Page:Notes on equitation and horse training.djvu/24

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III.

Preliminary work—Exercise by leading.—When young horses, sent from remount depots or by purchasing boards, arrive at the station, the squadron commander should place them all together in the best stable of the squadron, turn them over to troopers known to be fond of horses and make sure that all precautionary and hygienic measures are taken to gradually accustom them to changed conditions and to handling by men.

Young horses should be exercised daily; at first by men on foot and later led beside kind old horses. This exercise, which is at a walk, is of great advantage not only to strengthen the animals but to quiet them by making them familiar with outside objects. The only drawback is that, ordinarily, the mistake is made of invariably leading the horses on the same side. They eventually acquire a false set of the neck which could be easily avoided by holding them for a time on the left as well as on the right.

Care of young horses.—After each exercise, the le'gs are rubbed and the tendons massaged. Following a wash down with plenty of water, the application of flannel bandages produces highly beneficial results to the fetlocks and tendons; the bandages retain the heat, help circulation, support the tendons, prevent windpuffs and swellings. Put on in the stable, they should encircle the fetlock and the lower half of the cannon. They must not be too tight; the fastening tapes in particular should be somewhat loose. It is useless to leave flannel bandages on the legs all the time; the important thing is to put them