Some of us, while driving down a country road have witnessed a lone horse in its round pen, or in a field. While this is not unusual, the question remains: Should horses have partners?
Because horses are herd animals, loneliness can cause separation anxiety, and emotional distress. Herbal remedies, and essential oils can help to calm stress and anxiety. In addition, Bach flowers can also help with varying emotional states; Bach Flower Remedies for Animals by Helen Graham, is a helpful book to reference. You can also visit our store, for more options in caring for your horse under emotional duress.
If a horse has a preference to pace in a specific area or pattern, the other concern is the wear and tear on their legs and feet. Finally, another malady that the horse may experience due to chronic stress and loneliness is ulcers. Common symptoms can be loss of appetite, poor hair coat, grumpy attitude, and poor weight. Some horses with ulcers have few symptoms except a lousy attitude and a refusal to work!
Many factors come into play when a decision is to be made about pairing up a horse with another horse, a donkey, goat, sheep, etc. Consider the environment of the horse, and until a decision can be made whether to bring a partner into your horse’s life, massage, acupressure, acupuncture, and other types of naturopathic treatments, may also be viable, and helpful solutions, in aiding your horse to cope with loneliness.
RMSAAM would be interested in hearing any of your experiences in dealing with a lonely horse, and any creative solutions that were used to help your horse through lonely times!