Tips for Mentally Stimulating Your Horse
Just as is the case with humans, horses need to have plenty of mental stimulation in order to remain happy. In fact, a bored horse is also more prone to becoming ill and engaging in negative behavior that can lead to injury. Therefore, it is important for you to find ways to provide your horse with mental stimulation in order to prevent boredom from setting in.
Tip #1: Create Opportunity for Movement
One way to stimulate your horse is to provide ample opportunity for movement. The easiest way to do this is to let your horse wander about in a pasture, where it can move from place to place as it grazes.
Tip #2: Offer Socialization
Horses are also social creatures and, therefore, will do best if they are able to spend time around other horses. Even when your horse is stalled, it should be able to see other horses and barn activity. Stall guards instead of stall doors can help to make this possible for your horse.
Tip #3: Set Aside Play Time
Offering toys to your horse can help to keep it mentally stimulated. Stall toys can be purchased online or through horse stores, or you can make your own. One simply DIY toy that you can make is to simply place some feed pellets inside of a gallon milk jug and then hang it in the stall. Your horse will keep itself busy trying to tip the jug in order to spill out the treats.
Tip #4: Groom Regularly
Grooming your horse and providing it with equine massages can also help to mentally stimulate your horse. At the same time, performing these tasks will give you the opportunity to check for possible injuries or illnesses that need to be addressed. Even more importantly, it gives you time to build your bond with your horse while helping to lower its overall stress levels.