Equine problems and stable behaviour
My horse paw’s the floor!
Once you become aware that a horse constantly paws the floor, it can be very annoying which will not only annoy you but also others on the yard as the noise level rises.
This behaviour will happen in the stable, and when you tie him up, on the yard.
Why does my horse paw at the floor?
Some horses paw the floor in excitement, as soon as the owner arrives.
A horse can be seen displaying this behaviour when waiting for food, hay or to be turned out.
Horses don’t understand the meaning of the word “wait”, they get frustrated and will display this pawing behaviour.
It could be that your horse is smart and intelligent, he has learnt your daily routine – He paws the ground for you to get a move on!
He’s telling you “hurry up”.
Pawing the floor creates noise and can also cause uneven hoof and shoe ware on the favoured leg.
Unfortunately there is no way of preventing the horse from pawing.
Although you can reduce the noise level, protect hoof, and shoe wear by placing thick, solid rubber matting over the concrete area by the stable door, where the pawing takes place.
Horses that spend long periods of time in a stable without fibre, can get stressed and bored.
They develop habits to amuse themselves, to pass time away.
Therefore, my guess is, this probably relates to boredom and has turned into a habit.
Horses enjoy the company of others. When grazing in the field, they eat small amounts of food over 24 hours, so they are trickle feeders.
When stabled and the hay net is empty, the horse will look for something to do, to occupy himself.
It’s not uncommon for another horse to copy this behaviour, if he is stabled close by.
There is also a danger that he could end up,
swallowing wood, which could get lodged in his throat.
For more information on equine problems and stable stimulation, click bored horse.
How can I prevent my horse from biting the wood?
If possible, cover all wooden surfaces that are assessable to the horse with metal sheeting.
The other option is to apply a coat of Jays Fluid to the woodwork (nasty bitter taste).
If the horse were biting the wooden fencing in the field, you would need to run a line of electric fencing to the inside of the wooden fencing to prevent the horse doing further damage to the field boundaries.
If you have to stable the horse for long periods, you need to find ways to occupy him and make his hay last longer.
If I were in this situation, I would be using very small holed hay nets.
If you don’t have one, then make up the hay net and put it into another one.
This way, it should take the horse longer to eat it.
Most horses are contented, but I have to say that some get frustrated when you double net the hay.
Hang up a salt like and put a very large lick block in the stable.
When there is nothing else to do, he will spend time licking the minerals.
You could also hang a play ball in front of his stable door.
This is a ball with a handle, so you can tie it up. My horse loves this and has loads of fun, nudging it when he puts his head over the stable door.
Equine problems > > Home
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Kicking and banging the stable door
Biting and ripping rugs