Student - June 4, 2009

HORSES LESS STRESSED WHEN BROKEN IN SENSITIVELY

Young horses that are broken in sensitively experience less stress than those raised in the conventional way.

This has emerged from research by the Wageningen Animal Sciences Group and the Utrecht Faculty of Veterinary Science, recently published in the Veterinary Journal. The performance of the horses is not affected.

Two groups of horses were broken in during the research. One group was broken in by a horse trainer who paid attention to the horses’ behaviour and individual development, and made them feel at ease. The other group had a more traditional, performance-oriented trainer. The two groups performed equally well, but the more sensitively trained horses experienced significantly less stress.
A range of unconventional training methods known collectively as natural horsemanship have been gaining ground in the horse world in recent years.

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