Nutritional Articles

Foraging enrichment for individually housed horses: Practicality and effects on behaviour

Published: 2006-02-20

Brief content of the article
The main objective of this study was to establish whether the behavioural effects observed in short-term trials when stabled horses were provided with a multiple forage diet persist over longer periods. For that, nine horses received comparable weights of two dietary treatments: a Single Forage (SF, hay) diet and a Multiple Forage (MF) diet (three long-chop and three short-chop commercially available forages). The authors concluded that the results indicate that the potentially beneficial behavioural effects of short-term multiple forage provision do persist when horses are managed on a MF diet for a 7-day period. They suggest that a MF diet provides a means of enriching the stabled horse's environment, by offering variety and enabling patch foraging behaviour.
Keywords: foraging; behaviour; roughage.

Reference
Thorne, J.B., Goodwin, D. Kennedy, M.J., Davidson, H.P.B and P. Harris. 2005. Foraging enrichment for individually housed horses: Practicality and effects on behaviour. Applied Animal Behaviour Science 94, 149-164.

Website and publisher
http://www.elsevier.com