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Gallop into Fun: 20 Amazing Horse Facts You Can't Miss!

illustration of horses
Hold onto your manes and gallop into the fascinating world of equine trivia with these neigh-sayers' delight: fun facts about horses!

1. Horse Speed Limits

Hold your horses, or rather, don't - because these neigh-borhood speedsters give roadrunners a run for their money: Horses can gallop up to an impressive 89km per hour, making them one of the fastest land animals, though their swiftness and endurance depend on their breed, fitness, and training to keep them in tip-top, breakneck-race shape.
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2. Horses' Quirky Vision

Whoever said "you can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it see its own bridle" clearly understood the equine's quirky field of vision: Horses are unable to see directly behind them or under their noses, which includes their own bridles—so approach them with caution and avoid sudden movements that could startle our trusty, near-sighted steeds.
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3. Equine Bathroom Etiquette

Who said horses can't keep it clean? These equine poop-sperts are known for their tidy bathroom etiquette: Horses naturally create designated areas for their manure, often choosing specific spots like paddock edges or barn corners to unload. By training them to use these areas and praising them when they nail it, owners can enjoy easier manure management. However, factors like a change in herd or weather can affect their bathroom behavior.
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4. Emoji Masters with Fabulous Hair

Horses: the original masters of emojis, non-verbal communication, and did we mention they have fabulous hair? These four-legged, tail-wagging therapists aren't just great at horsing around or giving you a mane event to remember: they communicate their feelings and intentions with various body language signals, from ear positioning to tail swishing. By decoding their emotive Pony Express, we can strengthen our bonds with these neigh-borly creatures and foster relationships built on trust and equine finesse.
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Horses' Slow-Mo Breathing

5. Horses' Slow-Mo Breathing

Hold your horses and take a breather, we've got some news that'll knock the wind out of you: A horse's normal respiratory rate is a mere 8-15 breaths per minute, significantly slower than our human rate of 12-20 breaths per minute.
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6. Magical Camargue Horses

If you've ever dreamed of riding off into the sunset on a magical, color-changing steed that was born to grace the covers of fantasy novels, look no further than the ever-morphing, marshland-loving Camargue horse: A hardy and agile breed from southern France, their coat transforms from gray to pure white as they reach adulthood, and has thrived in the semi-feral environment of the Camargue marshes and wetlands for centuries to potentially thousands of years, making it the perfect companion for the gardians who herd black Camargue bulls.
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7. Black Caviar's Winning Streak

Hold your horses Superman, there's a new speedster in town: Black Caviar, an astonishing Australian Thoroughbred racehorse, dominated the racing scene by winning all 25 of her races, nabbing 15 Group One titles, being dubbed the WTRR World Champion Sprinter four consecutive years (2010-2013), and scoring a spot in the Australian Racing Hall of Fame while still competing - but let's be real, she couldn't outpace a speeding bullet.
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8. Przewalski's Wild Horses

If you combined a zebra, a lion, and a dash of horse DNA in a mad scientist's lab, you might end up with the peculiar yet majestic Przewalski's horse: Sporting a zebra-like mane, a lion-esque neck, and their own unique blend of horse characteristics, these critically endangered equines are the only true wild horses left in the world. Found primarily in Mongolia, China, and Kazakhstan, they split from their domesticated cousins about 500,000 years ago, preserving their wild, untamed spirit.
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9. Healthy Horse Treats

Horse owners, hold your horses and ditch the Werther's Originals: feeding sugary treats to our equine friends can be detrimental to their health. Instead, pamper your neigh-neighs with fruits and veggies like apples, carrots, and bananas - just remember to slice 'em up and remove any pits or seeds to avoid an unscheduled trip to Dr. Hoofington.
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Toothy Equine Clients

10. Toothy Equine Clients

Hey neigh-bor, ever heard of the Tooth Fairy's equine clientele? She's known to keep herself pretty busy in the horse world: Horses go through two sets of teeth in their lifetimes, just like us humans! In fact, by age 5, stallions have a full set of 40 permanent teeth, while mares clock in at an impressive 36-40 chompers. Moral of the story? Book that dental appointment for your hoofed friend, pronto!
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11. Power-Napping Partners

Ready for a stable relationship with a power-napping partner who stands by you even in REM sleep? Horses got you covered: These four-legged slumbering stags only need about three hours of sleep daily, often standing up to prevent organ pressure and take turns guarding their herd during those precious REM moments when they do lay down for a quick snooze!
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12. Natural Fly Repellent Mane

Horses might not have invented the original "shake it off" dance, but they sure know how to perfect it when combating pesky flies: Equipped with their mane, tail, fetlocks, and hair around the eyes, ears, and muzzle, they have a natural arsenal to protect their sensitive areas and keep their fly game strong, making it best to avoid clipping these hair parts short!
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13. Sleepless Elite Steeds

You'd think horses are part of the Sleepless Elite, taking quick power naps exclusively while firmly on their four pillars of strength: Horses actually only enjoy about three hours of sleep per day, often standing up to prevent excessive pressure on their vital organs, and spacing out their sleep into multiple brief siestas. Giddy-up, indeed!
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14. Winter Fashion Faux Pas

Horse blankets: the equine fashion statement no one asked for! In reality, horses have their own fabulous natural winter coat and insulation skills to keep them warm in temperatures as low as 10-20 degrees Fahrenheit, rendering those extra layers obsolete for most healthy, unclipped horses. Just watch out for the waifish equine models that might need a little extra coverage!
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Stand-Up Comedy Sleepers

15. Stand-Up Comedy Sleepers

Horses may have a hard time fitting into clown cars, but they've mastered their own version of the art of the stand-up comedy: they sleep standing up! No joke here: horses are equipped with a special locking mechanism in their legs, allowing them to snooze on their feet without toppling over for a quick escape from predators, though they do enjoy a good, safe lie-down when the opportunity arises.
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16. Gut-Feeling Superstars

Horses could easily give the term "gut feeling" a run for its money, with their impressive ecosystem of tiny creatures working tirelessly away to fuel their galloping escapades: As it turns out, horses' digestive systems harbor a unique microbial community adept at breaking down cellulose - the main component of plant cell walls - thanks to the help of AA9 LPMOs from aerobic thermophilic fungi that catalyze the oxidative cleavage of cellulose into C1- and C4-oxidized cello-oligosaccharides, showcasing not only the vital role of gut microbiota in herbivore digestion, but also the incredible biological functions LPMOs have to offer.
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17. Thoroughbred Speedsters

Hold your horses, they're not just horsing around: Racing Thoroughbreds can gallop at aston-mare-ishing speeds of 40+ mph, with the fastest ever clocking in at 44 mph, and Quarter Horses dashing even quicker at 55 mph!
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18. Empathetic Equestrian Heroes

Step aside, canine companions and feline friends, for it's high time we trotted out the unsung heroes of empathetic equestrianism – those remarkable neigh-bors we often take for granted: Horses possess a highly developed sense of emotional intelligence, enabling them to detect and reciprocate positive emotions from humans, as well as discerning when a person is stressed or afraid. These fine equines are both expert hoof-stradamuses and sensitive souls.
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19. Coat Fashion Health-O-Meter

Whoever said "You can't judge a book by its cover" clearly never met a horse: Coat fashion is all the rage in the horse world, serving as an all-season wardrobe that doubles as a health-o-meter. Horse couture not only provides a stylish barrier against pesky bugs and Mother Nature's mood swings, but also gives clues to a horse's well-being – a glossy, luxurious coat is a surefire sign of good health, while a drab or scraggly one could indicate illness or a hankering for a multivitamin.
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20. Tiny Falabella Royalty

If the towering Shire horse were Goliath, Falabella would be the equine world's David with size specifications that make smartphone mini versions look bulky: The world's smallest horse breed, Falabella, stands merely 30 inches tall at the withers – ruling the small kingdom of over 300 horse and pony breeds across the globe as the tiniest king.
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