Care for Carriage Working Horses
~ 2017 ~
~ 2020 ~
Dehydration can cause serious long-term effects on horses, and if not treated immediately, cause death. One of the main health problems that cause dehydration is Colic.
Horses need water to produce mucus in their lungs which protects fine cells from the respiratory tract. When horses are dehydrated and produce less mucus, their protective layers in the lungs slowly erode making horses more susceptible to lung problems, allergies, and even infections.
One of the most common symptoms of dehydration is loss of appetite, which in itself can have a number of effects on the body of the horse. This has a dramatic effect on the kidneys and in some cases can reduce saliva which causes choking when eating.
In short, lack of fluids too long can threaten the life of a horse.
Years of medical and scientific approaches by the UGM Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Government's Animal Clinic have not significantly changed the way many coaches take care of horses. If there is an emergency case whipping a horse, the coachman oftenly avoids veterinarians and prefers to use methods that have not been scientifically and medically proven, such as giving hot coffee or soda water if the horse have colic or cuts the skin if there is swelling.
One that is dangerous for the welfare and health of horses is the basic need of horses in drinking water, horses are only given water three times a day, when eating. The standard of hooves trimming has also not been filled with coachmen. Many limping horses were found but still forced to work, when AFJ held a workshop for carriage horses in Yogyakarta in 2017, with help from equine veterinarian and farrier volunteers from Australia, we met a lot of horses hooves trimming badly, which resulting in injury to the horse's leg.
The government as a policy maker also has not noticed the welfare of horses. Maliboro Street, a horse's workplace, has not yet provided clean water sources for drinking horses. In the regional regulations (Perda) of the Yogyakarta Government regarding traditional transportation, which regulates the Andong (local name for carriage), horses are still not accommodated in the articles in them. This regulation only regulates the physical characteristics of the train, but ignores horse working hours, heavy loads, and healthy resting facilities for horses.
In August 2018 Animal Friends Jogja (AFJ) and Animal Aid Abroad (AAA) distributed examples of non-spill bucket for horse places to 11 stable in Bantul and Sleman. The non-spill bucket can be placed on the wall or fence of the stable. So as to avoid the steps of the horse.
At present there are 560 coaches who joined the Andong Coach Driver in Yogyakarta, with an average ownership of 3 horses belonging to one coachman. Because of the limitations of AFJ, we have not been able to reach all the carriage working horses in DIY. Need more support from parties to realize the availability of drinking water for thousands of horses left.
Giving a non-spill bucket can change the culture of the coachman in caring for horses. The existence of a non-spill bucket placed in stable encourages the driver to always provide drinking water for the horse.
Every one of the buckets you make will increase the quality of the health of one individual horse.