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Answering The 7 Most Common Questions About Horses

Horse care raises so many questions, as there are so many things to learn about these incredible creatures. That’s why, in this article we will be answering some of the most commonly asked questions about horses. So, let’s get started and discover some of the facts!

Do Horses Sweat?

horse sweat

When the weather is hot, or they’ve been exercised, horses sweat so that they can stay cool and reduce their temperatures and heart rates back to normal. When a horse is exercising, it can lose up to 4 gallons of sweat every hour. However, horse’s sweat is different to humans in that it contains water and high measures of electrolytes. It is imperative these electrolytes are replaced to avoid your horse foaming at the mouth or fainting.

To avoid excessive sweating in your horse and loss of electrolytes, ensure your horse drinks frequently (around 10 to 20 gallons a day). If hydration is not enough to keep your horse hydrated, you can purchase electrolytes and add them into your horse’s water to ensure they are getting the replenishment they need. For further advice, check out our article on how to keep your horse cool during hot weather.

Do Horses See Colour?

Many people assume that all animals are colour blind, and while this is true for some animals, this is not true for horses. Horses do see in colour; however they may not see as vividly as we humans do. The reason for this is that horses only see colours in two or three visible wavelengths and these are mainly the colours blue and green. Horses cannot see reds and yellows.

To find out more about horse sight and the amazing things your horse’s eyes can do, check out our article on horse’s eyes.

Do Horses Sleep Standing Up?

When you think of a horse, is he standing up? The majority of horses we see are standing up for most of the time and what’s even more amazing is that horses can sleep this way, too. In fact, your horse will sleep standing up most of the time. He is able to do this because his skeletal system can lock into place via a system of tendons and ligaments to stop him from falling over.

However, historically, horses have been prey to other animals (at least those that roamed around in the wild), and therefore, they often don’t like lying down to sleep unless they are in a herd and there is one horse willing to keep watch.

Can Horses Lay Down?

horse

Yes, horses can lie down. Although horses prefer standing up, there will be times when your horse needs to rest his legs by lying down. On sunny days, it is common to see a couple of horses lying down the fields and, because it is such an uncommon site, many people report horses lying down to the police, as they’re worried horses are unwell or dead – even though they’re just resting.

Have Horses Evolved?

Another common question we get asked is, have horses evolved? And the simple answer is; yes. Over 50 million years, horses have evolved into the animals we know and see today. Over the decades, horses have developed large bodies, longer limbs, a reduction in the number of teeth, and a longer and slimmer head. So, have horses evolved? The answer is yes and while we cannot copy out all the information on the evolution of horses in this article, there are plenty of online resources you can check out to find out more information.

Are Horses Omnivores?

Many humans are omnivores. That is, they eat both plants and meat. However, horses are not made to be omnivores. Horses have particularly delicate digestive systems that have been built to process plants – not meat. If horses were to eat meat, a number of toxins would build up in their bodies and this could be potentially fatal. Horses do not and should not eat meat or fish, their diets must be made up of plants, grains, and hay. Check out our article to find out what foods you should feed your horse to keep him healthy.

Can Horses Swim?

Often, in movies, you see horses leaping through streams and rivers and occasionally swimming. But can horses really swim, or is it just a trick of the camera? Yes, horses can swim. However, they are naturally afraid of water because they don’t know what is underneath it. Like many humans, the unknown watery depths of the ocean or a lake can make horses feel vulnerable and even send them into a panic. So, while horses can swim, it is best to introduce them to the water slowly so that they feel safe.

Find Out More on Our Blog

There you have it, our answers to your most commonly asked questions! If you would like to find out more about horses, how to care for them, and what they like and dislike, check out the Prime Stables blog. We have dozens of articles providing all the information you need to keep your horse healthy and happy.

If you would like to ask us any questions or find out more about the services we provide, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our team today. We would be more than happy to help.

Sarah Macey is the owner of Prime Stables, a family-run company who manufacture and install equestrian buildings throughout the UK and parts of Europe. Read more here.