• Care of Horses

    For those who are going to own a horse, then they must be ready to accept the responsibility that comes with them. They are a beautiful and valuable a

  • What is Reining?

    When most people wonder about equestrian sports in the UK, some may not be thinking about reining, as this is a western riding sport. It is quite popu

  • The Enjoyment of Horseball

    Some individuals enjoy horseback riding just for the pure pleasure of it. Others like to participate in a variety of equestrian sports or games, such

  • Therapeutic Horse Riding

    There are undoubtedly many people of all ages who love horses. Some are using them simply for recreational purposes, and others are used for various e

  • Horses in Agriculture

    Farming methods are not the same as they used to be many years ago. Thanks to technology, it has changed, but for some farmers, they do not embrace al

  • Behaviour of Horses

    One of the most intriguing aspects about horses is their behaviour. Many say that the horse is unpredictable, but for those who are comfortable around

  • History of Horses

    Most people know that the horse has been around for many millions of years. What they may not realise, is how it has evolved during that time, going f

  • Different Horse Breeds

    There are many different breeds of horses. Some are bred for specific purposes, while others are reared as pets. There are many shapes, sizes and col

For those who are going to own a horse, then they must be ready to accept the responsibility that comes with them. They are a beautiful and valuable animal which requires proper care.

Horsemanship

Horsemanship means developing the skills and training of a horse. Added to this is their overall care.

Housing and Feeding

As a live animal, the horse requires proper feeding and housing. Feeding is using comprised of field feeding when the seasons are right, and then the addition of hay and grain to supplement their diet.

When it comes to housing, this is going to depend on the weather conditions. Most horses fare quite well left out to pasture the majority of the time, provided they have some type of shelter to protect them from the elements.

Training

Every horse needs at least some basic training, even if they are not going to be ridden. They need to be halter broken so they can be handled. Most who own horses want to be able to ride them, which means introducing them to the saddle.

From here, training extends to what the purpose of the horse is going to be. Some will be used for sports events such as racing. Others may be used for equestrian events.

One of the most intriguing aspects about horses is their behaviour. Many say that the horse is unpredictable, but for those who are comfortable around them and get to know them, that is not the case.

Learning the Behaviour

Those who are going to be around horses need to educate themselves about their behaviour. Otherwise, they will not form a good relationship with them.

The Herd

Although horses are often seen running freely, that doesn’t mean that they prefer their own company. They are a herd animal. They all have many things in common just as each of them has their own distinct personalities. There will always be a leader among the herd. The leader can be identified in a herd by their behaviour. For example, the leader will be the first one to drink from a pool of water.

Fight or Flight

Going back centuries when the horses were small in stature, they had no recourse but to flee from danger. The same trait exists in this species of animal today. A horse when frightened will opt to run. If this fails, their next response is to fight. They will do this in many different ways, such as biting and kicking or rearing.

Most people know that the horse has been around for many millions of years. What they may not realise, is how it has evolved during that time, going from a multi-toed species to the single toe that the horses of today possess. Also, back then, they were no bigger than a dog.

Horse Domestication

The taking of a wild horse and turning into a tame one dates back to 4000 BC. Today, there is only one horse which is considered to be a truly wild horse, and that is the Przewaiski’s horse which has not been seen in the wild since 1966. This horse is only found in central Asia and is an endangered species.

The Value of the Horse

The horse is one of those animals which tend to get taken for granted. They are in today’s world used for many purposes. Some of these tasks are similar to what they were initially used for, while others are new. The one thing that they have always been used for is as a mode of transportation. Once it was discovered that the horse could be tamed, it changed forever the way that people could get from one place to another and be able to take several items with them.

The Disappearance

Although the horse can be traced back so many years, what has also been discovered, is that about 10000 years ago, the Americas were no longer home to the horse. The reasons for this are unknown, but it is speculated that it may be as a result of the end of the ice age. Then, others think that it may have been from the people hunting the horses. Horses were used for food before they were for transportation.

Warfare

Once it was discovered that aside from food, a horse could be used for riding, it wasn’t long before they became part of the battleground. This is aptly seen when going back to the days of the Romans. The chariots were drawn by horses as they entered into battle.

The invention of the saddle and stirrups created a whole new way of riding, which allowed for the use of the horse in warfare. This took place in China, dating back more than 2000 years ago. It wasn’t long before riders mastered the art of archery on horseback; this made them fierce warriors to contend with during battle.

Moving into the Future

Once other modes of transportation were discovered, this lifted the responsibility of the horse somewhat. Although still used for the same purpose today, horses are also used for many other activities. When one thinks of the value of the horse, it makes one wonder what would the world do without them.

There are many different breeds of horses. Some are bred for specific purposes, while others are reared as pets. There are many shapes, sizes and colours of horses. As with any other animal, the temperament of horses can vary from one breed to another or even within a breed.

Thoroughbred Horses

Thoroughbred horses are a very popular breed of animal. The thoroughbred is of Arabian ancestry and is a very pure breed. Thoroughbreds are one of the most popular well-known breeds worldwide.

Thoroughbred horses are primarily bred for racing, which makes them ideal for the equestrian world. The thoroughbred breed can run extended distances at high speed, proving its endurance and agility.

American Paint Horse

As thoroughbreds were bred with quarter horses, the American Paint Horse evolved. The noticeable colouration of the Paint Horse is white and dark, in patterns which are not uniform. Therefore, there are no two identical Paint Horses anywhere. American Paint horses can be trained for trail riding, jumping, and talent shows, as they are very intelligent and learn quickly.

Arabian Horse

The Arabian horse is one of the oldest breeds, having a long tail and distinct height. The Arabian Peninsula desert tribes originated this breed. George Washington, Alexander the Great and Napoleon were historical figures who were known to ride Arabian horses.

Morgan Horse

Morgan horses are very gentle natured. The Morgan is a great breed for beginner and intermediate level riders. Morgan horses are known to be working horses as far back as the Civil War, as they were used as cavalry mounts and artillery horses. They could journey all day.

Miniature Horse

As the Miniature horse only grows to a height of 34 inches, they make a great pet. They can also be used as service animals, as they are much the same size as a large dog.

Appaloosa Horse

Appaloosa horses can be identified by a very distinctive spotted coat pattern. This breed is one of the most beautiful and is often used in movies and television. They can be used for Western and English riding and also compete in trail riding and endurance tournaments.

Andalusian Horse

The Andalusian horse goes back to the 16th century. It is a purebred Spanish horse. The ancient Romans and Greeks thought of the Andalusian breed as a supreme horse.

American Quarter Horse

The American Quarter Horse is commonly known as a racehorse. This breed is very docile and has become to be known as the official state horse in Texas during the cowboy era.

The biology of horses revolves around their anatomy, which encompasses the stages they go through in life, as well as their colours and breeds. It also involves the terminology which applies to them.

Life Expectancy

Years back, when the horse was relied on for many of the common things in life, such as transportation and for working, the life expectancy was of great importance. In today’s modern world, the life expectancy of the average horse is 25 to 30 years. There have been some notable ones which went far beyond this expectancy, such as:

  • Old Billy who lived during the 19th century and survived to the ripe old age of 62.
  • The worlds oldest pony passed away in 2007 at the age of 56.

Terminology

There is different terminology which is used to describe the age bracket of a horse. Such as:

  • Foal: A baby horse, either male or female which is under the age of one.
  • Weanling: If the foal has been weaned, it may be referred to as a weanling.
  • Yearling: Horses between the age of one and two of either sex.
  • Colt: The male horse that is under the age of four.
  • Filly: The female horse that is under the age of four.
  • Mare: A female horse which is four or older.
  • Stallion: A male horse that is four years or older and has not been castrated.
  • Gelding: This is an age of horse that has been castrated.

Understanding the terminology which applies to horses is particularly important when an individual is going to buy one. They want to know the age of the horse, and it will be explained to them using one of the above terms.

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