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Old 10-24-2014, 07:50 PM
1 posts, read 3,619 times
Reputation: 10


Hello everyone! My husband and I are relocating to Alaska this coming up summer. We are looking at buying a small cabin in the Fairbanks area. We will be bringing along 3 horses and 2 dogs. I'm not worried about the dogs (although if you have some helpful tips that I may not have thought of then please share). But I am somewhat worried about the horses living in the extreme cold. I've done a ton of research on this. I have some ideas for their water, run in shed, blanketing, feed, etc. However, I'd love some opinions from people who have actually kept horses in Fairbanks, AK (or surrounding areas). I'm sure there are a million things I haven't thought of yet or other ideas that are better than mine! Thank you in advance!
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Old 10-25-2014, 01:28 AM
Location: Wasilla, AK
2,632 posts, read 4,269,120 times
Reputation: 2128
Horses in Fairbanks was recently discussed in this thread:
Horses in Alaska
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Old 10-28-2014, 09:08 AM
Location: Back and Beyond
2,895 posts, read 2,897,062 times
Reputation: 6807
Sell your horses and simplify your life and your move. If you are still set on having horses after you settle in after the big move you can look into Icelandic horses that are built for and thrive in the cold. IMHO horses in the interior would be more trouble than worth (think feeding and watering in -40 or colder temps). Maybe you will find you are more interested in dog mushing up here. To be fair to you and your horses, I think you might be getting in over your head bringing horses to the interior. If you are set on keeping your horses Try south central alaska or kenai peninsula where it is warmer, or sell and get Icelandic horses up here. Plus think of all the gas you'll save, not to mention headaches of leaving the 3 horse trailer behind. Just food for thought and not trying to offend you. I know people have very special relationships with the horse and they are not easy to just "sell". However think of your horse. If you were him/her would you want to be in fairbanks for the winter? Yes I know people keep all kinds of horses here, but the Icelandic horse recommendation is one you should at least research. Where are you going to ride said horses in winter? Hopefully you are moving up from some place like eastern Montana or North Dakota etc, where the horses are already used to freezing beyond belief temps. Good luck with your move, not trying to be a downer, just giving you some things to think about.
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Old 10-28-2014, 09:16 AM
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,490 posts, read 4,032,892 times
Reputation: 3232
Folks have horses in extremely frigid areas around the country...you can keep them warm enough through the winter. My concern would be feeding them. The other areas of the country that I am thinking of are farming areas where hay is readily available. How easily obtainable is alfalfa and hay in Fairbanks? You may end up paying HUGE amounts of money to feed 3 horses through the cold months. As for the summer, is there grazing where you will be? If not, you just signed on to feed 3 horses year round...
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Old 10-28-2014, 12:36 PM
Location: Deltana, AK
865 posts, read 1,717,030 times
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I don't have any specifically useful information to add, but to counter the last two posters, lots of people have horses in interior Alaska, and hay is grown locally. Maybe contact UAF Cooperative Extention. They have lots of information about adapting to local conditions for farming, livestock, gardening, building, etc.
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Old 10-28-2014, 05:13 PM
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Keeping horses in Alaska is expensive, been there,done that. Locally grown hay usually runs out early in the winter and the alternative hay comes up on trucks from Washington. You will need good shelter, especially at -60f, and you will also have to stoke the horse up so it can keep itself warm, we used beet pulp as energy food. I suggest you contact some feed stores in FBX to get an idea of what food costs. Ar least you can get COB at a decent price at Wal Mart.
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Old 10-30-2014, 01:49 AM
Location: alaska
471 posts, read 1,173,863 times
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Is your husband a hunter? If so Bring Them!!!! Feed grains are also grown locally in the Delta area.
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Old 11-01-2014, 06:14 AM
Location: interior Alaska
4,662 posts, read 3,466,190 times
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The cost of keeping horses in the interior is astronomical (it's not just the feed, it's also keeping them warm and keeping water liquid) and you also have to consider what it's going to be like to slog out to care for them at twenty, thirty, forty, fifty below. It can be done, of course, but it requires quite a bit of time and disposable income compared to horse keeping in the lower 48.

Bugs are pretty miserable for the horses, too.
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Old 01-22-2015, 02:41 PM
9 posts, read 9,228 times
Reputation: 15
Big thing is the skeeters, absolutely eat horses alive, then there are the noseeums and the biting flies. Horses take cold. You need a tightly insulated barn with a good roof vent, and they need to be excercised even in the cold. You can build a protected passage to the barn. Take a good waterer with you and install it properly. Gold miners took millions of horses to AK.
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Old 01-22-2015, 05:28 PM
Location: Anchorage
900 posts, read 716,406 times
Reputation: 1094
And keep the horses hooves dry or you will have real problems!
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