behavior


Horses are animals who evolved in open grasslands. They’re designed to be awake and graze most of the day and night. Because of this they have excellent vision in scotopic (low-light) conditions. It’s hard for us to imagine because we have opposite needs – to see with acuity and color […]

In Light and Dark: Your Horse’s Vision


It started snowing on Sunday night and didn’t stop until late Tuesday afternoon. On Monday I drove to the barn. I’ve got a pickup truck with 4-wheel drive, but still had to be extra-cautious. Snow was coming down and the roads were slippery. But, when I know that the horses […]

Snow Days Activities


We’ve had a stretch of truly miserable weather. It rained on and on. Sometimes there was a fine mist enveloping the world. Sometimes a cold driving downpour soaked everything it pelted. In the morning there was a dusting of snow, until that turned into more rain. It seemed like it […]

Rain, Shelter, Horses



On Sunday, after riding the jumper course (which for us was a series of poles on the ground) in the indoor arena at Coyote Spring Farm, Tonka and I went for a hack around the property. We were approached by a woman on her nice young grey mare. She said […]

Making It Look Easy


When riding, our view is between the horse’s ears, which makes us quite aware of their sense of hearing.   I’d always assumed that horses have far superior hearing to humans. Certainly, horses have better hearing than me! For most of my riding life, I’ve had a hearing loss (I […]

Your Horse’s Hearing


Horses evolved to live in wide-open, mostly monotone landscapes. Unlike humans, they didn’t need color to determine what was ripe and edible. Their food was at their hooves, and they used their whiskers to feel what was good to eat. What they did need to see were predators, which had […]

Horse Color Vision



It’s still raining. The grass paddocks are a soggy mess and the horses are being kept in. Tonka has an in/out stall, which means he isn’t confined to his box, but also has access to an attached dirt area the size of two more stalls. At least he gets fresh […]

Rainy Day Play


When it comes to taking medication, Tonka is cooperative. It’s no problem giving him injections, or squirting paste wormer into his mouth. But, these are behaviors that have to be maintained. A couple of months ago, for the move to a new barn, Tonka was on a one-week course of […]

Training For Oral Med Dosing


I’ve been looking into horses’ eyes lately. Literally and figuratively. In November, l’ll be talking at Equine Affaire about the horse’s senses, how their view of the world impacts how they behave, and how we can use that knowledge to interact with them with understanding and effectiveness. Sight is the […]

Your Horse’s Vision