Certain situations can trigger anxiety such as being left on their own in the yard or clipping or loading onto a truck or trailer. Sometimes it is easier to remove the cause on a temporary basis if this is a new horse you are working with, and he hasn’t yet developed a secure and confident relationship with you.
Inexperience in the rider or handler often causes a tense and excitable response with too much pressure being applied to the horse just at the wrong point, as he is trying to assess what the issue is that concerns him. Don’t be in a hurry to resolve the problem but hold your ground quietly and firmly, ultimately the horse will derive confidence from this response but not from a rider or handler who has become agitated and aggressive.
Giving the horse to someone you know who is not emotionally connected but competent can have a very calming influence. The horse will react to a worried handler and this just increases tension as the person he normally looks to for stability and security cannot deliver.
Asking someone to stand in is particularly useful in situations where you have to carry out a procedure with the horse such as loading or clipping and ultimately, is much safer for both parties. If you have a horse who is nervous or really frightened of a situation such as loading or clipping then you will need to take time and perhaps work with a professional to resolve these issues.
In this article, we’ll discuss five of the calmest horse breeds, including: They are the most popular breed in the world, with millions of Quarter Horses around the globe.
Quarter Horses are known for their versatility and can be found competing in any discipline a rider wishes to pursue. They have notoriously calm temperaments that make them a natural choice for rookie riders and horse owners, as they quickly win hearts and build riders’ skills and confidence.
Ride all day, switch from Western to English at the same horse show, or change disciplines completely. Look no further than the class list at a local Quarter Horse show for proof of their versatility.
He was born in 1789 in Springfield, Massachusetts, and the entire breed can trace its roots to this single stallion. Figure, later referred to by his owner Justin Morgan’s name, was a versatile horse that could compete in a race, work in the fields, and be ridden under saddle.
They are a beautiful breed, with slightly dished faces, arched necks, and flowing manes and tales. Morgan horses can be found throughout the United States and Canada, as well as abroad.
In fact, the versatility class at Morgan horse shows proves it. In this class, horses are required to ride, drive, and jump over two fences.
Morgan horses can be found on the trail, in competitive driving events, working cattle, and on and on. They make fantastic babysitters, let one or more kids scramble all over their back, or serve as your favorite lounge chair while you read a book.
Seek adventure: While the Morgan is a calm breed, their natural high head carriage and keen interest in anything new have them eager to set out on the trail. Some Morgan horses are bred for the show ring and are hotter than others in the breed.
Approximately 10% of the Appaloosas bred by the New Peace were spotted, and their colorful coat patterns had many fans. The Appaloosa Horse Club was formed in 1938 to protect and improve the breed.
Are colorful: The blanket of spots or leopard coat pattern are distinct, and will help you stand out from the rest of the crowd. The club honors that history every year with the Chief Joseph Trail Ride in July, a four-day ride from Franceville, Idaho to Mussel shell Meadows, Idaho.
The same horse can easily help you with your English, Western, or trail goals. Their kind temperament and calm personality make them a favorite among children and young adults.
Appaloosas were also bred for speed, and there remains a vibrant community that races these horses. When seeking out an Appaloosa, be careful that you choose one bred for temperament and versatility, rather than the racetrack.
Norwegian Fjord Stout and sweet, this “light draft” breed is beloved for its dorsal stripe and roached black and tan mane as it is for its endearing personality. These pint-sized horses are as sturdy enough to carry kids and adults and calm enough to put even the most anxious riders at ease.
You’ll also see this breed pulling carts, enjoying trail rides, doing dressage, and much more. Want to take things slowly: Fjord horses are known for their calm and willing demeanor, but they will hustle when the job demands a little extra energy.
Whether you want to officially work with a riding program or simply help other anxious friends conquer their fears in your backyard, look no further. Though this breed is wonderful for pleasure riders, drivers, and kids, they aren’t designed to rise up the show jumping levels or smoke the competition at high-energy events like reining.
Believe great things come in small packages: This breed stands 12.2 to 14.2 hands, which makes it suitable for average adults and children of all ages. Want a “horse” that holds up: Connemara's are built to last with strong backs and hind quarters, deep rib cages, and crested necks.
With proper care and love, they’ll stay on the job for many years. Quarter Horses will help you gain confidence in the saddle and working on the ground as they have calm temperaments, will quickly put your mind at ease, and allow your skills to develop.
Morgans have short backs, which makes their gaits incredibly smooth. Find the right Appaloosa for your kid, and you’ll watch them bond and grow together.
Appaloosa’s have a lot of character, and are known for their wonderful personalities when working with youth. There are a lot of resources with horse temperament scales on the Internet, from mom blogs, to Pat Pirelli Horsemanship.
Bred fans praise the horses lack of spookiness, especially while trail riding, and trust in their riders. If you’re looking for an even-tempered trail companion with comfortable gaits, a Rocky Mountain Horse may be for you.
Their energy and “hot-blooded” nature may not make this the breed for you if calmness is top of your wish-list. If you’re playing a numbers game, the clear winner is the American Quarter Horse.
This flight instinct is beneficial for mustangs living in the wild where danger from predators still means life and death. However, when you saddle up for a relaxing trail ride with friends, the last thing you want is a horse that looks for the “boogeyman” around every corner.
You’ll find a variety of such supplements on the market containing a number of ingredients reported helping the horse be quieter, less reactive, and more able to focus. What worked for your friend’s nervous gelding may not make a noticeable difference on your spooky mare.
Vitamins, such as thiamine, which is one of the B-complex, is often found in calming products because it helps manage stress and has a quieting effect on the nervous system. Another popular ingredient is tryptophan, an amino acid, which isn’t produced by the horse’s body and must be obtained through his diet.
If you do decide to use a calming supplement, give it a “trial period” of one month to see how it works for your horse. Before you start your horse on a calming supplement, good horsemanship suggests that you take a careful look at your management practices.
In many cases, changes in specific areas can greatly reduce your horse’s level of tension and unease. One main reason is that these feeds support the gut because they cause less gas as they are digested,” says Dr. Hughes.
“One of the huge side effects of this type of diet is that the horse is usually much calmer, and some undergo a fairly dramatic change. Other management practices that can cause significant tension and worry include stabling routines and turn out.
If his neighbor constantly pins his ears and kicks the stall wall between them, this can be quite stressful for your horse. Some horses get upset because they lack a solid foundation and don’t fully understand what the rider is asking them to do.
If your horse has a “vice,” such as weaving, stall walking, or cribbing, a calming product may help but it’s not a cure. “Sometimes we get in a hurry to treat things with a drug or supplement, and don’t take the time to try to figure out what’s causing the problem in the horse,” notes Dr. Hughes.
We know that your horse means a lot to you so we’d like to help you make a more informed decision. In this article, we’ll tell you about the 7 best calming supplements for horses along with their pros, cons and product reviews in complete detail.
So, companies developed horse supplements that can help them feel relaxed again. There are several benefits that these calming supplements provide due to the active ingredients found in their formulas.
Magnesium is needed by the body to regulate enzymes and increase the supply of oxygen. Magnesium, in calming supplements, also aids in metabolizing carbohydrates and amino acids which boosts the energy for horses.
Folic acid: It produces hemoglobin and red blood cells. Our top pick in horse calming supplements is the Redmond Daily Gold Stress Relief.
This clay binds toxins and buffering acid, hence alleviating the digestive system. As a result, it reduces the developing gastric ulcers in the horse and consequently, de-stresses your equine companion.
Redmond Daily Gold Stress Relief provides 68 natural trace minerals that are essential for the optimal health of your horse. The major benefits that are reported by Redmond are improved vitality and digestion along with better hydration.
The best thing about Oral by which it ended up second on our list is that it is made up of a combination of an essential amino acid; tryptophan and natural herbs. A major advantage that Rama rd provides is an increase in focus along while calming the anxious horse.
Cortisol, the major stress hormone in horses, is effectively reduced by an ingredient found in this supplement, called Ramiro. As discussed earlier, magnesium aids the body to regulate enzymes and increases the supply of oxygen, whereas, the B vitamins are essential for calming the horse.
Although some people have reported Rama rd being distasteful for their horse, it is still recommended because of the all-natural formula and the special ingredient Ramiro. Its unique formula contains melatonin, B-vitamins and 5-HTP agonists that help calm the horse and make him feel more relaxed.
Although, there are some reports of Syn chill having little to no effect on horses, others describe that it is fast-acting because of the 5-HTP agonists in the formula. There is absolutely no need to mix any powder or liquid to this augmentation since they are wafers and can be given anytime, anywhere.
Like Oral, Majesty’s Calm Supplements also contain tryptophan and B-vitamins along with other natural ingredients to reduce stress, depression and anxiety. The applesauce and molasses flavor of this supplement has been reported to be loved by horses of all sizes and ages.
Be sure never to give this supplement to pregnant horses or those that are intended for breeding as it can have adverse medical effects on them. It calms your mare by balancing the hormones in the body as well as controlling the heat cycles by supporting the reproductive structures.
It has an all-natural formula made by a veterinarian whose main aim is to make safe and natural products for horses. Studies have indicated that due to the enrichment of a number of beneficial ingredients, horse calming supplements do what they promise.
Magnesium, for example, reduces the release of dopamine in the brain, the main hormone linked to hyperactivity. Valerian root, for example, acts on the same receptor to calm the horse as benzodiazepine which is a sedative.
Make your horse hear soothing sounds so that he feels relaxed and provide him a low-stress environment. The brains of horses are wired to be naturally social and this helps them reduce stress.
Make him indulge in active stimulation by hiding the food, so he searches for it in order to eat. The time required for horse callers to work majorly depends on its ingredients.
However, there are certain ingredients like valerian root that act faster than tryptophan but it might be banned in some shows so you should think twice before choosing any horse calming supplement with valerian root if your horse participates in shows. He’s just … well, he isn’t the placid guy who rolls sedately with every new request and stands like a rock for the veterinarian and farrier.
“I’ve found that horses, for the most part, are trusting animals; they are pretty open to most things,” says Jenny Johnson, VM, of Oak hill Shock wave and Veterinary Chiropractic in Calabasas, California. That means that sometimes it’s simply necessary to administer a sedative or tranquilizer to help a horse through a veterinary or farrier procedure.
But in the vast majority of instances, administering medications can also seem like bringing out the “heavy artillery” when, in fact, a lighter approach might be preferable. What’s more, over the long term, the best approach boils down to simply treating your horse gently, firmly and consistently over time so that he learns he can trust and respect your leadership when he confronts something new.
Chances are you’ll find that one or more of the following techniques, products or approaches can help soothe your horse’s anxieties and curb his more extreme behaviors. If a horse has learned to consistently pay attention to you and respond to your direction, he’ll look to you for leadership in stressful situations, which will help keep him calm.
If you are unsure of your horse’s ground manners, have an experienced friend watch you perform basic tasks and offer pointers. You’ll also find numerous books, videos and other resources, some from natural horsemanship trainers, describing how to establish good basic manners.
If your horse is generally well-mannered but gets upset about certain specific activities, such as loading into a trailer or receiving injections, you’ll want to tackle desensitization training, which means gradually exposing him to the situation that he fears, gently pushing the limits of his comfort zone. The techniques for desensitization training vary with the specific issues being addressed, but most rely on some form of advance and retreat: If a horse resents having his ears handled, for example, you might start by scratching him at the closest point he will permit contact before reacting, such as the shoulder.
“Once those horses become acclimated to a specific procedure or event, they realize it’s not so bad, and they don’t panic,” says Johnson. If your horse remains edgy as you continue to talk, hum or whisper, try keeping quiet a while to see how he responds.
When planning for a procedure or situation that will be stressful to your horse, choose a setting that won’t add to his anxiety. For example, wait until later to hang the blanket to dry within your horse’s line of sight, and choose a time when there will be less movement and activity around the barn.
A high-strung horse who spends too much of his time confined to a stall is going to have energy to burn, which of course can fuel anxious behavior. If your horse needs more exercise than you can provide, consider enlisting a friend or two to ride him once or twice a week or look for someone to enter a half lease agreement.
Ensure the pairing is compatible---in terms of experience and personality---to keep everyone safe and ultimately reduce your horse’s stress. Massage therapy---manually rubbing or manipulating the muscles---has become popular at many racing and sport horse barns.
You’ll also want to ask for recommendations to find a qualified massage therapist in your area who has undergone appropriate training. Another therapeutic option is acupressure, which makes use of the same target points on the body as acupuncture, but instead of piercing the skin with needles, the process involves gently pressing or rubbing the spots with the pads of the fingers.
Chinese traditionalists will say that the goal of the treatment is to improve the flow of “life force” (“QI” or “chi”) along “meridians.” Westerners are more likely to ascribe the effects of acupressure to reduced muscle tension and/or the release of endorphins, hormones that block pain and make the patient relax and feel good. When Johnson begins work on a chiropractic patient, she says, “I start at the head and TMJ , along various lines of the face and different trigger points---and the horse simply relaxes.
Browse the supplements section of any well-stocked retailer, and you’ll find dozens of products intended to help calm fractious horses. Many contain magnesium, which plays a role in muscle and nerve function; chromium, a mineral that helps regulate blood sugar; and thiamine (vitamin B1), which supports the nervous system.
You’ll also find supplements that contain herbal ingredients, such as chamomile, valerian root and raspberry leaf, all of which are traditional calming agents. One of the newest products on the market contains alpha-casozepine, a protein derived from milk that is believed to calm nursing youngsters.
Chemicals released by animals to affect the behavior of others in the environment, pheromones play many roles, signaling everything from alarm to sexual receptivity. For several years, products based on pheromones secreted by females to comfort and reassure their offspring have been available to help calm anxious dogs and cats.
One new product contains a synthetic version of “equine appeasing hormone,” which nursing mares produce to calm their foals. The product is a gel that is applied inside the horse’s nostrils at least 30 minutes prior to a stressful event or situation.
Since ancient times, people have used essential oils extracted from flowers, roots, bark other plant parts for aromatherapy to enhance physical and mental well-being. One 2013 study, conducted at Cheese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana, measured the effects of lavender essential oil on seven horses.
When exposed to the lavender, the horses heart rates were significantly lower, an indication that they were less stressed by the noise. By taking steps to calm him, distract him and teach him that he need not be fearful, you can go a long way toward keeping him safe and happy, and maybe even a joy to work with.
Whilst some of these products do work, there is little or no evidence to support using some ingredients commonly found in horse callers. In fact, some equine studies show that low doses of tryptophan may cause excitability.
Very high doses of supplementation (over 300 mg/kg) caused respiratory distress and a reduction in exercise endurance. Many of these products are included in traditional ‘callers’ because a deficiency in these ingredients can cause clinical nervous system symptoms.
Care must be taken to ensure these are sourced from qualified herbalists able to provide advice on dose requirements and precautions for specific animals. Probiotics and the Gut-Brain Axis Exciting new research is emerging to demonstrate the significant influence of the gut microbial population on animal health and behavior.
Scientists believe that supplementation with probiotics to improve digestive comfort is a plausible strategy that could contribute to behavior modification in horses. This reduces the levels of lactic acid and maintains a more stable hind gut pH which could reduce the impact of stress on the gut and avoid deficiencies in the vitamins and amino acids normally provided by a healthy hind gut microbiome.
Perhaps in future we will see research linking marine-sourced omega-3 supplementation (DHA and EPA) to improved horse behavior and learning! So, we also understand that you can’t feel good if your horse is stressed or nervous most of the time.
They tend to be distracted or anxious, that led them to stay unproductive throughout the day. A horse that is nervous, jumpy, or easily distracted is hard to train.
Such products let you focus on the overall growth and development of horse; without worrying about their nervous breakdowns. These calming supplements for horses can help them to stay relaxed so that you can train them better.
This brand claims that horses can quickly adapt to new situations as well as routine trailing, training, and clipping after consuming this supplement. It helps to eliminate those molecules that attract or bind toxins and cause stomach issues.
If you mix this calming paste with a wet mash, it can provide better results because of other nutrition. This way, you can also make sure that your horse has eaten his daily dose of Redmond Natural Healing Clay.
It fills the gap with those essential minerals that other supplements fail to provide! Most supplements contain up to 12 minerals, whereas Redmond Daily Gold includes 68 to be very precise.
Thiamine can fill the gap between nutritional deficiencies and metabolic processes, while Magnesium is there to calm or relax the muscles of your horse. Even if these supplements are safe to use, it is essential to visit the vet before increasing the dosages.
It is still not be proven that this supplement is safe for pregnant horses or for those animals that are intended for breeding. It is wholly natural and Ideal for horses who are anxious, spooky, or distracted.
It is developed to improve the focus of your horse at the time of training, showing, or racing. It contains the ‘cutting edge ingredient’ called Ramiro that helps to suppress the stress hormone.
Apart from that, it contains Magnesium and a balanced blend of B vitamins, which are beneficial for nervous or hyper horses. Perfect Prep EQ Training Day is a daily calming support formula.
It can stabilize unwanted attitudes of the horses and helps to create focus at the time of training. If you have an average-sized horse, you just need to feed him two scoops in a day, beginning 48 hours before the targeted activity.
You can also increase the amount and feed an additional two scoops (2 ounces) 3 hours before your event. You can watch your horse eat the full supplement as animals like its taste.
If the situation becomes worst; stop using the supplements immediately and contact your veterinarian. Always administer during or after the animal has eaten to reduce the incidence of gastrointestinal upset.
In case of accidental overdose, contact a health professional immediately. Some of these products are not evaluated by the FDA and can’t diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health conditions.
All these products are developed and used by equine veterinarians and provide relaxation without sedation. We hope you have got some ideal supplements for your nervous and anxious performance horses.
In my leisure time, I like to play with my cat or sip my long Americano reading my favorite book. Directed by Nick Rowland. Starring Cosmos Jarvis, Barry Keogh an, Name Altar, Ned Kennedy, David Wilmott and Anthony Welsh.
Arm is constantly egged on to increasingly bloodthirsty acts by the loose cannon Divers teen SYMPA (Barry Keogh an). His increasing connection with the family comes as his ex-partner Ursula (Name Altar) is contemplating moving out of the area, and taking their child with her.
Calm With Horses opens with a portentous voice-over in which Arm dishes out heavy-handed backstory (“I’m told I was a violent child… usually to myself”) and discusses how he was effectively adopted into the Divers family out of appreciation for his loyalty. Once the blood-soaked stage has been set, though, Rowland changes gear for a film that reveals a bold, bleak vision of a cycle of violence, while delivering flashes of stark emotional warmth.