1. True or false: A longe whip lying on the ground is not likely to be a serious injury risk to your horse.
T / F
2. True or false: A manure fork parked within reach of a stalled horse’s muzzle can be a serious safety hazard.
T / F
3. True or false: Metal T-posts are safe as an element of horse fencing as long as the fence includes a strand of hot wire.
T / F
4. True or false: It’s safe to turn your horse out wearing a halter as long as he’s thoroughly halter broke.
T / F
HOW’D YOU DO? (Answers below.)
1. F is correct. Stepped on just right, the whip can act like a spear. A horse’s weight can drive the solid core of the whip up into the foot, penetrating a critical structure such as the coffin joint or navicular bursae, causing serious damage. Always keep the ground all around your barn area and arena free of any potentially dangerous objects.
2. T is correct. Horses are inquisitive and often bored when confined. Anything they can grasp in their mouth is at risk of being “played with,” with resulting injury always a possibility. Don’t leave brooms, shovels, pitchforks or anything else leaning in a spot where your horse can reach them.
3. F is correct. If you have T-posts on your property in any capacity, cap them. Electric fencing can fail, and T-posts are always potentially a harpoon, so the only safe T is a capped one. Commercially available T-post caps are inexpensive and easy to obtain at feed or farm stores (or at Amazon.com—see below). In a pinch, a tennis ball can serve as a temporary cap.
4. F is correct. No amount of training will stop a horse from panicking if his halter catches on something and “traps” him. Always remove your horse’s halter before turning him out, or else outfit him in a halter with a breakaway crownpiece.
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