Muscles are one of the most important components in the equine body. Without them, the horse would be unable to walk, chew food, digest it, or even swish his tail. Muscles comprise the largest tissue mass in the horse’s body.

A horse’s conformation and muscle types can determine how well he can perform certain tasks, but all horses are subject to muscle injury and disease.

Equine muscles are adaptable. Through exercise and conditioning, they can be prepared for diverse activities so that they function efficiently and stave off fatigue in order to avoid injury.

In part eight of the anatomy and physiology series, we’ll take a look at how equine muscles function and are nourished, as well as examine some of the problems that have surfaced, such as hyperkalemic periodic paralysis and tying-up.