Horses are large domesticated mammals that are incredibly strong and smart. They live all over the world except Antarctica. There are about 60 million horses in the world. Horses can run indeed after being born incredibly. They can see about every direction except directly behind them and, interestingly enough, directly in front of them. They can communicate with each other through sounds and facial expressions. Also, horses have excellent problem-solving skills that can get them out of all kinds of jams, and sometimes they can kick them in trouble.
How do horses run so fast?
Over thousands of years, we use horsepower as a unit of measure. In modern-day cars, one of the most popular brands, like Ferrari, is inspired by horse speed, and they use their brand logo.
- Horse running speed: 88-90 km/h.
Arabian horse speed: 40 mph or 65 km/h.
Here are some facts that give horses the ability to blazing speed.
Slow-twitch muscles: They can run fast because of their strong thigh muscles. They can jump far because of their long calves. Their hooves are tough, and they make a rhythmic clapping sound. The more they run, the more their hopes get worn down. When they run, it’s like they’re wearing nice shoes with their manes blowing in the wind.
These muscles burn oxygen much more efficiently, giving horses great mpg. Thoroughbreds have twice as many of these muscles as quarter horses. They have good vascularization. Vascularization means lots of blood vessels to the muscles. Horses have a good mix of muscle. Wire horses so fast because their physiology is just so superior.
Spleen: When the going gets tough, the spleen kicks in, churning out an additional 12 liters of blood and greatly boosting oxygen levels throughout the body.
Big hearts: The bigger the heart, the more blood to fuel the muscles. And it’s not uncommon for some horses to have a heart twice as big as the standard size. It’s referred to as the large heart gene. Secretariat famously possesses this gene. And his heart is estimated to have weighed over 20 pounds.
Latherin: Latherin, better known as sweat. Unlike humans, equine sweat is a protein-based detergent-like fluid. And this facilitates the cooling process a whole lot better than others.
Respiratory tract: Air intake fuels the whole process. The upper respiratory tract is one of the first things you evaluate when considering a horses’ potential. And it is constantly monitored throughout their career. It makes horses one of nature’s fastest, most robust, and grittiest animals.
Bones: In thousands of years ago, they used to have four toes. Horses have elbows and knees, just the way people do. They have a forearm and elbow. They gallop and move in a straight motion. How do the legs move together, or how do the legs move, individual joints within the legs? We can define motion patterns throughout the horse’s ankle. It allows measuring angular accelerations to measure velocities of the lens, speed of a joint as it’s changing angle throughout. That gives the ability to define motion patterns in very great detail about the horse.
Breathe power: Horses are obligate nose breathers. It means that they cannot breathe through their mouths. And that’s an excellent evolutionary adaptation because it means horses separate their breathing. They’re swallowing a lot better than others. So they’re just from the get-go. They’re meant to be able to run at any moment.
Studies show that horse’s body structure makes their speed faster and keep fit.
5 amazing facts about horses
There are many facts and science about the horse. Here are 5 common facts.
1. The color of a ribbon on a horse’s tail can tell a lot about it. Blue ribbons are for male horses or stallions. And pink ribbons are for female horses, called mares, who are ready to have babies soon.
2. There are lots of different horse breeds, like hundreds of them! Most breeds can be divided into three basic categories: light horses, heavy horses, and feral horses.
Light and heavy horses are grouped based on their weight. Popular light horse breeds include Andalusians, Arabians, and thoroughbreds. Heavy breeds are also called draft horses, which means they’re used to pull heavy loads around.
This includes shire horses, Clydesdales, and the American cream draft. Feral horses are domesticated but roam-free instead of living in small stables. Spirit is a wild horse breed, the Kiger mustang.
3. Horses eat a lot. Larger and lighter horses eat different amounts, but they still put down a surprising amount of food, no matter the horse. So, like humans, horses will generally keep eating and eating. Some experts even estimate that horses can eat seven times their body weight each year. That’s about 29 pounds
of food every day for an average-sized horse.
4. Horses are related to an order of animals called Perissodactyla, a scientific term for large mammals with an odd number of toes. Some of their relatives are a bit less shocking, like donkeys and zebras. But there are a few animals closely related to horses that you might not expect: the pig-like tapir and the giant rhino!
5. Horses are surprisingly emotional creatures. They use their faces to express emotions, just like people. But they also use their ears and nostrils to communicate their feelings. When a horse’s ears are pinned back, it means they’re angry and maybe about to bite or kick. If their ears are swiveling all-around quickly, the horse is likely anxious or scared. But if they’re turned out to the side, you’ve got a relaxed horse on your hands.
Studies show that horses are good at understanding human emotions too. They can read facial expressions.
Goody, John. Horse Anatomy (2nd ed.). J A Allen. ISBN 978-0-85131-769-4.
Ensminger, M. E. Horses and Horsemanship 6th edition USA: Interstate Publishers.
Tristan David Martin Roberts, Understanding Balance: The Mechanics of Posture and Locomotion, Nelson Thornes.
Harris, Susan E. Horse Gaits, Balance and Movement New York: Howell Book House.