Nature intended and therefore equipped the horse not only to survive, but to thrive, without human intervention.
Is it natural for horses:
- To live in family groups, herds
- To have a pecking order within that herd
- To live outdoors 24/7 – animals of prey, fright/flight
- To forage on the move for up to 20 hours a day
- To walk in to water to quench their thirst and to hydrate their hooves
- To self-groom by rolling or by using their teeth/ trees etc. to scratch and/or to mutual groom with another herd member
- To paw the ground to find minerals then grinding them to a powder with their teeth.
- To self-medicate, seeking out herbs to regulate parasites
- To find shelter from inclement weather
- To self-trim their hooves by covering all kinds of terrain over long periods of time
- To thermo regulate their own bodies, their natural rug being a layer of mud!
Everything depends on it for their mental and physical wellbeing and soundness
Those of us, who have an affinity with Exmoor and their native ponies, need look no further. Albeit semi feral, not truly wild, Exmoor ponies survive and thrive, year in, year out, living free on the moors with no confinement, no rugs, no veterinary service, no shoes and very little human intervention.
In practising traditional horse management, we have removed almost all that is natural to horses for our own benefit.
Jaime Jackson spent 4 years studying how horses live naturally in the wild. Based on these studies he hoped to find a better way for our domestic horses, that they too may live as nature intended. His revolutionary breakthrough came to him some years later. His concept, “Paddock Paradise” enables us to create a natural environment at home, for our horses, which will meet their needs on every level.
Paddock Paradise simulates how horses live naturally. It is adaptable for almost all breeds, disciplines, climates, properties and pockets! To get started all you need is posts and electric fencing! However, I strongly advise that you read the book first. Change is not easy. To let go of all that we know about horse care is to start all over again. I did and people all over the world, have done, are doing and you can too.
For the love of horses, because nature matters.