Helping a Horse Adjust to a New Environment
It can take some time for a horse to adjust to a new environment, and become relaxed in their new surroundings. Remember that moving to a new environment is a huge change and your horse may suddenly feel anxiety and scared at the unfamiliar surroundings. In many cases, your horse is also struggling with the loss of other familiar horses and may actually become quite lonely during the first couple of weeks.
The best thing you can do to handle equine anxiety during this difficult time is to spend as much quality time with him as possible and understand that horse adaptations to the environment are a complex process and may take some time. You may find that horses who are used to travelling or showing will adjust faster than others, but generally horses are not themselves for at least a couple weeks. You may find your horse becomes spooked in a stall or is not relaxed in the ring.
During this time you may notice your previously happy and well adapted horse starts acting out with a few new behavioral problems. It’s often useful to ease up a bit on the training during this time and rather spend time taking them out for hand walks around the new property and spending plenty of time with them.
Adjusting to a new environment can be a spooky time for horses, and sometimes they could use a little help from nature to make the transition a little easier. There is a variety of natural ingredients that can be used to make your anxious horse feel calm and at ease.
One such example is Chamomilla, which is an excellent calming herb. Chamomilla can be used to help soothe fearful, angry, irritable or spooky horses and can also be used to reduce restlessness.
Another useful homeopathic ingredient for distress is Kali phos which works on the nervous system and is very useful for stressed horses, or those with a nervous disposition. Similarly Asarum and Phosphorus are recommended for skittish and nervous horses as they are well known for their beneficial calming and relaxing properties.