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It can be daunting starting equine EMS placements, especially as many owners and vets use

different words and names for things that you might not have heard before. This glossary
explains some of the terms commonly used - we hope it will be useful to you! If you have
anything to add, please let the BEVS committee know.

Term Explanation


Piebald Black and white
Skewbald Brown and white
Coloured Any colour with white on the body (including piebald and skewbald)
Strawberry roan Chesnut with white hairs mixed in
Blue roan Black with white hairs mixed in
Bay Brown with a black mane and tail
Chesnut Brown with a brown or light-coloured mane and tail
Grey White-Grey
Palomino Blonde with a light coloured mane and tail
Yellowish colour with dark mane and tail and a "dorsal stripe" along the
Appaloosa Spotty

Note: If a horse only has white on its legs and/or face, it is not classed as 'coloured'. For example, a
bay horse with white 'socks' is still a bay horse!

Sides of the horse

Near-side Left side
Off-side Right side

Note: In most circumstances, you should lead and tack up horses from the left (near) side


Tying-up / Monday Morning
disease Azoturia / Equine exertional rhabdomyolysis
Bog spavin Synovial swelling on hock - does not cause lameness
Bone spavin
Osteoarthritis of the distal intertarsal or tarso-metatarsal joints in the


Hock Tarsus
Knee Carpus
Fetlock Metacarpo-phalangeal or metatarso-phalangeal joint
Pastern Proximal interphalangeal joint
Coffin Distal interphalangeal joint


Cannon 3rd (large) metacarpal/ metatarsal bone
Splint bones 2nd and 4th metacarpal/metatarsal bones (rudimentary)
Pastern Proximal (1st) and middle (2nd) phalanges
Navicular bone Sesamoid bone of the distal interphalangeal joint
Pedal Distal (3rd) phalanx

General anatomy

Coronet band Where hoof meets hair on horses leg
Feather Tuft of hair on the horse's fetlock


Grand prix Highest level of dressage/showjumping
Driving Carriage pulling
A competition involving dressage, cross-country and showjumping held
over one or three days
Affiliated dressage /
eventing / showjumping
Competions organised by British Dressage, British Eventing, Show
Jumping Association Ireland or British Showjumping - these are
generally of a higher standard than unaffiliated events. Horses and riders
must be registered with these governing bodies to take part


HOYS Horse of the Year Show

Types of training
A long lead is attached to the horse's bit at one end, and held by the
trainer at the other end. The horse moves in circles around the trainer
2 long leads are attached to either side of the horse's bit, and are held at
the other end by the trainer, who walks along behind the horse
Flatwork Ridden training that doesn't involve jumping
Breaking in/ backing Teaching a horse to be ridden or to pull a carriage for the first time
Lateral work When the horse moves forwards and sideways at the same time


Bit (many different types
e.g. snaffles, curbs,
pelhams, kimberwicks...)
Metal mouthpiece on the bridle that goes between the horses teeth.
Used to signal to the horse to turn or slow down when being ridden, or to
increase control when leading
Numnah Cloth that goes under the saddle (shaped like the saddle)
Girth Strap that goes under the horse's belly to hold the saddle on
The standard type has one strap around the horses neck, another
attaching to the girth and 2 straps attaching to the reins. Generally used
to stop the horse raising its head too high when being ridden
Crop Small riding whip


Chopped straw that is added to concentrates to bulk it out and slow
down eating
Mollichaff Chaff that has had molasses added to make it more palatable


Bute A NSAID: phenylbutazone (pain relief)
ACP Acepromazine: a sedative


Green Inexperienced horse or rider
Unit of measurement for height of horses. 1 hand = 4 inches. Measured
vertically from the floor to the top of the wither.
Pony A horse that is smaller than 14.2hh
Filly Female horse under 4 years (race horses under 5 years)
Colt Male horse under 4 years (race horses under 5 years)
Gelding Neutered male horse
Stallion Entire male horse
Broodmare A female horse used solely for producing foals
Dam Mother of a horse
Sire Father of a horse
Bomb-proof A horse that doesn't spook easily
Sound Not lame
Bolting When a horse suddenly spooks and runs away, with or without a rider
Napping Refusing to go forwards, often pulling towards the gate or horses
The muscles over the neck, withers, back, loin and croup, from the side
his withers should be higher than his croup
A horse working correctly in the desired fashion when ridden, in a
rounded frame with the poll as the highest point and tracking up
On the bit
When the horse is relaxed and accepts the bit, working with its head in a
verticle position and a rounded back
Tracking up
When a horse 'tracks up' his hind hooves step into the hoof prints left by
his fore feet (in walk, trot and canter)
Good doer A horse that thrives with little food and has no trouble keeping weight on
Brushing When one hoof catches the opposite leg and injuries it when moving
Over-reaching When a horse steps on the heel of it's front foot with it's hind foot

Types of horse

A stoutly built horse under 15.2hh, often with a hogged mane (cut very
short and bristy) with large joints and bones, usually 9inches at the
Maxicob A cob exceeding 155cm
Tb Thoroughbred; the breed used in racing
Horses and ponies with smaller joints and slender frames, such as the
Medium-framed horses used as 'sports horses' (eg eventing) with
bloodlines recognising this; often a cross between
thoroughbreds/arabians and draughts; notably the Oldenburg, Belgian
warmblood, Dutch warmblood and Hanoverian
A horse selectively bred for pulling heavy loads and with consequently
large shoulders and often described as 'heavy boned' due to their large
joints and cannon bones; commonly includes the Shire, Clydesdale, and
Irish Draught
Breeds including the Andalusian, Lusitano and Sorraia; Spanish and
Portugese horses renowned for their ease of training