Trivia Challenge: Do You Know How to ‘Treat’ Your Horse?

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A cartoon horse has a Santa hat on his head and a candy cane in his mouth.

1. True or false: Feeding your horse treats will cause him to become aggressive.

T / F

2. Why is chocolate a less-than-ideal choice as a horse treat?

A) It can cause your horse to develop acne.

B) It can cause your horse to develop cavities.

C) It can cause a positive result in a drug test.

3. True or false: It’s OK to feed your horse a sugar cube or a peppermint as a treat if it’s just one or two and only occasionally.

T / F

4. True or false: Vegetables known to cause gas in humans (such as cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower) don’t make ideal treats for horses.

T / F

HOW’D YOU DO? (Answers below.)

1. F is correct. The right answer is not necessarily. Feeding treats won’t automatically cause your horse to become aggressive. (For details, see the “What Experts Say” link below.)

2. C is correct. Chocolate contains theobromine, which can cause a positive result in a pre-competition drug test.

3. T is correct. Just as it’s not good for you, sugar isn’t great for your horse, but as an occasional treat in a tiny amount, it won’t hurt him. With healthier choices, such bite-size chunks of apple, carrot, or many other fruits and vegetables, you can be more generous. But always follow the recommended guidelines for giving treats.

4. T is correct. Gas + horses = trouble, so this one’s a no-brainer, just to be on the safe side. It’s also best to avoid anything from the nightshade family, which would include eggplant, tomato, potato, bell pepper, and tobacco.

[WHAT EXPERTS SAY about feeding treats to horses.]

[BONUS: Just how motivating *are* treats to horses?]

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