BH: Horses are not made stronger by taking the weight out of them. But weight does influence the performance of the horse. The more weight the horse is carrying, the lower the speed of the horse. It’s also true that horses on farms are not carrying most of the loads that they do at home or on private property but these are heavier horses, so the weight of the horse will affect the speed or quality of the horse, as well. So yes, heavier horses on the farm can be faster than lighter horses.
Q: What types of weight do we most commonly use for horses? What makes the horses of different breeds unique?
BH: As a general rule, the heavier and more expensive the horse gets, the lower the speed of the horse, which means that heavier and more costly horses can take less room on the property and on the barn. The difference between this and having more horses on a farm is that you could say that there are more resources to get around, but there is still a huge gap between horse barn space that can support one horse and one hundred horse.
Q: When you move your horses, do you have to remove weight from them to get them to move at the new pace?
BH: Yes. If you were to leave your horse, or get it off the barn floor, and put it back on the floor, you would take down the weight. It is true that horses are sensitive to the touch, but this is not always true. If your horse were to get too hot in winter or too cold in summer, there could still be an effect that leads to a speed reduction due to heat or cold because the heat or cold itself would make a slight difference in the horse’s speed. This is why most experienced breeders will remove their horses from the barn floor (the horse will not be able to move any faster as long as the floor is still on the horse) in those situations to reduce the damage that could occur.
Q: What type of feed do you feed the horses? How much do you use? In your experience, is it good for horses for a new owner to give a lot of a particular feed (e.g. corn, sugar beet, etc.), or are you likely to cut the feed and feed it less often (e.g. in-house fed) until the horse can get the nutrition he/she needs?
BH: We use various forms of feed for all the horses we
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