The Heart of the Horse
We often talk about certain horses “having a big heart,” because they give all they can when asked to run or jump. But a horse’s heart is more than a metaphor. The heart can’t be discussed in isolation; it is just one part of the cardiovascular system, and it’s not the driver – it’s the slave. Ontario Veterinary College professor emeritus Dr. Peter Physick-Sheard says, “The heart doesn’t control the system; instead, it responds to the change in pressure in the animal’s arteries, which in turn is under the control of tiny valves in the smallest of blood vessels.” Causes of sudden death When all the valves open wide to allow blood to flow into the muscles, as will happen when the horse is racing, jumping, or otherwise exercising intensely, the heart has to work hard to maintain the correct blood pressure. Horses don’t have “heart attacks” the way humans…
Subscribers: enter the email and password connected to your subscription.
First time logging in?
Subscribe now and enjoy full access to Horse-Canada.com
Your All-Access Digital Subscription includes unlimited access to all Horse-Canada.com articles as well as a digital subscription to each issue of Horse Sport, Horse Canada, and Canadian Thoroughbred.
Get full access to Horse-Canada.com including all articles from Horse Sport, Horse Canada, Canadian Thoroughbred, and The Canadian Horse Annual.
Read the digital editions of Horse Sport, Horse Canada, Canadian Thoroughbred, and The Canadian Horse Annual.
copyright © horse-canada.com 2014