Did you know THIS about horse?
Horses have been roaming the earth for a surprisingly long time, in fact, the earliest horse is estimated to have lived 55 million years ago and was about the size of a Labrador.
Based on evidence found at archaeological sites, we estimate that horses were domesticated around 6000 years ago and that they were originally kept as a source of food.
Throughout history, horses have been a source of prey which is why they find safety in a herd and form strong social relationships with each other.
They are naturally highly social animals and use their senses to recognize familiar horses and spend time with those they have formed friendships with.
They also look out for each other. For example, in the wild horses will take turns to protect the herd by keeping watch while the others take time to eat, rest and sleep.
Today, there are more than 400 breeds of horses.
The reason there are so many breeds goes back to the history of horses as working animals. Over thousands of years, people have selectively bred horses and ponies to emphasise traits that make them well-suited to different kinds of work, from farming to sport and leisure.
Many breeds are also deeply rooted in the area where they are bred, with characteristics that help them to thrive in certain landscapes and weather conditions. For instance, the New Forest pony is just one of many that gets its name from the place it is born and bred.
When it comes to categorising horse breeds, there can be strict rules about what does and don’t constitute a purebred. For example, certain breeds, such as Thoroughbreds, can only be considered a true example if they possess a very specific set of characteristics.
However, for other types of breeds where the pedigree is less important and the definition of what constitutes a purebred can be much broader and more variable.
While different breeds vary enormously in build, strength and appearance, all horses have at least one thing in common- their field of vision.
Horses have nearly 360-degree vision due to the positioning of their eyes on the sides of their head.
They only have two small blind spots – one directly behind them, and the other just in front and below their nose. This means that they cannot see the grass they are grazing on, or the carrot you are sticking out to them! Instead, they use their sensitive rubbery lips, whiskers and sense of smell to detect what is in front of them.
Regardless of their size, breed, or origin, another thing that horses have in common is their ability to make you happy.
They are incredibly therapeutic animals, and whether you spend time perfecting a dressage routine, like to whizz round a course of jumps, or enjoy going on a happy hack, getting out in nature and putting your muscles to work is a guaranteed way to make your day better.