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Taking Care of the Horse


A Horse is Not a Dog or a Cat...

Horses are different from dogs, cats and even people--because they are a prey species, instead of predators, all of their instincts tell them to react differently than we do. And because of that, taking care of them is highly specialized, and different from the care of other companion animals. In this course, you will learn the basics of horse illness and injury and how to treat both, the accidents that may occur to your horse, and all about equine reproduction, and other regular care. Dogs and cats do not have hooves, cannot run at 60 miles per hour, and cannot die from a case of colic which any human baby lives through on a weekly basis. Learn how to care for your horse, or how to care for horses that you work with, so that your relationship with these most elegant of animals will be even more fulfilling, and will last a lifetime.

Once you have a basic understanding of the horse, you can progress to more complicated care, on both a daily basis, and in unusual and dangerous situations, such as:

  • What does it mean for a horse to be cast in a stall? How can you deal with this situation which is dangerous to both the horse and you?
  • What are the likeliest body areas of the horse to become cut, and how do you deal with superficial and deep cuts?
  • Why do horses get hematomas, and how do you cure them?
  • How can you know if you horse has a broken bone?
  • What if one horse kicks another? How can you safely isolate the injured horse, and tend to its injuries?
  • Because trailering a horse is among the most dangerous activities you can take part in, how can you insure the horse's safety and your own when loading and unloading a horse from a trailer? And how can you treat injuries suffered by the horse when in a trailer?
  • How and why should you make the decision to euthanize an injured horse?
  • How can you safely catch a reluctant horse that you need to work on?
  • Why should you always try to have a buddy helping you?
  • How can you predict and forestall the problems that are likely to occur?
  • Why should you always work with a horse from the side?
  • How can you get a reluctant horse to load onto a trailer?
  • How can you get a horse that is a weaver or stall walker to relax in the barn?
  • How can you safely wean a foal from a mare's side without injury to either?
  • What are the ways you can safely separate and then re-integrate paddock mates in a pasture?
  • How does the mare's estrus cycle function?
  • What is teasing, and what does it tell you about the mare's readiness to be bred?
  • What are the various ways in which mares may be bred? What is the difference between breeding with frozen semen, pasture breeding, and live cover at a stallion farm?
  • What are the most common difficulties that face equine pregnancies, and what may be done to prevent and/or treat them?
  • What must be done if a mare conceives twins?
  • What drugs may be used to make a mare ovulate?
  • How does Regumate work?
  • What are the signs that a mare is about to foal?
  • How can you insure a foal's health through passive transfer of immunity?
  • What happens during the course of delivery? What is a normal delivery? What can go wrong, and how do you handle it?
  • What must be done post-foaling to insure that both mare and foal are healthy?
  • How do you achieve a healthy, glowing, shiny coat? How do you combine elements of nutrition, de-worming and grooming skills in this endeavor?
  • What are the basic tools you will need to adequately groom your horse?
  • How long should you groom your horse for daily? What basic techniques do you need to know?
  • What needs to be done to a horse going to a show or sale?
  • How do you care for the hooves of a horse, so that they look great and are healthy?
  • What parts of a show or sale horse should you clipper, and what should you never touch with a clipper?
  • When do you blanket your horse?
  • How do you safely bathe a horse?
  • What specialized techniques will give your horse a beautiful mane, tail and bridle path?
  • What kinds of positions are available for you at horse farms?
  • Do you want to work with stallions? With mares? With foals? With yearlings? What kind of pay and hours can you expect?
  • Aside from becoming a veterinarian, what types of work might you find in medical-related fields? Where are the best veterinary hospitals located?
  • What does horse training entail, and how do you become expert at it? What types of training exist?
  • If you want to work in horse sales, what does this work entail? What must you know about conformation, pedigrees, and marketplaces? How important are people skills along with your horse skills in sales-related jobs?