Heat Stroke in Horses, Presented by Kentucky Performance Products

As we head into summer and temperatures begin to rise, it’s always a good idea to know how to recognize and address heat stroke in horses. Fortunately our good friends at Kentucky Performance Products have these helpful tips.


What is heat stroke and how do you recognize it?

Heat stroke occurs when you horse’s natural cooling mechanisms fail to keep his body temperature at a normal level. If left untreated, heat stroke could kill your horse. The best way to avoid heat stroke is to closely monitor your horse when riding in warm weather. Know your horse’s normal vital signs, know the symptoms of heat stroke, and take immediate action to cool your horse off when he gets too hot!

Normal vital signs:

  1. Temperature between 99°F and 100.5°F
  2. Heart rate between 36 and 44 beats per minute
  3. Respiration rate between 8 and 16 breaths per minute

Signs of heat stroke:

  1. Rectal temperature over 103°
  2. Heart rate over 80 beats per minute that does not decrease after a few minutes of rest
  3. Respiration rate of over 40-50 breaths per minute that does not decrease after a few minutes of rest
  4. Lethargy
  5. Profuse sweating or absence of sweating


Ways to cool off your horse:

  1. Stop riding immediately and un-tack your horse.
  2. Move to a shady, breezy spot (use a fan if need be).
  3. Hose your horse with cold water (the coldest you can get and don’t worry, it won’t hurt his muscles), scrape and repeat. Concentrate on the largest muscle areas and large blood vessels that are close to the surface, such as the jugular vein and saphenous vein inside the thigh.
  4. Offer water and allow the horse to drink.
  5. Call your vet as soon as possible and give electrolytes as directed.

About Kentucky Performance Products, LLC:

Fight back against dangerous dehydration and electrolyte imbalances with Summer Games® Electrolyte.

Summer Games is a unique blend of both electrolytes and trace minerals specifically formulated to replenish critical electrolytes in the proper ratios. Summer Games supports healthy electrolyte balance so horses stay hydrated, perform at optimal levels, and recover faster after exercise or in stressful situations.

Summer Games contains a research-proven electrolyte formulation that was originally developed for the horses competing at the 1996 Olympics. Formulated using the results of extensive research studies investigating the composition of sweat, Summer Games contains both key electrolytes and trace minerals in the actual amounts that are present in the sweat.

  • Adjustable serving rates allow you to easily meet your horse’s individual electrolyte needs.
  • Affordable price allows you to consistently replenish key electrolytes in appropriate ratios.
  • Concentrated formula ensures your horse receives both critical electrolytes and trace minerals, not sugar and other fillers.
  • The unique ingredients in Summer Games support optimal performance and speedy recovery during exercise or stressful situations.

The horse that matters to you matters to us®.

Not sure which horse supplement best meets your horse’s needs? Kentucky Performance Products, LLC is here to help. Call 859-873-2974 or visit KPPusa.com.