How well do you know your horse?

In a recent survey we asked Your Horse readers a range of questions designed to see how well you know your horses and to what level of detail. In some areas you blew us away, you’re doing brilliantly! But, as with most things in life, there’s always room for improvement.

With that in mind we put together a special feature to run through the vital stats you need to know and in it we reveal how well you did on our 2016 Horse Health Survey.

Here's a snippet ...

Your horse’s temperature, pulse and respiration rates, or as we often refer to them – his TPR, are key indicators to his state of health. Being able to spot when one of them changes is important and, if you keep a record, you’ll be well placed to inform your vet if you suspect a problem. In our survey, 58% of you said you’d never checked your horse’s heart rate and 50% have never taken your horse’s temperature which could make it trickier for you to know when one, the other or both aren’t as they should be.

Blue Cross Welfare Manager Ruth Court knows just how important it is to know your horse’s vital stats and recommends that horse owner should know their horse’s normal range of TPR. “This should be recorded at the same time over three days at a time when the horse is relaxed – not near feed time or if he’s just been ridden for example. The average should then be recorded.”

If your horse looks unwell at any time you then have your horse’s normal ranges to refer to if you need to take your horse’s heart rate, temperature or respiration rate again. “I wouldn’t say it was necessary to record them any other times routinely,” says Ruth, “but, as horses grow older their normal ranges may alter, for example, from a youngster to an adult. As a result, you should record your horse’s TPR again.”

To read the rest of this feature - where you'll learn more about your horse's heart and respiration rate (and how to take them), weight control and dental checks - be sure to buy your copy of the March issue of Your Horse magazine. Be quick, it's on sale until 8 February. Click the button below to order your copy online - order by 12pm for next day delivery.