Crazy horse

crazy horseThis horse is CRAZY!

He’s a KILLER!!

Seriously … a couple of weeks ago Wally attacked me and Laura. He tried to kick me, backing up to me and kicking in my direction and then he bit Laura!

But why?

Usually he’s a gentle soul, always trying to please. Sometimes he can be stubborn. But he never before attacked us! We puzzled over his behavior, we tried to assert our authority, we tried to coax and bribe him. Nothing worked. He’d either run away or threaten us. The really odd thing was that sometimes he was OK. Especially with Julia and the other girls he was OK most of the time. Julia could put a halter on him and then even I could lead him and lunge him. No problem. But as soon as I took off the halter he’d start threatening me.

After several days of agonizing over this problem we realized that we had recently run out of flax seed. In early summer, when the flies started getting bad, we started giving him flax seed to help him with his allergy to the fly bites. It worked great! He used to grow huge welts for each fly bite. When we gave him flax seed the flies were still biting, but his allergies were much less severe and in the places where his fur had fallen out, it was growing back. But then we ran out of flax seed.

And when we ran out of flax seed, Wally turned into an animal. Well .. he IS an animal. Of course … but I mean a WILD animal. But why? What made him so crazy? Flax seed withdrawal?? Well, as it turns out, flax seed, besides having anti-inflammatory properties also contains lingan, which can use the same neural receptors as estrogen. Estrogen is sometimes used to make geldings more docile. So we suspect  that the flax seed made wally more docile over the summer, and when we stopped giving him the flax, his testosterone kicked in more vigorously than ever. When we got some more flax seed and started giving him a cup in the morning and one in the evening again, within a couple of days he was his old, mellow self again.

Besides the possible hormonal effect, the anti-inflammatory properties of flax made the fly bites much less painful for Wally, and so when that effect went away, we think he was just in more pain again, which made him irritable and confused. I noticed that even with the flax seed, when a particularly aggressive fly harasses him, he gets nervous and won’t let me get close when I try to swat the fly.

So we’re not 100% sure what happened, but whatever it is – the flax seed works. Wally clearly feels better, and in the end that’s the main thing.

Comments are closed.