Recent News for Behavior & Handling

Article

Hands Off: New Research on Impact of Human Intervention on Foal Behavior

February 02, 2008

Human interaction with foals at a critical early developmental age appears to be a stressor, whereas positive human interaction with the dam creates a strong model for the observing foal, according to a series of ongoing research projects a... Read More

Article

Becoming a Behaviorist

February 01, 2008


Veterinarians and nonveterinarians can pursue this growing field.

What does it require to pursue a career as an animal behavioral consultant? I've heard the question a number of times.... Read More

Article

Pawing Problem

February 01, 2008

Is there a humane method for breaking my 4-year-old Missouri Fox Trotter mare from pawing? ... Read More

Article

Calming Mother Nature

January 26, 2008

Q: I have a 7-year-old Quarter Horse mare that is quite "the mare." When she is around the geldings (even if they are in different pastures) and in season, she will put her butt up to the fence and wink (the vulvar lips), etc. She... Read More

Article

Crossing Bridges

January 01, 2008

Q: My horse Dakota is not wanting to cross a wood bridge. I walked him across plywood for about three days and had no trouble. Then I rode back to the bridge, and he wouldn't have anything to do with it. Dakota goes crazy, start... Read More

Article

Bad-Asses

January 01, 2008

Q: Some friends and I were discussing the heightened "territorial" aspects of long-ears (mules and donkeys) vs. horses. While I've had horses that were bred and raised out West that were more protective against "predators" such... Read More

Article

Best Breeding Approach

December 01, 2007

Q: For a horse reproduction project in my equine seminar course, I was trying to find video clips of horses breeding. Well, there were many on YouTube, and it took awhile to find the decent ones. But once I found some that were... Read More

Article

War Drum and The Basics

December 01, 2007


A horse that nearly was sent to the killers because of his dangerous habits learned "The Basics" and became a good citizen. 

No one would ever mistake War Drum for a reining horse... Read More

Article

Equestrian Longevity (Book Excerpt)

November 06, 2007

Regardless of your age, it's never too late to start making changes that will impact your life in positive ways. It is never too late to take the first step toward a future filled with horses, happiness, and good health.... Read More

Article

Belching Horse

November 01, 2007

I have a 16-year-old Tennessee Walking Horse who appears to be in perfect condition, except he belches. Often.... Read More

Article

Anabolic Steroid Effects

November 01, 2007

A colleague, Larry Soma, VMD, is an anesthesiologist/pharmacologist who conducts research for the Thoroughbred and Standardbred horse racing commissions in Pennsylvania. Basically, his lab develops and validates testing methods for detection of... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 11: Diagnose the Problem Before Trying to Fix It

November 01, 2007

There are many people looking for answers for their horses' problems. I've been talking to more and more people, and they all think they have different problems, but generally, horse problems boil down to one of four things: ground manners, under... Read More

Article

Thoroughbred Group Offers Tips on Managing, Retraining the Ex-Racehorse

October 16, 2007

The proliferation of racehorse rescues and retirement programs means that thousands of retired Thoroughbred racehorses have been placed into new homes. Ensuring success in what comes next--the transition and retraining of Thoroughbreds by their... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 10: Stand Still

October 01, 2007

Horses often need to be restrained for the veterinarian, farrier, or groom. Foals present particular problems, as do horses that might have been mishandled or who have never been taught to be patient and respect their handlers. Here are a few tips... Read More

Article

Oral Attacks

October 01, 2007

Q: We have an Arabian who, for some reason, has taken to chewing on the horse trailer when we are at a show. He has never done this before. He started gnawing on the fender. We tied him away from the fender, and he started chewing... Read More

Article

Defecation Behavior

October 01, 2007

Q: Why do some horses at our barn poop in the same place every time, then some others seem to go anywhere?


A: We certainly don't know the full answer, but I can tell you what we do... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 9: Sans Twitch

September 01, 2007


Anderson believes twitched horses are dangerous, and twitches aren't needed to tube, clip, trim/shoe, float, deworm, or medicate a horse.
I have no... Read More

Article

Smart Mare, Smarter Vet

September 01, 2007

I am doing some positive reinforcement-based behavior modification for needle shyness in a draft broodmare. This mare is just too big and strong for the old-fashioned restraint methods of working around the problem. She has quite a repertoire of... Read More

Article

Hoofing It with John Henry

August 11, 2007

If you've visited the Kentucky Horse Park sometime in the past few months, you might have noticed a small, dark brown gelding, utterly unremarkable apart from his obvious age, walking with purpose with bright eyes and pricked ears among the sleek... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 8: Teaching the Movements

August 01, 2007


It's important to teach your horse to respect your personal space

(Editor's Note: Last month we discussed the start of using pressure to work on ground... Read More

Article

Bitless: A New Breed of Bridle

August 01, 2007

What is the difference between The Bitless Bridle and other cross-under bitless bridles (CBBs) versus the traditional type of bit-free bridles such as the hackamore? Even more importantly, what are the advantages and disadvantages of the CBBs versus ... Read More

Article

Training Your Horse for Procedures--And Everything Else

July 21, 2007

"It is our responsibility to have the horse so well trained that we can do whatever we need to do without a problem," he stated. "Our horse does not have the right to hurt anyone. It's not because the vet smells funny that a horse hurts him... Read More

Article

Positive Reinforcement

July 01, 2007

Can you explain the concept of positive reinforcement training? What exactly does it mean? I was recently in New Zealand, where I was with a group that seems "converted" to what they call "all-positive training." It sounds like good old-fashioned... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 7: Yielding to Pressure

July 01, 2007

I'm going to start discussing ground manners by talking about a 2-year-old colt from Arkansas who hadn't been handled much. He wasn't mean, he was just uneducated.

I use a rope halter to give me a little more leverage and "bite" if the horse... Read More

Article

Lessons Learned, Again

July 01, 2007

Sometimes we need to hear the same things again in order to learn them. Or maybe it's not the learning, but the applying what we've learned. I had to call Dr. Andy Anderson after reading his column this month and put his lessons into practice at... Read More