Should they be seperated?

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kylie
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Should they be seperated?

Postby kylie » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:34 pm

My 15.2 Irish draft has always been low in the pecking order but recently he seems to be being bitten and bullied by his bigger, younger, field mate more than ever. I've witnessed the odd bite and buck/kick in his direction for no apparent reason in the past but now he comes in from the field with his rug ripped, his neck cover ripped, he even came in the other day with his head collar broken! I've not seen this damage being done though so don't know for sure its the other horse. But the last thing I want is for him to receive a kick and be lame or seriously injured. Should they be separated?

High Hopes
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Re: Should they be seperated?

Postby High Hopes » Thu Jan 14, 2010 4:13 pm

Hello, Does your paddock set up allow you to put an electric fence upbetween the two horses? Being able to see each other (for company) but putting enough distance between them to deter any bullying. I looked after a hunter who was off practically all season due to a bad kick to the hock, you are wise to want to avoid injury.

pukkapony
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Re: Should they be seperated?

Postby pukkapony » Fri Jan 15, 2010 1:03 pm

Maybe you could try to review your turnout buddies and match your horse with another less intimidating/less aggressive horse maybe even a mare? Mare/geding pairs work very well 95% of the time.

Its horrible when horses bully/get bullied, I have a 15.1 WBx that will pick on any horse/pony that is smaller than him or that even shows an interest in him! We were very lucky in the fact that he has fallen in love with a little 13.2 mare of mine (that breaks all his social rules) but he has since become even more aggressive towards other horses that try to chat up his girlfriend over the fence!

kylie
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Re: Should they be seperated?

Postby kylie » Fri Jan 15, 2010 3:43 pm

There is only the one other horse, "the bully", and my shetland, who gets on fine with my Irish gelding. I can't really divide the field with electric fence as then only one horse has access to shelter.

I was thinking of maybe switching to night turnout, as the other horse is always out in the day and in at night, especially as we come (hopefully!) into the spring and the nights get warmer.

Does anyone have any views on night turnout vs day turnout?

Would night turnout also help keep his weight down in the summer? He tends to put on a bit of weight during the summer months, even with a grazing muzzle.

hessy
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Re: Should they be seperated?

Postby hessy » Fri Jan 15, 2010 4:17 pm

Night turnout could work. He would probably be warmer in general as he will be able to run about in the colder nights vs the warmer days and he wouldnt need as much rugs in the stable during the day either. Also, he will have dried out by the time you go to ride in the evening, making grooming easier and then turning him out after exercise will be good for his muscles. :D

I think at night the grass doesnt grow as much - its the sunlight etc that makes the sugars higher etc.

pukkapony
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Re: Should they be seperated?

Postby pukkapony » Mon Jan 18, 2010 12:17 pm

Yes, night turnout definately seems to be the best option for your horse - with all the above mentioned!

You could even keep the shetland on 24/7 turnout, it wouldnt do him any harm as shettys are hardly little things and that way all horses concerned have a companion and no-one gets bullied.

Your horse may get a bit bored however the first few days/week or so of being indoors in the day so I would advise you invest in some stable entertainment (toys/licks etc).

If your horse will be shut away from contact durin the day you could even try leaving a small radio on quietly as I found (from experience) that can help comfort a bored lonely horse.

hessy
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Re: Should they be seperated?

Postby hessy » Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:08 pm

Only thing i would say though about having the shetland out all the time is watching his weight as he could easily expletive up like a balloon lol!

Hopefully he would be ok standing in during the day especially if he is getting fed regularly. He would only be getting one net to last him the night whereas in the day you might feed him more so it would keep him occupied. However, if he is prone to gaining weight this may be really difficult to manage because you might feel sorry for him standing in looking out at you looking fed etc whereas at night youre sleeping. So you are going to have to have strong willpower if youre around the yard in the day! lol! :D

A radio is a good idea - something to listen to whilst mucking out too!

Just thinking here but night turnout is maybe better for them than day turnout! for all the reasons i mentioned above and also theyre able to eat a little all the 24 hours because they can be fed wee bits during the day and nibbling away at night. wow.. interesting. cant believe i never thought about all that before lol!


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