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The Grazing Muzzle


According to BHS "Grazing muzzles can be used to restrict grass intake and help you manage your horse’s weight. When used responsibly, grazing muzzles can help as part of a weight management programme, with no increased stress on the horse."


When top equine charities with a mission to be dedicated to knowledge and encouraging people and horses to enjoy life together write a statement like the above, then it's hard for us to not distrust the information or do any further research.


THE HARD TRUTH - Grazing muzzles are cruel, appalling and inhumane. They should not be recommended to any horse owner. We should not be restricting a horse's natural behaviours or their emotional well-being. We need to move away from these devices and start putting our horses needs first.


Horses should be allowed to roam freely unrestricted and be allowed to eat as much or as little as they like throughout their day. They are foragers by nature and need full access to a species appropriate diet with plenty of movement. The answer - A Paddock Paradise track system! This natural way of living eliminates the luscious grass, encourages movement whilst allowing a horse to freely be a horse. Paddock Paradise can virtually eliminate the risk of founder and other preventative horse illnesses, which are caused by unnatural lifestyles. Why waste your time stressing about grazing muzzles, strip grazing, limiting turnout time, stabling for extra hours and diet fads. These things only cause stress to the horse and you as the horse owner.


Horse owners all over the world are beginning to recognise that this is the only way to accomadate our domestic horses. Some stuggle with being on a traditional livery but fear not - as more and more people begin to find the solution, livery owners will have no choice but to make the change or lose business. In the grand scheme of things if you want to run a livery you should be required to provide grass free areas for your clients.


In the meantime, If you can't provide your horse with this way of living then you need to find ways to eliminate the grass, not use devises to control their eating. A lot of liveries do have dry lots or sand areas, so ask if you can utilise these until you have found better solutions. Often we think that our livery owner won't be open to change but most will surprise you. Sometimes it just takes us to ask the questions.


I would recommend all horse owners read 'The Natural Horse' by Jaime Jackson. He talks about his research on the wild horses of the U.S Great Basin and talks about how we can incoropate the 4 Pillars of Natural Horse Care (Natural boarding, Natural Horsemanship, A Reasonably Natural Diet and The Natural Trim) into our domesticated horses lives.



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Picture - taken from www.electric-fence.co.uk



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