The Horse (Soundness and Conformation)

Essay by lindanoteHigh School, 10th gradeA+, February 2006

download word file, 4 pages 2.3

Downloaded 13 times

The examination of horses as to soundness and their selection as to suitability is part of the work of veterinary surgeons which requires sound judgement and the employment of knowledge tempered with experience. It is a melancholy fact that, today, such work is done by fewer with confidence and satisfaction. A horse is sound when it is free from hereditary disease, is in the possession of his natural and constitutional health and has as much bodily perfection as is consistent with his natural formation. The rule as to unsoundness is, if at the time of sale or examination the horse has any disease which either actually does diminish the natural usefulness of the animal so as to make him less capable of work of any description for which in its ordinary progress will diminish its natural usefulness, or if that horse has, either from disease or from accident has undergone any alteration of structure that either does at the time or in its ordinary course will diminish the natural usefulness of the horse, such horse is unsound.

Conformation is the manner in which the horse is formed or put together. Bad conformation may not be unsoundness in itself, but it may often lead to unsoundness. The study of conformation should consist of the appraisement of points of structure and the estimation of their significance in the horse as a whole. In the first place the horse, whatever his breed or job, should convey to the eye suitability in make and shape, with no obvious fault which would upset the whole makeup. In short, the horse must have 'presence' - that undefinable something which, at first impact to the eye, impresses on with the suitability of the horse for his particular work. If the horse meets you well and on a...