By: Jennifer Woods
Stress: A mentally or emotionally disruptive or upsetting condition occurring in response to adverse external influences and capable of affecting physical health.
Most people do not realize how stressful transportation can be for even the most seasoned traveling equine. The possible affects of stress on horses during transport include colic, diarrhea, laminitis, shipping fever, injury, performance impediment, weight loss, dehydration, disease or even death. Through awareness of the key transport stressors, horse owners and caregivers can alleviate stress levels and the adverse affects.
Transport stressors include:
Changes in temperature, humidity, air qualityMixing with unfamiliar animals
Confinement in unfamiliar places
Unfamiliar movement underfoot
Climbing and descending
Disrupted feed patterns