Veterinary Treatment for Working Equines PDF Book Download. The first known contact between early man and equines was in approximately 15,000 bc.
Veterinary Treatment for Working Equines
Equines are depicted in wall paintings in the Lascaux caves in France; at that stage equines represented only a source of food. A skull, dated to 4000 bc and showing evidence of wear from the use of a bit on the first cheek teeth, has been found near the Black Sea. Was this a riding horse or was it used to pull a chariot? We have no way of knowing;
however, it is likely the animal was used for a warlike purpose. Mercifully, we do not involve equines in war situations today, but, on the other hand, millions of horses, donkeys and mules are used as working animals throughout the world.
I define a working animal as one used by man to carry out a working task – this normally means pulling or carrying. I have excluded all riding horses used to carry a rider for pleasure only, and so therefore no references to pleasure horses or racehorses will be found. None the less, I am sure that the various treatments described in this book will be, in many cases, applicable to such horses. However, the main purpose is to provide a handy guide for veterinarians and others who are called on to treat working animals worldwide, my main aim being to improve the welfare of these animals. It might be argued that in many instances there are severe problems with human rights for the owners of those animals, but these I cannot alter and so I have concentrated on the working equine.
It is well recognized that, although horses and donkeys have very many similarities, they also exhibit certain differences. As the sterile progeny of the two species, the mule and the hinny inherit properties from both, but these in turn have differences. To help clarity, the text will be based on the horse, with any subtle differences seen in ponies mentioned. More fundamental differences in donkeys and mules will be fully explained.