Do Horses Sleep Standing Up?

Yes, many horses will sleep while standing up. Some may close their eyes while others can sleep with their eyes open. One way to tell if a horse is sleeping while he’s standing up is to take a close look at his lower lip. When a horse is sleeping the lower lip is completely relaxed and often hanging down a bit. Horses in herds often sleep standing up, but they can also be seen sleeping lying down. A horse will only lie down to sleep when he feels safe enough to do so. Horses in large herds often feel protected enough to lie down. They won’t all lie down at once. Some will lie down to rest or sleep while others keep watch. They may rotate and give others a chance to lie down and sleep. Horses kept in stalls often sleep part of the night lying down. Speak with your vet Mt. Airy, MD to learn more.


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