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Questions About Horses
 By Winniefield Park   •   18th Feb 2019   •   550 views   •   0 comments


I never seem to run out of questions about horses. This both excites me and intimidates me. Thereís always something to learn, but I just canít learn fast enough.

Why Arenít Horses Kosher?
Unlike most government recommendations that divide food into five groups, Kosher dietary law divides foods into three groups: meat, dairy and pareve. Of the meats, the flesh of fowls except for predator and scavenger birds, domestic cattle, sheep, and goats and wild animals such as bison and deer are kosher. Four-legged animals must be cloven hoofed and chew their cuds. So of course, horses do neither. Neither would the milk of a horse be kosher since any dairy product such as milk, yogurt or cheese must come from a kosher animal.

Why are Wild Horses Actually Extinct?
In the wild, horses are extinct. It was thought that the Przewalski's Horse represented the last true wild horses. But recent research has proven that these horses are actually feral descendants of domesticated horses. There are plenty of horses around though. Estimates suggest that there are over 60 million horses worldwide. But, if humans stopped breeding horses, there would only be feral horses left.

How Can Horses Wear Tight Girths and Still Breathe?
Weíve all been told not to girth or cinch our horses up so tight we make link sausages out of them. But, by doing so, we may be making them uncomfortable, but we probably arenít impairing their breathing very much. The first ten ribs in a horse's rib cage are largely immovable. So, they donít expand and contract with the horseís breathing. If you think your horse holds its breath when you girth up thatís not quite true. Horses canít really hold their breath for very long. They are more likely tensing their abdominal muscles, and when they relax, the girth becomes looser.

Why Do Ponies Need To Eat So Little?
Itís really easy to over feed a pony. Most ponies donít need very much food at all. Most pony breeds developed where the grazing included very coarse, low nutrient, and space foodstuff. So after generations of natural selections where only the hardiest and thriftiest survived. Nature developed an animal that was very efficient at extracting nutrition from very poor and spare food. Now with lots of fodder and grain available, itís almost difficult not to feed them too much and cause obesity related health problems.

Why Do Horses Have An Appendix?
Many of us have an appendix. Thereís still some mystery surrounding its function, although recent studies suggest it has something to do with the immune system. Not so with the horse though. The appendix, called a cecum in the horse is an important part of the digestive system. The food a horse eats sits in the cecum for several hours while good bacteria help break it down before it heads to the colon. So its role is extracting nutrients from fodder.

Why Wonít Some Horses Get On A Trailer?
Horses feel most secure in wide open spaces where they can see all around. All horses descended from animals that depended on quick reflexes, speed and seeing a predator before it got close enough to eat them. So getting on a small dark restrictive trailer is exactly opposite of where it feels most safe. If the horse has had a few bad rides when it was frightened and uncomfortable it can make things much worse. Some horses will continue to load on a trailer because they are very trusting, but if that trust is lost, or never developed, youíll have a horse that wonít set foot in a trailer no matter what you do.

Can Horses Smell Fear?
A horseís sense of smell is much better than ours. So they can smell and interpret body odor much better than we can. So yes, they can sense our emotions from not only our body language, the way we speak and from how we smell.

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