…has got to be a cribbing horse.
You walk into the barn, and you’re greeted by the comforting sweet smell of hay and the warmth of the horses’ bodies all tucked in their stalls… the quiet calm of happy ponies munching their dinners… and then…
I wish I could describe it for you… ugh!
Cribbing, wood chewing, or wind sucking, although different practices all lead to one place – the complete annoyance of the barn manager and detriment to the horses anatomy. All wood within the horses reach gets worn down and destroyed from them biting or chewing on it. Horses teeth are destroyed, and wind sucking can cause huge issues like colic. In a word? It’s just all around BAD.
And the worst part about it? It’s virtually impossible to cure. When horses crib, it releases a surge of endorphins so powerful it becomes as important to them as eating… sometimes even more important.
But horses that crib and/or have other stable vices aren’t BAD horses! They may just have some anxiety or boredom issues and need a little more love and “creative parenting” than the next guy.
Examples of “creative parenting”
- as much turn-out time and free grazing as possible (reduces anxiety and boredom for them to be in their natural habitat)
- a supplement like “chew-stop” put on wood in their stalls (in my experience, doesn’t really work… but hey – it’s worth a try!)
- boredom-breaking toys (usually don’t work either! lol!)
- electric wire on top rail of pasture fence (getting a little more serious… they won’t crib on THAT!)
- if all else fails: cribbing collar; a humane option
A cribbing collar is a leather strap which causes a horse to feel uncomfortable pressure on their neck ONLY when they try to crib.
Weaver’s Miracle Collar is the best cribbing strap I have had experience with. It has saved my barn… and my sanity :)
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