Interesting findings from a study conducted on depressed horses, showing that, among other behavioural indicators of depression such as posture, a lack of attention was also a major indicator.
Depression is normally a result of being exposed to long-term stress and anxiety, and can also indicate poor welfare conditions or inadequate living conditions/management.
In order to maintain a balanced state both physically and mentally, horses require the ability to move around freely, forage freely, socialisation with other horses and the ability to perform normal inherited behaviours.
If any of these components are compromised continuously, the horse may fall into a depressive state.
It is very important to monitor your horse for any signs of depression, chronic anxiety or stress, and to know what the possible triggers are. If you suspect that your horse may be suffering from depression, you should contact a qualified Equine Behaviourist immediately to evaluate your horse, along with your Veterinarian to first rule out any pain or disease related problems.
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