The competitive Wood horse temperament loves to play rough, even if it means he hurts himself. Most horses will back off when in pain but the Wood horse’s instinct is to power through. In the case of the horse with the torn shoulder he did not slow down when he snagged his skin on an exposed gate latch. Instead he pushed on through the partially open gate, collapsing it and several posts.
My Wood mule did similar harm to himself when he refused to slow down when galloping over sharp rocks. The result was a broken coffin bone. The competition Wood temperament horse will continue to run of jump even when injured. They feel the pain but love competing so much they keep going. Think Barbaro and the injuries he sustained racing because he could not be pulled up.
So what to do to protect the Wood horse temperament from himself:
Scan stalls and pastures for any possible danger
Avoid overfeeding and underworking
Consider relaxing herbs such as Relax Blend before turning out
Turnout with more sedate horses
Provide safe toys like giant rubber balls(expect to replace these regularly)
Keep free choice hay available to keep your Wood horse occupied
The other side of the self destructive behavior of the Wood horse temperament is what makes him so fun to compete on. For the Wood horse there is no race too long or jump too high. He loves the challenge. Madalyn
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