Troy Warren for CNT
NATIONAL I LOVE HORSES DAY
On July 15th we recognize the love of one magnificent creature on National I Love Horses Day!
With over 200 breeds, these spirited animals give humans much to love. Their loyalty and devotion throughout history may only be a fraction of the reasons to love them. Not just a means of transportation, horses cleared fields, fought wars, and moved cattle. Beyond their utility, their companionship was indispensable on long lonely trails. Cattlemen, pioneers, and more recognize horses as cornerstones of survival in a burgeoning nation.
The tallest horse breed is the Shire. The stallions of this draft horse breed tower at 17 hands above the tiny Falabella, which grows to only eight hands and is the smallest breed of horse.
The quarter horse, named for its speed on a short track, is one the of three fastest breeds of horses. Thoroughbreds follow quarter horses for longer distance, but Arabians outlast both breeds for endurance on the longest races.
A horse can see almost 360° at once. Because of this, it’s difficult to sneak up on a horse. Their only blind spots are directly behind them and in front. However, don’t approach a horse from behind; their powerful hind legs can do serious damage if they decide to defend themselves with a kick. Because horses have such an excellent range of vision, they can be easily distracted or startled. Trainers will place blinders or blinkers on their harness to block the horse’s view from the side. The small piece of leather helps the horse to focus their vision forward.
Just like human hair and fingernails, a horse’s hooves are made of the same protein – keratin. Farriers specialize in caring for horses’ hooves. They not only fit horses with shoes, but they trim their hooves and make recommendations for hoof care and foot health. Since horses spend an enormous amount of time on their feet, the care a farrier provides is instrumental to their overall health.
HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalILoveHorsesDay
Celebrate by visiting a local stable for a horseback ride. Seek a view of wild horses in a national park. Spend time riding your own horse if you have one.
Post on social media using #NationalILoveHorsesDay.
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