Horse has started head bobbing - why???

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Horse has started head bobbing - why???

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  • 1 Post By waresbear
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    03-11-2012, 03:23 PM
Horse has started head bobbing - why???

Here is the situation - 30 year old NSH mare diagnosed with mild cushings about 4 months ago and is currently on Pergolide. She has a stall with access to paddock and 1-2 acres of pasture. About 5-6 months ago her barn buddy left and she was alone for about a month then 2 new horses came to her barn (3 horses total). She shares the barn with these horses but she has her own pasture area. The head bobbing began about 2-3 weeks ago and she really bobs!

Any ideas as to why this has started? Any ideas how to stop it? Will the other horses learn this behavior?
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    03-11-2012, 03:25 PM
Does she just do this in her stall or paddock or when she is out on pasture? Does she do this when she walks or trots (that is a sign of possible lameness) or when she is standing around (that is a boredom vice)?
    03-11-2012, 03:27 PM
Sounds like lameness?
    03-11-2012, 03:29 PM
She does this in her stall when she is just standing there. It is really weird, she just bobs her head up & down, up & down, up & down like she if frantically nodding. She didn't do this before so its got us scratching our heads.
    03-11-2012, 03:31 PM
Sounds like a boredom vice. When she started missing her buddy, she did this manuever & it released some endorphins which made her feel good, akin to weaving. Now she's addicted. More time out on pasture & more work takes her mind off her bobbing addiction.
hillside farm likes this.
    03-11-2012, 03:38 PM
The thing is that her buddy left about 6 months ago and this just started 2-3 weeks ago. She is fully retired and no longer ridden and she has access to pasture all day and a paddock 24/7. Could it be a delayed response?

It could be that she has done it without people around and we haven't noticed it until lately. Would Cushings cause an increase in appetite? Maybe she is begging for more hay? I don't know though because she is pretty obsessive about it.
    03-11-2012, 03:41 PM
Possibly a delayed reaction, who know why horses do things like that, could be a combination of all the factors. I do not know much about cushings but what I have read & heard (mostly on here), it does cause more nutritional needs. Maybe try giving her more hay & see what happens?
hillside farm likes this.
    03-11-2012, 06:18 PM
Sorry I misunderstood you earlier and thought you meant she was head bobbing when in her pasture and on the move.

In the stall, then its boedom and stress. Google weaving and you'll turn up information about it

Originally Posted by newhorsemom    
She does this in her stall when she is just standing there. It is really weird, she just bobs her head up & down, up & down, up & down like she if frantically nodding. She didn't do this before so its got us scratching our heads.
hillside farm likes this.
    03-11-2012, 06:30 PM

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