Stress and Your Horses Brain: Hello again, I’m back today to tell you how we keep moving forward with horses’ work. It is called emotional stress management.
Before we discuss emotions and stress management for horses, we must first examine how the brain of your horse works. We can then compare ours with it.
First, horses think in different ways than we do. They have a completely different brain, and the way they use it will determine the level of stress you may be experiencing.
If we compare a horse’s brain with ours, then the critical thing to remember is the region of the “frontal lobe.”
Introduction: What is the Brain of a Horse and How it Relates to Horses
The brain’s frontal lobe has a large and developed brain. This is because it is where we can receive all the information daily. It also contributes to our personality and our cognitive and reasoning skills.
Comparing the same areas, we find that the frontal brain area of horses is significantly less developed than ours. Therefore, they cannot solve problems with the same level of reasoning as us.
Most of the horses’ brains that allow for movement and general athleticism are developed similarly to the frontal.
What Types of Information Can Horses Learn
You will likely see your horse run away if you place them in situations where they have to make their own decisions. It would help to consider the extreme stress levels created in such a situation.
You might wonder how it all works together. It is done through a very tiny area of the horse’s brain. The place I’m referring to is the same size as an almond. The “Amygdala,” a part of the brain that is more or less involved in your horse’s emotion management area and is directly connected to his emotional stress, is known as this.
When we look at horse brains, the emotion referred to is fear and rage. This emotion does not include sadness or pride, but it is emotion. The horse’s brain is primitive by nature and intuitive in its response to stimuli; it is here that “fight or flee” is born.
How Do Horses Learn?
This is the primitive portion of the horse’s brain, including the Amygdala. It is the “limbic systems” that cause many unresolved horse problems. These same issues are also likely to be kept.
Their past experiences are here, including those difficult to understand and relate to. They can also be brought up from time to again.
It is vital to note that this is responsible for emotional stress production. This stress produces fear which in turn makes fear. Knowing the truth helps us understand why we have problems and fix them.
How Can We Teach Horses?
Stress levels can vary depending on how your horse develops, the size of their head, and the use they make of the frontal lobe.
The condition of stress can cause serious health problems for your horse if not treated.
As in humans, horses release the stress hormone cortisol when they become stressed. This hormone, also known as the “stress hormone,” is made by your adrenal glands. It settles into the horse’s bloodstream.
Some trainers believe that certain bits used with horses can relieve stress and help the horse cope with difficult situations. The “Sweet Water” bit can be used to achieve this group. A sweet water bit has an untreated center (the piece in your mouth). It has been proven that horses with untreated steel can produce more saliva and be calmer in stressful situations.
Cortisol hormone can be absorbed by many cells in your horse’s body. It is used to control your horse’s metabolism and electrolyte balance and help reduce inflammation.
Cortisol can be very beneficial in maintaining the health and well-being of horses. However, it is also essential for preventing health problems.
Horses with high cortisol levels make their natural defense system weaker, making them more vulnerable to bacterial infections like thrush and abscesses.
We have found that when a significant amount of emotional stress is released, additional problems such as gait issues, lameness, and body soreness can be seen. It is believed that this is the body’s way to allow the immune system to function at an even higher level.
Horses can experience two types of stress: long-term, chronic anxiety, or short-term acute stress.
Knowing the difference will allow you to manage your horse’s stress better.
You will learn the difference between Acute and Chronic stress by looking at the following indicators.
An acute stress indicator
- Tensed Muscles
- The art of sinning
- Carrier with high neck/head
- The wringing of tail
Chronic Stress Indicators
- Stall Walking and Weaving
- An attitude change in your horse’s mind
- Aggression Type Behavior
- Gastric Ulcers
- Teeth grinding
- Skin Infections
- Coat Dull
- Performance decrease
These are only a few indicators of acute or chronic stress. Every horse responds differently to the exact situations.
It is crucial to understand what normal is for horses and what is not.
Conclusion: The Brain of a Horse and How It Plays Into Your Future with Horses
Horses can also hold stress indicators, just as humans do. It is very distressing for horse owners when suddenly their horse has health problems seemingly out of the blue.
We are relatively new to emotional stress management and have seen great results with horses from many situations.
Helping horses, owners, and horses return to their former performance has opened up many old problems that appeared impossible to fix.
Contact us if your horse needs our help.
That’s all we have for today. We are open to your feedback and always available for your comments.