This Week in Horse Health News Presented by Absorbine

Mare. Gelding. Mare. Gelding. Do you have a preference? Creative Commons Photo. Mare. Gelding. Mare. Gelding. Do you have a preference? Creative Commons Photo.

Geldings. Mares. Geldings. Mares. The age old debate — which makes for the better equine partner? Every rider most likely has their own opinion on this hot topic. And some have (very) strong opinions on this particular manner. On a fundamental level, the decision to ride, lease or purchase a mare or gelding is really something that I consider to be a personal preference.

You can probably tell from my own gang of geldings where my personal preference falls. Yes, I love my geldings; they are each special horses with their own personalities. I’ve connected with them and have formed a unique partnership with each of them. And even considering all of the good (and bad) qualities that comes with each, I wouldn’t trade them away for another horse.

Even with my preference though, I feel really strongly that a good horse is a good horse. Will I bring home a mare in the future? That’s certainly possible and something that I would not rule out. While mares and geldings each have their own stereotypes to contend with, I think it is important to remember that horses are individuals — and, like people, they all have their own personalities.

The Horse recently posted a very interesting commentary article, written by Nancy Diehl, VMD, MS, regarding the differences in behaviors exhibited by the two genders. You can check it out here.

And then make sure to check out the other headlines from this week in Horse Health News, Presented by Absorbine:

Soak Away Hay’s Hidden Dangers: Investing in high quality hay is important for your horse’s diet. So why after spending the time (and money) to bring home quality hay to fill your barn would you consider soaking it before feeding it to your horse? Learn about what your hay is really made of, the benefits of soaking and step-by-step instructions for soaking here. [The Horse]

Five Step Mud Removal: Yep, it’s that time of the year again. Spring brings on yet another mud season around the paddocks and pastures. Keeping your horse clean can be frustrating and seems like a losing battle at times. So make sure to brush up on these five simple steps for mud removal. [Equus Magazine]

Studying Why Horses Lie Down: How much time do horses actually need to spending lying down in order to be comfortable? A team of researchers in Ontario is currently testing out a device to measure the amount of time a horse spends lying down, which should also be able to help make observations about equine welfare. [The Horse]

Radical Weaning Approach Better for Foals: What kind of impact does weaning have on a foal long term? And does the method of weaning really make a significant difference in the long run? A team of researchers in Czechoslovakia have compared two methods of weaning foals and suggest that separating foals and immediately relocating them to a rearing farm may be better for a horse long term. [Horsetalk]