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The Dangers of Sleep Deprivation in Horses

Sleep is essential for life. The quality and quantity of a horse’s sleep directly affects their health and well-being. However, sleep is rarely considered as part of a horse’s management plan. A new study has found that poor management or physical problems can lead to horses becoming sleep deprived and at risk of serious injury.

Study Highlights:

  • Horses that don’t lie down sufficiently suffer from sleep deprivation leading to collapses.
  • A 24hr sleep laboratory monitoring study of 36 horses showed between four and 199 instances of collapse during the time period.
  • Horses that collapsed had an altered and very restless sleep-profile. Their REM sleep phases were shorter and occurred while they were standing and, in 86% of cases, happened during, or immediately before the collapse.

Please click here to read the rest of the study as it appears on the Eurodressage website.

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