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Common Myths About Horses Debunked

Common Myths About Horses Debunked

Not All Common Beliefs About Horses Are True

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In the horse world, there is an abundance of myths and lore propagated by both non-equestrians and even seasoned horse enthusiasts. Some of these myths have been around for so long that they have been accepted as part of the holy grail of horse care. The long-enduring nature of these myths has also made it difficult to tell them apart from the facts. Here are a few of the common myths you have probably heard at some point.

Pair of horses behind a barbed wire fence at sunset

Horses Can’t See Color

While this used to be a widely held belief, recent research has proven it to be untrue. Horses do see color, maybe differently from how we do, but they can definitely see color. Unlike humans that can see four unique hues and more than a hundred intermediate colors, horses have a dichromatic vision, which means they only see two unique hues (yellow and blue). They see all other colors as grey or white.

Portrait of two horses in a stable

Black Hooves Are Stronger Than White Hooves

This is another myth that used to be quite popular. Because of this belief, many people have passed up good horses simply because they have white hooves. However, the structure of a horse’s hoof is the same no matter the color. The strength of the hoof depends on factors like diet, exercise, and genetics, but the color does not have much to do with it.

Two horses in a field

Horses Only Sleep Standing Up

Horses evolved to sleep on their feet because it made it easier for them to escape from predators in the wild. However, that does not mean this is the only way they can sleep. Horses also lie down to sleep. In fact, this is the only way they can get REM sleep, which is needed for brain and muscle recovery. So don’t be alarmed if you find your horse lying down to sleep. It means you’re doing something right and making your horse feel safe.

Two brown horses nuzzle each other

Horses Only Need Hay

While high-quality hay and other forages remain essential to a horse’s diet, the myth that horses don’t need anything else isn’t valid. Horses require minerals and vitamins that they may not get from hay. To make up for this, it is okay (and even recommended) to give your equine friends supplements, salt licks, and balancers. You’ll find a wide array of horse supplements in our online shop!


There are many other myths like this in the equestrian world. Whether you are a horse enthusiast or not, there’s a good chance that you have heard one of these at some point. Ensure that all your assumptions and beliefs about horses are scientifically accurate to avoid doing things that will harm your horse in the long run. Choose Open Nutrition USA for all your horse’s supplement needs today!