Tag Archives: deaf equine

Equine Anomalies: Deaf horses, Mule babies and Twins

I am reposting this because I am gearing up to write about two new sets of live twins!  And, I also wanted all of you to read about deaf horses again because it seems like the community has grown.


This cute baby was presented on one of the rescue sites I watch.  I tried to adopt him but didn’t get him.  My vet was very fascinated and he thought he could get much interest from Loomis Basin and Davis Equine Science (famous equine hospitals around here).  I really wanted to learn from him but it wasn’t to be.  But, it got me thinking… You hear about blind horses , but not about deaf horses.

There is a society for this.  It is called THE DEAF HORSE ASSOCIATION.  The website is being revised and I have not heard back from the moderator.  But, again, that won’t stop me.  I then went to the DHA FACEBOOK PAGE and saw a few entries.  * Wow, this page has really grown since the first time I wrote this post…

You might want to check it out yourself!  Such and inspirational page for all deaf horse owners.

Click image to go to the Deaf Horse FB page!

Click image to go to the Deaf Horse FB page!

It seems there are two kinds of deaf:  born that way and sickness induced.  The same with humans.  The colt above was born this way, clearly.  Upon reading, most of these unfortunate animals are euth’d.  But, some brave souls are teaching the horses in a manner similar to deaf humans.  They use sign language, which works, and they use vibration.  Curiously, some of the stories on the Internet describe how these horses will stand with their head against their human’s chest so that they can feel the human heart beating — or their breathing — but you get the idea.  The horse wants that connection.

Deaf horse riders speak about what great trail horses they make because there is hardly any spooking.  They just aren’t distracted easily.  Yay!  And, those that have deaf horses just adjust.  They stomp on the ground or bang the gate for attention grabbers.  Also, the hoof beats of resident hearing horses tend to alert those that cannot hear.  Truly, it seems to be not that much of a burden if one takes the time.

(The white horse is an albino who was born deaf.  His owner says he is a great trail horse and she adores him.  I am waiting to interview her.)

But, alas, I missed out on this boy first pictured above.  I am trying to get a follow up on him.  I wonder what kind of a halter they are using…?


*This still fascinates me… I wish I could have heard back from the owners.  I would really, really like to understand how this happened. 

Wow!  Could you imagine these folks waking up and seeing a baby next to one of their pack mules?!! 

Mules are sterile.  Or so it seemed.  Mules, being a cross between a horse and a donkey, have an odd number of chromosomes which renders them infertile.  Horses have 64, a donkey has 62 and a mule has 63.  But, I guess this mule had an anomaly.  The owners are doing testing to figure out who is the Daddy and how this happened.  I have yet to hear back from them but I’ll keep on this one as well.


I am gathering information on two sets of equine twins…. I’m excited to bring their story!

I just love seeing equine twin photos.  Sadly, most twin stories don’t turn out so well.  Usually, if the vet sees twins on an ultrasound, he will “pinch” (remove) the smaller embryo.  But, lots of times, there is no ultrasound.  And, most times, the twins are either stillborn, they die soon after birth or only one survives.  This is because there is not enough room or nutrients for two in the equine uterus.

However, sometimes it works!  Again, I have contacted several of these folks but no response.  I think they are sick of being prompted but I will continue.  In the meantime, I wanted to offer some very cute pics.

Enjoy Friday!

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HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!



HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!