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  • Writer's pictureTeena

Is Soft Water Safe For Horses To Drink?

horse drinking
Hmmm... they are drinking softened water. Is it safe?

Is Salt From Water Softeners Bad For Horses?

Water softeners are the most popular water filter sold in America. There’s a reason for that - they improve the quality of your home's water.

Not everything is hunky dory with the water produced by a water softener. Read this article to find out the good, bad, and ugly of softened water!

Folks assume that when their skin feels dry and itchy after showering, they must have hard water. This could be true, but you MUST test you water to be sure!

Other signs of hard water can be rusty stains on toilets/sinks/glassware/clothes, and wrecks water heaters.

Water softeners removes minerals from the water so that you get softer skin, fewer mineral stains are seen on toilets, dishes, glasses, better taste for coffee, and a fully functioning water heater.

Unfortunately, the minerals removed by water softeners are necessary for your horse's health.

But what about horses? Do you think water softeners can affect them?

horse drinking
Is Water Softener Water Bad For Horses?

Does Salt from Water Softeners Harm Horses?

A lot of people think so.

It's easy to see why: horses have a high-maintenance diet, and they need a lot of fresh water to maintain their health and keep them happy.

When you add salt into the mix, you're basically asking them to ingest an ingredient that can cause a lot of problems.

Effects of Hard Water on Horses

Hard water can cause the following to your horse:

  • Skin problems: Hard water can cause skin irritation and itching, which can lead to hair loss.

  • Colic: There's a theory that hard water may contribute to colic by causing electrolyte imbalances in the digestive system.

  • Hair loss: (or "dandruff").

Hypertension in Equines: The Impact of Salt Water Softeners

Salt water softeners can increase the amount of sodium in your horse's water, which can lead to high blood pressure.

High blood pressure is bad for horses because it can cause colic and kidney problems. If left untreated, high blood pressure can even lead to the same problems as humans with high blood pressure.

sick horse
Horse That Is Colicking
Collection of Issues in Horses Caused by Salt Water Softeners

In addition to causing health issues like colic and kidney damage, high salt levels caused by Salt Water Softeners have been linked with other serious illnesses such as laminitis (founder), equine polyarthritis (EP), endocarditis (a bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the heart valves), septic arthritis (inflammation or infection of joints) and even anemia caused by excess fluid retention in body tissues due to dehydration from excessive urination caused by increased thirst due to excessive salt intake through drinking lots of softened water--all things we want our horses not experiencing!

Softened Water can cause all of these!!!!

· Colic

· Kidney Damage

· Laminitis (founder)

· Equine Polyarthritis (EP)

· Endocarditis

· Septic Arthritis

· Anemia

horse hair
Dull Coat of a Horse
Equine Dermatological Issues Caused by Salt Water Softeners

Salt water softeners can also cause skin problems in horses. Salt causes skin irritation, dryness and inflammation in horses. If enough salt gets on your horse's skin, it could lead to infection as well.

Salt water from softeners can ruin a horse’s coat – especially in the summer sun. Their hair will get dried out and brittle. It also changes the color of the hair and is most noticeable in black or dark bay horses.

mare and foal horse
Mares and Foals Must Have Calcium

Effects on Horses & Foals Cause by Salt Water Softeners

Water softeners remove iron, calcium, and magnesium from your well water.

This can be a real problem because like humans, horses need a sufficient amount of calcium in their diets so they can grow strong bones and maintain healthy joints throughout life--this is especially important for pregnant mares who need extra calcium during gestation so their foals grow up strong enough to survive on their own once born into this world.

teena filter
DIY Home Water Filter Does NOT Use Salt

Protect Your Horse's Health: Opt for a Salt-Free Water Filter

If you have a horse, it's important to understand that salt in softened water is bad for them.

The water softener salt can cause skin problems, blood pressure problems, colic, diarrhea, frequent urination, weakness, kidney problems, hair loss, dull coats, and death.

If you have a water conditioning system and don't want to change it out because of your horse's health concerns, there are some things you can do.

1. Divert The Water: You can put a diverter (valve) on your untreated well water and divert it to your barn, horse waterers, horse tubs, wash racks, etc.

2. Reverse Osmosis: You can add a reverse osmosis system to remove the sodium.

3. Ion Exchange: Another device that’s mentioned is an ion exchange unit which is reported to not work as well as reverse osmosis.

As you can see, this article emphasizes how softener salt can significantly impact horses in a negative way........including DEATH.

Choosing a water filtering system that won't harm your horse's health is crucial.

Opt for a SALT-FREE solution like DIY Home Water Filter to guarantee clean, rust-free water. This not only protects your horses but also prevents stains and damage to clothing and water heaters.


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