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How to Think Like A Horse: The Essential Handbook for Understanding Why Horses Do What They Do

Horse Stable and Riding Arena Design

Horse Owner's Veterinary Handbook (Howell Reference Books)

Horsekeeping on a Small Acreage: Designing and Managing Your Equine Facilities

- Horse Terms Beginning With C -
Caballero: literally means 'horseman' in Spanish, but also refers to any man

Caballo: the Spanish word for the horse

Cabriolet: a high, single horse, two-wheeled, hooded vehicle for two people. It has a rear platform for the Tiger (pygmy groom) to stand on. Fashionable in the early Victorian era

Cacolet: a structure attached on each side of a packsaddle to transport an injured man, either in the sitting or lying position

Cadence: the rhythmic clarity of a gait

Caesarean Section: surgical removal of a foal from the dam's abdomen, performed under general anesthesia

Calcium-Phosphorus Ratio: the amount of calcium compared to the amount of phosphorus in the diet. A ratio of somewhere between 1:1 or 2:1 is conductive to proper bone development

Calf-Knee: conformational fault where the horse's knee has a concave look below the knee; it looks as though the lower leg were attached a bit under the knee instead of straight on

Calk: a pointed projection on a horseshoe to prevent slipping; to injure with the calk on a shoe

Calked Shoes: shoes having projections downward from the toe or heel to provide better traction

Call: to describe the running of a race. A specific point in a race at which running positions are recorded. A verbal contract between a jockey and a trainer

Caltrop: an iron ball with four sharp prongs, thrown in front of a cavalry to hinder their advance

Camarillo White Horse: This rare breed originated in Camarillo, California. In 1912, a white Spanish-blooded colt was born; Adolfo Camarillo, the city's founder, finding this 'stallion of a dream', bought him and began the breed. Over the next few years, Sultan, as he was called, won many stock championships throughout California. Adolfo kept him and bred him to many Morgan mares, and never sold a white horse, but instead would occasionally give one as a gift. The horses were used in parades, until they were eventually sold off in 1987 at an auction

Canker: a chronic overgrowth of the horn-producing tissues of the foot, occurring most commonly in horses housed under unsanitary conditions

Cannons: the lower parts of the horse's legs between the fetlocks and the knees or hocks

Canter: the English term for a three-beat gait with right and left leads. The canter has the same foot fall pattern as the lope, which is the Western term

Cantharidin: a toxin in blister beetles responsible for blister beetle poisoning in horses

Cantle: the back of the seat of the saddle

Capel: a heavy draft horse used for farming purposed in medieval times

Capped Elbows/capped hocks: when a swelling occurs in either area as a result of direct blow, or chaffing

Capping: if the rear foot of a horse sets down squarely on the track of the same side front foot as it is set down, the horse is said to be capping

Capillary Test: press the gum with your thumb which temporarily restricts the flow of blood to that area. When you remove your thumb, the blood should immediately flow back into the capillaries; if it takes longer than normal, it is a sign of ill health

Capriole: one of the Airs Above the Ground moves in which the horse leaps with all four legs and strikes out with the hind legs in mid-leap

Card: a day's racing program

Carotene: a substance that is converted to vitamin A in the animals body that is found in green and yellow feeds

Carpal Canal Syndrome: annular ligament constriction on the back side of the carpus, causing lameness

Carrot: often used as a treat for horses; it's a good idea to cut them lengthwise to prevent choking

Carriage Horse: an elegant horse used for carriage-driving; usually with Thoroughbred blood in its ancestry

Cart Horse: a large, heavy horse used for pulling carts

Cartoid: the main artery in the horse's neck

Caslick: the surgical technique in which the vulvar lips of the mare are cut and sutured so that they grow together, making the vulvar opening smaller

Cast: when a horse rolls and gets stuck up against a wall or a fence because it's unable to get its legs under it because it's too close to the wall

Castration: removal of the testicles of the male animal

Cathedral: a western curb bit with an extremely high, pointed port. A very severe bit that can hurt a horse's mouth if used improperly. Not commonly used

Catheter-tip dose syringe: a large hypodermic syringe with a blunt nozzle tip

Caulk: projection on the bottom of a shoe to give the horse better traction, especially on a wet track

Cavalletti: ground rails suspended between two wooden Xs designed to provide three different heights for working horses; a very small jump

Cavalry: mounted troops that fought from horseback

Cavesson: leather noseband (customarily used with the English snaffle bridle) that encourages the horse to keep its mouth closed; a lungeing cavesson is a leather or nylon headstall with a weighted noseband that has metal rings for various attachments of the longe line; part of the bridle that goes over the nose and under the horse's jaw

Cecum: the blind gut; in the horse it is huge compared to other animals, holding five to ten gallons of ingesta

Centaur: a fictional creature that has the head, arms, and chest of a man, but the body, legs, and tail of a horse

Cervix: the narrow neck or mouth of a mare's uterus

Chalk: the betting favorite

Change of diagonal: when the rider changes the diagonal to which he is posting

Change of Leg or Lead: a change of the leading legs at the canter or lope

Chart: result chart that shows all horses and their positions at various points in a given race along with the time of the race

Checked: a horse pulled up by his jockey for an instant because he is cut off or in tight quarters

Check Rein: a strap that fastens to the bit to keep the horse's head up

Chestnut: a color in which the body, mane, and tail are various shades of brown

Chestnuts: hard hornlike patched on the insides of the legs, just above the knee and just below the hocks. The shape of each horse's chestnuts is individual, so can be used for identification like fingerprints

Cheyenne Roll: a style of cantle where the edge bends downward to form a rim or lip

Chin Groove: the groove above the lower lip in which the curb chain of a curb bit lies

Chip: occurs when a horse puts in a short, additional stride in front of a fence

Chrome: flashy white markings on the horse

Chronic: a continually recurring condition or habit

Chukka: In polo, a period of time usually 7 to 7 and 1/2 minutes. Horses can be ridden a maximum of 2 chukkas. A game of high-goal polo usually has 6 chukkas

Chute: in cattle events, the chute is a fenced lane that contains a single cow behind a gate

Chute: extension of the backstretch or homestretch to allow a longer straight run at the start

Cinch: a band that fastens a Western saddle in place; goes under the horse's belly

Cinch Strap: the strap of leather on the near side that is looped through the cinch to hold the saddle in place

Circuit: tracks whose meets are in sequence, allowing stables to follow a circuit

Claiming Race: a race where horses are entered for a specified price and can be claimed (purchased) from the race for that price. Claimers are horses who generally run only in claiming races

Classic: a race for three-year-olds, such as a Derby or Oaks, that has a long standing tradition behind it. The American classics are the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes

Clean-legged: a horse that does not have any feathering on the lower part of the leg

Cleft Palate: Birth defect characterized by an abnormal connection between the oral cavity and the nasal cavity; as a result, small amounts of milk often may be seen dripping from the nostrils when the foal suckles

Clerk of Scales: the official who is responsible for weighing the riders before and after a race to ensure proper weight is carried

Cleveland Bay: a breed of horse originating in England as a carriage horse. Increasingly popular for crossing with Thoroughbreds to produce versatile sport horses used in a number of equine sports

"Click": breeding term for a situation in which certain blood lines, if crossed, produce exceptional offspring

Clinches: the folded-over ends of horseshoe nails on the outside of a shod horse's hooves

Clipping: the act of shaving a horse's hair for a stylish look or to help the horse from overheating. Also, when a horse overreaches in its gait, hitting his front hooves with his hind. The horse's hind shoe clips the edge of the front hoof

Clitoris: sensitive mound of erectile tissue in the lower portion of a mare's vulva

Clocker: the person who times the morning workouts

Close: to gain ground on the leader

Closer: a horse who runs best in the latter part of the race, coming from off the pace

Clover: a legume used for hay and pasture

Club Foot: in horses, a flexural deformity of the coffin joint resulting in a raised heel: this is not to be confused with the club foot deformity of humans

Clubhouse Turn: generally the turn immediately after the finish line and closest to the clubhouse

Clydesdale: a breed of heavy horse originating in Scotland and often used for heavy draft work

Coach Horse: a heavier type of horse than a carriage horse, used for pulling coaches

Coarse: a horse lacking refinement, breeding, and quality. A course feed has a high fiber content

Cobby type: a horse that has conformation similar to a cob - stocky, sturdy and strong, with short legs and rounded barrel

Cob: a small horse

Coffin Bone: the distal phalanx or toe of the forelimb, incorporated within the hoof; also, the small bone within the hoof. In severe cases of laminitis, this bone can detach and rotate, causing extreme lameness

Coffin Joint: the joint within the hoof of the horse between its short pastern bone (second phalanx) and the coffin bone (third phalanx) also including the navicular bone

Coggins Certificate: a veterinarian's document that certifies the horse free of the disease, equine infectious anemia

Coggins Test: a laboratory blood test used to detect previous exposure to equine infectious anemia or swamp fever, developed by Dr. Leroy Coggins

Coldblood: a horse, not a pony, of heavy, common or 'cart' blood. The basis of warmblood breeds

Cold-blooded: refers to horses having ancestors that trace to heavy war horses and draft breeds. Characteristics might include more substance of bone, thick skin, heavy hair coat, shaggy fetlocks, and blood that makes it suitable for slow, hard work

Colic: spasmodic pain in the horse, usually caused by spasm of the intestine; the reaction of a horse to abdominal pain by kicking, rolling, sweating

Collect: to coordinate the horse's moving forward with impulsion while shortening the frame for slow motion

Collection: gathered together; a state of organized movement; a degree of equilibrium in which the horse's energized response to the aids is characterized by elevated head and neck, rounded back, "dropped croup," engaged hindquarters, and flexed abdominals. The horse remains on the bit, is light and mobile, and is ready to respond to the requests of the trainer

Color: description or class in which the body coat color and pattern, not conformation, is a deciding factor

Colors: racing silks, the jacket and cap worn by jockeys. Silks can be generic and provided by the track or specific to one owner

Colostrum: the first milk of the mare, containing high protein, sugar, and, most important, globulins that impart temporary disease resistance to the newborn foal

Colt: a male horse under four years of age; a young racehorse of either sex the first year of training

Combination: a series of two or more fences within 39 feet and 4 inches of each other that must be taken as a pair, an in-and-out

Combined Training: an equestrian competition held over one or three days and including the disciplines of dressage, cross country and show jumping; combined training is also known as Eventing

Common: an ordinary, plain-looking horse

Complete Ration: a usually pelleted ration, containing all the necessary nutrients except water

Concentrates: feed low in fiber and with Total Digestible Nutrients of close to 75%.

Conchas: the decorative round leather, metal, or silver discs through which pass the saddle strings

Concussion: the jarring caused to the foot and lower leg by the impact of the horse's foot hitting the ground. Concussion is greater on harder ground

Condition: the shape of the horse is in, its  state of health, how much work it is doing, and how much food it is eating. Good condition describes a fit and healthy horse with good muscle development. Poor condition describes a horse that is run down, underweight, and with little muscle development. 'Good but soft condition' describes a healthy horse that is not fully fit and lacks muscle development

Condition Book: track publication for horsemen announcing conditions of upcoming races

Conditioned Race: eligibility to enter is determined by a set of conditions such as age, sex, races won, etc

Conditioning: the art and science of preparing a horse mentally and physically for a particular use such as pleasure riding, competitive trail riding, or showing

Cone: a red or orange vinyl traffic cone, used as a marker

Conformation Hunter: a class judged 40 percent on conformation and 60 percent on performance

Conformation: the physical structure of a horse, which is compared to a standard of perfection or an ideal

Congenital: an abnormal condition that an animal possesses at birth

Conjunctiva: the white membrane that lines the eyelid of the horse

Conjunctivitis: inflammation of the conjunctiva of the eyes

Consignor: the person who consigns a horse for sale or puts it up for auction

Contact: the horse's stretching forward into the bit and accepting the taut rein as a means of communication with the rider

Contracted Heels: heels are pulled close together due to the frog shriveling. caused by lack of use or disease

Corona: a fancy western saddle pad featuring a border of alternating colored thick fabric

Coronary Band: the top of the hoof between hair-covered skin and hoof where growth takes place

Coronary Corium: the part of the corium from which the hoof wall grows. Tissue containing the blood vessels and nerves, located at the coronary band (coronet)

Coronet: coronary band. All growth occurs here. Soft tissue is turned into
the hardened horn of the hoof wall

Corpus Hemorrhagicum: blood clot that fills pit on ovary immediately after ovulation

Corpus luteum: a yellow gland tissue that replaces corpus hemorrhagicum

Corral: a fenced-in area to keep horses; usually round and made of wood. Paddocks are larger, and pastures are grassy fields for grazing

Corrective Trimming: trimming of the hoof in an attempt to achieve a desired conformational effect, or to undo faulty trimming

Counter-canter: when the rider deliberately asks the horse to canter on the lead opposite the direction of movement. For example, in a circle to the right, requesting a countercanter would result in a canter left lead

Coupled: two or more horses running as an entry in a single betting unit

Course: a prescribed route that the horse and exhibitor must take, usually in hunter and jumper classes

Cover: to breed a mare; the mating process between a mare and a stallion, when a mare goes to stud to be covered by a stallion

Cowboy: someone who makes his living through working on a ranch with cows

Cow-Hocked: a conformational fault. When looking at a horse from behind, if the hocks turn in towards each other it is called 'cow-hocked'

Cow Sense:  a horse with cow sense has a particular aptitude for working cows, and appears to anticipate the cow's next move

Cow Trot: term used to refer to method of moving the back end of a horse when trotting. A cow trotting horse is stiff in the rear joints, and uses the hips for most of the forward movement. A cow trotting horse will swing its tail side to side and its feet out in an arc as it moves them forward. A cow trotting horse will not break over in the hocks, but will swing them side to side in a stiff motion. A cow trotting horse may also be either long trotting or square trotting

Cradle: a device put on a horse's neck so it can't reach to bite or lick its sides or legs

Creep: area mares can't enter, but foals can, where foals can feed free choice

Cremello: a very light, whitish or cream color coat that can result from breeding a Palomino with a Palomino or a Cremello with a Cremello. It two dilute genes, making the light color. These horses also have blue eyes; they are sometimes mistakenly called 'white' or 'palomino'

Cribber: a horse that bites onto something and gulps air into its throat. This is a very bad habit and should be corrected immediately

Cribbing: a vice whereby a horse anchors its teeth onto an object, arches its neck, pulls backward, and swallows air. It can cause the horse to lose weight, suffer tooth damage, and other physical disturbances. It can be a contagious habit

Crib-bite: an undesirable vice consisting of the horse chewing on the stable door, fences, or any hard surface. Persistent crib-biting can develop into windsucking

Cricket: a copper attachment to a bit's port which will spin in the horse's mouth as he moves his tongue. By having such a thing to play with the horses mouth will stay moist and it helps pacify the horse

Cross-tie: a means of tying a horse in which a chain or rope from each side of an aisle is attached to the side rings of the horse's halter

Crossbred: a horse that has one parent of one breed and the other parent of another breed

Cross Firing: a horse is cross firing when the inside rear foot hits first, and the inside front foot hits last when the horse is in the canter or lope

Crossing: breeding horses of different pedigrees

Crude Protein: calculated amount of protein in the feed based on the amount of nitrogen in the feed

Crupper: Strap attached to the back of a saddle and encircling the root of a horse's tail to keep the saddle from slipping forward.

Cryptorchidism: the retention of one or both testicles in the abdominal cavity

Csikos: Hungarian cowboys. They ride on girthless saddles (felt pads with leather corners and stirrups, but no cinch or girth to fasten the pad). They are known for their well-trained horses are excellent horsemanship skills. They practice "Puszta otos", a trick where the rider will stand on two horse's rumps and and drive three or more horses ahead of him, all at a full gallop. This is often practiced by trick riders in circuses

Cue: a single signal, often made up of several aids, from the rider or handler that tells a horse what to do. Often used in performing tricks

Culture: the cultivation of living cells in prepared media ' the technique used to determine if a mare's genital tract is infected

Cuppy: a track surface which breaks away under a horse's hoof

Curb Bit: a bit with a U-shaped projection on the bar which pushes on the horse's tongue or roof of the mouth when reins are retracted

Curb Strap: a leather strap that is affixed to the bit below the reins and lies across the chin groove. When used with a curb bit, it creates pressure on the chin groove From the leverage action of the shanks. When used with a snaffle, it prevents the snaffle from being pulled through the horse's mouth

Curb Chain: the chain attached to the bit passing under the horse's chin

Curb: an unsoundness of the hind leg

Cured Hay: hay that has been dried to allow safe storage, without molding

Curry Comb: a metal, plastic, or rubber device with many small teeth, usually in circles, for cleaning hard-packed filth off a horse

Cushion: the top level of the racing surface

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