Gear of the Month — April
Managing cribbing in horses can be a distressing problem for many horse owners. Cribbing is often confused with wood chewing but they are not the same.
A cribbing horse grasps a surface with his incisors, flexes his neck, and swallows air. As the air passes through his throat, it makes a gasping, grunting, or groaning sound. As well as being a hazard to the horse's health, cribbing horses can cause extensive, and ongoing damage to equipment and facilities as they feel the need to grasp and pull any surface within reach.
Over 100 pounds of force is applied when the horse arches their neck and pulls. Many cribbers have overdeveloped neck muscles while others are thin due to their penchant for cribbing rather than eating. Most unmanaged cribbers have worn incisors and tendencies for colic.
Researchers are not in agreement over the causes of cribbing, though most agree that once established, there is not much that can be done to stop it without aids. Genetics, diet, personality, and weaning methods all seem to play a part. Cribbing is most prevalent in Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses and least found in cold-blooded breeds and ponies. Much talk centers on gastric ulcers though there is conflicting evidence on whether cribbing causes the ulcers or the ulcers cause cribbing. Some studies have shown that cribbers have less saliva and a lower stomach pH. Most authorities feel that cribbing is not a learned habit.
If your horse cribs, the problem should first be discussed with your veterinarian. Once the need for a cribbing collar is established there are many options. With any cribbing collar, vigilance is needed in regularly checking the fit and ensuring that rubbing does not occur, especially in determined cribbers.
Designed by professional horseman, Rusty Dare, when he was unable to find a collar that worked on determined cribbers, The DARE® Cribbing Control Collar by Schutz Brothers, Inc. works to control cribbing as humanely as possible. The collar fits around the horse's jowl at the throat latch and doesn't affect a horse's breathing, eating or drinking when not cribbing. The collar will loosen when the horse drops it's head to eat, so it is recommended to check the fit at the horse's normal cribbing position.
DARE® Cribbing Control Collar
The DARE® Collar is kept in place without a brow band, needing only a single, 1¾" wide strap and a unique, patented 3-dimensional throat piece that applies pressure when the horse cribs. It can be positioned from either side of the horse and does not require the extreme tightening like other collars. Double stainless steel roller buckles provide multiple adjustments and rust free durability. The collar is reversible. Proven results in controlling cribbing in older, habitual horses and often stops tendencies in younger, just beginning horses.
DARE® Cribbing Control Collar
The Patented (Patent No. 7,946,255) Dare Cribbing Control Collar can be purchased at https://www.schutzbrothers.com/DARE%C2%AE-Cribbing-Control-Collar or from Schutz Brothers' dealers worldwide. It is available in two colors and one size, made in the USA by Schutz Brothers, Inc. Visit our website at www.schutzbrothers.com to view our extensive line of working, training and show tack.