Horses are members of the equine family and are hoofed mammals. According to historical facts, horses have evolved from a multi-toed animal to a single toed animal. They were one of the earliest animals to be domesticated by man. As of today, almost all breeds of horses have been domesticated. Only the Prezwalski horse is left in the wild. Listed among the most endangered species, developments are in full swing to domesticate this breed so that it can be protected from its various predators.
The Average Life Span
The definition of the life span of a horse has changed drastically over the last few years. Horses are costly farm animals. They don’t come cheap and neither does their maintenance. Most people who buy horses mostly use them for farm and traveling purposes. While buying a horse, the owners should be aware of its life expectancy, which breeds have a longer life span, various health problems, and how to ensure that the horse remains healthy so that it enjoys a longer life. On a normal basis, a horse that is well-maintained and stays in hygienic conditions is expected to have a longer life expectancy of 25 to 30 years. Remember that the breed and general lifestyle also play an important factor in determining the average life span of a horse.
As observed, the two kinds of horses that have a higher life expectancy than most others are ponies and draft horses. Many types of horses fall under these two categories, but normally, horses don’t live more than 35 years. The breed which has the least life expectancy is a thoroughbred, which, due to the rigorous hours of horse racing, tends to live for only 25 years. As the horse ages, its health deteriorates. The most significant change is in its ability to eat due to a weak digestive system. If you continue to feed your horse on roughage food even after it has grown old, this can harm its intestines. This can lead to malnutrition and an impact on its colic. When it comes to the cardiovascular system, horses have been very lucky. They seldom get heart diseases and have a strong heart which strengthens with training. One of the most interesting facts about horses is that in the 19th century, a horse named “Old Billy” became the oldest living horse, dying at the age of 62. The most recent horse to have a longer life was called “Sugar Puff”, who lived till he was 57 and passed away in 2007.
The best way to determine a horse’s life expectancy is to examine its teeth. This observation also requires some experience if you want an accurate age. All horses in the world have a common official birth date and that is January 1st. So, even a foal born in the 2nd week of December will be considered a yearling upon the New Year. The food of the horse basically depends on the animal’s lifestyle. The horse is one animal that keeps on eating as long as food is available, and therefore, this usually leads to overeating. Its food should basically consist of forage, grains, and hay. A riding horse or a draft horse will need more food than one living in the barn. This animal drinks about 12 gallons of water when idle and more if active. A horse is happy if it’s provided shelter from the rains, cold, and heat.
This is all you need to know while determining the life expectancy of a horse. If you really want your horse to live longer, then make sure it receives proper dental care and other veterinary facilities, good nutrition, and regular exercise.