Some of these horse-facts are really interesting and others are need to know horse-info
Knowing some basic horse-facts is a key element in learning how to ride, train or handle horses. It also helps us learn how to communicate with them. In fact its very helpful when trying to communicate with other horse people.
Some of these facts are well known and some are really interesting, even to me! And I have been around horses for a long, long time.
So lets get started....
A breed of horse is a group of animals that share distinctive inherited characteristics. A breed will have a common ancestry and thus a similar genetic makeup.
The modern horse is the descendant of the Condylarthra. Condylarthra were primitive, long extinct mammals, which were the ancestors of all hoofed mammals.
There are over 300 breeds
of horses in the world today.
Horses are considered prey animals.
Horses are animals of habit that have GREAT memories.
Horses are not color blind. They have color dicerning cells in their eyes much like humans. The horse's color spectrum is somewhat smaller.
Horses are very social beings, needing the companionship of another being.
Horses are most vulnerable when they are eating or drinking.
Sports involving horses have been present in our history since the ancient Greek Olympics. These Olympics started around 776 BC.
Equestrian events were first included in the Modern Olympics in 1900.
*Though there is controversy over the exact date horses weredomesticated and when they were first ridden, the best estimateis that horses first were ridden close to 4500 years ago.
A Quarter horse got its name for the fastest horse over a distance of a quarter mile.
You measure a horse's height in hands. Each hand equals four inches.
*Horses that live in an untamed state but have ancestors who have been domesticated are not true "wild" horses; they are feral horses.
The equine eye
is the largest of any land mammal.
Unlike humans, horses also have a third eyelid.
*The average lifespan of a horse is between 25 and 30 years.
Like most animals of prey, the horse's eyes are set on the sides of its head, allowing it close to a 350 degree range of monocular vision.
Horses are unable to regurgitate food, except from the esophagus.
Thus, if they overeat or eat something poisonous, vomiting is not an option.
*Colic is a leading cause of death in horses.
Horses have a relatively small stomach for their size, which limits the amount of feed
that can be taken in at one time.
A newborn foal can stand up in an hour after it is born.
Horses are non-ruminant herbivores of a type known as a "hind-gut fermentor." This means that horses have only one stomach, as do humans.
The esophagus is the area of the digestive tract where horsesmay suffer from choke.
Horses are able to sleep both standing up and laying down.
*Mares carry their young for approximately 11 months..
Horses can consume approximately 2% to 2.5% of their body weight in dry feed each day. Therefore, a 1,000 lb adult horse could eat up to 25 pounds of food..
Horses' teeth are often used to estimate the animal's age.
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