Protect Your Horses from Predatory Wildlife

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Protect Your Horse from Predatory Wildlife
In cases of wildlife threats, Fish and Game works hand in hand with the United States Wildlife Service, so a call to either agency should be your best first response. | Photo:
Bret Christensen is no stranger to wild animal attacks on horses. Two years ago the Lewiston, Idaho, man and his family lost a foal pastured with its dam and several other horses. Last year his mare, Dyna, was attacked by what Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) officials believe to be a cougar.

“It was apparent to us that the harm was caused by a lion, or a cougar,” said IDFG District Conservation Officer Mark Hill. He, another biologist, and a veterinarian determined the size and type of predator by evaluating the width between each claw mark on Dyna, who has since recovered from her shoulder and leg injuries.

Hill said that once a wildlife attack has occurred and the animal causing the damage has been identified, Fish & Game officials can issue a kill permit.

In other cases, said Keith Huffman, DVM, of Retama Equine Hospital near San Antonio, Texas, the offending “wildlife” is found to be a dog

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Written by:

Diane Rice earned her bachelor’s degree in agricultural journalism from the University of Wisconsin, then married her education with her lifelong passion for horses by working in editorial positions at Appaloosa Journal for 12 years. She has also served on the American Horse Publications’ board of directors. She now freelances in writing, editing, and proofreading. She lives in Middleton, Idaho, and spends her spare time gardening, reading, serving in her church, and spending time with her daughters, their families, and a myriad of her own and other people’s pets.

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