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  • Writer's pictureJanine

Can the FeedingMaster handle my destructive horse?

Updated: Sep 28, 2023

Absolutely, the FeedingMaster is up to the challenge, and here's why:


Understanding horse stomach vs. human stomach

To comprehend why the FeedingMaster effectively addresses destructive behavior in horses, it's important to consider the distinct differences between equine and human digestive systems. In nature, horses graze almost constantly, munching on small blades of grass day and night. This continuous eating is essential for their well-being. Unlike humans, who eat intermittently and have stomachs primarily designed for storage, a horse's stomach is relatively small, about the size of a football. When loose hay is provided in a stable, horses tend to consume it rapidly, and it passes through their stomach quickly due to its inability to expand. In just 15 minutes, the horse's stomach can be empty, even if it has consumed a substantial amount of hay.


The consequence: Gastric acid and stress

For humans, when the stomach is empty, the production of stomach acid decreases. However, this is not the case for horses. Their stomachs continue to produce gastric acid because they are naturally inclined to graze frequently. In response to this continuous acid production and empty stomach sensation, horses produce the stress hormone Cortisol. This hormone creates discomfort, stress, and the urge to seek food to alleviate the discomfort, ultimately leading to destructive behavior.


Gastric acid and gastroesophageal reflux (heartburn)

Imagine experiencing heartburn for hours every day while confined to a locked room out of sheer boredom. It's not a pleasant thought. In this state, you'd likely resort to any means necessary to find relief from the discomfort and stress.


FeedingMaster and destructive behavior

A Shire eating from a FeedingMaster
Shire

When you introduce a FeedingMaster into your horse's stable, it may initially become the target of destructive behavior. However, the FeedingMaster has been purposefully designed to withstand such challenges. The materials used are robust, capable of handling significant force. Extensive simulations were conducted to assess the FeedingMaster's durability, even subjecting it to forces double that of a 1000 kg horse. In addition, our own horses at the stable were put to the test, where we witnessed everything from kicking to standing on top of the FeedingMaster with two front legs.

The transformative effect

Here's the remarkable part: after a few days, something incredible occurs. Because the horse's stomach is never empty, heartburn and its accompanying stress hormone, Cortisol, are no longer issues. As a result, the destructive behavior ceases. In our own stables, we employ camera monitoring and log systems with the FeedingMasters to observe and analyze eating patterns while we sleep. The results are a testament to natural, continuous eating interrupted by short rest breaks and occasional half-hour periods of sleep while lying down—just as it should be.


The FeedingMaster can also be used by Shire horses

At Valetudo Horse Products, we prioritize the well-being of your horse and are dedicated to providing innovative solutions to enhance their quality of life. The FeedingMaster is more than a feeding system; it's a transformative experience for your equine companion.

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