Cribbing in Horses

Horses September 23, 2011 Print Friendly and PDF

Cribbing is a serious vice in horses that can lead to:

  • Weight loss
  • Wear down the top incisors
  • Cause horses to be more prone to colic


What is Cribbing?

Cribbing is when the horse grasps onto a surface (often wood) with its teeth, flexes its neck, and swallows air.

Stop Cribbing

There are a variety of cribbing collars and other equipment available to stop cribbing, but most are effective only in reducing cribbing or are not effective at all.

Why would a horse crib?

Cribbing is thought to be a coping mechanism that horses use to deal with stress or boredom. Managing horses to prevent cribbing is a more effective way to address this problem.


To learn more about Horse Behavior and Vices look into the following articles:

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.