Horses are instinctively curious. It begins when they are young and discovering, learning, and exploring the world and continues with them for the rest of their life. When any of their senses are stimulated, whether it is the sound of a ruffle in the bush or the sight of an object running towards them, it creates interest and curiosity.
Horses like to satisfy their curiosity by playing. In fact, they have a natural desire to do so. If you find yourself with a horse who has an overly high play drive, a toy can help take some of the pressure off his field-mates to entertain him.
Normally, horses play with each other physically. It is usually very fast and often very rough. It can involve running, biting, kicking, rearing, and striking. But sometimes, they can play with something other than fellows like them. We can see in this video some completely adorable horses playing and running after an RC car toy. They seem to really enjoy it, and we can also enjoy watching them doing it. We think there is no one happier than these horses playing.
Playing is an important part of the development of all animal species. In fact, it is not only fun, but it’s often the way many animals, and also humans, practice their survival and endurance skills, because toys can also be used as training tools, and you are only limited by your imagination here. Moreover, offering stimulation and activities that encourage horses to interact safely with humans and their environment can help develop the learning processes that improve their psychological well-being and welfare.
But, with any toys or play activities, make sure your horse doesn’t become frustrated with a challenge that’s too difficult for him. If necessary, make the challenge easier or choose a different game or toy.
From encouraging play in the field, entertaining the stall-rested horse, and adding fun to your training, to aiding with proper eating and digestion, toys can promote a happy, healthy, well-behaved horse if you go about it right. So get playing!