Natural Horse Care

The past 20-years has seen the development of Equine Science, with a focus on both the psychological and physiological elements and needs of the horse and how we keep them.
Gone are the days when horsey-people simply do what they have always done, today, we base horse care on scientific data, research and results.
We’ve learned that horses are social, physical and have begun to understand their complex physiological processes like never before. From the need to eat little and often, to the impact many processed foods have on hind gut health. We know that isolated in a box standing still for hours on end is neither appropriate for their mind nor their body.

At KBS we continually strive to do the very best we can by means of our horses: giving them the most natural life- based on the most recent scientific evidence based horse care.
This means living as a herd, only stabling for short periods when horses are sick or cold. Feeding a primarily forage based diet, keeping them moving via our track-system and of course, maintaining solid barefeet.

If you would like to know more about our natural horse keeping systems: read here
Discover our interventions and management systems for maintaining barefoot horses: read here
To find out more about our barefoot trimmer Vanya Lazarova: read here

Land Care & Management
Keeping horses requires land, and keeping healthy horses requires maintianing the land in the best possible condition to provide adequate and healthy nutrition, space for free movement and provide natural shelter from both the cold and summer sun.
For these reasons we have implemented and are constantly trialing new systems to work with both our land AND our horses.

Our land is by no means ideal. It’s all located on relatively steep inclines, its soil is heavy clay and our grasses are delicate native mixes indigenous to our unique grassland Natura2000 site.
Our climate too is harsh- and changing. Long hot and dry summers, followed by wet and muddy winters- with rainfall becoming shorter and more aggressive in duration.

However, we like to look on the bright side! Our hills provide our horses with incredible muscle mass, our grasses provide varied and diverse low-sugar nutrition and our rainfall provides opportunities for collection.

Many of our systems might not look so attractive, however they help maintain both the land AND the horses. E.g. in an effort to protect our grazing lands during resting and growth periods, we use a track-system and a series of sacrifice fields. The track system allows the horses to move freely between their food, water, shelter and social activities, yet keeps ground damage to a minimum. The sacrifice areas are located close to the stables, offering increased security at night and the bare-soil offers considerable wild fire protection around the buildings throughout the summer.

If you would like to know more about our rainwater harvesting/collection systems: read here

Feeding and Fodder
Our feeds are sourced locally, hay and lucerne from our local farmers in Srem, while our winter barley comes from Mramor. We are actively involved in the forage process from watching the fields grow and mature, to cutting, baling and the dreaded bringing home. Not only does this mean we can ‘vouch’ for its quality, but we reduce our environmental impact and support our local economy.

As and when required, we feed barley mixed with chaff. Again the barley is local and the chaff cut from our own bales with an impressive relic from times gone by, located in Ustrem’s old Cooperative Farm complex.