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Aspergers in horses?

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  • #41
    It is not used as a diagnostic term for humans anymore, so it obsolete for that purpose.
    Originally posted by J-Lu View Post
    Actually, it's not. But thanks for the comment anyway! .

    Comment


    • #42
      Originally posted by 2boys View Post
      It is not used as a diagnostic term for humans anymore, so it obsolete for that purpose.
      2boys is right. Asperger's is not a separate classification in the newly-released DSM-5.

      Comment


      • #43
        Originally posted by J-Lu View Post
        Why Gazzu? I'm not talking about generally "not wired right". What does that mean - "not wired right"? What kind of behavior constitutes "not wired right"? There's a lot of behaviors that fall into that category that I'm not talking about here. I'm talking about specific behaviors. If you have no insight, feel free to not chime in. I'm sorry you are offended by associating specific human disorders with conditions in animals.
        Not wired right covers a lot of territory.
        As for being offended, I'm not, but you seem to have a bit of tailhair under your crupper.
        And, for the record, don't forget that you don't get to dictate who replies to a thread and what they have to say.
        As for your premise, it brings this to mind....
        "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

        ...just settin' on the Group W bench.

        Comment


        • #44
          Not feeling emotional or ruffled here at all about the subject.

          I just don't think it is a very useful or credible hypothesis.

          Comment


          • #45
            Originally posted by Discobold View Post
            Are you sure about that? I'm pretty sure all of us will eventually be diagnosed with a disorder, even if it's not one that exists yet. Are you sure you don't suffer from linear thinking disorder ?
            Funny...then I suppose I suffer from non linear thinking disorder.

            Comment


            • #46
              I dont recall aspergeres like behavior in horses, but once had an arab mare who I would say had PTSD like issues. Normally she was pretty chill and about as sensitive as a typical arab.

              However when a very particular set of steps was carried out-twitching, followed by ear clipping one ear, then moving to the second, she would rear and strike with her front feet. You could twitch her otherwise or you could clip her ears otherwise, but the combination triggered a violent response. Over several months this particular pattern repeated several times, and the trainer refused to work with her anymore.

              It makes sense that PSTD like behaviors would serve to a wild equine's advantages-the ability to remember very dangerous situations and respond explosively to avoid a second occurrence...thus I could see that as we inbreed for certain types of attributes, we increase the concentration of alleles that would lead to enhanced PSTD responses.

              Originally posted by wendy View Post
              They've apparently created autistic mice, so animals certainly can be autistic:

              http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0906140744.htm

              Note the problems are in social interactions- your autistic horse wouldn't do well in a herd setting.
              However to the point above, Aspergers is typified by decreased empathy and social cue recognition, heightened IQ, and a preference for logic, as well as hypersensitivity to sensory stimuli (although it is a syndrome thus each individual will differ)

              To a certain extent some Aspergers characteristics could be advantageous in humans, thus the genes for Aspergers remain. in mice populations, we can breed in extremely inbred ways to fix for odd lab behaviors, and thus replicate the biology of Aspergers, However these dont seem to be things that would be advantageous to equines, so I would expect, simply due to evolutionary pressure, the answer is no for a horse.
              Mr Friendly's Paddock

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              • #47
                Originally posted by wendy View Post
                They've apparently created autistic mice, so animals certainly can be autistic:

                http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0906140744.htm

                Note the problems are in social interactions- your autistic horse wouldn't do well in a herd setting.
                I think the point here would be we "CREATED" the mice. They didn't develop autism naturally.

                Comment


                • #48
                  I have to admit, I really haven't read past the first page. But I do have a comment.

                  We (humans), have taken a prey animal that is physically and internally designed to graze approximately 16-20 hours a day, designed to move approximately 10 miles a day, are a highly social herd animal, and in the wild, purposely do not keep a routine so they can keep one step ahead of their predators.

                  We have now thrown many of them in stalls with limited or no turnout, no friends to interact with, on a strict routine which includes only two meals a day...which leads the highly designed digestive system empty for the most part and prone to ulcers, often little exercise or social interaction...and you wonder why some of them are a bit "strange" or suddenly "go off"? To be honest, I'm surprised they haven't all ganged up and killed all of us. Just sayin'

                  As for Asperger's, you really need to look up the definition. And as for diagnosing a problem, you really cannot do that without knowing the ENTIRE history of the individual horse. Where they imprint trained at birth and it was done correctly? Did they have something traumatic happen to them at a young age? Did someone abuse them early on? Have they been allowed to properly socialize with other horses? Do they get enough adequate exercise and mental stimulation? Does the saddle fit properly...and on and on. There can be a million and one reasons why an animal "reacts" the way they do. Unfortunately, without knowing the entire history of that animal, it can be impossible to understand why they may react to a stimulus while another horse has a totally different reaction.
                  www.DaventryEquestrian.com
                  Home of Oldenburg, Westphalian & RPSI approved pony stallion Goldhills Brandysnap
                  Also home to Daventry Equine Appraisals & Equine Expert Witness www.EquineAppraisers.com

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    Where they imprint trained at birth and it was done correctly?
                    Also highly unnatural, wouldn't you say? Otherwise I agree completely with you.
                    Click here before you buy.

                    Comment


                    • #50
                      I think the point here would be we "CREATED" the mice. They didn't develop autism naturally.
                      yes- we aren't very different from other mammals, though, so it would extremely surprising to not-find examples of every mental illness we suffer from cropping up in the animal world. In the real world, autistic animals would probably die very young, because their inability to fit into the social group and their odd reactions to social stimuli would be very maladaptive. Most likely their mothers would abandon them and they would just die. As to why the genes linger in the population- sometimes it's very advantageous to be "slightly" something. Persons carrying autistic genes tend to have mental traits that are very useful; it's only when the condition gets extreme that it's bad. There are many examples of this- sickle cell, for example. If you carry a bit of sickle cell genes you're protected from malaria; too much sickle cell you get sick. But the trait persists because of the many protected from malaria overrides the few who get sick.

                      Animals do suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder- it's been diagnosed and treated in working military dogs, and is probably under-diagnosed in our pets and horses that have gone through nasty experiences. Animals also suffer from depression, anxiety, phobias, and OCD- the most common mental illness in horses, cribbing, is probably caused by OCD.

                      Comment


                      • #51
                        Horseperger's?
                        "When life gives you scurvy, make lemonade."

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          Back to the term aspergers - I'm pretty sure the OP had no intention of starting a debate on whether these 'odd' horses had the condition - she just put it in the title to describe a horse without taking up a whole paragraph.
                          What is the need to chew the fat.

                          I have a nephew with it - but take no exception to her title. Once in a long while I do believe there are horses who are wired differently.
                          Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            Originally posted by wendy View Post
                            yes- we aren't very different from other mammals, though, so it would extremely surprising to not-find examples of every mental illness we suffer from cropping up in the animal world.
                            This actually made me laugh out loud in a hearty way in which I haven't for some time. Thank you for that!

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              ---"Originally Posted by wendy
                              yes- we aren't very different from other mammals, though, so it would extremely surprising to not-find examples of every mental illness we suffer from cropping up in the animal world."---


                              ---"This actually made me laugh out loud in a hearty way in which I haven't for some time. Thank you for that!"---


                              Yep, makes you laugh, because it is so far off.

                              I have yet to hear of a horse that will take months to prepare to go shoot a school full of people.

                              While there are some similarities, humans are indeed definitely not like horses when it comes to our brain and so how it may malfunction.

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #55
                                Originally posted by Discobold View Post
                                2boys is right. Asperger's is not a separate classification in the newly-released DSM-5.
                                Yet you are familiar with it and know the symptoms. Huh.
                                Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #56
                                  Originally posted by Ghazzu View Post
                                  Not wired right covers a lot of territory.
                                  As for being offended, I'm not, but you seem to have a bit of tailhair under your crupper.
                                  And, for the record, don't forget that you don't get to dictate who replies to a thread and what they have to say.
                                  As for your premise, it brings this to mind....
                                  Exactly, "not wired right" covers more territory than the behavior I mentioned. That's why I mentioned it. Do you have anything to say about the behaviors I described beyond "not wired right"? If so, I'd appreciate it. Did you read the thread? CLEARLY, at least one person with a diagnosed child was offended. I am sorry she was offended. Please, Ghazzu, I've been on this board long enough to know that anyone can reply. But the fact that I can get reasonable replies from some sectors of the horse industry and the medical field and very few on this thread says a lot. Carry on, Ghazzu.
                                  Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    We occasionally joke about my horse being 'autistic'. He doesn't relate to other horses normally at all. Of course, the reasonable explanation is that he spent the first three months of his life in the hospital and missed some crucial socialization. (We also joke that he had 'brain damage' as a baby, and blame some of his quirks on that). He hangs out by himself most of the time, even though he doesn't have any problems with the other horses in the herd. He is perfectly happy to go out alone, even for hours on end, and I don't think he'd miss horses one bit if he never saw one again. Everyone who meets him agrees he is the goofiest horse they've ever met. He doesn't check out or anything along those lines, and he's wicked smart... he just doesn't act very... horsey...

                                    Originally posted by BEARCAT View Post
                                    Horseperger's?
                                    I'm going to call it that from now on.

                                    The horse in question:
                                    http://i496.photobucket.com/albums/r...g?t=1281295468

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #58
                                      Originally posted by orobas View Post
                                      However to the point above, Aspergers is typified by decreased empathy and social cue recognition, heightened IQ, and a preference for logic, as well as hypersensitivity to sensory stimuli (although it is a syndrome thus each individual will differ)

                                      To a certain extent some Aspergers characteristics could be advantageous in humans, thus the genes for Aspergers remain. in mice populations, we can breed in extremely inbred ways to fix for odd lab behaviors, and thus replicate the biology of Aspergers, However these dont seem to be things that would be advantageous to equines, so I would expect, simply due to evolutionary pressure, the answer is no for a horse.
                                      Orobas, interesting post about that mare. Yes, individuals with diagnoses vary. Yes. Regarding aspbergers in human or mice, it is carried in any population when carriers have offspring. In mice, certain genes are knocked out or enhanced, and these mice are mated. If the offspring are viable, they grow up to mate. It doesn't need to be "extreme inbreeding", mice are genetically altered. Horses can breed at age 2, and are often bred at age 3 or 4. They are also bred for certain characteristics, and AI removes any behavioral selection. They live in barns and are well cared for. Horses don't have selection pressure these days because they are bred before certain criteria can be realized and many are bred via AI. That said, the horse in question is the 5th breeding of the same sire and dam.
                                      Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #59
                                        Originally posted by Daventry View Post
                                        I have to admit, I really haven't read past the first page. But I do have a comment.

                                        We (humans), have taken a prey animal that is physically and internally designed to graze approximately 16-20 hours a day, designed to move approximately 10 miles a day, are a highly social herd animal, and in the wild, purposely do not keep a routine so they can keep one step ahead of their predators.

                                        We have now thrown many of them in stalls with limited or no turnout, no friends to interact with, on a strict routine which includes only two meals a day...which leads the highly designed digestive system empty for the most part and prone to ulcers, often little exercise or social interaction...and you wonder why some of them are a bit "strange" or suddenly "go off"? To be honest, I'm surprised they haven't all ganged up and killed all of us. Just sayin'

                                        As for Asperger's, you really need to look up the definition. And as for diagnosing a problem, you really cannot do that without knowing the ENTIRE history of the individual horse. Where they imprint trained at birth and it was done correctly? Did they have something traumatic happen to them at a young age? Did someone abuse them early on? Have they been allowed to properly socialize with other horses? Do they get enough adequate exercise and mental stimulation? Does the saddle fit properly...and on and on. There can be a million and one reasons why an animal "reacts" the way they do. Unfortunately, without knowing the entire history of that animal, it can be impossible to understand why they may react to a stimulus while another horse has a totally different reaction.
                                        Hi Daventry. As I posted, I'm aware of the definition of Asbergers and Autism. Just sayin', your scenarios don't apply to the horse in question, and you'd know that if you read the posts. It's getting really frustrating replying to all of these posts assuming crap that isn't true. This horse's history is known from day 1. It would seem that few in this forum believe that an animal's brain chemistry is anything other than a blank slate at birth, and that they are 100% products of their environment. How un-biological.
                                        Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          Originally posted by J-Lu View Post
                                          Yet you are familiar with it and know the symptoms. Huh.
                                          What the heck does that mean?? I think you are continuing to misunderstand. The term is no longer used to diagnose humans per new DSM regulations. From now on, humans can not be diagnosed with "Asperger's Syndrome".

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