride, is yet another salt that can be lethal to animals. The point is to avoid corrosive ingredients like such and use salt-free deicers. EcoGrit is an organic defroster and won’t cause harm to your pets.
EcoGrit’s range of ice melts and associated products, including shakers, spreaders and larger tubs for wider areas, are organic, naturally sourced and free from harmful chemicals that cause toxicity, including rock salt and urea. They are pet-friendly ice melts and readily available online, along with further information about keeping yourself, your loved ones and your four-legged friends safe this winter.
Ingesting too much salt can be incredibly harmful to a cat or dog. Too much salt entering the body can cause blood sodium concentration to increase to a dangerous level, which damages the kidney and causes excessive thirst and lethargy.
Salt can be absorbed through skin and paws too, making it even riskier to use rock salt as a deicer in areas where dogs can reasonably be expected to walk. Additionally, some deicers are based on urea, or urea-derived ingredients, which are also toxic to pets coming into contact with them. Urea ingestion can lead to excessive salivation and irritation to the gastrointestinal tract.
Additionally, the combination of salt and melting ice can cause a heat reaction, meaning that a surface can become hot and uncomfortable to walk on with ‘bare paws’. Rather, the simple act of deicing a pavement with rock salt can cause burns to a pet’s delicate paws.
If a dog or cat’s paws feel painful or uncomfortable, they are more likely to lick them for some relief, which in turn transfers the offending products onto their lips, mouth and tongue and on into their digestive system, affecting the bloodstream and internal organs.
Given these risks, it is clear that great care must be taken when choosing a deicing product to use this winter. It is prudent for owners to check the labels of any commercially available products before buying them as they may still contain rock salt, but fewer quantities of it with rounded edges for a softer impact.
Nevertheless, salt remains a risk. So look for products stating that they do not contain any rock salt or urea whatsoever. Urea can also be known as carbonyl diamide or carbamide resin and is also used in many fertilizers as a source of nitrogen. Excess levels caused by ingesting urea, or absorbing it through the skin, can lead to blood and kidney problems in cats and dogs.
Other chemicals to steer clear of include chlorides, which can cause internal irritation and kidney issues in pets, calcium salts, which can lead to diarrhoea. Skin complaints and glycols, which are also a key ingredient of antifreeze and can be deadly to pets if eaten.
The aspects that make the ice melt safe for pets and concrete include a lack of salts, urea, chlorides and other harmful chemicals. The safest preventative solutions are those derived naturally from organic sources that do not work against your cats’ and dogs’ internal systems nor cause them irritation when they come into close contact.
Some examples include sand, grit, gravel and cat litter, which all offer excellent traction but do not speed up the ice melting. For the latter, there are specialist, pet-safe ice melter products on the market that are aimed at pet owners and that clear icy surfaces quickly and efficiently without causing any harm to concrete or other surfaces while posing no risk to animals or plant life.
A quick and easy way to reduce the risk and clear away dangerous snow, frost or ice is to spread grit of some form or another onto the road to add traction and help melt the ice so that it turns back into a liquid and runs safely off the surface into the gutters.
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