The Horse's Birthday - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 8 Old 03-19-2011, 01:24 AM Thread Starter
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The Horse's Birthday

Like most horse lovers, I never forget that the horse's birthday is on the 1st of August every year. However, I've been wondering, how did the horse's birthday come to be on the 1st of August and how did there get to be a single day that all horses share as their birthday?
Personally, I believe that when horses and horse racing were very big industries (not saying that they aren't now), horse owners found that there were so many horses and that it was hard to keep track of their exact ages and so decided to create one special day that people would celebrate as the horse's birthday.
If anyone has any theories or done any good research as to how the horse's birthday began, I'd love to know.
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post #2 of 8 Old 03-19-2011, 11:50 AM
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I have never heard that the horse's birthday is August 1st? Do you have some sort of info about it? My horse's birthday was yesterday.

Racehorses' "birthdays" are January 1st. If they turn an age after Jan 1st in the year, they are considered to be that age on January 1st.

ETA: just googled it. In the Southern hemisphere, August 1 is used for racehorses.

Last edited by Carleen; 03-19-2011 at 11:52 AM.
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post #3 of 8 Old 03-19-2011, 12:00 PM
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Interesting... my first time hearing that.

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post #4 of 8 Old 03-19-2011, 12:05 PM
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I always heard January 1st, but I wondered/guessed the same thing.

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post #5 of 8 Old 03-19-2011, 04:35 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry for being unclear. I live in Australia where the horse's birthday is on the 1st of August. Is it 1st of January in America?
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post #6 of 8 Old 03-19-2011, 05:24 PM
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Yeah, in the US it's the first of January. I always assumed it was because the first day of the year, but I don't really know.
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post #7 of 8 Old 03-20-2011, 01:42 AM
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I am fairly certain the reason all horses have one 'birthday' is to even out competition to a point. In America, it's January 1st and for the Triple Crown races, horses have to be 3. Most breeders try to breed for as early in the year as possible (usually using hormones to trick mares into thinking they're in heat so they can be bred), so that the horse is actually very close to what the rules say its age is.

It wouldn't be entirely fair to have a horse born in February vs a horse born in August who would both be considered 3 on the same day. The August foal won't have nearly as much experience because they had to wait 7 or 8 months AFTER the February foal has been started on.

It's probably different in Australia because your seasons are backwards from ours, so by putting it in August, the season would probably be the same as if it were January here.

However, that's usually only for competition, particularly racing. I wouldn't celebrate my mare's birthday on January 1st because her's is June 26th.
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post #8 of 8 Old 03-30-2011, 01:27 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the great info Poseidon. After hearing that I am beginning to follow the idea of a single day for race horses' birthdays.
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