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Thread: Horse Cribbing

  1. #1

    Horse Cribbing

    I have a problem I'm not sure how to deal with. I have an 8 year old Morgan gelding who is an obsessive cribber (windsucker). The horse was initially trained as a show horse but never did well in an arena setting as he always acted up in the arena and got excused from the classes. I purchased him for a pleasure horse and we have been on several nice rides over the course of the summer. He usually does very well as long as another horse and rider come along, not so well on his own. Over the past month he has been losing weight quite dramatically. He is at the bottom of the pecking order with the four other horses and two donkeys in the pasture. I have watched and if the lead horse approaches him he will stop eating and start cribbing. In fact some days he very rarely grazes and just wanders around finding things to crib on. I started feeding him on his own in another pasture and have been feeding him a mash of beet pulp with oats and some alfalfa cubes. He gobbles all this up right away. I thought if I could stop the cribbing he would graze more so last night I put a cribbing collar on him. Well needless to say he was not a happy camper. He reared up and then took off into the pasture and started grazing. The way he reared when I put on the collar, I am starting to think that he has a major dental problem which might account for some of the weight loss, but now I am not sure how to catch him and get the collar off him without hurting him. I think when I put the collar on it caused some pain in his jaw area and now I don't know how to get it off without hurting him and causing him to rear. Do you have any suggestions. All I want to know is how to get the collar off so I can have a vet come and check his teeth and fix them if they need to be fixed.

  2. #2
    New to list & hope you've sorted this out by now, but seeing as you got no replies previously...

    With regard to your worries about catching him, sounds like the best idea is to find someone experienced & gentle with horses to catch him & teach you how to get him to come to you & handle him safely.

    With regard to the cribbing, it is one of those habits that is near impossible to break. Usually brought about through stress of an unhealthy environment & feeding practice, such as show/stabled horses are often subjected. There is a big chance he's got stomach ulcers too, because of previous management practices.

    As for his obvious general stress, perhaps at least temporarily, you should remove him to a paddock with some easy going horses, or only one other, so he can pal up & feel secure. I'd also try herbs or flower essence to help calm him.

  3. #3
    Well, we have a horse taht cribs and a cribbing collar works for him. If we do not have it on him, all he does is crib. The only time we do not have it on him is when he is shedding because it ribs him and causes a sore. But for a while in the summer we had ot off because it had dry rotted through and it was a little bit until we got a new one for him and he did drop some weight and when we got a new one on him, he gained that weight back. I doo not know what to tell you though.

  4. #4
    The reason your horse cribs so much when it is off is because of stress, the collar makes cribbing worse so that when it is removed the horse will crib worse for the time it was on. Your better off to deal with why he is cribbing, is he stall bound? In a doment herd? Not enough grass or hay?

    Providing your horse with all day hay or a lot of turn out will help curb this problem that is caused by stress. Get your horse out of the herd and into a buddy situation, turn him out lots, give him lots of forge and make sure his stall is big enough for his size. Give him toys and lots of activity, riding alone does not help. Then run an electirc fence along the top line of your fence to curb his need while he is outside.

    The collar is nothing more then a very stressful quick fix that makes the problem worse and not better, its best to figure ot why they are doing the behavior and fix the problem, not inhibit the action.
    The reason dogs are great is they wag their tails, not their tongues.

  5. #5
    he is out all the time. he never comes in and we have a run in shed for him out their. he is also pastured with a miniture donkey. that thing is his pal and if we take the donkey away, the horse has a fit. so, it does not work.

  6. #6



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