Horse anatomy posters are a visual aid for students, farriers, veterinarians and trainers as well as anyone with an interest in the equine body. They are a great way to demonstrate the different components of the musculoskeletal system as well as showing how these parts relate to each other when looking at them from a specific angle. They are a valuable resource for those with an interest in horse health and can be used in class-rooms, clinics or trucks.
The horse skeleton has approximately 205 bones and can be divided into two main sections – the Axial skeleton made up of the skull, vertebrae and ribs and the Appendicular skeleton which includes the limbs. This equine skeletal anatomy poster shows the different bones of the skeleton and how they are connected together by ligaments and muscles. Muscles connect bones to allow movement whereas tendons transmit the forces needed for movement. The fascia is another important component of movement – it is one reason why simple skin work and myofascial release techniques are so effective with horses. The poster shows the muscular and skeletal system with the different muscles in groups of three.
There is also a separate section of the poster dedicated to the hoof which is extremely useful for farriers or anyone with an interest in hoof care. The poster clearly illustrates the difference between a healthy hoof and the effects of laminitis on the hoof. It compares a normal hoof with a laminitis affected hoof that has severe rotation and the gap left in the connective tissue. It then highlights how the frog fills in the gap to protect the sole of the hoof and helps prevent further damage as a result of rotation.
This equine hoof anatomy poster also illustrates the keratinous structure of the hoof in a cross section with the frog and sole coriums merged. It also shows the frog as a double-sided connective tissue structure with distinct papillae and lamellar fibres.
The vascular section of the horse is illustrated with histological slides of a blood vessel and a nerve as well as a diagram of the distribution of VAN (vein, artery and nerve) triads. This is particularly useful for farriers or anyone interested in histology as it enables the viewer to see how each part is connected and the role that nerves play in each system of the horse.
The urinary system is a major player in the regulation of hydration which is essential for good health and to ensure that the muscular and fascial systems are able to function effectively. The poster also outlines the differences in the digestive tract between horses and other mammals and the implications that this has for feeding and digestion and is something that Gillian looks at in detail in her on-demand seminar Digestive Anatomy, Feeding and Nutrition.