Coping styles and signs of stress can be subtle, making it harder to spot an anxious equine. Horses are not ‘naughty’ – their behaviour is their way of trying to tell you that something’s wrong. Your horse’s mental wellbeing is just as important as their physical health - check out our guides on the various different behaviours exhibited by horses and the changes you can make to contribute positively towards their physical and mental needs.
Changing routine and diet
Horses thrive off a regular and consistent routine and any change to your horse’s management needs to be made gradually to ensure the health of your horse is not compromised.
Enrichment creates a greater variety and choice and positively contributes towards a horse’s physical and mental needs, for example, by providing the opportunity for natural foraging behaviour when a horse is stabled.
Horses are kept stabled for many reasons, but one of the disadvantages is that the horse is kept in a confined space with restrictions on movement, feeding and interaction with other horses. So what more can we do to provide for our horses if they need to be stabled?
Stereotypical behaviours (stereotypies) are repetitive behaviours with no obvious goal or function. They are rarely seen in animals in the wild and are most commonly found in domesticated animals and animals kept in captivity.