Do horses NEED to be pastured??? - Page 7
   

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Do horses NEED to be pastured???

This is a discussion on Do horses NEED to be pastured??? within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        08-23-2013, 01:07 PM
      #61
    Showing
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Horse racer    
    So, I'm buying a horse that I've worked with for a while now and she's an awesome horse. Everything I look for in a horse and just amazing. I've developed a great relationship with her and stuff. The deal I have with the guy is that I buy the horse and he'll keep it at his barn and feed it for me in exchange I muck out the stalls. Which is a great deal! But....he doesn't pasture his horses. He doesn't have pasture land but he does have good sized paddocks for each horse and he feeds his horses well and they look well nourished and fine. This horse has never been pastured in the 5 years that they've had it and the horse is 8. So is not pastuing bad? I'm just wondering and maybe a little concerned...
    No horses do not always have to be pastured. A very large portion of show horses are never pastured and are stalled over night with paddocks during the day. As long as the horses have a good size paddock OR are at least thrown in the arena for a good run and ridden regularly, it is fine for some horses to not be pastured.

    That decision is very specific to what the horse's job is throughout its life.
         
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        08-23-2013, 01:43 PM
      #62
    Super Moderator
    I think that bsms's horses , by being kept together in a "herd" to meander that corral are far happier than any horse that is kept in a large paddock, or even a pasture all by itself. I realize this was not part of the original discussion, but it really is an important factor in a horse's "happiness". His horses may not be able to gamble across green pastures, but they can mutually groom and intereact and meander across the corral, and that peaceful interaction of the small herd is FAR more calming to them than being allowed to roam more.

    Even horses that can only interact across a fence do not have the same mental stimulus as those that literally interact next to and with each other as a herd. But, I know that is not always possible . Just wanted to point out that I am pretty sure that bsms's horses are examples of sane and satisfied domestic horses.
    Hidalgo13, bsms, PunksTank and 1 others like this.
         
        08-23-2013, 02:10 PM
      #63
    Super Moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sahara    
    And my point is if you do not have adequate space to keep a horse maybe you should get a hamster. In my personal experience, keeping a horse in an 80 ft corral is borderline 'negligent and ignorant'. Lets agree to disagree.
    Posted via Mobile Device
    This was totally uncalled for and I am quite surprised you could make such a statement.

    I know MANY horses who are stalled with daily turnout, who rarely get to see a real pasture, who are healthy and happy. It is not that common to see these horses crib. The worst cribbers I have seen are ones in pastures, who stand at a fence post and crib all day long.

    Many areas of the country, either due to climate or space restrictions, simply do not have pasture. This means that the horse owner may have to make some concessions to make up for it, but these horses are not automatically neglected or abused.
         
        08-23-2013, 02:47 PM
      #64
    Foal
    Years ago I had an aged mare. I asked my vet what I should be doing for her, besides the obvious, to keep her in optimum health. He replied, "The best thing you can do for any horse, regardless of age, is to keep it moving".

    Milling around in a corral or small paddock is "moving" in my book.
    Allison Finch likes this.
         
        08-23-2013, 10:08 PM
      #65
    Foal
    I didn't read all the posts but my opinion is that your horse will be perfectly fine. He was raised that way and as long as he gets regular exercise and is healthy I don't see a problem. I personally have my horses on pasture but I know a lot of people who do keep their horses in stalls or have very small paddocks. But yet their horses are happy! Every time I've tried to keep my barrel horse in a stall or small space he tries to colic, because he wasn't raised that way. But your horse is used to it and will be fine. And about cribbing, not just horses kept in stalls crib. I had used to have a mare that stayed in pasture and she cribbed a lot!
         
        08-23-2013, 11:42 PM
      #66
    Green Broke
    If pasture were a requirement, most horse owners in Arizona would not have horses. Most horses in Arizona are kept in pens. Is it ideal, no. But it is a desert for gosh sakes.

    My guys live in pens and don't have pasture. And if they did, it would be grazed down in nothing flat and there wouldn't be a blade of grass on it. I have a friend with a huge "pasture" (I'm guessing close to 20 acres) and is nothing but dirt and weeds. I do admire the space though. I wish my guys had 20 acres of dirt and weeds!

    And I live in northern Arizona, where it actually rains once in a while. In the Phoenix or Tucson area, only the wealthiest people have grass because it has to be irrigated and planted and cared for.
    Hidalgo13 and jaydee like this.
         
        08-24-2013, 12:11 AM
      #67
    Green Broke
    Coming from experience at both extremes and a little bit in between, this is what I have noticed:

    On a large scale, a large amount of horses turned out together on a huge amount of acreage. Very happy.

    Horses in a training/showing barn that are stalled, no turn out but ridden/trained 5-6 days a week. Very happy.

    The only time that I have witnessed unhappy horses that come up with stall vices is when there is a lack of food, lack of exercise, mental stimulation or all the above.
         
        08-24-2013, 05:08 AM
      #68
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by trailhorserider    
    If pasture were a requirement, most horse owners in Arizona would not have horses. Most horses in Arizona are kept in pens. Is it ideal, no. But it is a desert for gosh sakes.

    My guys live in pens and don't have pasture. And if they did, it would be grazed down in nothing flat and there wouldn't be a blade of grass on it. I have a friend with a huge "pasture" (I'm guessing close to 20 acres) and is nothing but dirt and weeds. I do admire the space though. I wish my guys had 20 acres of dirt and weeds!

    And I live in northern Arizona, where it actually rains once in a while. In the Phoenix or Tucson area, only the wealthiest people have grass because it has to be irrigated and planted and cared for.
    This is a geographical difference in the U.S. That many people are not familiar with. Here in NC where the weather can be almost tropical (hot, wet, humid) 5 acres of pasture can keep a number of horses busy most of the non winter months if you control the weeds. When we lived in TX, you would probably need at least 10x that much space to provide the same forage.
         
        08-24-2013, 08:17 PM
      #69
    Weanling
    Thanks guys, makes me feel a little more at ease. I like the idea of pasturing and when I get my own place I'll pasture my horses. But I think Addy will be fine, like I said I don't see any effects of not being pastured except being energetic sometimes. Thanks for all your input!
         
        08-25-2013, 05:49 PM
      #70
    Yearling
    I think horses should be pastured. I've noticed a huge difference in my own horse's happiness when I moved them to an area with pasture. Even if all they get is a large dirt lot, it is better than a stall.

    I work for a barn that keeps all their horses stalled (10 horses). Almost every horse on the property exhibits stereotypical behavior. Some crib, some pace, some stand in the corner and just look depressed, some kick the walls constantly. Most of them have issues with colic. At least 3 of them have swollen legs from stocking up or kicking the walls.

    A horse was designed to move- it keeps their feet healthy, their GI tract healthy, and keeps their mind stimulated.

    I would rather sell my horses than keep them stalled. If you locked a child in it's room all it's life it would be considered child abuse. I consider stalling abuse unless that horse is out working for 3 hours a day or doing something physically exhausting.

    Growing up I didn't know better, as that was how horses were kept. Now I do. Unless there is severe weather or the horse has a bad injury, or you are at a horse show/camping trip, I do not believe in stalling.
         

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