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Horse Care Overview
Historically ownership of a horse was akin in prestige to land ownership and considered a sign of wealth. We developed a requisite schedule of equine maintenance similar to how we maintain our machines today. We did this because horses were our cars, pickup trucks and tractors and life without them put our survival in question. Horses were held in high esteem and to this day our machines are measured in horsepower. Now horses have been supplanted as our primary method of conveyance and enterprise and our reliance on them is more emotional. With shifting priorities so shifts the emphasis on the care of our horses. Far too often people buy horses thinking of them as lawn ornaments or worse as cute pets for their children. Uninformed people assume that horses require little care; a little water and some grass and they will be fine. They also tend to underestimate the safety aspects of being around horses - safety for both horse and human. Because of their size, strength, blinding reaction / movement and the lack of easily recognizable emotional cues, horses are often misunderstood by uninformed people. Many untrained horse people as well as people with some experience; don't fully understand horse behavior and communication cues. This lack of proper schooling seldom ends well and as has been the theme of this web site it should be restated that horse ownership is far more than a form of gratification or a resolution to “buy me a horse” demands. We have a responsibility our horses; a responsibility to keep them and those who interact with them safe, to keep them healthy and provide them with adequate activity and stimulation. Those people who do not understand this premise are not and should not be considered equestrians.
This page will focus on the basic ground care aspects of horse care. Those aspects are: