What remains of the primal instincts of our horses?

aAlthough evolving over time, horses have retained much of their original instinct. This instinct allows them to survive without human intervention. Many horses wondered how the horses were in the countryside in Ukraine. It was horses in urban areas such as Kyiv and Kharkov that had problems due to the lack of hay and hay. Assistance from the Netherlands was provided by SOS Support Ukrainian stables. It turns out that the horses living in the countryside of this war zone are less affected. This dramatization once again shows that a noble four-legged friend, who shares his life with people, is helped not only by instinct. After all, people are needed to take care of him.

Vigil animals with instructions for use

We all know that wild horses are grazing animals by nature, taking in small amounts of grass and weeds 20 hours a day in the wild. In the summer they shine with health, and in the winter this is much less. Horses are herd animals by nature and the herd is subject to some form of hierarchy. In the wild, horses do not like to be alone. They also have a kind of vocabulary among themselves, which consists of neighing, grumbling and even screaming. Screaming or screeching usually comes from a mare in heat, rather than the roar of a stallion.

Horses can sleep standing or resting. Then they stand on 3 legs (one hind leg at rest), with the eyes almost closed and the lower lip hanging down. A horse’s ears are highly mobile and indicate his temperament. From vigil (ears-ears) to menacing (flat-back ears). Sometimes questions arise about a horse’s eyes. Because the eyes are on the side of its head, the horse sees almost everything around it. There is only a blind spot directly behind his head and in his field of vision. He just needs to turn his head a bit to block these blind spots.

A horse’s muzzle is particularly sensitive and allows it to safely eat “by touch”. A horse is a flying animal that reaches, includes, and moves very quickly. They also possess a tremendous aromatic instinct. The talk is not that the horse smells stable, but the danger as well.

Top 2 world

Hobby horses experience the best of both worlds because they have the opportunity to enjoy partly freedom and on the other they can rely on the interests of humans. After all, it would be impossible to let the horses live on the heavenly dew in overcrowded Flanders.

A good example is the Exmoor ponies that inhabit the Het Burreken Nature Reserve in Brakel. The ponies do not stay in this lively neighborhood during the harsh winters typical of the Flemish Ardennes and are collected to move to drier places for a few months. Exmoor ponies are part of the seasonal grazing program here, and are read several months a year. This is very different from the life of a horse or pony that is fixed with its owner and has its own terrain. However, it is well suited to the Exmoor pony, the primitive pony of Northwest Europe. By the way, we will talk specifically about this breed in a later article. Our modern breeding stock was selected for characteristics other than those of the “wild” breeds. As a result, they have become more adapted to humans, and as a result they need us more for their well-being and well-being.

Protecting the horse from itself

In fact, this is like trying to walk a tightrope. To overcome them, it is better to tighten the rope regularly. With the exception of a few primitive breeds, our horses have become dependent on humans. The main thing is that they were always people-oriented. He has filled history with horses in the service of man. They fought wars with them, were part of the great booms (for example, the flight from East Prussia from the Trakners, the rescue of the Lippizaners in World War II). The fact that horses love people – or have learned to love them – has played into the hands of many enthusiasts who are indispensable to horses in their lives. Our modern age, with its accompanying limited space, was another revolution for the horse and its owner, because we had to transform the horse as a flying animal, and a vigilant athlete, into a life where we had to protect it from itself! Regular “tug-of-war” was part of this…

Looking at the horse’s soul

There are all kinds of instructions for horse breeding. When we compare the description of a primitive horse’s senses with our domestic horses, these are still there, but subject to the instructions for use we have added to them. We still consider typical traits, but we frame them in our lives.

After all, one horse is not the other. For example, not every horse is served by staying in a “herd”, especially if it is low in the rankings. Some horses really enjoy being alone, as do more and more people. Then they focus on the caregiver with whom they feel safe. The “feel safe” factor in the equine industry is often underestimated. It is very important for a horse to respect us, but it also gives us an impulse to know that we are respected. Sometimes a well-built relationship between a horse and a human can be mentally lifesaving. This fact, too, has held up through the ages and is useful today.

Following the photo of the Exmoor pony in a later article, we’re closing this series with tips on buying and keeping horses.

Patricia Bourguignon

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