What Does Lameness Look Like?

Have you seen the video “24 Horse Behaviors: Shifting The Paradigm of How We See Lameness”?

Starting September 30th, 2022, you can view the 35 minute video for FREE at http://www.24HorseBehaviors.org.

The video features the research of Dr. Sue Dyson, MA, Vet MB, PhD, DEO, Dipl. ECVSMR, FRCVS. She is an equine orthopedic specialist and an accomplished rider in the eventing and show jumping disciplines.

Dr. Dyson wants to expand equestrian definitions and awareness of lameness in an effort to improve horse welfare.

While most equestrians will recognize a head-bobbing trot as a sign of lameness, Dr. Dyson makes the case that many other much more subtle behaviors can give the rider a clue that the horse may be hurting.

The video gives a brief outline of behaviors that horses often display under saddle and how, according to Dr. Dyson’s research, they may relate to lameness, particularly when taking into account the frequency and/or duration with which they occur during a ride.

If you are an equestrian, this video has information you will want to see and consider. I think it has a lot to add to the “is this a training issue or a pain issue?” debate.

In addition, you can view an article on this topic at https://thehorse.com/192855/behavior-test-reveals-owners-miss-signs-of-lameness/.

You can also read the related research by Dr. Sue Dyson and Danica Pollard titled “Application of a Ridden Horse Pain Ethogram and Its Relationship with Gait in a Convenience Sample of 60 Riding Horses” at https://www.mdpi.com/2076-2615/10/6/1044.

Finally, watch for Dr. Dyson’s book to be released in 2023. You can bet it’s on my wishlist.

6 thoughts on “What Does Lameness Look Like?

  1. A friend sent me the link to the video on YouTube which I watched yesterday. It is an extremely well done video with thought provoking and very interesting detailed points to consider in lameness. The most interesting is how horses are trying to communicate to us in so many ways that I’m sure most of us never have considered before. I agree we usually say it’s just behavior but as we see this study unfold it is very eye opening to the fact that more likely it is pain related. I love her work and will check out the other links you’ve provided and the book will be on my wish list as well. Thank you for sharing! šŸ’ž

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is great that your friend sent you the link before you even saw my post today because that means the video is already circulating. I remember reading about her research previously, but I was excited to see Dr. Dyson had produced a video. Some behaviors are better watched than described. Anywho, I think she has so much to add to the conversation about what our horses might be telling us with their behavior. Glad you found it interesting as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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