The conflicting results regarding the study of motor laterality in horses may indicate that there does not exist a proper method to assess the degree and the direction of motor bias in these animals. Unfortunately, even less is known about the development of laterality in horses, and to what extent early manipulations can still exert their effects in adulthood. We propose a new method that can be easily applied at a very early age thus avoiding testing adult horses eventually biased by human handling and/or training.Forty-six horses (29 nine-month-old foals and 17 two-year old horses) were handled since birth bilaterally and housed in groups in wide areas. At the time of the analysis, in order to minimize environmental and sensorial dis- turbances, each horse was tested in a round pen individually or as dyad mother-foal. The ability/inability to prop- erly execute a circle at trot was then recorded, assuming the direction of derailment, i.e. the cutting of the circle, as an indicator of motor bias.From the results of the study it is arguable that motor laterality in horses is acquired over time: in fact foals tested while their mothers were being subjected to longeing showed a higher percentage of ambidextrous animals, while two-year-old horses appeared biased toward the right (pb0.05). Results are discussed in the light of the scienti␣c knowledge about equine biomechanics, taking into account horses' locomotion that leads to the advancement of the body mass through the activation of a kinetic chain that originates from the hindquarters.© 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.[...]

Assessment of motor laterality in foals and young horses (Equus caballus) through an analysis of derailment at trot.

LUCIDI, Pia;BERNABO', NICOLA;
2013-01-01

Abstract

The conflicting results regarding the study of motor laterality in horses may indicate that there does not exist a proper method to assess the degree and the direction of motor bias in these animals. Unfortunately, even less is known about the development of laterality in horses, and to what extent early manipulations can still exert their effects in adulthood. We propose a new method that can be easily applied at a very early age thus avoiding testing adult horses eventually biased by human handling and/or training.Forty-six horses (29 nine-month-old foals and 17 two-year old horses) were handled since birth bilaterally and housed in groups in wide areas. At the time of the analysis, in order to minimize environmental and sensorial dis- turbances, each horse was tested in a round pen individually or as dyad mother-foal. The ability/inability to prop- erly execute a circle at trot was then recorded, assuming the direction of derailment, i.e. the cutting of the circle, as an indicator of motor bias.From the results of the study it is arguable that motor laterality in horses is acquired over time: in fact foals tested while their mothers were being subjected to longeing showed a higher percentage of ambidextrous animals, while two-year-old horses appeared biased toward the right (pb0.05). Results are discussed in the light of the scienti␣c knowledge about equine biomechanics, taking into account horses' locomotion that leads to the advancement of the body mass through the activation of a kinetic chain that originates from the hindquarters.© 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.[...]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11575/9442
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