DICTIONARY OF HORSE WORDS
Aged Horse A horse known to be nine years old or older.
Bad Keeper A horse who does not eat well or does not digest what he does eat.
Bedding Straw, wood shavings, sand, even peat moss, are considered to be good bedding for horses.
Blemish An abnormality that does not seriously affect the serviceability of a horse.
Body brush A soft brush used to make a horse shine.
Box stall A stall in the shape of a large box (12 x 14 approx.) Breeches Riding pants
Breed Registry A group of breeders banded together for the purposes of recording the lineage of their animals, protecting the purity of the breed, encouraging further improvement of the breed, and promoting the interest of the breed.
"Buy a lot" An expression used in racing circles for falling off. Castration Removal of the testicles of a male to make him sterile. Colostrum The milk secreted by the dam for the first couple of days following birth of a foal.
Colt A young stallion.
Concentrates Feeds that are low in fiber and high in total digestible nutrients. Examples of this class of feeds are the various grains, sweet feeds and high grade by products.
Conception The fertilization of the egg and beginning of growth of the embryo inside the mare's body.
Conformation Symmetrical disposition of the parts of a horse
(how the horse is proportionally put together).
Cribbing A vice in which the horse bites or places its upper incisor teeth on some solid object, pulls down, arches his neck, and swallows gulps of air which go into the stomach, not the lungs.
Dam A name for a mare who is the mother of a foal.
Dismounting Getting off of a riding horse. This should always be done on the "near" or left side of the horse.
Drench A method of giving liquid medicine to a horse by elevating his head and pouring it very slowly down his throat from a bottle.
Farrier A blacksmith or one who trims horses feet or shoes them. Feathers Long hair found on a horse on the fetlocks and sometimes above.
Filly Female horse under three years of age.
Firing A method of strengthening tendons by piercing the skin of the foreleg between the knee and pastern with a red hot iron. This is practiced largely with race horses which have broken down in the tendons.
Foal Colt or filly under one year. Gaits The ways a horse moves. The three natural gaits (paces) of a horse are walk, trot and canter. Others are extended trot, gallop, pace, rack, running walk, etc. Gelding A male horse which has been castrated
Gestation The act or period of carrying the young during the pregnancy period; 11 to 11 1/2 months or 330 to 340 days for the mare. Gymkhana An all-games show or event (egg-in-spoon race, musical chairs, pole bending, barrel racing, keyhole race and many more) for horses and their riders.
Hand Unit of measuring horse's height (to highest part of the withers):
1 hand = 4 in. = 10 cm. Subdivided into inches.
(For example, 16.2 hands = 16 hands and 2 inches.)
Head-shy Horse is afraid of having the head touched or of quick movements about the head.
Heat period The period in which the mare can be bred. Heat periods usually occur as a 21-day cycle. The duration of the heat period averages 4 to 6 days
Hogging or roaching Clipping the mane close to the neck.
Mare A female of the horse species.
Measuring The four common measurements of a horse are bone, girth, height, and weight.
Mounting Getting onto a horse properly. Always mount from the "near" or left side.
Near-side The left side of a horse. Off or far side The right side of a horse.
Parasite An organism living on or in the horse such as lice (external) and worms (internal).
Parturition Act of giving birth.
Pedigree A form showing the line of ancestors and their performance for an individual horse.
Pony A horse of a small breed, 14.2 hands and under.
Puberty The state of being capable of begetting or bearing offspring (point of sexual maturity). Mares generally reach the age of puberty when 15 to 24 months of age.
"Pulling leather" Hanging onto the saddle to keep your balance. Purebred An animal whose blood lines are pure.
Red ribbon on tail A sign that a horse kicks.
Registration Entering horse into the registry of the breed association if he meets qualifications laid down by the organization.
Saddle A leather covered seat for the rider on horseback. The English saddle and the Western saddle are the common types. Shank A long strap or rope used for leading the horse.
Sire The male parent of a horse.
Stallion A male horse of breeding age.
Sterility or barrenness Not fertile - horses that are incapable of producing young thus are sterile.
Straight or tie stall An area between two partitions in which the horse is generally tied to his manger. tie stall:(5 or 6 ft. x 9 ft.)
Tack The saddle, bridle, girth, martingale, etc.
Types of horses A classification of the different kinds of horses. One type is the light horse which is sub-divided into driving horses, racing horses, and riding horses. Under driving horses we find fine harness, heavy harness, ponies, and roadsters; under racing horses are harness-race, quarter-race, and running-race; and under riding horses are five-gaiter, hunters, jumpers, plantation walking horses, polo mounts, ponies, stock horses, and three gaited horses. The second type is work horses which is sub-divided into draft horses, farm chunks, southerners, and wagon horses.
Umbilical cord A tube-like structure connecting the mare's body with the growing fetus.
Vices Objectionable traits found in a horse but not serious enough to be classified as unsoundnesses. The common ones are weaving, biting, wind-sucking, cribbing kicking, blanket tearing, halter pulling and crowding.
Weanling A foal no longer nursing his mother but before he becomes a yearling. He is a yearling the next year at one-year-old.
Withers Area of a horse at the base of the neck, above the shoulders, where the neck joins the body.