With all the excitement about breaking in the horses I have compiled a page with facts about horses.
The modern domestic horse has a life expectancy of 25 to 30 years. The oldest horse who ever lived was called Old Billy and died at 62 years old. A 450-kilogram horse will eat 7 to 11 kilograms of food per day and, under normal use, drink 38 litres to 45 litres of water. Horses cannot vomit, so problems with digestion is a leading cause of death.
Horses are measured in hands. Each hand equals four inches. If you say a horse is 16.2 hands high, the 2 means 2 fingers. A horse also has no muscles in its legs below the knees. An adult horse’s brain weights about half that of a human. Horses teeth never stop growing. Horses have 16 muscles in each ear, allowing them to rotate their ears 180 degrees.
A healthy adult horse should have a pulse of between 36 and 40 beats per minute while at rest. Horses normally sleep two and a half to three hours a day. A horse has approximately 205 bones. Horses can sleep both lying down and standing up. They lock their legs when they go to sleep. Horses have the largest eyes of any land animal. A horse can see completely around its entire body except for small blind spots directly in front of its face, underneath its head, and directly behind itself.
A young horse of under 1 year old is called a foal. Foals are normally born at night, after being born, it only takes a foal about 1-2 hours to stand up and walk. Foals have milk teeth, which are replaced by permanent teeth around 3-5 years old.
A horse can move in four ways: walk, trot, canter, and gallop. Galloping is the fastest. Horses gallop at around 44 kph (27 mph). In the gallop all four of the horses legs are off the ground at the same time. The fastest speed a horse has ever ran was 88 kph (55 mph). One metric horsepower = 736 watts. Chariot racing was the first Olympic sport in 680 B.C. When cantering, a horse takes a breath with every stride.
A stallion is a male horse. A mare is a female horse. A colt is a young male horse. A filly is a young female horse. A gelding is a castrated horse. A yearling is a horse of either sex that is between one and two years old. A pony is a small horse.
Some people say that horses have 5 hearts because blood is pumped back up to the heart as the feet expand and contract with each step. When the foot is set down on the ground, it expands and fills with blood. When the foot is picked up, it contracts and the blood is sent back up the hoof to the heart. One litre of blood is pumped through the body every 20 strides.
Gestation, (the period between conception and giving birth) lasts approximately 340 days, with an average range 320–370 days,and usually results in one foal, twins are rare. Foals are usually born in the spring. Foals stop drinking their mother’s milk when they are between four and six months of age.
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