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Maggie May 12-27-2010 04:58 PM

Agressive biting
We got a new horse in November. We already had a 25 year old mare at home. This new horse is a 6 year old gelding haflinger. He has always been pretty pushy towards our mare. A couple weeks ago we noticed bite marks on our mare's blanket and shrugged it off because we figured he was just trying to groom her. Today I noticed that our mare has scabs all over her neck. They seem to be in a pattern, almost like two top front teeth and then a gap and two more front teeth. But all over one side of her neck. Is this a behavioral issue that I should be concerned about? If so, do you have any solutions.

LoverofHorses 12-27-2010 05:55 PM

Are you totally sure their bite marks? One of our horses had had many bite looking injuries, but it turned out to be a loose board on the hay feeder.

Maggie May 12-27-2010 10:26 PM

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lilruffian 12-27-2010 10:31 PM

The only real way to solve a problem like that would be to seperate the two. I dont believe there is any way to train a horse from biting his pasture mates.
His agression may be caused due to pent up energy, which can be fixed by removing any high-energy feeds from his diet & giving him more exercise.

AlexS 12-27-2010 11:36 PM

I'd say if it is just scabs it is not a big deal, if it were massive open sores I would be more worried.

TheLastUnicorn 12-28-2010 12:22 PM

Well... it would depend, for me, if the older horse seems to be upset, or isn't getting enough feed, or just seems to getting "depressed" - I'd remove the gelding.

Otherwise... usually horses will sort out horse politics on their own, given time. To make sure everyone is safe, make sure there is enough space for the horses to get out of each other's way, safe fencing, and no "junk" in the field for them to get hurt on - then monitor the situation. New horses will often go through a phase where they either get picked on by the established horse... or they do the bullying, it seems (in my experience) to work itself out eventually.

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