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Franklin Levinson's

Horse Help Center

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My new horse/ new herd


I recently purchased a 6 yo Appaloosa gelding who is have a problem adjusting to his new herd mates.

I bought him from a horse dealer who had him about 6 months and he was kept outside in a loose fenced area around their home.

He came in to the boarding barn where I am keeping him and was tuned out immediately with a small group of horses - a 4 yo who had just arrived a day earlier.'The next day another new horse came in who also belonged to the 4 yo's owner and who wanted to bond with the 4 yo right away.

My horse began attacking him right after that with several bites to the rump area and a few on the neck. Also bit some of the other horses in the pasture.

About a week later the barn manager put him in another pasture with some older more established horses and he was fine in there for a few days.

Now she has informed me that he has started biting again and wants to either muzzle him or put him in the round pen alone which is far away from the other horses.

I am sick over this and don't know where to go with this?

Please help!

Hi Pam,

Because domesticated horses are kept in relatively small areas, introducing a new horse into an established herd can be tricky and occasionally dangerous. There is no quick and easy answer. It will depend on how the facility is set up and how big the paddocks are. Sometimes a holding pen is available to hold a new horse for a while in view of other horses so they can get used to each other without being thrown in with each other too soon. Sometimes introducing them 'in hand' for a few days helps. Systems for this vary with the facility. Other than isolation (holding pen) for a while in view of other horses and in hand introduction there isn't much else to do other than put them in together in a big enough area and hope they work it out. Wish I had more to offer you on this one.

Sincerely, Franklin

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