I can't believe it the big boy that i recently got now seems to have separation anxiety. He had been kept on his own for over a year and I guess it was to be expected but wow it was extreme today. I took out 2 off my boys - which is unusual as usually I leave one of them with him but he went mad charging around the field so I thought - I 'll bring him in and borrow a friends stable but he was a nightmare and busted the lock! Nothing much usually bothers him - he hacks out on his own and he has been left in the field on his own before but I have just moved them to a different field and was wondering if this made it worse?? I am hoping that I can ride him on MOnday and hopefully he will be back to his normal self. Do I get another horse so that he is never on his own or will he eventually cope? Thanks
Firstly I would whip to health food shop and get some Bach Flower Rescue Remedy and put in his water. I would also ask their advice on which remedy would suit his separation anxiety. I think getting another horse is an expensive and not always reliable solution but its still early days and he really needs to settle down before anything else happens (not sure how long u had him arki as not on much so excuse me if I am wrong that its not long).
He needs to know that his field mates will come back to him when he is left on his own and you can only teach him that slowly and in a carefully structured way. Only leave him for as long as he can cope to begin with and gradually extend the period until he is coping with longer and longer periods, until eventually he is relaxed enough however long you leave him knowing he will get his companions back eventually. That was as a result of living on his own - he suddenly realised what he had been missing and how much it meant. Think of racehorses and competition horses who travel all over for hours on their own - they have learned to cope. With a big horse it is a real problem because they can damage fencing, buildings and themselves as you have discovered - Cassidy (17hh heavyweight hunter) is like that and at age 20 he is unlikely ever to be really safe on his own. He is better though, tied up on the yard in sight of his friends but not with them, which is progress, and it has taken a long time. It is worth doing because you never know when he may have to go somewhere on his own, or in an emergency leave him on his own for a short time, and getting another companion is masking the problem really.
Thanks - in some ways I was relieved to see him behave like this as he was so switched off when I got him. He is happy without them as long as I am with him so this is a start. He has been on the yard without the other 2 for a while this morning as he had a Bowen treatment - this was a lovely experience for him and he was relatively calm. He whinnied a couple of times but then just enjoyed his treatment and ate some hay. I will bring him in every day without the others so he learns to adjust.
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