Download Care & Management of Horses: A Practical Guide for the Horse by Heather Smith Thomas PDF

By Heather Smith Thomas

This complete consultant presents a common-sense method of preserving a horse fit, sound, and satisfied by means of encouraging horse vendors to middle horse-keeping practices round the horse's needs.

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Extra info for Care & Management of Horses: A Practical Guide for the Horse Owner

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The muzzle prevents cribbing yet still allows the horse to eat and drink (some types allow a horse to drink but not eat; these must be removed at mealtime). Since it takes longer for the muzzled horse to eat, it keeps him busy more of the day. Another alternative for a confirmed cribber that cannot be deterred is for the owner to find a way to live with his habit, such as installing a sturdy, rubber-covered bar in the horse’s stall that he can crib on safely, without damaging his teeth or the stall.

If someone gallops past at full speed, your horse may want to run, too. These actions are survival instincts; the horse naturally does what the herd does as a way to escape possible danger. This flightiness makes him seem very emotional. He expresses his feelings very obviously and his moods can change rapidly. He can be half asleep one moment and very excited the next. A person who handles horses must realize the horse’s quicksilver nature and use care and consistency so the horse can trust and have confidence in the human.

Dr. Nicholas Dodman, a Tufts University researcher, used opiate-receptor-blocker medications (which he’d found successful in treating cribbers) on self-mutilating horses and some of these medications halted the behavior. Dodman thought that release of opioids in the body was made possible in a stress-primed system. Stress, like pain, might cause the body to release endorphins, which desensitize the horse to pain and and thus he keeps biting himself. The horse is sensitized to his body’s reactions and in the complex stress process is stimulated to repeat the activity.

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