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Odd habit my mare has....

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  • Odd habit my mare has....

    Every time I put my mare in her stall, either after riding or just coming in from the field, she backs up to her water bucket and leans on it (it hits right at the middle of her hindquarters). It doesn't sound super weird, but no fail, every time she leans against it for a few minutes. Sometimes she shifts her weight from front to back so that she is sort of bouncing off of it. One trainer told me she may be stretching, but I have no idea what she would be stretching! She has switched barns and does it at the new one as well. Nothing seems to be hurting or sore. Thoughts or ideas?

  • #2
    My mare is a confirmed bucket humper as well. Just avert your eyes and give her some space.
    McDowell Racing Stables

    Home Away From Home


    • #3
      Barn rat for life


      • #4
        I have a gelding that does the same thing. He has hock arthritis, and I wonder if it isn't him trying to "take some weight off" his back end...


        • #5
          Ayup--I've seen plenty of horses sit on their water buckets because their hocks hurt. Worth investigating!


          • #6
            My gelding did this as well- he was off the track and did end up having hock problems, although he was leaning on his bucket YEARS before he had soundness problems.


            • #7
              Wasn't there a thread about this not too long ago? OP was Crone maybe???

              BTW- I had never heard of bucket humping until COTH. Thanks COTH!
              Unrepentant carb eater


              • #8
                My mare does this too and I find tail hairs stuck in the bucket to prove it. She will also walk backwards up a wood mounting block if given the chance and "rest" her legs on it. She will back up to pretty much anything including my grooming bag laying on the floor behind her while she's in crossties. I think it's a weird mare humping thing ;-)


                • #9
                  Oh my....my gelding does this too! I have never found anyone else who had a horse who did this, my boarding barn mates think it is very weird but funny! Glad he is not alone! He does it more often after a long trailer ride, or sometimes after I jump him....but not consistently. I have had his hocks injected in the past, seems to make no difference. I think he may be giving himself a stifle massage, but who knows. He is 21, very sound, and totally happy with our schedule of first level/second level dressage and novice level jumping. He is an OTTB, has done this ever since I have owned him (11 years now). I have always just considered it one of his endearing quirks, along with hanging his tongue while ridden and dunking his hay into a big, sloopy, alfalfa soup.
                  I'm not tense, just terribly, terribly alert!
                  If you can't be a good example, you'll just have to be a horrible warning!


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by rockfordbuckeye View Post
                    My mare does this too and I find tail hairs stuck in the bucket to prove it. She will also walk backwards up a wood mounting block if given the chance and "rest" her legs on it. She will back up to pretty much anything including my grooming bag laying on the floor behind her while she's in crossties. I think it's a weird mare humping thing ;-)
                    My gelding does this and so did several other horses I've owned in the past. I guess they all had hock problems Seriously though, if you google about this sitting on a bucket (and pooping in it as well), you will find written various reasons some say they do it ranging from relaxing the thigh or adjusting the back somehow. How do you know for sure why they do it other than just believing whom you chose to believe. If a horse has a hock problem, or any problem, I don't doubt that problem will surface and be able to get diagnosed under traditional vet methods other than using bucket sitting as a diagnostic.


                    • #11
                      Check her udder and vulva for "gunk" build up. That's one place they can't scratch, clean. If a gelding does this his sheath is usually dirty.
                      Breeders of Painted Thoroughbreds and Uniquely Painted Irish Sport Horses in Northeast Oklahoma