10 Things to Consider When Shopping for Betta Fish Tanks

Bettas are among the most interesting and low-maintenance fish you can keep. And their ability to breathe atmospheric oxygen and live in very small volumes of water allows them to be housed in a variety of small aquaria that can complement any home or office. However, there are some important considerations to bear in mind when shopping around for the perfect tank for your pet betta. Please read on as we discuss these issues and our own opinions on what to look for in a small betta tank.

Characteristics of The Best Betta Fish Tanks

1) Adequate Size

Yes, it’s true that a betta can live in a small bowl, if it had to. But this is not the most fulfilling life for such a regal fish. In addition, very small bowls are prone to heating and cooling extremely rapidly, as well as suffering quickly from pollution that can easily occur from even slight overfeeding. As a general rule of thumb, we suggest a minimum tank size of one gallon to keep one adult betta. Of course, your betta would be happy if you provided a larger aquarium, but a gallon container is generally sufficient so long as it is diligently maintained. Bettas can also be housed in community tanks, but take care not to keep them with fish that tend to nip fins. For example, tiger barbs are notorious for fin nipping, and will shred a betta’s fins very quickly. Shredded fins are not just a cosmetic issue, unfortunately, and a betta with badly torn fins can easily die from stress and/or secondary infections like ick/fungus.

2) A Good, Tight Fitting Cover

Bettas are not what I’d consider big time “jumpers,” but they can and will jump when given half a chance. Sometimes osmotic or other stress will cause them to jump, and sometimes they will leap simply because the can. To minimize any risk of such escape, for whatever reason, do yourself a favor and put a lid on the tank. Be careful though to leave some air space between the surface of the water and the cover as they are air breathers and need to gulp air occasionally.

3) No Strong Currents or Water Movement

This is a consideration that I often see overlooked, especially in some of the smaller betta tanks. Bettas have evolved to thrive in still or stagnant waters where this no little or no current. And, as a consequence of this design, they are unhappy when subjected to currents typically generated by hang on back filters or powerful aeration. Bettas require water that is either still, or very placid. They do not require aeration of any kind, especially when properly maintained and in a tank by themselves. If you do use a filter at all, make sure that the tank is large enough (e.g., 3 gallons or more) or the filter can be dialed down (e.g., an air release valve on an aquarium pump) such that the betta does not need to exert effort to maintain its position in the water column. If your betta is getting pushed around or fighting to stay still, it will put constant stain on the fish that can eventually lead to disease or death.

4) Bare Floor or Fine Substrates

Bettas don’t need or want any substrate in their tanks. In fact, bare bottom tanks are best for you and the betta since they facilitate easy clean up. If you do want to add some colorful gravel, however, keep it sparse and opt for relatively small grained types, rather than the large, marble-sized gravel that is often sold for small decorative bowls/tanks. Very course gravel makes a great trap for uneaten food, which then decays and causes potentially lethal ammonia spikes. Finer gravel (pea-sized or smaller) allows the fish to get at food that lands on the bottom, and still allows you to see when food is left uneaten and needs removal – both of which is better for your fish.

5) Regular Light Cycles

Fish, like most vertebrates, react profoundly to light cycles. As a species that lives close to the equator, your betta will expect a photoperiod of roughly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness. If you don’t use artificial lighting, you don’t need to provide any, but avoid turning the lights on late at night when your fish is preparing to “sleep.” Also, try to purchase a tank that uses LED lighting. LED lights are by far the most efficient and long-lasting type you can buy, and also generate the least amount of unwanted heat.

6) Warm Temperatures

Unlike goldfish, for example, which can thrive in very cold water, betta are a very tropical fish. In their native waters of Southeast Asia, they rarely experience temperatures below 76 F. Consequently, you should always aim to keep your bettas at a minimum temperature of 72F, with a temperature of 78F being ideal. Bettas can certainly withstand cooler temps for short durations, but extended exposure to water temperatures below 72F make them lethargic and highly vulnerable to infections and diseases, particularly fin rot, ick, and fungus.

7) Individual Housing

Although female bettas can be kept together, males cannot be kept with other males or females. The only exception to this rule is if you are attempting to breed bettas, in which case the male will tolerate the female (grudgingly) only until the eggs are laid, after which time he will attack and kill her if the tank is not large enough for her to escape his line of sight.

8) Good Water Quality

Whatever you do, you must keep a betta’s water clean. This means that periodic water changes should be conducted, which involve removing any debris from the bottom of the tank. A good rule of thumb is to change between 30-50% of the water per week. This keeps the water fresh without changing things too drastically. Make sure to use dechlorinated water and try to match the temperature of the new water to the old water.

9) Placement in a Calm Area, Away From Direct Light

You wouldn’t want to live next to a 6-lane highway, and neither would your betta, so keep the tank somewhere away from heavy foot traffic. It’s difficult enough living your life in a small transparent container, don’t make matters more stressful by locating the tank where your betta will be subject to constant movement and/or vibrations. Also, locate the tank away from direct sunlight, which can cause rapid temperature spikes and encourage algae growth.

10) Simplicity!

If you’ve chosen a tank of sufficient size, keep the betta by itself, maintain proper temperatures and keep up with regular water changes, there’s not much else you need. Be wary of vendors that try to sell lots of accessories for beta-only tanks, like sophisticated filters, lighting, etc. These things are usually unnecessary.

4 Of the Most Interesting Snakes of Australia

Australia is a great place for reptile lovers. It has a high population of snakes, and though many are not deadly to humans, a good number are. Oddly enough, though, very few snake related deaths are reported each year there. If you go hiking, you might see some of these interesting snakes. Just remember to look and not touch.

Because it is so venomous, the most infamous Australian snake is the Taipan. It can grow to nearly 10 feet long. One of them, the Coastal Taipan, is indigenous to the northeastern coast near Queensland. It is considered the third deadliest snake in the world, and if bitten by one, death can occur within 30 minutes. Fortunately, scientists have developed anti-venom to prevent that if administered soon enough. If this snake bites you, you had better hope that you have the anti-venom with you, or that you are less than a half-hour away from medical help.

The continent is home to several sea snakes, too. One genus of this dangerous reptile is the Olive Sea Snake, which is venomous. This snake can grow to over 6 feet long, and it has a strong, brownish colored body with shades of lilac. It prefers the coral reefs, lagoons and rocky shores in Australia’s northern region. It is uncommon for it to attack, but it will if it feels threatened.

In Western Australia, you might encounter the potentially lethal Dugite. Unlike many of the other snakes found in remote areas, this one frequents areas inhabited by humans, even backyards. This is unfortunate because they are so dangerous. Females have no issues with eating the males, so they certainly would not hesitate to bite a human – especially an unsuspecting child.

Northern Australia has a snake that grows to be 10 feet long and gets as thick as the fat end of a baseball bat. It is the King Brown Snake, and it is very venomous and dangerous; so much so, that humans cannot get close enough to it to kill it with a gardening tool: They have to stone it or shoot it.

This list of interesting snakes of Australia is a good start for you should you decide to go on a scavenger hunt for them. These are by no means all of the snakes from that region, and certainly not all of those that are venomous. Considering that there are more venomous species there than non-venomous, you would do well to wear tall, thick boots on your excursion.

Basics About Bearded Dragon Facts

Bearded dragons make very interesting pets. There is a lot to learn about bearded dragon facts and how to care for them. Pogona is the actual real scientific name for them. The lizards usually live in arid warm deserts with little moisture in regions of Australia. They can usually be found in the wild spending quite a bit of their time playing on branches and in the sun in the early morning and late afternoon. They are also good little climbers and enjoy basking on rocks in the heat.

The genus originates from the sub family Agaminae and is from the family called Agamidae. They are naturally cold blooded being reptiles. They posses spiny scales all around their bodies. Whenever they may feel they are being threatened they are able to expand out their spiny scales around the throat to show their aggression. The also can move around their head in an up and down motion to show dominance amongst males.

There are many color combinations. A lot of times they are dark golden brown and also can come in tan and brown. Occasionally they also have black markings. They have the ability to change their color on their scales during a rivalry or when the temperatures rise or drop. Fully grown they are around thirteen to twenty-four inches long on average.

People usually keep them as pets. One of the most common varieties is the Pogona viticeps or more commonly known as the Central Inland Bearded Dragons. Pogona is also a term that can cover other species too. They are quite popular pets because of how easy it is to maintain and care for them as well as their calm nature. They are probably one of the most popular lizards kept among reptile pets. They can be quite interesting. They are happy when they have a properly maintained enclosure to live and play in and make wonderful pets.

They are naturally omnivorous and they consume both plants and animals. When in the wild they eat a large variety of foods. Ones kept as pets most of the time eat green leafy vegetables as well as insects coated with a powder supplement. Crickets are a very common and popular choice for them. They can also consume flies, butter worms, silk worms and one their favorites super worms.

Some popular choices in green leafy vegetables include collard greens, parsley, carrot tops, and turnips. Some orange colored vegetables can also be eaten including squash, carrots, pumpkins, and beets. Other favorites include celery, rosemary, basil, hibiscus, rose petals and oregano. They need a bit of variety in their diets but they are very easy to keep healthy and happy.

Fruits including apples, pears, strawberries, grapes, melons, mangoes and papayas are good too. Owners are discouraged from feeding wild insects because it exposes them to viruses and parasites among other dangers. Some bugs including fire flies contain a fatal ingredient known as bioluminescent chemicals which can kill lizards when consumed. Depending on their environment and health level they easily can live about five to ten years on average inside captivity.

For additional information about bearded dragon facts you can quickly find out more online. Also pet stores have great information on the topic you may want to check out. There are so many different sources you can find on this topic. They usually make great pets and do not grow very big. They usually are friendly and easy to handle even for children since they are tame.

4 Common Health Issues of Tokay Geckos and How to Deal With Them

As the pet owner, you need to make sure that your gecko is healthy all the time. It’s not enough that you give them food and keep their tanks well. There are many other factors that affect the physical condition of geckos. The good thing about them though is that they don’t require too much attention like most domesticated animals. You can leave them for a day all alone without having to worry about their welfare. But then again, you need to make sure that all their needs are met in order to keep your geckos healthy and happy.

If you’re new to raising geckos, particularly Tokay geckos, below are some of the most common health issues they may encounter. Let’s discuss each one of them thoroughly so you will know what to do when confronted with such issues.

1.Parasitism
Geckos can tolerate a few internal parasites just like humans do. But if they’re injured, stressed, or ill, these parasites can easily propagate until such time that they are already absorbing all the nutrients that the gecko needs to survive. Parasites can also live on the external body of the gecko. If you notice some crust-like areas on the skin of your pet, it’s an indication of parasitism. Treatment of this condition includes administering anti-parasite medications and keeping their environment clean and well-sanitized to avoid re-infection.

2.Stress
This condition is usually a result of moving to another environment. During the first days of your gecko in its new tank, expect that the gecko will experience some sort of stress. Don’t take this issue lightly because stress often leads to a lot more health problems such as poor shedding, malnourishment, and more. Giving your gecko some time to adjust in its new environment is essential. Don’t hold it too much especially if it’s not used to it. Handling geckos need time and patience. You should not hold it anytime you want to. Proper timing is very much important.

3.Wounds
Normally, geckos that are living together in the same tank would fight and bite each other. This can lead to wounds. Even those that are living alone can injure themselves from scratching their bodies to rigid surfaces and pointed objects. Wounds can get infected which can lead to more serious health problems on your Tokay. So be careful.

4.Metabolic Bone Disease
All geckos are prone to this health problem. To prevent the onset of metabolic bone disease, they should be given with calcium and vitamin D3. These vitamins come in supplement forms which you can mix with their food. Geckos that do not receive sufficient amount of calcium may experience in a loss of bone density. This condition can result to crippling deformities.

Keeping your gecko healthy can be fun and at the same time challenging. There are a few things that you also need to consider. These include the food, shelter, and vitamins. Your gecko must be well-fed and given attention to so it grows healthy, alert, and beautiful.

5 Things to Expect From Your First Tokay Gecko

Tokay geckos are such amazing creatures. Their natural appeal and charisma is the reason why more and more people are becoming interested in making this particular type of reptile as pet. They may not have colors that are as glowing and beautiful as leopard geckos but there’s something about them that really make them extremely special.

However, Tokays have characteristics and personalities that you may not like. And if you don’t handle it right, you can get disappointed in your pet. So if this is your first time to own this kind of pet, there are some things you should be ready for.

1. Tokays can be very aggressive.
Many people end up selling their Tokays or passing them over to friends and relatives because they found out that this reptile is not sweet and can even hurt them. Unlike leopard geckos, Tokays are more of a fighter. They don’t want to be touched or held often especially if they’re new to the environment. So during your first encounter with your Tokay, don’t forget to put in your gloves. And also, don’t hold it without asking an expert to teach you how. When it bites, it bites hard! So be very careful.

2. Male Tokays are better off alone.
The last thing you want to do is to put multiple male Tokay geckos in a single tank. These creatures are very territorial. Unless it’s a female, they would never want to share their territory with any other geckos.

3. Geckos love crickets.
Don’t make a pet out of Tokay gecko if you’re afraid of crickets! Geckos are not geckos when they don’t eat crickets. Anyway, this type of insect can be purchased from local pet stores. It’s important to feed your pet with live and full crickets so it gets the nutrition it needs.

4. They want warm places.
Tokays are mostly found in the tropical rainforests of Asia. To make your pet feel more comfortable in its new home, you want to make it feel as if it’s in the same place where they used to be. Keeping the humidity inside the tank or terrarium is a must. Ideally, the level of humidity should be between 40 and 80 percent. This can be easily achieved by placing moist (not wet) substrate inside the tank and proper misting. Failure to sustain such level of humidity can lead to various health problems.

5. Tokays want it clean.
Sanitation and maintenance are essential to keeping your pet healthy. In order to maintain a beautiful, hygienic, and attractive environment for your Tokay, make it a daily habit to clean its terrarium. Remove the feces from the walls or substrate, clean and refill the water dish, replace the substrate at least every three months, and take away any other clutter like dried plants, dead insects, etc.

When you know what to expect from your Tokay, you can become the best pet owner. Tokays are not really hard to deal with. You just have to know a little bit more about them so you can understand what they feel and provide what they need.

7 Most Common Birds That You Can Find In Singapore

If you live or work in Singapore, you may often have the urge to know more about the city. In this article, we are going to talk about some of the most common birds you can find in this city. We will share some common facts about these birds.

1) Javan Mynah

This bird is called the white-vented mynah as well. For the first time, in 1920, this bird was brought from other countries to be kept as a pet bird.

As far as breeding and food are concerned, mynah is quite adaptable. It leaves its nests before other birds in order to eat road kills, fruits, leftover human food, and insects.

2) Asian Glossy Starling

Often, these birds get together in big flocks consisting of 30 birds. You can find sitting on TV antennas and feeding on different types of fruits in gardens. At night, you can find them in big communal flocks and roosts. Their voice sounds like a whistle.

3) Pink-Necked Green Pigeon

The male pigeon is more colorful than the female. Often, their nests are in trees. Rarely they are found on the ground. Typically, they get down only when they have to drink water.

The pair helps each other incubate the eggs and the nest. Typically, the male rests in the nest throughout the day, and the female comes back in the evening. Unlike other birds, doves and pigeons don’t have oil-producing glands. So, their feathers are not waterproof.

4) Yellow-Vented Bulbul

You can find this bird in almost every park and garden. In gardens, they can be seen flying around flowering shrubs. Usually, it’s cup-like nest is made of plastic strips, raffia pieces, tissue paper, and plant stuff.

They feed on caterpillars, beetles, grasshoppers, and ants. After having their meal, they like to bathe and preen.

5) Whimbrel

You can find these birds breeding in the arctic and sub-arctic parts of the world. Usually, they fly to other countries, such as New Zealand, Australia, and Asia during the colder months of the year.

In Singapore, you can find them in September and November. Their long bills to feed on marine animals and crustaceans.

Whimbrel was seen at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve after a long time in 2014.

6) Pacific Golden Plover

In Singapore, you can find this beautiful bird on the shores. They feed on insects, spiders, worms, marine, and crabs, to name a few. This bird can fly thousands of miles without getting tired. They fly in flocks of hundreds of birds.

In Singapore, they arrive in late August. In April, they fly back to their original sites.

7) Common Redshank

You can identify the common redshank from its red legs. But the juveniles don’t have red legs. Their legs are greenish-yellow. These nervous birds are often seen flying around the sandy shores.

In the breeding season, the common redshank feast on worms, insects, and spiders. Before or after the breeding season, they eat tadpoles, small fish, crustaceans and mollusks.

What You Need to Know About Riding Your Horse Bareback

This seems to be a much debated topic. There is an even divide in response; some people say yes, and some people say no. They think that it hurts the horse, or that it is not natural because the rider’s weight is not distributed as evenly as it is in a saddle. I say, it depends; on the horse and on the rider. Is your horse bony-backed? Are you an especially thin person? If so, you should not ride your horse bareback; horses have extremely sensitive skin and can feel things very harshly. You would dig into his back muscles and cause his back to be tender so that you could not ride him for several days. Riding bones on bones does not mix. A large rider on a narrow or bony horse is also not a good idea; it will put too much pressure on one area of the horse’s back; thus causing the same problem: a sore horse. Fattening the horse up will probably not work, some horses, like some people, are just built very slender and there is nothing to do about it.

Another factor is your seat. How do you sit on the horse? Is your weight always in one area, or are you bouncing around? Do you move with the horse, or clamp your legs against his sides in an effort to stay on and stay still? If you sit stiffly on the horse, with your weight all in one area, it can be very uncomfortable for your horse and he will not ride well. His gaits will be stiff and make your ride difficult. Do not clamp your legs on the horse either, he may take this as a response to move faster and while you try to stop him, he will get confused thinking that he is being told to go faster. This all factors into whether you should ride bareback or not. I was raised riding bareback first, most people are taught in the saddle first, and so while I find it easy, comfortable, and relaxing to ride bareback, you may not.

Develop an independent seat. Feel as comfortable riding bareback as you do with a saddle, and always, no matter what, start out at the walk until you feel secure and then you may move up to faster gaits. Do not ride at faster gaits until you are certain that you are able to; if you fall off, you may lose your confidence all together. If you decide to trot, start out at a slow trot, and if you feel good about it, and comfortable doing it, go faster. The most important thing to remember while riding bareback is: move with the horse. If you had to carry something heavy around on your back, would you rather it stay stiff and hard on your back, or move pliably with you as if it were part of you? Of course you would want it to move with you, so do the same with your horse. Make his load easier by not being a burden.

5 Tips For Addressing Weight Loss In The Horse

Nothing is more worrisome than watching your horse day after day slowly lose weight and not knowing the reason why. Despite making sure they have plenty of access to good quality feed and mineral/vitamin supplements they continue to lose weight. Here are 5 tips that may get you started on the right track to addressing unexpected weight loss in the horse.

Veterinary Evaluation

First and foremost, ALWAYS have your horse evaluated by your veterinarian if they are encountering any kind of health challenge! I cannot stress that enough. There are so many things that may be affecting your horse’s ability to absorb nutrients, from parasites to cancer. Your veterinarian can rule things out for you and make a proper diagnosis if there is a serious medical condition that’s contributing to a weight loss issue in your horse. I’ve seen too many times people take a wait and see attitude to the detriment of the horse.

Intestinal Parasites

A very common reason for horses to lose weight is due to a heavy parasite load. As parasites develop resistance to many of the commercial dewormers available on the market, you may find that your deworming protocols are no longer effective. Your veterinary clinic can do a fecal egg count for you and let you know what kinds of intestinal parasites (if any) your horse may be harboring. From this information, you can then make more targeted decisions as to what deworming protocols might be most effective for your situation.

There are also alternative protocols that are becoming more and more popular among horse caretakers. Many of these are safe to use in conjunction with traditional dewormers and may help increase the effectiveness of your deworming program.

Some of these include:

    • Food-grade diatomaceous earth – it is thought that the diatomaceous earth works similarly as it moves through the animal’s digestive tract as it does when applied externally to insects. The microscopic silica-based diatom fossils that make up the fine powder penetrate the exoskeleton of the insects, causing them to dehydrate and die.
    • Essential oils – Animals in the wild will hunt out and eat certain types of plants not normally in their everyday diet to help clear their bodies of parasites. Certain medicinal-grade essential oils are thought to help rid the body of internal parasites based on the historical use of these plants by both ancient cultures and wild animals. Whether these help by boosting the host’s natural immune system or acting directly against the parasite is unclear. Oils that may help most are – Tarragon, Ocotea, Di-Gize and Longevity.

 

    • Immune System Supplementation – an organism that has a compromised immune system is going to be more susceptible to all types of infection, including that of internal and external parasites. Adding supplements that are high in antioxidants may help your horse’s ability to deal with these attacks naturally. Immune support is very important for maintaining the geriatric horse.

Equine Dentistry

I’ve been surprised at the number of people that I’ve encountered over the years that are unaware that horses need routine dentistry. There are many factors that play into the function of the horse’s jaw and how the horse’s teeth erupt and wear continually. The way a horse moves, position it eats, what it eats, etc. all contribute to whether a horse will develop dental imbalance. If the teeth are out of balance and the horse cannot effectively masticate his food, they are less likely to be able to absorb the necessary nutrients from that food. Older horses may have worn out the life of their teeth or have missing teeth, also contributing to problems with properly processing their food. Having your horse checked by a reputable equine dentist at least once or twice per year may save your horse some grief down the road.

Adding Calories

Your horse’s weight loss may just be a simple matter of math… they are burning more calories than they are taking in. Upping your horse’s hay and/or feed may be necessary, particularly for horses in heavy training or working horses. However, adding a high-quality high-calorie fat source may be all that is necessary to turn the corner. Traditionally people have added corn oil to their horses feed as a top dress. However, since corn oil is not fully digestible, you have to give large quantities for it to be effective and many horses don’t find that much oil on their feed palatable. The most popular oils that are highly digestible, palatable and provide added benefits to skin and hair coat are – flax seed, soybean, and wheat germ oils.

Alternative Forages

When dealing with geriatric horses, the ability to chew becomes increasingly problematic, not to mention the aging digestive tract becomes less efficient and able to pull the necessary nutrients from what they can chew. Adding some more easily chewed and digestible forages may help. You will want to make sure and consult with your veterinarian before changing your horse’s diet though. Certain conditions, like liver and kidney dysfunction, require special dietary consideration.

Bird Lovers Should Add Native Plants for Their Feathered Friends

Birds add natural beauty to gardens, parks and other landscapes with their gorgeous colorations, happy chirps, and graceful flight. These feathered creatures also assist in plant pollination (i.e., hummingbirds) and in pest control by eating slugs, snails and wireworms (i.e., purple martins). It then comes as little surprise then that professional gardeners and landscapers plan outdoor spaces with the goal of attracting beneficial bird species.

The best way to attract birds into the garden is to concentrate on the cultivation of native plants including shrubs, vines and trees. Doing so is beneficial for several reasons:

1. Indigenous plants have evolved alongside the local wildlife and, thus, are most likely to provide the right attributes for birds to co-exist with. For example, hummingbirds drink the nectar from plants and, in the process, assist in the pollination of the species to form a mutually beneficial relationship.

2. Native plants create natural corridors where birds can fly back and forth in their natural habitats. In contrast, non-native plants can disrupt the flow, so to speak. Such aspect of plant cultivation is of particular importance to areas impacted by manmade development projects.

3. Indigenous plants will not crowd out other plant species, thus, ensuring diversity of plant life beneficial for the attraction of the local wildlife including birds. In contrast, non-native plants may provide abundant food for birds but are more likely to invade the entire area; examples include Japanese honeysuckle and buckthorn.

4. Of course, the definition of native plants will vary from one location to the next, which is also compounded by the fact that many plants are considered indigenous to several zones. The best way to determine whether a plant is indigenous to the area is to ask the experienced staff of your local plant nursery for more information.

5. When selecting native plants for your bird-friendly garden, consider the following factors:

6. Choose plants that provide food for birds in various ways such as from buds, flowers and nectar aside from the usual fruits.

7. Select species that provide food the whole year-round or for the most parts of the year so that the birds will keep coming even in winter. For example, serviceberries, mulberries and wild cherries provide fruits for the spring; magnolia, spicebush and flowering dogwood have ripening fruits in the fall; and nannyberry, crabapple and hawthorn provide winter sustenance.

The more diverse your choices in native plants, the more diverse the bird life in your garden!

Beginners Basic Guide – How to Choose and Care for Your Horse

The first step would be to ensure that you have somewhere to keep your new pet. Whether you own property, or rent pasture, the ideal area where your horse will stay needs to be secured with fencing. The area should be at least a couple acres with some sort of shelter such as a barn or lean too. You should always do a walk through of the pasture before releasing your pet. Remove anything that could pose a danger to your horse such as garbage, poisonous plants, old fencing, dead trees etc.

After deciding where you will be keeping your horse you will need to actually choose a horse that is compatible with yourself and your family. Do not be afraid to ask potential sellers or adopters a variety of questions such as, the history and age of the horse and make sure you take advantage of this time by addressing any potential health or behavioral issues.

Visually Check the horse over well, including lifting the hooves to make sure that they are rounded properly, crack free and have been trimmed and taken care of. You will want to pay particular attention to the frog of the hoof, as this area is an important part. If the frog of the hoof is damaged it can cause issues when riding such as limping, lameness and further damage.

You can judge the approximate age of a horse by lifting the upper lip to look at the way the teeth have worn and the way that they line up. After the age of fifteen the upper teeth will start to overlap the bottom teeth. A horse under ten will have perfectly aligned teeth, where the upper teeth sit right on top of the lower teeth.

If you plan on riding your pet, then you will want to bring your preferred saddle along with you when meeting the horse. After asking relevant questions, you should test drive the horse to make sure that it is the one for you.

It is a good idea to check out more than one horse and familiarize yourself with each potential pet. You should plan on spending a little bit of time with each animal so that you can watch their actions and reactions.The more you know about the horse the better chance you have of choosing the perfect pet.

Horses require a lot of time and care. The basics of caring for your pet are proper food, water and shelter. Your pet will also need to have their feet trimmed regularly as well as being wormed every three months and yearly vaccinations.On occasion your horses teeth will need to be floated.These animals can be costly to own and they are a long- term investment, so you will want to choose wisely.