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Reindeer on the Ranch

20-Dec-08

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Though you might prefer games on horseback to reindeer games, there are some interesting comparisons between reindeer and horses. Reindeer, for example, can be raised in a small ranch environment like horses. Their diet is also similar to horses, consuming alfalfa hay and a commercially formulated pellet. These facts may be the reason reindeer farming continues to expand throughout North America. But raising reindeer isn’t for everyone, because they require some special handling. Calves, like foals, are often imprinted at birth so they remain friendly with humans. Bull calves not deemed worthy of stud duty are gelded. And, just like horses, reindeer are prone to parasite infestation, from roundworms and tapeworms to bots and warbles (Habronema). Fortunately, as methods of horse care have improved, so have the techniques for successfully raising reindeer. Who knows? Perhaps one day your horse might have Rudolf as a barn buddy!

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Reader Comments

Horselover    Somewhere, ID

3/31/2011 6:57:02 PM

Cool information.

Nicole    Carlisle, PA

12/19/2009 7:48:02 AM

Neat article. Never thought about it that way before. Thanks!

Anna    Maple Grove, MN

12/20/2008 1:07:05 PM

Interesting! Reindeer are so neat! I would've never known they are so similar to horses.

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