Lyth stable owner Natalie asks public to be 'horse smart'
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THE owner of a Lyth-based riding stable is urging members of the public to be careful around horses if the animals are encountered while on a walk.
Natalie Oag, of the Horsin' Around stable, has been thinking about the best etiquette to follow "so we can all be horse smart" during the pandemic.
"We need to think out of the box regarding the coronavirus," Natalie said.
She pointed out how more people are walking around taking their lockdown exercise and may encounter horses in fields on the outskirts of their towns and villages.
"Simple things like touching stable gates or doors or even patting other people’s horses is putting yourself and others at risk as it could transfer the virus to the owner or result in you catching it," she warned.
Natalie said that feeding horses without permission can encourage them to bite people.
"Also, if there is more than one horse in the field they can end up fighting over treats and it can lead to the animals being kicked and injured."
She said that horses can also suffer from allergies and some plants can be poisonous to horses – deadly nightshade, ragwort, hemlock, yew and foxgloves, for example.
"The list goes on, with some poisonous plants being fatal to the horse. Fresh-cut garden grass is another that can lead to the death of a horse," she pointed out.
"Feeding the incorrect food to a horse can cause illness such as colic, laminitis and equine metabolic syndrome, to name just a few."
Natalie's advice is to be horse smart and try to keep all horses happy by keeping them safe.