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3 9090 014 547 984 

Webster Fami'- 


Nor:n 3-,ion, MA 01536 


Horses on Board Ship 




(late captain "the buffs") 


"Veterinary Notes for Horse-owners," 

"Points of the Horse," "Riding and Hunting,' 

"Stable Management and Exercise," Etc. 






All rights reserved 




During voyages with horses to and from India and 
to Russia, I often wished to write a book about the 
management of these animals on board ship for the 
benefit of men who were new to the work ; but I 
felt I was not competent to do so, because my 
experience had been restricted to not more than 
half-a-dozen horses at a time. As my animals had 
been conveyed in portable horse-boxes, I knew 
nothing of the special requirements of large numbers 
of horses in stalls at sea. Fortunately, at the 
beginning of this year, I obtained veterinary charge 
of 498 remounts proceeding from England to South 
Africa, on board the hired cattle steamer Kelvingrove^ 
on which there were thirty-three nondescript men and 
boys to look after the animals ; and after a most 
instructive passage I returned to England. Wishing 
to see how things were managed on board ship with 
troops, I again applied to Colonel Duck, Director- 
General, A.V.D., who very kindly sent me in 
veterinary charge of 248 remounts going to South 
Africa on H.M.T. IdaJio, which also carried a large 
number of infantry and no men of the lOth Hussars. 
I therefore obtained an insight into both the civil and 
military methods of horse management at sea. 

viii PREFACE. 

The gentlemen to whom I am particuhirly indebted 
for information which has been utiHsed in the following 
pages are : Captain O'Neal, of the S.S. Kelvingrove, 
and his chief officer, Mr. Simpson ; Captain Newman, 
of H.M.T. IdaJio, and his chief officer, Mr. Norton ; 
Captain Powles, of H.M.T. Tagus ; Captain Ross- 
Smith, Military Landing Officer at Port Elizabeth ; 
Mr. Desmond, who is Chief Government Veterinary 
Surgeon of Adelaide, South Australia ; and Lieut- 
Colonel Nunn, D.S.O., CLE., Deputy Director 
General of the A.V.D., who has been most kind in 
furnishing me with various statistics. ^ 

The photographs in this book were taken by me, 
while I was on Government transport duty. 

The existence of the South African war is my 
excuse for giving as much prominence as I have 
done to military horse transport and allied subjects. 

As this book is the outcome of practical experience 
among horses on board ship, I trust it may be of use 
to readers who are interested in its important subject. 

M. H. HAYES, F.R.C.V.S. 

Authors' Club, 

3, Whitehall Court, 
London, S.W. 

\ St January^ 1902. 


Ability of Horses to Bear Transit by Sea 
Percentage of Equine Mortality at Sea 
Horse-carrying Ships .... 

Ventilation ...... 

Preparation of Horses Before Going on Board 
Embarking and Disembarking Horses . 
Portable Horse-boxes .... 

Arrangement of Horses on Board Ship 
Head-collars and Halters . . . 
Clothing ...... 

Stalls ....... 

Tying-up ....... 

Stationary Slinging of Horses . 

Foot-hold . . ' . 

Watering Horses ..... 

Feeding Utensils ..... 

Food and Feeding. .... 

Horse Attendants and Stable Duties 
mucking-out ...... 

Changing Horses from one Stall to Another 

K_7 J. ^r\.XjJ-j • • • • • • • 

Grooming ...... 

Exercise. . . . . • . 

Precautions after Disembarking. 
Cost of Transport . ... 

Veterinary Remarks .... 

The War Office and Horse Transport 
Index . . 






































1 8. 




Horses in double stalls . 
Bow of steamer 
Side of steamer 

Disembarking sling 
Raising horse out of lighter 
Disembarking horses 





Landing horse on pier 
Removing slings 
Portable horse-box . 

}5 55 

)5 ?> 

35 J5 J? • 

Main deck 

Halter .... 

Stalls with single breast-boards 

A round turn and two half hitches 

A slippery hitch 

A clove hitch . 

Bad type of feeding bucket 

Vacant double stall, with freeing por 

Horse with his tail badly rubbed 























Under favourable arrangements and In small 
numbers, horses bear a sea voyage almost as 
well as a sojourn in a loose box for a similar 
period ; but their percentage of mortality is 
generally high when the shipment is large. 
In this respect, their power of resistance Is 
much less than that of mules ; apparently 
because they are as a rule bigger ; the weight 
of their bodies, as compared to the strength 
of their legs and feet, Is heavier ; and 
they are not so hardy. 

Ho7'ses on Board Ship. 

The history of long distance pedestrianism 
amply proves that small men greatly excel 
tall ones in endurance ; probably because 
their circulation is quicker, on account of 
their heart having to send the blood through 
a shorter circuit. My experience is that the 
same rule holds good with horses. The 
average rate of the pulse of a small pony 
is about 45 beats in a minute ; and that of 
a heavy cart horse, about 35 beats. Hence 
the supply of material for repair and develop- 
ment, and the removal of waste and deleterious 
products are carried on more quickly, and 
consequently more effectively in the former, 
than in the latter animal. 

The chief artificial habit of the domesticated 
horse which militates against his well-being 
at sea, is that of eating grain. Dr. Luff 

Ability of Horses to Bear Transit by Sea. 3 

has proved that the mineral matter (ash) 
of green vegetables aids in the elimination, 
from the human body, of uric acid, which 
is the cause of gout, and which is one of 
the waste nitrogenous products that seriously 
endanger health if retained in the system ; 
but. that the mineral matter of grain is 
powerless to effect this good end. Besides, 
the consumption of grain is productive of a 
far larger- quantity of waste nitrogenous 
matter than that of green vegetables. 
Experience strongly supports the assumption 
that the mineral matter of green vegetables 
not only acts on uric acid in the manner 
stated, but is also an indispensable aid to 
health in the removal of other deleterious 
products which are allied to uric acid. 
Herein, I think, we have the explanation 


Horses on Board Ship. 

of the fact that green fodder and hay are 
much less " heating " than grain. Exercise, 
by quickening the circulation and increasing 
the supply of oxygen to the lungs, greatly 
assists in the elimination of the hurtful 
products in question. Hence, although a 
horse in strong work can remain healthy 
while consuming a large daily ration of corn, 
he will be unable to do so, when kept in 
idleness, as he would be on board ship. 

When horses which have been liberally fed 
on corn are suddenly thrown out of work, 
their systems will retain for a considerable 
time an excess of unhealthy material, which 
evil will be proportionately increased by 
continuing to give corn. All veterinary 
surgeons and the majority of experienced 
horsemen are aware that the combined action 

Ability of Horses to Bear Transit by Sea. 5 

of corn and idleness is a fruitful cause of 
lymphangitis (weed), azoturia, laminitis (fever 
in the feet), and other diseases. Viewed 
solely from the standpoint of health, an 
idle horse should not get any corn, the 
continued deprivation of which might 
impair his physical powers to some extent. 
Consequently, if working efficiency has to 
be considered as well as health, we may 
give a small amount of corn, as well as 
a liberal supply of hay, and, if possible, 
carrots, which contain the beneficial mineral 
matter that makes grass, hay, and similar 
fodder, a necessity of equine life. 

Horses, like men, being the product of 
their surroundings, can accommodate them- 
selves more or less perfectly to new 
conditions ; but the alteration has to be 

Horses on Board Ship. 

made gradually. Also, the greater the 
change, the longer Is the time required to 
attain this end. 

We are all aware that horses have to be 
previously fed for a considerable time on a 
liberal amount of corn, in order to make 
them capable of enduring severe and pro- 
longed labour ; but we should not overlook 
the equally important fact, that corn without 
hard work is powerless to effect that object. 
In fact, the more corn they get while they 
are idle, the longer time will they take to 
become fit for work, after their period of 
rest has expired. 

While giving full consideration to the short- 
ness of the voyage and the fineness and cool- 
ness of the weather, I cannot help thinking 
that a large proportion of the comparative 

Ability of Horses to Bear Transit by Sea. 7 

immunity from loss enjoyed by the Argentine 
shipments (p. 12) during the present war, has 
been due to the fact that they got little or no 
corn up to their time of landing. I am, of 
course, aware that Argentine remounts have 
done badly, as a rule, in South Africa ; the 
chief reasons for their failure being that they 
were injudiciously selected, that their food in 
South Africa was entirely different to that in 
South America, and that the condition of their 
feet was neglected (pp. 147 and 148). 

A point in these considerations which well- 
to-do English horse-owners (like the majority 
of our cavalry officers) are apt to neglect, is 
that although horses of all breeds require corn 
for severe and continued work, they can, as a 
rule, do a fair amount of labour on grass alone, 
and still better on hay, as all practical horse- 

8 Horses on Board Ship. 

- — - 

keepers can testify. For Instance, It Is a 
common practice among English farmers to 
use horses at grass for their own trap purposes. 
As I am now living In the Midlands, I fre- 
quently see such animals go ten miles or more 
to market and the same distance home In a 
day, at a smart trot, and drawing four or five 
portly individuals, without any bad effect on 
the quadruped. Colonial friends tell me that 
in Australia, men often ride similarly fed 
animals from thirty to fifty miles In a day 
without distressing either themselves or their 
mount. Naturally, the drier grass of the 
Australian Colonies Is better than the moisture- 
laden herbage of Great Britain and Ireland, 
for enabling a horse to do hard w^ork. 

Stuffing horses with corn on board ship, 
and then expecting them when landed to 

Ability of Horses to Bear Transit by Sea. g 

successfully undergo semi-starvation on a long 
campaign, is a display of ignorance for which 
the unfortunate animals and the public have 
generally to pay the penalty. 

The following are the chief favourable 
conditions for the welfare of horses on board 
ship : 

1. Seamty of fittings. — I need hardly say 
that if the fittings, whether of boxes or 
stalls, give way during bad weather, death 
or serious accident will be the almost in- 
evitable result. 

2. Absence of over -crow ding. — Horses are 
extremely susceptible to the bad effects of 
over-crowding, even when the ventilation 
appears sufficiently good for the health of 
human beings. I am inclined to think that 
the emanations from the bodies of horses 

lo Horses on Board Ship. 

have a particularly injurious effect on them 

and on their fellows. 

3. Ventilation of the most ample kind. 

4. Good foot-hold. 

5. Suitable food and an unlimited amomit 
of drinking water. 

6. Facilities for exercise. 


7. Facilities for lying down.-^T\\\s is not 
of much consequence if exercise can be 
given. No provisions for allowing horses to 
lie down or for giving them exercise need be 
made, if the length of the voyage does not 
exceed fourteen days. 

8. Shortness of voyage. 



Although I can offer no details respecting 
the death rate of horses carried in small 
numbers, statistics most kindly furnished to 
me by the A.V.D. enable me to supply my 
readers with the following very interesting 
table, which refers to remounts shipped to 
South Africa from various countries, from 
November, 1899, to July, 1901. Unfortunately, 
It is only an approximation ; because, In many 
cases, reports of several shipments were not 
sent in to the War Office or were Imperfect. 
Their omission does not materially affect the 


Horses on Board Ship. 

averages I give, considering the large number 
of instances upon which they are based. 

Table of Mortality of Remounts Shipped to South Africa 
FROM November, 1899, to July, 1901. 

Country of Embarkation. 


No. of 

of Loss. 

Great Britain and Ireland ... 
U.S. America and Canada ... 
Austria (Fiume) 
Argentine Republic ... 




~ 591 




.78 - 


Various countries 




In comparing these figures, we should bear 
in mind the following points : — 

I. Horses going to South Africa from Aus- 
tralasia and the Argentine Republic have not 
to pass through the tropics, which is a serious 

Percentage of Equine Mortality at Sea. 1 3 

danger that animals proceeding from Europe 
and North America have to encounter. 

2. Horses embarked at Flume escape the 
perils of the Bay of Biscay and Portuguese 
coast, to which those leaving Great Britain and 
Ireland are subjected. 

3. The length of the voyage from Buenos 
Ayres to Cape Town Is only about half that 
from England. 

4. Usually the weather Is finer on voyages 
from Buenos Ayres and Australia to South 
Africa than from England and North America 
(New Orleans and Montreal). 


Horses on Board Ship. 

The following instances of successful voyages 
are well worthy of honourable mention : — 

Name of Ship. 

Country of Embarka- 






Mount Royal 


Ft'cmona (Mules) ... 

South America 

North America 
Italy (Naples) 












Only steamers will be considered in the 
following observations, because sailing vessels 
do not travel with sufficient speed and 
punctuality for modern horse requirements. 

Ships vary in type according to the 
purpose for which they are built. Walton, 
in his instructive book, Know Your Own 
Ship, points out that the greater the weight 
of the cargo as compared to its bulk, the 
more severe will be the bending and twisting 
strains experienced at sea, and hence the 
greater necessity for increased structural 
strength. The three-decker is the strongest 

1 6 Horses on Board Ship. 

type of marine weight carrier. In a fairly 
large three-decker, the deck which has 
bulwarks is called the main deck; the deck 
below it, the 'tween deck; the next deck, 
the orlop; and the lowest deck, the lower 
hold. A ship with one deck less would 
have a main deck, 'tween deck, and lower 
hold. The orlop is generally the. store' deck. 
The space between any two adjacent decks 
is called 'tween decks. 

The spar - deck type of steamer is of 
lighter construction than the three-decker, 
because she is designed to carry cargoes of 
less specific gravity. On these steamers, 
the deck which has bulwarks to keep water 
off it, is called the spar deck; and the deck 
below it, the main deck. Large spar-deck 
steamers have an upper 'tween deck below 

Horse-carrying Ships. 17 

the main deck, and a lower 'tween deck or 
orlop below the upper 'tween deck. In the 
Atlantic cattle trade, the spar deck Is often 
called the cattle deck. 

The foregoing names of decks are gener- 
ally used In horse-carrying ships. Large 
passenger steamers have several decks. The 
Celtic, for Instance, has the captain's bridge, 
promenade deck, boat deck, upper bridge 
deck, bridge deck, main deck, upper deck, 
middle deck, lower deck, orlop deck, and 
lower orlop deck. 

In cattle steamers, which are generally 
used for the conveyance of large numbers 
of horses, the spar deck or main deck (In a 
three-decker) is usually protected by an 
awning deck, which Is of comparatively light 
construction, and is, of course, the upper- 

1 8 Horses on Board Ship. 

most (exposed) deck. As it is considered to 
be too weak to carry cargo, it is not 
included in the registered tonnage of the 
ship, and is therefore not looked upon as a 
regular deck. The policy of excluding the 
awning deck from tonnage computation, is 
explained by the fact that the lower the 
registered tonnage, the lighter will be the 
dues. In cattle steamers, the awning deck 
is usually called a shelter deck, or a shade 
deck; the only difference between these two 
kinds of decks being the amount of ventila- 
tion provided by openings in the sides of 
the respective ships, between these decks 
and the deck immediately underneath them. 
A shade deck affords more ventilation to the 
deck it covers than a shelter deck, and is 
therefore used in cattle ships which have to 
















Ho7^se-carrying Ships. 2 1 

encounter tropical weather, such as that met 
with by steamers trading between South 
America and England. The horses shown 
in Fig. I are standing on a spar deck 
which is covered by a shade deck, as we 
may see by the presence of openings above 
the heads of the animals. Almost all the 
big Atlantic lines have three-deckers fur- 
nished with a shelter deck for the cattle 

As a rule, cattle steamers are the best for 
the conveyance of large numbers of horses, 
because they generally have large ports 
on the spar or main deck (Figs. 3 and 4), 
according as the steamer is a spar-decker 
or three-decker. The presence of these 
ports will naturally promote good ventilation 
(p. 37 et seq.), which is one of the most 

2 2 Horses 07t Board Ship. 

Important points in horse-carrying ships ; and 
besides it will facilitate mucking-out (p. 193). 
Freeboard is the term applied to the 
height of the sides of a ship above the 
waterline at the middle of her length, 
measured from the top of the deck at the 
side, and is a margin of safety given to a 
vessel (Walton). The comparative amount 
of freeboard allowed by the Board of Trade 
to a ship is inversely proportionate to her 
structural strength. Hence, as a rule, a 
fully-laden spar-decker would have more 
freeboard than a fully-laden three-decker. 

Stability (righting leverage) is the power 
a ship has of righting herself when inclined 
out of the upright position by some external 
force or forces, such as, for instance, wind 
and waves ; and it depends chiefly on her 

Horse-carrying Ships. 23 

width of beam and on the fact of her centre 
of gravity being low down. The term stiff 
is applied to a ship which has a good deal 
of stability, and is the opposite of tender. 
A ship which rolls comparatively little is 
said to be steady or easy (slow roller) in a 
sea way. 

Walton tells us that the stiff ship is 
generally the one which rolls most, and that 
a steady steamer is usually tender. The 
man-o'-war. The Captain, whose great want 
of stability was the cause of her loss by 
upsetting, was remarkably free from rolling 
under ordinary circumstances. Also, it has 
been noticed in the case of a lightship that 
she rolled much less at night, when her 
lantern, which weighed several hundred- 
weights was hoisted up on her mast, than by 

24 Horses on Board Ship. 

day, when it was kept on her deck. The high 
masts which many steamers formerly carried, 
decreased their stiffness, and also their 
tendency to roll. Bilge keels check rolling 
to a considerable extent, but without affect- 
ing the stability of a ship. They usually 
vary in depth from one to two feet and 
extend for about two-thirds of the length of 
a ship. 

The class of ship required for the trans- 
port of horses greatly depends on the 
number of animals. In all cases speed is an 
advantage, for it reduces the length of the 
voyage, and the consequent ill-effects of a 
sea journey on the equine passengers. An 
average speed of 240 miles a day may be 
taken as a minimum ; supposing that the 
voyage is not less than 6,000 miles long. 

Horse-carrying Ships. 25 

If a choice of position on board be avail- 
able, any ordinary steamer (a mall boat for 
preference) will do for the carrying of a 
few horses, especially If they be taken In 
portable boxes (p. %'^. Therefore, the 
observations I am going to make on horse 
ships win refer chiefly to those which are 
Intended for the conveyance of large numbers 
of horses, In which case the animals will be 
in stalls as a rule. The carrying of horses 
In pens, which are generally used In place 
of stalls for mules. Is so exceptional that I 
need not consider It here. 

In a well-deck ship^ the deck which is 
provided with bulwarks Is the exposed deck, 
and such a steamer Is, therefore, not so suitable 
for the carrying of horses as It would be If 
It were protected by a shade or shelter deck. 

26 Horses on Board Skip. 

In all well-deck ships and those that have 
shade or shelter decks, the deck with bul- 
warks has freeing-ports, which are rectangular 
openings made in the bulwarks for freeing 
the deck from water shipped during rough 
weather. A ship with a flush deck has no 
bulwarks, and consequently does not need 
freelng-ports, because her exposed deck offers 
no impediment to the escape of water over 
the side. In Fig. 23, p. 197, a freeing-port 
may be seen in the vacant double stall. 

A well-deck ship which has a high stern, 
bridge and bow, is sometimes called a three 
island ship. 

It is a great advantage for a steamer 
which is carrying horses below, to be light 
in the water, so that she may be as free 
as possible from the danger of shipping 

Horse-cai'rying Ships. 27 

heavy seas ; for If she begins to do this, the 
hatches (of the spar deck, for instance) will 
have to be put on, and the horses which 
are thus deprived of fresh air will be rapidly- 
suffocated. Also, if any horses are on the 
exposed deck, they will be liable to be 
washed overboard. 

A steamer taking a full complement of 
horses, would naturally be more unsteady 
than a carefully loaded cargo boat ; because 
the greater part of her weight would be 
below the lower deck. Thus, a ship of, say, 
3,000 tons gross, taking horses for a voyage 
of a month's duration, would probably have 
in her hold at the time of sailing, 1,000 tons 
of water and 2,000 tons of coal and fodder. 

For purposes of stability and for the com- 
fortable carriage of horses, a steamer should 

28 Horses on Board Ship. 

not as a rule be less than 44 feet in the 
beam. Her accommodation in this respect 
will depend to a certain extent on the size 
of her hatches ; for the larger they are, the 
less space will there be for the stalls which 
face them. 

The presence of large hatches are a necessity 
for the well-being of the horses on board, both 
for purposes of ventilation and for providing 
spaces which can be utilised for standing horses 
on, as a temporary measure, as in cases of 
sickness, or when mucking out. 

Considerable width of beam is of great 
advantage, in the event of the extra space 
not being fully taken up by mid-ship stalls ; 
not only for purposes of ventilation, but also 
to admit of horses being exercised, and readily 

Horse-carrying Ships. 29 

A cargo of 600 horses would, as a rule, be 
a full complement for a steamer of 3.000 tons 
gross, in which case she would require to have 
a shade or shelter deck that would be more 
or less occupied by horses, as well as stalls on 
two decks below. As an Increase of gross 
tonnage does not give a corresponding Increase 
of length to a ship, a large steamer will not 
be able to take a proportionately greater 
number of horses than a smaller one. For 
instance, a ship of 4,000 tons gross would 
probably be able to take only about 120 
horses more than a ship of 3,000 tons. 
As a rule, 1,000 horses would be a full 
cargo for a steamer of 9,000 tons gross. 
Of course a large Atlantic cattle boat of, 
say, 56 or 58 feet beam, would be able 
to carry on some of her decks a row of 

''O Horses on Board Ship. 


stalls more than a steamer of 44 or 45 feet 

" To ascertain roughly the number of horses 
that can be carried on a deck, cut off all 
parts where there Is less than 12 feet clear 
out from the ship's side, and the remaining 
length In feet divided by three will give the 
number of horses that can be taken, allow- 
ing for spare stalls." {^Regulations for H.M. 
Transport Service.) This estimate Is made 
on the supposition that each horse Is allowed 
2^ feet. Including the thickness of the divi- 
sion boards. 

All alley ways (bridge spaces) and other 
passages over which horses may have to pass, 
should be covered with boards ; for if this be 
not done, a horse will be apt to slip and fall, 
if his feet come In contact with the iron deck. 

Horse-carrying Ships. 31 

Even If matting be put down on an iron 
deck, a horse may easily get off it, especially 
if he be fidgetty or weak on his legs, or if 
the ship is rolling. 

There should be at least 7J^ feet from deck 
to deck, of which space 4 inches will be 
occupied, according to Government regula- 
tions, by a one inch flooring laid on scantlings 
3 inches by 3 inches. The overhead iron 
beams will be 8 or 9 inches in depth. No 
passage for a horse to go through should be 
less than 6 feet in height. This minimum 
will be met with as a rule onlv at bunker 
hatches in alley ways. 

It is an advantage for the exposed deck to 
be covered with wood, which being a bad 
conductor of heat, will prevent the iron deck 
from becoming unduly hot, and thus raising 

32 Horses on Soared Ship. 

the temperature of the atmosphere under- 
neath it. 

Captain Ross-Smith tells me that ''concrete 
should never be used on horse decks, because 
it cuts up easily and forms pit-holes, into 
which urine settles, and the deck then becomes 
foul and difficult to be cleaned. Scuppers on 
horse decks are generally much too small, and 
consequently they often become blocked up. 
They should be about 15 inches in diameter, 
and they could then be fitted with air scoops, 
so as to promote ventilation. Brows (p. 61), 
if employed, should run fore and aft, and not 
thwart ship. Electric lights should be pro- 
vided on all horse decks, with connections and 
plugs at frequent intervals, so as to avoid the 
use of a small lamp attached to the end of a 
long insulated wire, which almost invariably 

Horse-carrying Ships. '^'^ 

gets caught in some object, and then becomes 
more of a danger than a convenience. The 
best type of steamers I have seen for carrying 
large loads of horses, are the European, 
Michigan, Magician, and Politician, all of 
which could carry more than a thousand 
horses comfortably. There is no better type 
of ship for the conveyance of horses and 
troops than the Victorian. A great advan- 
tage which these big liners possess, is that 
they are capable of steaming 13 knots an hour 
with the comparatively small consumption of 
from 45 to 60 tons of coal a day ; and 
besides, their carrying capacity is enormous." 
Captain Ross-Smith is the military landing 
officer at Port Elizabeth, and has had an 
immensely large experience in the inspection 

of horse-carrying ships. 


34 Horses on Board Ship. 

The ordinary type of mail steamer, however 
well adapted it might be for the conveyance 
of horses on its exposed deck, would not have 
sufficient ventilation for carrying large numbers 
of them below. ' 

For purposes of ventilation, it is an advan- 
tage to have — as in the case of some modern 
built steamers — no hulk-heads on the upper 
deck (the spar deck for instance). Lloyd's 
rule renders it imperative to have bulk-heads 
on all the lower decks. 

On steamers intended for the carriage of 
horses, mooring bits should be present only on 
the exposed deck ; for if they be also on the 
deck under It, they will more or less block up 
the passage in front of the stalls near which 
they are placed, and will thus cause incon- 
venience when horses are led past them. 

Horse-carrying Ships. 35 

All decks which carry horses, and which are 
below the exposed deck, should be kept per- 
fectly dry, so that the hay which happens to 
fall out of the hay nets or feeding troughs may 
not become wet, the decks slippery, and the 
dung saturated with water. With this object, 
no cook houses or washing houses should be 
allowed on these decks. 

A ship painted white is cooler when exposed 
to the rays of the sun than a similar ship of 
a darker colour, because white objects reflect 
light better than darker ones. The rays of 
the sun consist partly of rays of heat, and 
partly of rays of light, the latter being con- 
verted into the former when they fall on an 
object which does not reflect them. 

If a ship is rolling so much as to endanger 
the safety of the horses on board, she should 

^b Horses on Board Ship. 


be put head to sea and her speed reduced. 
Running in the trough of the sea will of course 
make her roll. When a ship is steaming 
against a head sea, the faster she goes, the 
more violently will she pitch. In such a case 
her speed should be diminished, if the pitching 
be dangerous to the horses. As a rule, a long 
ship will not pitch so much as a ■ shorter one. 



With reference to cold and temperate climates, 
we may define ventilation as the process of 
removing foul air and substituting pure air 
for it. In very hot weather, not only is 
this change of air necessary, but we must 
also. If possslble, produce currents of air, the 
velocity of which should be proportionate to 
the atmospheric heat, so as to utilise the 
cooling effect of evaporation from the skin. 
Hence we find that draughts, which are 
justly regarded in English stables as a 
frequent cause of disease, are essential to 
the health of horses, for cooling them down, 

1,^ Horses on Board Ship, 

on a voyage into the tropics. On board 
ship, the removal of foul air has to be more 
rapid as a rule than on land ; because at sea, 
the injurious emanations from the excreta and 
bodies of the horses are supplemented by 
those from the cargo, and mucking-out is 
more difficult than on land. As the sides 
of a steamer are of iron, and are unprotected 
by the shade of trees, etc. ; a ship as a rule 
is a much hotter abode than an ordinary 
stable in the same latitude, and consequently 
it requires better ventilation. Also, in the 
case of a large number of horses, economy 
of space has to be practised far more at 
sea than on land. These considerations point 
to the necessity of obtaining the freest pos- 
sible ventilation on board ships which have 
to encounter hot weather. This of course 

Ventilation. 39 

cannot be done, unless the construction of 
the ship Is favourable, which Is a subject 
outside the scope of the present remarks. 
Respecting very free ventilation, I can state 
that horses I have taken to Revel, via the 
North Sea and Baltic during winter, suffered 
no ill consequences from a ten days' sojourn 
on an exposed deck with their heads 
uncovered, while the thermometer at times 
went several degrees below zero Fahrenheit. 
Although the principles of ventilation are 
the same on board ship as on land, the 
details necessary for carrying them out, vary 
to some extent, especially as regards the 
establishment of inlets and outlets for air. 
As a rule we may assume that the atmo- 
sphere inside a ship is warmer than that 
outside her, and consequently the tendency 

40 Horses on Board Ship. 

of the Inside cufrents of air will be to 
ascend. At the same time we must bear 
In mind, that the comparatively high specific 
gravity of carbonic acid gas will tend to 
cause that gas to accumulate in positions 
which are low down and ill-ventilated. When 
the wind Is blowing in a direction parallel 
to the sides of a ship, It will tend to draw 
air out of all port-holes and freeing ports' 
which are unprovided with air-scoops ; but 
when It Impinges on the side, or when it 
Is directed Inwards by an air-scoop, It will 
naturally tend to force Its way into the ship, 
and will thus convert these openings Into 
inlets. Air-scoops (p. 44) can be utilised 
with advantage in various ways. 

Hatchways act both as Inlets and outlets. 
Dividing them vertically by means of a 












V entilation. 43 

canvas sheet or other suitable material will 
often greatly help them in performing this 
dual office. 

The chief mechanical means by which ven- 
tilation on board ship is facilitated, are : 
Windsails, air-scoops, ordinary cowl ventila- 
tors, steam ventilators, and electric ventilators. 
Windsails and cowl ventilators are shown in 
Fig. 2. As a rule, a windsail is only an 
inlet,' and should therefore be kept trimmed 
towards the wind. It is generally used to 
ventilate hatchways. Its diameter should not 
be less than 30 inches, and its lower end 
should be kept at about a foot above the 
deck it is supposed to ventilate. When a 
horse which is standing on or near a hatch, 
requires more fresh air than he is getting, a 
windsail or two may be trimmed on him. 

44 Horses on Board Ship. 

Air-scoops are almost always used with 
port-holes and scuttles, in which case they 
are made of sheet iron, are about 20 inches 
long, and look like a tube cut longitudinally 
in two, blocked in at one end and fur- 
nished at the other end with a rim which 
fits into the port-hole. Openings in the 
side (generally on the main deck ,or on the 
spar deck, according to the type of ship) 
may be provided with air-scoops, either by 
means of the door of the opening (Fig. 3) 
or by boards. Air - scoops being inlets 
should of course be kept trimmed towards 
the wind. In Fig. 18, p. 121, an air-scoop 
may be seen out of use, below the scuttle 
(small port-hole). 

The usual form of a cowl ventilator is 
that of a vertical iron tube provided with a 








• 1—4 




Ventilation. 47 

large cowl, which forms an effective inlet 
when it is kept trimmed to the wind. If 
the cowl is turned in a direction opposite to 
that of the wind, it will generally act as an 
outlet. We may often beneficially employ 
one of two adjacent ventilators In the former 
way, and the other in the latter manner. 
Cowl ventilators are sometimes provided with 
an arrangement which prevents water going 
down them, but which offers no impediment 
to the entrance of air. 

Exhaust fans are worked either by steam 
or electricity ; the latter being the better 
form of propelling force, because its conduct- 
ing wires are free from the objection possessed 
by the pipes which convey steam, of raising 
the temperature of the stalls near which they 
pass, and of thus endangering the health of 

48 Horses on Board Ship. 

the horses which occupy these stalls, during 

hot weather. Also, these pipes often leak. 

A steam ventilator or an electric ventilator 

usually consists of a vertical iron tube, inside 

the upper end of which there is a fan that 

can be employed for promoting either an 

ascending or a descending current of air ; the 

former being, as a rule, much the better, 

ventilating method. The tube, which is 

from 20 to 36 inches in diameter, projects 

above the exposed deck, through which it 

passes, and extends in a vertical direction 

below. At its full length, it passes through 

the lowest deck but one, and can then be 

used to ventilate the lowest deck. By 
shortening this tube, we can make it venti- 

late any deck above the lowest deck, and 

below he exposed deck. These exhaust fans 

Ventilation, 49 

are efficient, not only Tor removing contami- 
nated air, but also for promoting draughts 
which will have a cooling effect on horses 
during hot weather. They are of special use 
In a calm, or when there Is a light wind aft, 
the velocity of which Is about equal to that 
of the steamer ; or at anchor when no wind 
is blowing, In which case during tropical 
heat It might be advisable to keep the ship 
moving, so as to promote the circulation of 
air through her. It is evident that the 
smaller the area of the openings In the 
side of a ship, the more useful will be the 
action of these fans. Of course they cannot 
produce a good result unless they are kept 
revolving at a high rate of speed. In a 
poor class of ship, the transference of power 
from the engines to the fans might diminish 

so Horses on Board Ship. 

the progress of the ship, when she is at full 
speed. In any case, the working of the fans 
will entail an increased expenditure of coal, 
especially when they are kept at full speed, 
and consequently this method of ventilation 
is not usually regarded with favour by 
masters and chief engineers who are forced 
by their employers to practise rigid economy. 
Dr. Edmond's system of obtaining an out- 
let for ventilation by means of a " steam 
jetter" placed inside a cowl ventilator, acts 
well. When there is a strong breeze, the 
steam can be shut off, and the cowl of the 
ventilator trimmed to the wind, in which case 
the ventilator will torm an efficient inlet. 
The steam in the boiler should be kept at 
a pressure of at least 4olbs. 



If broken-in horses are taken fresh off grass, 

or If the duration of the Intended voyage Is 
not supposed to be longer than, say, ten 

days, little or no preparation will be required 
as regards food and exercise. On a longer 
journey and proportionately to Its duration, 
corn-fed and hard-worked horses — agreeably 
to the remarks made on pages 2 to 9 should 
have their corn and exercise gradually 
diminished, so as to prepare them as 
thoroughly as possible for their new condi- 
tions of life, under which, hay and roots will 

52 Horses on Board Ship. 

be their most healthy food. I need hardly 
say that the keeping qualities of green grass 
are not sufficiently good to admit of its use 
at sea, and consequently dried grass (hay) is 
employed. If the animals in question have a 
voyage of about a month's duration in front 
of them, I do not think that they should have 
less than a fortnight's preparation. 

I am Informed that horses which have been 
brought up in a wild state and which have 
never been handled, suffer far more from the 
effects of their new surroundings on board ship, 
than animals which are accustomed to stable 
life. Hence it is well, for at least ten days or a 
fortnight previous to embarkation, to stable and 
handle these animals, to teach them to feed 
out of mangers and to drink out of buckets, 
and to accustom them to be tied up. If 

Preparation of Horses. 53 

stable accommodation cannot be procured, it 
is advisable, if practicable, to tie them up, and 
feed and water them for a similar period in 
the open, or in stock yards, kraals, or pad- 
docks. I am told that Australian shippers who 
send horses to India act on this principle. 

If the journey is likely to extend to three 
weeks, or longer, the heels of the fore feet 
should be lowered, supposing that they are 
of the ordinary height, so as to reduce to 
some ext^ent the weight on the toes, and thus 
to diminish the danger of laminitis (fever in 
the feet), which, on board ship, is a disease 
that is almost entirely confined to the fore 
feet. The fore shoes should be replaced, in 
order to prevent the animals wearing down the 
fore feet by pawing in their stalls or boxes, 
which they are very apt to do from Im- 

54 Horses on Board Ship. 

patience, and particularly when anticipating 
being watered and fed. Under ordinary condi- 
tions it is generally advisable to remove the 
hind shoes and keep them off during the 
voyage, so as to lessen the risk of horses 
breaking their stall fittings and injuring their 
companions, especially if the animals have to 
be unloaded into a lighter (p. "jZ). Besides, 
if the fittings of a stall are not correctly made, 
a horse, when kicking, may get hung up by 
a hind leg. My experience Is that if a horse is 
barefoot behind, he will be much less apt to kick 
than If he was shod behind. With remounts 
during warfare, the question of efficiency soon 
after landing and the difficulty of shoeing a 
large number of animals would naturally out- 
weigh the advantage to be obtained from 
decreased liability to accidents from kicking, 

Pi^eparation of Horses. 55 

which are seldom of a serious nature. Hence, 
the hind shoes of such animals should not be 
taken off as a rule, and they should have new 
shoes put on their feet before being sent on 
board. We have also the fact that if the floor 
cannot be kept dry, the feet of unshod horses 
standing on it will suffer much more from 
thrush and rotting of the sole, than those of 
shod horses under similar conditions. 

Horses, before leaving a cold or temperate 
climate, especially in winter, to be carried into 
a hot one by ship, should be clipped, unless 
their coats are quite short ; for, as a rule, 
there would be great difficulty in using the 
machine on board. xA.lso, care should be 
taken that the sheaths of the animals are 
clean before embarking them. 




Besides the advisability of a "cooling down" 
preparation (p. 51), it is well to keep horses 
without food and water, for, say, three or 
four hours before taking them on board, in 
which case a drink and a feed soon after they 
have been shipped will help to reconcile them 
to their new place of abode. Also, when 
their stomach and intestines are comparatively 
empty, they will not be so liable to become 
injured, as they would be, if full of food, 
especially if they are slung. Each horse 
should be provided with a stout halter or 

Einbarking and Diseinbarking Horses. 57 

head-collar, to which is attached two strong- 
ropes to act as leading reins. A bridle 
(snaffle) Is necessary only when a horse 
has to be walked on board ; but even In that 
case, a halter or head-collar will almost always 
be sufficient. 

Mr. Desmond, G.M.V.C., draws my atten- 
tion to the fact that in hot climates, horses 
should be put on board last, so that the 
interval between their embarkation and the 
sailing of the ship may be as short as possible. 
He tells me that the horses belonging to the 
contingent of South Australian Imperial Bush- 
men, with which he came over from Adelaide 
to South Africa, were put on board first, and 
had consequently to wait for twenty-four hours 
without a breath of air to cool them ; the 
result being that ten per cent, of the animals 

5^ Horses on Board Ship. 

were attacked with pneumonia during the first 
three days. 

Horses, when It Is practicable, are best 
taken on board or disembarked by means of 
a gmtgway (Fig. 4), the gradient of which 
shoukl be easy ; and the floor should be 
covered with cocoanut matting or other 
suitable material so as to afford the animals 
secure foot-hold. Colonel Nunn tells me that 
" the sides of the gangway should be high 
enough to prevent horses seeing over them, 
and consequently getting frightened at strange 
sights about the ship, In the docks, or on the 
shore. Gangways should not have a roof, 
because horses, as a rule, object to go Into 
a tunnel. Mules will usually walk up a 
gangway by themselves. If some soiled 
bedding and dung are spread over it, and 

Embarking and Disembarking Horses. 6 1 

if they are allowed time to put down their 
noses and smell the litter. I obtained this 
useful hint on board a ferry boat in the 

Gangways which are employed for the 
transit of horses from one deck to another 
deck are called brows. 

In default of a gangway, horses may be 
conveyed into or out of a ship by means of 
a crane or der^'ick^ either in slings or in a 
portable horse-box (p. Z-i^. For this purpose, 
hydraulic cranes are the best. They work 
much more smoothly and with far greater 
precision than steam winches, which are the 
moving agents of derricks. They have the 
great advantage of being free from noise, 
which in the case of winches, is often a 
cause of alarm to horses that are in their 

62 Horses on Board Ship, 

vicinity. Hydraulic cranes are to be found 
only on steamers of good class. 

For slinging horses during embarkation or 
disembarkation, it is essential that the boom of 
the derrick or jib (projecting arm) of the 
crane should be sufficiently long to prevent 
the animal touching the side of the ship or 
coamings of the lighter into which he may be 
lowered. Also, he ought to be raised high 
enough to avoid letting him touch the deck, 
by doing which, he is liable to get injured. 

The process of slinging is employed not 
only for taking horses on board and putting 
them over the side, but also for raising and 
lowering them from one deck to another deck. 
In lowering a horse from one deck (generally 
the exposed deck), it will be necessary to 
lower him on to the hatch ; but in bringing 


Fig. 5. — Disembarking sling used at Port Elizabeth. 

r -- 






W3 bJD 
O <A 




• I— ( 


Fig. 7. — Disembarking horses at Port Elizabeth. 












• >— I 

























Embarking and Disembarking Horses, "jy 

him up, he can as a rule be raised either 
from the hatch, or from an intermediate 

As far as my experience goes, the best 
kind of sling for transferring a horse from 
one place to another, is that which is used 
for landing horses at Port Elizabeth, South 
Africa (Fig. 5). In this sling, the gromet, 
which is attached to the suspending chain or 
rope, is passed through the ring of rope at 
the other' end of the sling, so that the 
animal is enclosed in a running loop, out of 
which it is almost impossible for him to slip, 
supposing that he is further secured, fore 
and aft, by a breast-rope and breeching, 
both of which ropes are attached at their free 
ends to their respective rings by means of a 
slippery hitch (half hitch on a bight). The 

y^ Horses on Board Ship. 

large rope of the sling is all in one piece, 
and consequently it greatly strengthens the 
sling, which will fit horses of all sizes. 
The portions of the rope which touch each 
other, when forming a loop round the horse, 
are ** parcelled," so as to prevent wear. 
The two cross pieces of wood over which 
the canvas passes at each end of the sling, 
are made particularly heavy, so that the sling 
may readily fall down, clear of the horse, 
when it is disconnected from the chain or rope 
of the crane or derrick. Figs. 6 to 1 1 show 
the manner in which horses are landed on 
the Port Elizabeth pier from lighters. This 
sling works so expeditiously, that with one 
crane the Port Elizabeth people can land 
from their lighters, lOO horses in an hour 
and a quarter. The immense amount of 

Embarking and Disembarking Horses. 79 

practice which they have had, has made them 
extremely quick at this work. The only 
fault I had to find with them, is that the 
Kaffirs who put on and take off the slings, 
use the horses very roughly, especially in 
the matter of striking them about the muzzle, 
which is a particularly cruel trick. Mr. 
Desmond, Chief Veterinary Surgeon to the 
Government of Adelaide, South Australia, 
whom I had the pleasure of meeting at 
Port Elizabeth, aptly remarked to me that 
if these Kaffirs were supplied with strong 
boots, they would not be so inclined to 
strike the horses, which have an unfortunate 
tendency to tread on the toes of their 

Lighters into which horses are put, either 
for embarkation or disembarkation, should 

^o Horses on Board Ship. 

have their floors laid down with a plentiful 
supply of soft material, such as straw or coir 
matting, so as to prevent them slipping, and 
to save them from hurting themselves, in the 
event of their falling down. Accidents are 
much less liable to occur when the horses 
are left loose in these lighters, than when 
they are tied up. As I have already indi- 
cated (p. 54), it would be well, under 
ordinary conditions, to remove the hind 
shoes of the animals, so that they may not 
hurt each other by kicking. 

When a horse is put into a portable horse- 
box, previous to slinging him and the box, 
the ropes on his head-collar or halter should 
be firmly secured at a short length to the 
rings which are fixed to the respective posts 
at the entrance of the box, so as to stop 

E^nbarking and Disemdarking Horses, 8 1 

him from partly or wholly getting out of the 
box during transit ; and it is well to cover 
the box, or to blindfold the animal, 
so as to prevent him seeing where he 
is going, while the box is suspended in 
the air. The fact of his being thus kept in 
darkness will greatly help to check him from 
struggling to get free. We should attach a 
line to one corner of the box and get a man 
to hold the line, so that the box may not 
twist round. 

Before putting a horse into a portable 
horse-box, it is well to remember the fact, 
that the animal will generally refuse to go 
into it, unless the doors at both ends are 

Before disembarking a large number of 

horses, it is advisable as a rule to mark all 


82 Horses on Board Ship. 

those which are sick, In order that their 
proper care and supervision may not be 
overlooked after landing them. The attach- 
ment of a piece of spun-yarn to halter or 
head-collar, Is a convenient means of re- 



According to H.M. transport regulations, a 

portable horse-box (Figs. 12, 13, and 14) 

should be " 6 feet long, 2 feet 6 inches broad 

in the clear, and 6 feet 4^ inches high, made 

of good wood, well framed, strongly built up 

and strengthened with iron bands passing right 

round on the outside. Bottoms to be battened. 

Door at each end hung on strong hinges and 

fitted with strong bar fastenings top and 

bottom. Each door to have on the outside, 

ring bolts for fastening halters to. The inside 

of box and doors to be lined with liquored 

leather slightly padded out with straw. 


84 Horses on Board Ship. 

Wooden runners quite smooth on their under- 
sides are to be fitted underneath each box to 
facilitate hauling it about the deck. Each box 
to be fitted for hoisting with a horse in it, and 
when horses have to live in them on board, each 
must have a painted cover fitted on a frame 
in such a way as to ensure protection from the 
weather." I think that 6 feet 6 inches would 
be a better length than 6 feet 3 inches, and 
that the width inside might be increased to 
3 feet, so as to allow room for a man to get 
into the box alongside the horse, in order to 
arrange his clothing, pick up a foot, or perform 
any other necessary detail. In making this 
suggestion for increased width, I do not forget 
that under ordinary circumstances it is accom- 
panied by decreased stability on the part of the 
animal, which obtains support during the lively 


























Portable Horse-boxes. 91 

movements of the ship, by the fact of the 
walls of the box being close to his sides. This 
advantage may be safely dispensed with, when 
the floor of the box is covered with cocoanut 
matting, which is a subject I shall presently 
consider. For the conveyance of heavy cart 
horses, an extra allowance of room may have 
to be made. 

Instead of having a box only just large 
enough for a horse to stand up in, we might 
have one sufficiently big (say, 9 feet by 6 feet) 
for him to lie down in if he chooses to do so. 
I have known such an arrangement to be used 
when taking valuable horses from Australia to 
India. It proved very beneficial to the health 
of the animals thus boxed ; but the extra ex- 
pense would not, as a rule, be justified in 
ordinary cases. 

g2 Horses on Board Ship. 

A box has a door at each end, so that the 
animal may be able to go in or out of it which- 
ever way it is turned. Instead of straw 
padding inside the box, I would recommend 
the employment of large pieces of felt, to be 
secured by being laced through holes bored in 
the planking, so as to dispense with the use of 
nails of any kind, next to the horse. Each 
side of the box, at different ends, should have 
a small door (Fig. 15) through which the 
animal's dung may be removed. The box 
shown in Fig. 14 is not provided with this 
convenient door. Figs. 12 and 13 show a 
rope which passes through the sides of the 
box and across the horse's back, so that, when 
it is drawn tightly, it will keep the animal 
down, in the event of his struggling to get 
out of the box. 

Fig. 15. — Mucking-out door in the side of a portable horse-box. 

Portable Horse-boxes, 95 

The feeding trough or manger which is pro- 
vided with a sea-going horse-box, is generally 
much too narrow. It should be at least 13 
inches deep and 13 inches broad at the top, 
about 22 inches wide, and the sides should 
slope towards the centre, so as to help the 
animal to reach his food. 

With respect to the nature of xh^ floor upon 
which a horse will have to stand in a box 
during a sea voyage, we should bear in mind 
that loss of foothold is a very serious danger 
from which he is liable to suffer during 
bad weather. The famous Blue Gown, 
Prince lo, Ossory, who was own brother to 
Ormonde, and scores of other valuable animals 
have lost their lives from stress of weather 
during the short passage across the Atlantic. ] 
These accidents usually occur from the horse 

9 6 Horses on Board Ship. 

losing his footing, in which case he will pro- 
bably either get dashed from side to side, 
until he Is killed, or he will struggle until he 
dies, as horses will often do, when they get 
down and cannot regain their feet. As a 

quadruped has a far larger base of support than 

a biped, he can keep his footing much better 

on a rocking surface, like the deck of a ship 

which is rolling and pitching, provided that 
his feet do not slip. Yet horses, as a rule, find 
it far more difficult to keep standing in bad 
i weather than men ; because of the small 
amount of friction which exists between the 
floor of their box or stall and the ground sur- 
face of their feet. ' The superiority of the 
four-legged form of support over the two- 
legged one, Is well shown by the ease with 
which a dog can stand on the deck of a ship 

Portable Ho7'se-boxes. 97 

that is rolling in the most desperate manner ; \ 
because the pads of his feet give him abund- 
ance of grip. Therefore, to ensure a sea-going 
horse against the danger in question, we need 
only place him on a non-slippery surface, as 
for instance, thick cucoanitt matting, into the 
upstanding fibres of which his feet can sink, 
and can thus obtain secure foot-hold. The 
cocoanut matting, to which I allude, is of 
the rough door-mat type./ I have frequently 
proved the perfect efficiency of this material 
during very bad weather on voyages with 
horses between India and England, and also 
in the North Sea when going to Russia. 
My own practice when taking animals in 
portable horse-boxes, is to employ six cocoa- 
nut door-mats of the ordinary size (about 
3 feet by i ^ feet) ; five to cover the floor. 

98 Horses on Board Ship. 

and one extra, so that the rearmost mat 
can be taken out every day, cleaned and 
dried, and the others pushed down in daily 
succession. If one large mat is used, there 
will be great difficulty in changing it from 
time to time, as would be necessary for 
purposes of cleanliness. The old plan of 
putting battens across the floor of a box 
is not good ; because, instead of using the 
battens as a fixed point for his toes in the 
manner intended, a horse will often place his 
heels on them, apparently with the hopeless 
object of digging his toes into the wood 
beneath, and will thus adopt a position which 
is well suited to bring on fever of the feet. 
Hay is much less slippery than straw. Cinders 
and sand are very inefficient substitutes for 
rough cocoanut matting ; although they are 

Portable Horse-boxes. 99 

probably the best makeshifts that can be 
usually found. 

With respect to the loss of Ossory and 
Prince lo, I read In The Spirit of the Times 
that the man who had charge of them said that 
he could not keep either straw or sawdust 
under them ; because It got washed away by 
the water which was shipped. It Is evident 
that no amount of wave-washing could remove 
properly placed cocoanut matting. When 
horses get killed In this outrageous manner, 
any Insurance company which had taken the 
risk on them, would be right to resist all 
claims for compensation ; because proper pre- 
cautions had not been taken for the safety 
of the animals. 

I believe I was the first to advocate the use 
of rough cocoanut matting as a floor for horses 


loo Horses on Boai'd Ship. 

on board ship, which I did as far back as the 
30th March, 1889, in Hayes Sporting News, 
which I owned and edited in Calcutta. Rough 
cocoanut matting not only gives a horse firm 
foot-hold, but also saves him to a great extent 
from the danger of getting fever in the feet, 
by enabling him to stand on a substance which 
is a bad conductor of heat, and which causes 
the pressure on the ground-surface of his feet 
to be evenly distributed. 

Every box should be furnished with sling 
hooks, and also with slings (p. 141), which 
can be used when required. 

If practicable, the box should be opened 
morning and evening for cleaning out pur- 
poses, and when it is possible to exercise the 
horse. On all other occasions, it should be 
kept closed. If it is inadvisable to open the 

Portable Horse-boxes. loi 

box — for Instance, on account of bad weather 
— the removal of the dung may be effected 
through the small door (Fig. 15, p. 93) which 
should be on each side of the box. 

A portable horse-box ought not to cost 
more than from £^ to ^10 to make, although 
fancy prices are sometimes charged. 




With a small number of horses, we may 
observe the sound rule that they should be 
placed as near midships as practicable, because 
there Is less motion at that part of the vessel 
than at either end. As the inclination of the 
deck to the horizon Is greater when a ship 
is rolling than when she Is pitching, horses 
In all cases should be put athwart ship, and 
not fore and aft. 

To fulfil the requirements of ventilation with 
a large number of horses, not more than two 
decks, below the exposed deck, should be fully 

Ar7'angement of Horses on Board Ship, 103 

occupied by these animals. In a spar-deck 
ship, these two decks will be the spar deck and 
the main deck ; and in a three deck ship, the 
main deck and the upper 'tween deck. Except 
when there is a fair probability of bad weather 
being encountered, as during winter in the Bay 
of Biscay, horses can be carried on a shade or 
shelter deck, in which case there might be 
three decks occupied by stalls. It is a great 
advantage to be able to utilise, either wholly 
or in part, a shade or shelter deck as a hos- 
pital or convalescent home for sick animals, 
which can generally be brought up from below. 
If the exposed deck is unprovided with stalls, 
the horses should, as far as practicable, be tied 
up with their heads to windward, so that an 
undue proportion of weight may not be put on 
their fore feet, which are much more liable to 

I04 Horses on Board SJiip. 

suffer from lamlnitis (fever in the feet) than 
the hind ones. To avoid crowding the 
exposed deck, which would be a source 
of inconvenience and even of danger during 
bad weather, it is well to remove off it, 
from time to time, all horses which have 
recovered their health, and which are unpro- 
vided with stalls on the exposed deck. If^ 
bad weather comes on, all such animals 
should be sent below, w^here they will feel the 
movement of the ship much less than above. 
The best position for stalls is 'thwart-ship 
and close to the side of the ship, with the heads 
of the stalls facing inwards. To facilitate the 
opening and closing of port-holes, a space of 
about 2 feet is sometimes left between the ends 
of the stalls and the side of the steamer ; but 
the small advantage thus obtained is generally 





















I— I 


Ar7'angement of Horses on Board Ship. 107 

more than counterbalanced by the curtaihnent 
of the space in front of the horses, especially at 
the hatches and alley ways. 

Although four rows of horses can usually be 
arranged on some parts of the deck, as in 
places away from the hatches and engine room ; 
it is always advisable, if practicable, to limit 
the number of rows to two, so that, as far as 
possible, none of the animals may be forced to 
take expired air into its lungs. In all cases, 
mid-ship stalls (Fig. 16) obstruct ventilation, 
especially between decks, and in the neigh- 
bourhood of bulk-heads. These stalls should 
on no account be closer to the stalls they face 
than 3 feet 6 inches ; for if they be within that 
limit, there will be great difficulty in passing 
between the two rows when the feeding 
troughs are in position ; and the horses whose 

io8 Horses 07t Board Ship. 

heads are In opposite directions will have every 
chance to bite and otherwise annoy each other, 
and to appropriate each other's food. 

No stalls should be placed on hatches, 
which are extremely useful places for the 
temporary accommodation of sick animals, and 
of those that are taken out of their stalls 
during mucking-out time, and for .preparing 
hay and corn prior to distribution. 

Vacant stalls, to a number of at least five 
per cent., should be provided and should be 
uniformly distributed, so that, in case of Illness 
or accident, a double stall may be given to a 
patient (pp. 202 and 203). 



Leather head-collars are stronger and more 
easily adjusted than halters, which are 
generally made of webbing ; but are more 
expensive and are more apt to abrade the skin 
upon which the nose-band presses, especially 
if the nose-band Is put so high up as to touch 
the bony prominence (end of the superior 
maxillary spine) which is about mid-way 
between the horse's eye and the corner of 
his lips, on each side. For the adjustment of 
the nose-band it is a safe rule to place it about 
two Inches below this bony prominence. A 
frequent fault with halters which are put on 

no Horses on Board Ship. 

board for horses, Is that they are of a uniform 
size, and consequently. If they fit animals with 
big heads, they will be too large for those with 
small ones. In which case the nose-band Is apt 
to slip over the horse's muzzle, and the halter 
Is then converted Into a ring which goes round 
the animal's neck. I have known Instances of 
horses on board ship getting killed by hanging, 
owing to the nose-band slipping over the 
muzzle in this way, and the animal subse- 
quently losing his footing. 

The webbing of halters will generally stretch 
after having been In use for a short time. In 
all cases the front part of the nose-band should 
be about 14 inches long, and should be sewn 
to the rings at each side ; and the rear por- 
tion of the nose-band should consist of a 
strap (Fig, 17) which can be shortened or 

Fig. 17. — Halter used on Government transports. 

Head-collars and Halters, 113 

lengthened as occasion may demand. In some 

halters, the nose-band forms a running noose 

with Its rope, which arrangement Is open to 

the serious objection that If the tylng-up rope 

be long the animal may pass his head through 

the noose, which In this case will be brought 

round his neck, and he will thus run the risk 

of becoming strangled In the event of his 

falling down. I have had more than one 

horse killed in this way. A throat-latch 

Is an Indispensable adjunct to a board-ship 

halter, but It should not, as Is often done, be 

sewn on to the crown-piece (Fig. 17), in 

which case It Is liable to become detached. 

A better plan is to make it separable from 

the halter, to which it can be connected by 

passing It through a loop at the part of the 

halter which goes over the animal's poll. 


114 Horses on Board Ship. 

• ! — « — ^ 

Owing to the softness of its material, I am 
inclined to think that a halter made of webbing 
is better for board-ship use on voyages of not 
less than three weeks than a head-collar, 
supposing that both kinds of gear are properly 

Either with a halter or head-collar, the 
tying-up rope on each side can be spliced to 
the ring of the nose-band. In the case 
of a detachable throat-latch, the tying-up 
rope can be fixed by a clove hitch (Fig. 21, 
p. 137) to the ring which works on the rear 
portion of the nose-band, and which is 
attached to a strap that connects the nose- 
band to the throat-latch. 



As horses on board ship are practically in 
a state of rest, they are able to bear cold much 
worse than animals which can keep themselves 
more or less warm by movement. On the 
other hand, they are as a rule fairly well 
protected from bad weather, and are conse- 
quently free from the chilling effects of 
moisture ; a wet coat being about twenty 
times a better conductor of heat than a dry 
one. In Stable Management and Exercise y I 
have mentioned that I found a rug and a 
quarter sheet amply sufficient for purposes of 

warmth when taking well-bred hunters to 


ii6 Hoi'ses on Board Ship, 

Revel on the deck of a steamer through the 
North Sea and Baltic during winter, on which 
occasion the cold was far greater than Is ever 
felt In England. Although these animals had 
been clipped, they were protected from snow 
and salt water. We all know that In very cold 
weather the atmosphere Is comparatively dry 
and that no rain can fall. The fact that very 
cold snow contains a large proportion of air, 
greatly reduces the cooling effect which such 
snow has on a horse's skin, because air is an 
extremely bad conductor of heat. Experience 
leads me to conclude that a stationary horse 
which Is exposed to rain when the temperature 
of the atmosphere Is just above freezing point, 
suffers more from cold than if the temperature 
was, say, 30° F. lower. In which case the air 
would be dry. 

dot king. \ 117 

The cooling effect of a current of air is 
proportionate to its velocity, which is a fact we 
should bear in mind with horses which are 
placed in draughty situations. 

During winter on board ship in temperate 
climates, like that of England, a healthy horse 
will hardly ever require more clothing than a 
woollen rug or a kersey quarter sheet. In 
and approaching the tropics all clothing should 
as a rule be removed, except perhaps now and 
then when a clipped horse is exposed to a 
strong breeze at night. / With a large number ~^ 
of horses at sea we should be careful to keep 
the amount of clothing at a minimum, because 
the presence of even the lightest clothing will 
more or less check excretion from the skin, 
and will consequently throw increased labour 
on the lungs, which are the organs most 

1 1 8 Horses on Board Ship. 

liable to disease under conditions of overcrowd- 
ing. I am convinced that putting on too 

/ much clothing is at least ten times as 
dangerous to an animal's health as putting on 
too little. If a horse is found to be sweating 

\ even to the slightest extent under his 

\ clothing, we may be perfectly certain that 

1 . . 

I the limit of safety has been greatly exceeded./ 



As a rule, there are two varieties of stalls, 
namely, one with a double breast-board ; the 
other, with a single one. In the former (Fig. i, 
p. 19), the breast-board is 5 ft. in width and 
has an upright post at its centre, at the back 
of which post there is a groove to accom- 
modate the front ends of the division boards. 
In the latter (Fig. 18, p. 121), the breast- 
board is only 2 ft. 6 in. wide, and it consists 
simply of a piece of wood which is placed across 
the front of the stall, and fits into iron cleats 
that are bolted to the front of each front 
post, and are kept from lifting up out of 

I20 Horses on Boai^d Ship. 

place by swinging .stops, which are fixed to 
the front posts. Double breast-boards are 
also retained in position by similar cleats and 
stops. Although stalls with single breast- 
boards require twice the number of front 
posts as those with double ones, they are 
much more convenient in use than stalls of 
the double breast-board pattern ; because 
horses can be put into or taken out of 
them, merely by removing the breast-board. 
A double breast-board, on the contrary, 
cannot be taken out without also removing 
the division-boards (parting-boards) that are at 
its centre. In both cases, the division-boards 
in Government transports are 3 ft. 9 in. high 
above the floor of the stall. 

My experience, and also that of several 
capable men whom I have consulted on the 













































f— 1 


































»— ^ 




























• 1—1 










• rH 


Stalls. 123 

subject, lead me to the conclusion that the 
regulation height of 3 ft. 9 In. for division- 
boards Is too little, especially In the case of 
Northern Hemisphere mares during the early 
months of the year, when they come '' in sea- 
son," and are then particularly liable to kick 
and to get one of their hind legs over the 
boards. This accident is not only dangerous 
to the Involved animal, but also causes a good 
deal of trouble to the attendants, especially at 
night. As a rule, it will be easier to free the 
hung-up animal by removing and afterwards 
replacing the boards than by lifting the hind 
leg off the top board. A mechanical con- 
trivance for the easy removal of these boards 
In such cases of need is greatly required, but 
has not been supplied up to the present. An 
addition of, say, 8 inches to the height of the 

124 Horses on Boai'd Sin p. 

division-boards would no doubt be sufficient to 
meet the requirement in question. 

Mr. F. C. Golden, M.R.C.V.S., who has had 
great experience in the transport of Govern- 
ment horses by sea, was the first to point 
out to me the great advantage of using only 
one division-board (the top one). By adopt- 
ing this plan, mucking out, ventilation, and the 
getting-up of horses which had fallen down in 
their stalls would be greatly facilitated. Mr. 
Golden and other veterinary surgeons who 
have tried it, and who have spoken to me 
about it, have found that its adoption in no 
way increases the liability to accident by the 
horses kicking each other. 

Stalls for horses of ordinary size should 
not be less than 7 ft. in length ; although 
6 ft, 6 in. would do for a 15-hand horse. 

Stalls. 125 

Eight feet might be taken as a maximum 
length ; and 7 ft. 6 In. as the best for ordinary- 
use. The length of a stall is measured from 
the breast-board to the haunch-board. 

The division-boards (Figs. 16, p. 105 and 
18, p. 121), which are four in number, are kept 
3 in. apart by pieces of wood near their ends. 

Care should be taken that no spaces exist 
between the haunch-boards sufficiently wide 
(say, more than 3 In.) to allow a horse to 
catch his foot In them, in the event of his 

Every stall which contains a horse should 
have a hooked-up stanchion or other con- 
trivance, on which to sling him ; for if he 
requires slings, he will generally be too bad 
to be moved to another stall, especially when 
the ship is rolling. 

126 Horses on Board Ship. 

Stalls made on the Government pattern 
cost about ^3 for each horse on a covered 
deck, and about ^3 [Os. on the exposed deck. 

One of the most important points about 
stalls is that the fittings should be absolutely 
secure ; because neglect of this precaution may 
entail serious loss of horse-life during bad 
weather. For instance, out of 415 horses 
which were on board the ss. Rapidan on her 
voyage from Liverpool to South Africa, 191 
died, principally on account of the giving way 
of the stall-fittings during a heavy gale. 
This ship became disabled, got into the trough 
of the sea, and consequently rolled about 

The fitting of stalls on Government trans- 
port is carried out according to the following 
Admiralty details : — 

Stalls. 127 




ft. ins. 
Maximum length in the clear between breast and 

haunch boards . . . . . . .80 

(Not less than maximu7>i length to be given where possible.) 

Minimum length in the clear between breast and 

haunch boards . . . . . . .69 

Passage between two rows of stalls, clear between 

troughs, not less than . . . . .40 

Breadth between division boards in the clear, not 

less than . . . . . . . .24 

Height of the division boards above floor of stall . 3 9 

Height of breast board above floor of stall . -39 


To be 6 ins. by 4 ins., spaced 2\ ft. apart, centre to 
centre, the height of same to be 8 ft. from ship's deck. In 
way of horses' heads, stanchions to be covered with zinc 
9 B.W.G. as may be required. Heels to be secured by a 
cant, 6 ins. by 4 ins., fastened to the deck with a f inch 
nut and screw or tapped bolt, one to every 5 feet, and a 
f inch nut and screw bolt through heel of stanchion and 
cant. If on wood deck to be secured with f inch coach 

A staple for a hay net to be fastened to each front 

128 Horses on Board SJiip. 


To be 6 ins. by 4 ins., spaced 2^ ft. apart, centre to 
centre, the height to be 7 ft. 2 ins. from deck. 

These stanchions to be thoroughly secured in position by 
means of iron clamps, fitted to bulwark rail or rails Stop 
to be arranged on back of stanchions to prevent their 
rising. Heads of stanchions to be cross tied not less than 
every 15 feet, and as required by Inspector. Heels to be 
secured same as front stanchions. 


To be 3 ins. by 3 ins., bolted to front and back stan- 
chions. All roof rafters to be carried 2 ft. past front 
stanchions, and 6 ins. past back stanchions. 

Along upper end of front and back stanchions a 4 ins. by 
2 ins. fore and after to be run. These fore and afters to be 
nailed to stanchions. 


To be I -J inch tongued and 'grooved, and carried 2 ft. 
past front stanchions and 6 ins. past back stanchions, same 
as rafters. 

back: sheathing. 

Stalls in way of open rails to have \\ inch tongued and 
grooved sheathing full depth from bottom of roof i after to 
deck. Sheathing to be nailed on to back of stanchions. 
In way of closed bulwark to have i in, tongued and grooved 
sheathing from top of bulwark to underside of roof rafter. 
From top of bulwark to deck 9 ins. by 2 ins. sparring to be 
fitted with 3 ins. spacing. 

Stalls. 129 


To be 10 ins. by 3 ins., with upper third covered with 
zinc not less than 9 B.W.G. Breast rail to be scored 
1^ ins. at each end on the lower part over the iron cleat, 
so as to prevent the board from shifting fore and aft; a 
swinging stop of approved pattern to be fitted above breast 
rails on front of stanchions to prevent boards from lifting 
up out of place. The breast rails may be fitted in lengths 
to take two stalls. 


Iron cleats f in. thick and 4 ins. wide bolted on front of 
each front stanchion to take breast rail. 


To be moveable, and to be made with i^ inch deal 
boards the length of the stall with a i inch space left 
between them, secured with battens the width of the stall. 
Foot battens to platform to be of pitch or red pine 4 in No., 
rear batten to be 4 ins. by 2 ins., and placed 1 2 ins. from 
rear end of stall (when stall is 8 ft. long), the other 3 
battens to be 3 ins. by 2 ins., the front one to be placed 
7^ ins. from the end of platform, and the other two to be 
placed each one foot from the centre of platform. These 
battens to be chamfered and secured to platform by iron 
screws 2\ ins. long, \ in. diameter, well recessed below top 
of batten. 


Top parting board to be 9 ins. by 2 ins. The lower 
three parting boards to be 8 ins. by 2 ins. with 3 ins. 


130 Horses on Board Skip. 

clearance between each, i^ in. parting pieces spiked near 
each end of board to give this clearance. These parting 
boards to sHde in grooves at outer and inner end. Grooves 
may be machined (2 ins. slot) out of solid wood or by 
attaching with screw nails 2 ins. by 2 ins. battens on a 6 ins. 
by i-^ in. backboard. Front of top parting board to be 
fitted with slip bolt, or an approved iron pin with ball head 
secured by chain to stanchions, may be fitted into socket 
hole in stanchions just above top parting board. Back of 
top parting board to be fitted with wood stop, to prevent 
parting boards rising. 


To be of approved pattern, one to each stall, galvanized 
iron, about i ft. 9 ins. by 12 ins. by 9 ins. deep (not 


Of approved pattern in positions as directed, and firmly 



Scantlings of stanchions, breast rail, platform, and parting 
boards as specified for fittings on exposed deck. 

To be tightly wedged between decks, and to be secured 
at heads and heels as specified for exposed decks to prevent 
their shifting fore and aft, or athwart ship, to Inspector's 

Stalls. 1 3 1 


Ordinary ship's sparring in 'tween decks to be closed with 
intermediate spars, so as not to allow of more than 3 in. 
spacing between spars. Where no sparring exists on the 
ship, four 9 ins. by 2 ins. spars are to be fitted, with not 
more than 3 ins. spacing between each. 


Cattle ships fitted with cement decks to have portable 
floor pieces laid close down on cement between outer two 
and inner two footlocks, and good drainage space to 
scuppers cut through footlocks under parting boards. 


Sufficient number of scuppers to be cut in all 'tween 
decks and under all erections. As a general rule, a 4 ins. 
scupper every 25 feet of erections will be found sufficient. 
Position of all scuppers to have name " scupper " painted 
on ship's side or back of stall immediately above the 
scuppers in not less than 6 in. letters. Whenever prac- 
ticable an endless chain is to be rove through scupper for 
cleaning purposes. 


A permanent water service pipe to be fitted to all horse 
decks with hoses attached carried fore and aft on the upper 
deck. A cock is also to be fitted at each side at the 
following stations : — Poop front, after end of bridge, after 
end of engine casing, forward end of engine casing, bridge 
front bulkhead, after end of forecastle and forward. In 
'tween decks of ordinary length a cock is to be fitted at each 

132 Hof'ses on Board Ship. 

side, at forward and after end of each compartment. 
Special care to be taken that water service can be suppUed 
from at least two independent pumps in the engine room in 
case of breakdown. 


In long deck erections to be spaced not more than 1 6 ft. 
apart, and in 'tween decks spaced about 12 ft. apart. 


Of approved pattern to be fitted to all side lights. 


To be fitted in erections, and in between- decks of 
sufficient number to give ample light ; where candle lamps 
are fitted they are to be of approved pattern and hung in 
proper hooks. 


All erections (not necessarily enclosed) and all between 
decks are to have ventilators of sufficient size and number 
with their cowls carried clear above top fittings, besides 
which, all 'tween decks to have mechanical ventilation 
by means of fans, or other approved method, so as to draw 
all foul air from the after end and or if necessary, from the 
fore end of each compartment, and exhaust same at the top 
exposed deck. 


30 ins. diameter with large mouth (square head preferred) 
to be supplied and fitted, at least two to each 'tween deck 
compartment, and where required in erections. 

Stalls, 133 


A Pharmacy to be built, size about 6 feet square, of 3 inch 
stanchions and i inch boarding. Spaces to be left between 
the boarding of top half for light and air. A door to be 
fitted, provided with hanging lock. 

Shelves with face battens to be fitted, as directed, around 
the bulkheads. Also bottle racks and a broad shelf, 
2 ft. 9 ins. from deck, for dispensing. 

Five per cent, spare stalls are to be fitted in addition to 
the number of horses fitted for. Two per cent, to be fitted 
with slinging bars. The bars to be pitch or red pine 
running fore and aft between the stanchions with dumb 
sheaves worked on them, four to each front and two to each 
rear bar for each stall. The centre of front bar to be 9 ins. 
from front stanchion, the rear one to be three feet from the 
front bar, centre to centre. These bars to be kept as high 
as possible supported by and bolted to fir rails 8 feet long 
by 4f ins. by 3 ins. secured to stanchions by f inch bolts 
and nuts. Heads of bolts to be smoothly rounded, ends to 
be cut off flush with the nuts and covered with wooden caps 
carefully smoothed off. 

Two belaying cleats of f inch iron are to be screwed to 
front of each stanchion of the spare stalls, 18 ins. and 
5 ft. 6 ins. from the heel of stanchion respectively for belaying 
the falls of the hammocks. » 

All timber coming in contact in any way with the animals 
is to be well planed, smoothed, rounded, and neatly 
chamfered off. 

134 Horses on Board Ship. 

Forward and after ends of rows of all stalls on exposed 
decks to be close sheathed, full depth, with i^ ins. tongued 
and grooved, upper portion of this to hinge down, and the 
ends to be made portable when required. Canvas screens 
to be fitted from fore and after at top of front stanchions to 
bottom on deck cants with lashings, &:c. complete ; these 
lashings also to tie screens when rolled up. Screens are to be 
hung in front of all stalls on the weather decks, as also at all 
ends of the centre stalls adjoining hatches on next deck 

Brows are to be constructed to allow of shipping all 
horses ; these brows to be of easy descent to each between 
deck, and are to be taken out on board the vessel. Brows 
to have strong sparred sides (not more than 3 in. spaces 
between spars) ; also in way of each fitting, &c. on deck, 
more than 6 in. high small permanent brows to be fitted 
where it is intended to walk horses. 

All workmanship, material, and general arrangement of 
the stalls to pass the Inspector appointed, who may make 
any reasonable alterations in this specification while the 
work is in progress. Workmanship to be carried out in 
first-class manner. 



The method of tying-up differs to some 
extent according to the nature of the stall. 
In a stall which has two front posts (a 
single breast-board stall, Fig. i8, p. 121), a 
ring, for the tying-up ropes, will be fixed to the 
front of each front post, and about 16 inches 
above the breast-board. In this case, each 
tying-up rope should be about 2 ft. 6 in. long. 
In stalls which have one breast-board to 
two stalls, the outward tying-up rope is 
attached to a ring on the front post about 
18 inches above the breast-board ; and the 
inward rope, to a ring in the centre of the 

136 Ho7'ses on Boaj'd Ship. 

breast-board (Fig. i, p. 19). The best way 
for making this attachment is by means of 
spring hooks fixed to the tying-up ropes, 
which can thus be kept at their proper 
length, even when the spring hooks are dis- 
connected from their rings. If spring hooks 
are not used, the ropes can be tied to the 
rings by means of a round turn and two 
half hitches (Fig. 19), which will not be so 
liable to become undone as a slippery hitch 
(Fig. 20), and will be more easy to undo 
than a clove hitch (Fig. 21), in the event of 
the rope being drawn tightly, as would occur 
if the horse got down in his stall. 

The advantage of keeping the tying-up 
ropes at a fixed length by means of spring 
hooks, is emphasised by the fact that these 
ropes have to be disconnected from their 

Fig. 19. — A round turn and two half hitches. 

Fig. 20. — A slippery hitch. 


Fig, 21. — A clove hitch. 

Tying-up. 139 

rings every time the stalls are mucked-out, 
and consequently If spring hooks are not used, 
the length of the respective ropes will have 
to be frequently readjusted, with a needless 
and a very Inconvenient expenditure of time 
and trouble. 

In stalls which have double breast-boards, 
the length of the outward tying-up rope 
should be just sufficient to allow the horse 
to obtain his hay from the hay net, but not 
to annoy his companion ; and the length of 
the inward rope should give him full liberty 
to eat out of his trough, but not to bite 
his neighbour. With the double breast-board 
arrangement, these lengths would respectively 
be about 22 and 20 inches. Special attention 
should be paid to keeping these tying-up 
ropes at a proper length ; for if they are 

140 Horses on Board Ship. 

too short, the horse may be prevented from 
eating ; and if too long, he may not only 
tease and bite his neighbour or companion, 
but may appropriate his food. 

The application of coal tar to the tying-up 
ropes and hay nets, will often prevent horses 
gnawing them, which crib - biters are particu- 
larly fond of doing. Coal tar Is much more 
effective for this purpose than wood tar. 

Chains of a fixed length can be substi- 
tuted with great advantage for tying up- 
ropes. Their utility is still further Increased 
by the addition of spring hooks. 




For purposes of support, horses may be 
slung in their stalls ; on one of the hatches ; 
in various positions on the exposed deck ; or 
on one of the decks below it. In the stalls 
of cattle boats, horses may be slung on cattle 
stanchions (portable cattle fittings) which are 
hung up to the deck over the horses. It 
is a great advantage to have means for 
slinging horses in all stalls. Provided there 
are slings, there is no difficulty in slinging 
horses in portable horse boxes. Derricks 
may be used for slinging horses which are 

142 Horses on Board Ship, 

standing on hatches or on the exposed deck. 
When a horse is standing on a hatch, one 
of the beams that go across the opening of 
the hatch, will probably be the best object 
on which to attach the ropes of the sling. 
For the same purpose, a beam may be laid 
from the rigging to one of the derricks on 
the exposed deck. In a sling of this kind, 
care should be taken that pressure is not 
put on the withers or on any other part of 
the backbone of the animal, and that the 
breeching and breast-piece of the sling do 
not exert undue pressure on those portions 
of the skin which they touch. If necessary, 
these points of contact should be protected 
by suitable material, such as cotton waste, 
tow, etc. 

The breast-piece of a sling should be of 

Stationary Slinging of Horses, 143 

rope or canvas, but not of leather, which Is 
apt to get torn by the tongue of the buckle, 
in the event of strain being put on It. I 
have seen two cases of horses which were 
slung on board ship, getting killed by the 
breast strap giving way in this manner. One 
of these animals fell out of the sling in which 
he was being lowered from the exposed deck, 
and was fatally injured. The other fell for- 
ward in the stall In which he was slung, and 
got choked by a rope which had been put 
round his neck In place of a head-collar. 

Slings are of use to a stationary horse 
only during fine weather, when he can ease 
his feet by resting a portion of his weight 
on them. To permit of his doing this, the 
slings should be only loose enough to allow 
of the flat of the hand to be passed between 

144 Horses on Board Ship. 

them and the lower part of the animal's chest 
and abdomen. If they be so tight as to 
exert pressure on that surface, when the 
horse is standing up, their presence will have 
a more or less injurious effect on his organs 
of breathing and digestion. In rough weather, 
even when the slings are slackened out to 
their full limit of efficiency, their presence 
will endanger the security of his foot-hold, and 
may thus lead to a serious accident. 

If a stationary horse which is slung, will 
not bear any weight on his feet, the slings 
should be at once removed or entirely 
slackened out ; for their pressure would inter- 
fere so seriously with his breathing as to kill 
him in a short time. 

As a rule, one sling to twenty horses will 
be sufficient. 



On pages 95 to 100, I have emphasised the 
necessity of giving horses at sea good foot- 
hold. Although coir mats act admirably for 
this purpose in portable horse-boxes, they are 
not generally applicable to stalls, on account 
of the difficulty in mucking-out which their 
presence would entail. As the fore legs of a 
horse bear more weight than the hind ones, 
their stability is of special importance. I have 
accordingly found that the requirements of 
foot-hold for horses in stalls is amply fulfilled, 
as a rule, by placing their fore feet on a non- 
slippery surface, such as a coir mat or a thick 


146 Horses on Board Ship. 

layer of hay. A mat in this position would 
run little risk of becoming soiled by urine or 
dung, and consequently the duty of keeping it 
clean would cause but little trouble. On board 
the Idaho and Kelvingrove, I found that my 
suggestion of putting soiled hay under the 
horses' fore feet admirably served the purpose 
of giving them secure foot-hold. Colonel Duck 
tells me that in several steamers which carried 
remounts from South America to South Africa, 
the animals were bedded down with alfalfa 
(lucerne) hay, and that no mucking-out was 
practised. Consequently they had good foot- 
hold both before and behind, although their 
hind quarters received a gradually increas- 
ing elevation which, towards the end of the 
voyage, must have been somewhat Incon- 
venient to the animals. * This plan of allow- 

Foot-hold in Stalls. 147 

Ing the dung to accumulate in stalls for a 
long period has been practised from time 
Immemorial in many parts of the Continent, 
and Is not as productive of foul odours as 
one might Imagine. Although It gave good 
results with respect to the mortality of re- 
mounts during their transport from South 
America to South Africa, It would of course 
be inapplicable to steamers which had to cross 
the line, owing to the Increased activity in 
the process of decomposition, due to tropical 
heat. Veterinary surgeons who had charge 
of Argentine remounts in South Africa, tell 
me that these animals arrived unshod, with 
the ground surface of their feet In a deplor- 
able state of neglect, on account of their 
having stood in a mass of damp decomposing 

matter during their respective voyages, and 


148 Horses 07t Board Ship. 

consequently a large proportion of them were 
incapable of being worked for a consider- 
able time after disembarkation. The interval 
necessary for the macerated and thrush-afflicted 
feet to recover their normal condition of 
soundness, not being allowed by our military 
authorities, it was natural that only a very 
small percentage of these remounts proved 
fit for service. 



Captain Ross-Smith writes to me from Port 
Elizabeth as follows : — 

" Cattle (horse) steamers with water ballast 
are far preferable to those which carry only a 
comparatively small supply of that fluid, and 
trust to their condensers to supplement any 
shortage. This condensed water Is palatable 
neither to man nor beast, and should be used 
as little as possible for drinking purposes. The 
importance of this water question Is shown by 
the enormous quantities required for a shipload 
of animals. We have the pitiful case of a 
steamer which arrived here from Australia 

150 Horses on Board Ship. 

via East London, short of water, with her 
horses dying of thirst, and their mangers filled 
with untouched food. Although this steamer 
was paid off in consequence of the report sent 
to the Admiralty about her, the Australian 
Government chartered her afresh to carry 
horses to South Africa ! " 

Before ballast tanks are used to carry fresh 
water for horses, they should be carefully 
cleaned out ; because they are often very 
dirty, and frequently contain considerable 
quantities of salt which has been left in them 
from the salt water they had previously held. 
During this war, there have been cases of 
captains of steamers filling their tanks, for the 
purpose of economy, with water from the river 
in which their respective steamers were afloat at 
the time, with the result that the in-take was 

Watering Horses. 151 

more or less brackish, and consequently un- 
suitable for man or beast. As far as my expe- 
rience goes, fresh water carried In ballast tanks 
generally contains a large quantity of Iron, 
and Is also greatly discoloured on account of 
having been- In contact with the accumulated 
rust In the tanks. Although this water makes 
abominably bad tea, I have not observed that 
It produces any 111 effect on the health of horses 
which drink It, or that these animals dislike It ; 
supposing of course that It Is not otherwise 
unpalatable or noxious from the presence of 
salt, etc. If this rusty water, after It has been 
drawn. Is allowed to stand for an hour or two, 
a large portion of the rust which Is suspended 
In It win settle down, and the water will become 
proportionately Improved In taste. It Is 
almost needless to say that the carrylng-out 

152 Horses on Board Ship. 

of such a precaution would be impracticable 
with a large number of horses. In any case, 
it would be well to test the water before 

The principles which should guide us in the 
watering of horses on board ship may be 
summed up as follows : They should be 
watered not less frequently than three times a 
day ; they should be watered shortly before 
being fed, but not for at least three hours after 
being fed ; and they should be allowed to drink 
as much as they like. 

For the transit of large numbers of horses, 
water-pipes should be laid on in every deck 
which carries these animals, and the pipes 
should be provided with rubber tubes and 
turncocks at suitable intervals. In Fig. 18 
(p. 121), a water-pipe runs along the upper 

Watering Horses. 153 

part of the front posts, and one of Its rubber 
pipes can be seen, turned up out of the way, 
at the top of the spare stall. 

Probably the best way to water horses at 
sea is out of an ordinary sheet iron or zinc 
stable bucket held up to each animal. If a 
horse is watered out of his metal or wooden 
feeding trough, the probability is that the 
water will become more or less tainted by par- 
ticles of sour grain, and will consequently be 
distasteful to the animal. In no case should 
water left in a trough by one horse, be poured 
into the trough of another horse for him to 
drink ; for the degree of contamination of the 
fluid will thereby be probably doubled. In 
watering several horses out of one bucket, the 
dregs at the bottom of the bucket, each time 
it has been more or less completely emptied 

154 Horses on Board Ship. 

by one or more horses, should be thrown 
away, and should not be allowed to conta- 
minate the succeeding fresh supply of water. 
Anything less than, say, one pint might be 
fairly regarded as '' dregs." If the first or 
second horse to whom a pailful of water was 
offered desired to finish it, he should be 
allowed to do so, in which case, the quantity 
of the dregs would be at a minimum. The 
hygienic importance of proper watering is so 
great, and the fastidiousness of many horses 
in drinking is so well marked, that each 
attendant should be most careful to allow 
his horses full time and opportunity to drink 
their fill. Some horses drink very slowly 
and with several intervals. The watering 
buckets should be kept scrupulously clean ; 
not only as a direct safeguard to health, but 

Watering Horses. 155 

also because horses will often refuse to drink 
water which is even slightly tainted. 

The Government allowance of 10 gallons 
of water a day for each remount on board 
H.M. transports Is ample, and allows a good 
margin for waste, which Is often large. I 
have found that an ordinary horse will not 
drink dally more than 5 gallons, even on a 
voyage from Bombay to Liverpool during 
the summer. 



The present galvanised sheet-Iron feeding 
troughs which are used on Government horse- 
carrying transports, and which are shown In Fig. 
1 8 (p. i2i), serve their purpose fairly well ; their 
only two faults being, as far as I can see, that 
they cannot be fixed to their respective breast- 
boards securely enough to prevent the horses 
displacing them ; and that horses can more 
or less easily throw food out of them. I 
regret that I am not a good enough mechanic 
to be able to devise a contrivance for the 
removal of the first mentioned objection. As 

Feeding Utensils and Gear. 157 

soon as the generality of horses have eaten 
their corn, they will try to detach the feeding 
trough from the breast-board, probably as a 
signal that they want some hay. If the hay is 
given in nets, the prompt removal of each 
trough as soon as its respective horse has eaten 
his corn, will naturally entail a good deal of 
trouble on the attendants, who also will have 
extra work to do in replacing the troughs 
which are thrown down from time to time, in 
the case of the hay being given in them. I 
need hardly say that the troughs are liable to 
get injured by falling on the deck. If the 
horses are fed with hay as well as with corn 
out of the troughs, it would be advisable to 
make these mangers permanent fixtures, or at 
least, have them attached in such a manner 
that the animals could not knock them off the 

158 Horses on Board Ship. 

breast-boards, although an attendant could 
easily remove and replace them. 

In order to prevent a horse throwing his 
food out of his trough — which he is particularly 
inclined to do, when it contains long hay full 
of hay seeds — we may adopt Colonel Duck's 
wise suggestion to continue the two flat iron 
hooks which are used for attaching the trough 
to the breast-board, completely round the 
trough, which will then have, near its ends, 
two bars running across it, that will prevent 
the animal carrying out his objectionable inten- 
tion. In any case, the bars should be on the 
outside of the trough, and should be continued 
round its three sides, so as to distribute over a 
large surface any strain that may fall on the 
trough. The trough would be still further 
protected from injury by the adoption of 



Feeding Utensils and Gear. 1 6 1 

Colonel Duck's plan. The bad effect of cur- 
tailing the surface over which the strain had 
to be distributed in a feeding trough, is well 
shown in Fig. 22. We were supplied with 
these feeding buckets on board the Kelvin- 
grove when she sailed for South Africa in 
February, 1901, and although great care was 
taken of them, only 88 of these buckets out of 
525 remained intact to the end of the voyage. 
Thanks to the clever suggestion of Mr. 
Simpson, the Chief Officer, we kept many of 
the broken ones in working order, by placing 
a piece of wood inside the damaged bucket, 
and nailing the hooks to it; the hooks in this 
case being placed on the outside of the 

Iron mangers (feeding troughs or feeding 

buckets) are much preferable to wooden ones, 

1 1 

1 62 Horses on Board Ship. 

- £ 

because they are more easily cleaned ; they do 
not absorb moisture ; and horses are far less 
liable to crib-blte on them. 

Feeding troughs are much better than nose- 
bags, which soon become wet and dirty, even 
with dry food, by the saliva that escapes 
from the horse's mouth. They may, however, 
be useful in the event of the feeding troughs 
running short. On such an emergency, three 
of them can be made out of one corn sack. 
When turned with the hem inwards, they will 
then measure about 14^ Inches broad and 
13^ inches deep. A canvas strap can be 
sewn to one side of the bag and a loop of 
canvas to the other side. The bag can 
then be put on the animal's head by passing 
the strap over his poll, and fixing It to the loop 
by a slip hitch (Fig. 20, 'p. 137). Care should 

Feediiig Utensils and Gear. 163 

be taken to remove the bag as soon as the horse 
has eaten his corn, or has stopped feeding. 

The best means of giving long hay is by 
means of hay -nets of about 3^ inches mesh, 
made of tarred spun yarn, and capable of con- 
taining about 1 2 lbs. of hay, supposing that one 
net has to supply two horses. With these nets 
there will be a loss of about 25 per cent., 
caused by hay falling out on the deck or floor 
of the stall. The nets should be kept in good 
repair, for if they get broken, an unusually 
large proportion of the hay will fall out. 
Fairly long hay is required for nets, which 
retain short hay badly. The sergeants or 
under-foremen should see that the correct 
weight of hay is put into each net, and should 
weigh the filled nets from time to time, for 

which purpose, each sergeant or under-fore- 


164 Horses on Board Ship. 

man should have a spring balance, capable 
of weighing at least 15 lbs. 

There is an empty hay-net between two 
of the horses in Fig. i (p. 19). 

Colonel Nunn tells me that mules are par- 
ticularly fond of eating hay-nets and ropes. 

One or more oat-brtnsmg 7nac /lines with 
smooth rollers should be provided in proportion 
to the number of horses. The crushing should 
be done daily, because bruised oats soon 
become musty. 

If hay-nets are not supplied, one or more 
chaff-cutting machines should be provided ; 
because there is great waste and trouble in 
feeding horses with long hay out of feeding 
troughs, especially If these mangers are not 
furnished with cross bars, to more or less 
successfully prevent the horses throwing out 

Feeding Utensils and Gear. 165 

their food. Even the presence of cross bars 

will not prevent a horse getting rid of long 

hay in this manner. 

The following list of gear is that sanctioned 

by the Admiralty for remount horse ships : — 

I Admiralty pattern halter, with two head ropes for each 
animal (half large, half ordinary, the former with distinguish- 
ing mark such as coloured brow-band) and 5 ^/o spare halters. 

1 Canvas horse hammock for every 25 animals. 

E Hay net for each animal shipped and 5 ^/o spare. 

2 Coils 1 1 in. Manila ratline for spare halter ropes. 
2 Corn crushers. 

2 Chaff cutters. 
50 Curry combs. 
50 Dandy brushes. 
50 Large sponges. 

6 J-peck measures. 

6 quart measures. 

1 2 Windsails ; 6 for main deck and 6 for deck below. 

I Windscoop for each side port where animals are 
25 Coir brooms. 

6 Mops. 
10 Steel scrapers. 

6 Spanners for bolts. 

6 Axe hammers, 

1 66 Horses on Board Ship. 

50 Square-mouthed shovels. 

1 Dung-fork for each two cattlemen carried. 
24 Whitewash brushes. 

2 lo-cwt. cane dung baskets for each 'tween deck where 
animals are carried. 

50 Small cane hand dung baskets. 

2 Galvanised buckets for each attendant and 10 0/0 spare. 

4 Thermometers for each 'tween deck or compartment of 
shelter deck, and also sufficient to take temperatures on 

I Salter's spring balance to weigh up to 200 lbs. 

Hurricane candle lamps sufficient to light to approval all 
decks where animals are carried. 

(If vessel is fitted with electric light, 4 candle lamps are 
to be carried for each 'tween deck, and sufficient to light 
other horse decks in the event of the electric light failing.) 

Sufficient candles for the voyage. 

4 Water tubs in each 'tween deck or shelter deck or other 
compartment where animals are carried, or where vessels are 
fitted w4th permanent water service a tub is to be fitted 
under each tap. 

A sufficient supply of cocoanut matting for exercising 
horses on voyage. 

A sufficient supply of canvas for protecting the front of 
all exposed stalls, unless where screens have been already 



Hay, as we have seen on pages 3 to 8, Is 
undoubtedly the best food for idle horses, like 
those on board ship, and should be given In 
liberal quantities, say, 15 or 16 lbs. a day with 
a small amount of corn. In order to make the 
feeding conditions of hay as nearly as possible 
the same as those of grass — which Is the 
natural food of the horse, but which cannot 
be conveniently stored on board ship — we 
should. If practicable, supplement the hay 
ration with one of from 4 to 7 lbs. of carrots 
dally. Parsnips are quite as good as carrots 
for horses, but they are dearer and are not so 

1 68 Horses on Bom'd Ship. 

easy to get. As these roots are apt to rot, 
they should be put on board fresh, and hi a 
fairly dry condition. 

Horses on board Government transports 
are sometimes provided with mangold-wurzels, 
when carrots cannot be obtained at a suffi- 
ciently low price. We had them on the good 
ship Idaho, but most of them were rotten. 
Even the sound ones were not relished by 
the horses. They were certainly a failure In 
this case. 

To keep up the working capabilities of 
the horses, without unduly "heating" their 
systems, we may give them a moderate supply 
of bran or oats, or of both. As a bran mash 
is regarded by many people as the sole form 
of bran as a food for horses, I must point out 
\ that the admixture of water In this case 

Food and Feeding. 1 69 

diminishes the digestibility of the bran and 
makes It a laxative. If, however, the animal 
Is allowed to make his own bran mash, by 
giving it to him dry, he will be obliged to 
thoroughly masticate it ; for If he does not do 
so, his mouth will not obtain a quantity of 
saliva sufficient to enable him to swallow 
It. When the bran has been ground Into 
a fine state by the teeth and saturated 
with saliva, it will be in the best possible 
condition for reception and digestion by 
the stomach. Although a bran mash may 
be regarded as a laxative medicine, dry bran 
is a highly digestible and nutritious food, as I 
have proved with hundreds of horses on sea 
and land. A M u ic ihaii tl ttrty" years^Rgo, ColQaeL/ > 
John Anderson, A.,V. D., directed my atten- 

/ L 

tion to t)ils fact, w|iich Muntz, -Crandeau and 

/ - i 


1 70 Hoi'ses on Board Ship. 

Drher~Continental scientific men have amply 

Some people have the mistaken idea that 
dry bran should always be damped by 
sprinkling it with water, before giving it to a 
horse ; because its floating particles, so they 
say, will go up his nostrils and injuriously 
affect his organs of breathing. I have never 
found a single case of this to occur with the 
many thousands of feeds of dry bran which I 
have seen given to horses in feeding troughs 
and ordinary mangers ; although the presence 
j of dry bran in a nose-bag might make an 
I animal sneeze.lJ' A valid objection to the 
wetting of bran, as I have already indicated, 
is that the damper it is, the less will the horse 
chew it, and the less saliva will he secrete to 
mix with it. 

Food and Feeding. 171 

I have often found at sea that the substitu- 
tion of dry bran for oats, or for a mixture of 
oats and bran, will often cure a horse of 
diarrhoea apparently set up by the oats, in 
which case undigested oats will generally be 
seen in the dung. 

Formerly, the daily grain ration for each 
horse on Government transports consisted of 
half bran and half oats ; but I see by 
the Government " specification," printed in 
July, 1 901, that it is now to consist of 60 per ^ 
cent, of bran, and 40 per cent of oats. 
The increase in the proportion of bran pro- 
bably arose from the favourable reports made 
upon bran as an article of food for horses 
at sea. 

The only drawback to the use of bran on 
board ship is its liability to ferment, in which 

172 Ho7^ses on Board Ship. 

case it becomes heated, '' cakes," and assumes 
a musty smell. If fresh bran is obtained 
shortly before sailing, and is properly stored, 
it will undoubtedly keep sweet for six weeks, 
if not longer ; but it is generally difficult to 
be sure of its freshness at the time of purchase. 
In fact, considerable quantities of bran are 
imported to England from India. The only 
practical way I know of testing the freshness 
of bran, is finding that it smells sweet, is not 
caked, and is not abnormally warm, which we 
can do, by inserting our bared arm deeply into 
a bag or heap of it. 

For ship use, I am inclined to prefer 
moderately light oats to heavy ones, as I 
find that they are not so liable to upset the 
digestion of idle horses. Respecting the 
quality of oats in other respects, I need 

Food and Feeding. 173 

only say that the grain should be thoroughly 
dry and free from any musty smell. We 
all know that old oats are more digestible 
than new oats, and that kiln-drying, in the 
case of oats, Is generally employed to 
Improve the condition of musty corn. Con- 
sequently, kiln-dried oats should be viewed 
with more or less suspicion. 

When a horse eats unbrulsed oats, which 
Is not one of his natural foods, he is very 
liable, owing to the smoothness of their coats, 
to swallow them without properly chewing 
them, as we may see by an Inspection of 
his dung. The process of bruising Increases 
the difficulty of swallowing them without 
sufficient mastication, and it also exposes 
their Interior, which contains their nutritive 
constituents, to the action of the digestive 

1 74 Horses 07i Board Ship. 

juices. Consequently, bruising Improves the 
digestibility of oats. 

The chief points about grass hay are : that 
it should be free from any musty smell ; that 
It should be green In colour ; and that It 
should contain very few weeds, no dust, and 
no seeds. Mustlness is shown not only by 
the smell, but also by more or less large 
patches of mould distributed throughout the 
fodder. When hay has been quickly cured 
by a liberal supply of bright sunshine and 
sufficiently frequent turning over, It retains Its 
colour to a great extent and the most of Its 
nutritive properties. When cut grass is 
exposed to the action of the weather and 
especially to rain, Its colour and much of Its 
nutritive material becomes dissolved out. If 
an undue amount of fermentation Is set up, 

Food and Feeding. 1 7 5 

the hay will turn more or less brown. The 
obnoxious presence of weeds and dust needs 
no comment ; but I may explain to readers 
who are unacquainted with the principles of 
agriculture, that between the respective time 
of flowering and seed, the nutritive value of 
grass and consequently that of the resulting 
hay, becomes considerably decreased. 

Experiment has shown that chopped hay 
''goes farther" than long hay, and that it 
undoubtedly Improves the digestibility of 
corn when mixed with It. The length of the 
grass taken Into the mouth of a horse when 
he Is grazing In the open. Is certainly much j 
nearer that of " chop," than that of long 
hay. - 

Oaten hay, which is oats cut when the 
grain is In a soft condition and then dried, 

176 Horses on Board Ship. 

IS very largely used by Australian horse 
shippers, from whom I have often bought 
surplus quantities of It, when I lived In Cal- 
cutta. I have found it to be an admirable 
food for horses. 

Experience with the shipping of remounts 
from the Argentine Republic to South Africa, 
has proved that lucer7ie (alfalfa) hay is an 
excellent food for horses at sea. The normal 
colour of clover hay is more or less brown. 

I would suggest the following daily ration 
for horses on board ship : — 

Bran, 6 lbs. 

Hay, 1 7 lbs. 

Or oats, 3 lbs. 

Bran, 3 lbs. 

Hay, 17 lbs. 
And, say, 5 lbs. of carrots in either case. 

Food and Feeding, 1 7 7 

The Government daily forage scale for re- 
mounts at sea Is : — * 
Oats, 4 lbs. 
Bran, 6 lbs. 
Hay, 12 lbs. 
And for horses proceeding from New 
Orleans or Canada : — 
Oats, 5 lbs. 
Bran, 3 lbs. 
^ Maize, 2 lbs. 
Also, 4 cwt. nitre, 5 cwt. rock salt, 
100 gallons vinegar, and 2 tons linseed are 
allowed for each shipment. 

Formerly, only 10 lbs. of hay was allowed, 
which quantity I found to be far too small, 
especially as there Is always a large percent- 
age of loss In the hay. This loss, as I have 

already shown, would be reduced to a mlnl- 


178 Horses on Board Ship. 

mum by chopping the hay, and by giving 
it in troughs provided with a cross bar near 
each end. 

With respect to the principles of feeding, 
I need say nothing further than that, as we 
all know, horses should be fed frequently, 
and that they should not be given hay for at 
least an hour and a half after their corn. 
In order to maintain the sound principle of 
frequency of feeding, the first feed should be 
given as early in the morning, and the 
last feed as late in the evening, as is com- 
patible with due regard to the convenience 
of the attendants. The arrangement laid 
down on pages 182 and 188 will, I think, meet 
these requirements. The advisability of re- 
fraining from giving hay soon after corn, is 
that the latter, for purposes of digestion, re- 

Food and Feeding. 179 

quires to remain longer in the stomach than 
the former. As a horse's stomach is compara- 
tively small, more or less of the corn will 
be pushed out of it in an unprepared state, 
in the event of hay being given soon after 
he is fed. 




We shall first consider the case of army 
horses zvhich are accompanied by cavalry 

The best arrangement Is to divide the horses 
Into sections, each of which is to be looked 
after — as regards watering, feeding, grooming, 
exercising (when possible), and mucking-out 
— by one man, who being in frequent atten- 
dance on his charges, will be able to 
promptly notice and report any signs of 
Indisposition in them, which work could not 
as a rule be done by men who came on 

Horse Attendants and Stable D titles. i8i 

duty by roster. These men should be exempt 
from all other duties ; and attendance during 
the intervals between stable hours should 
devolve on stable guards, who could come 
on duty for four hours at a time. The work 
of the stable guards would be to see to the 
general welfare of the horses, to replace 
any hay that had fallen out of the feeding 
troughs or hay nets, and to feed them on 
hay during the night, as might be ordered. 
Other men would be required to lend a hand 
during mucking-out and exercising times. 
Sergeants and corporals should be told off 
to supervise the work of the men, according 
to the number of non-commissioned officers. 

Supposing that the men's meal times were 
8 a.m., I p.m., and 5 p.m., a suitable arrange- 
ment for the hours of feeding would be : — 

1 82 Horses on Board Ship, 

5.30 a.m. Water and feed. 

7.30 a.m. Hay. 

12 noon. Water and feed. 

2 p.m. Hay. 

6 p.m. Water and feed. 

8 p.m. Hay. 

Hay should also be supplied during the 
night ; and during very hot weather, the 
horse might with advantage be watered again 
at 10 p.m. 

On Government transports carrying remounts 
to South Africa, the following arrangement 
for stable duties has been laid down : — 


'' Rake the stalls well out to the rear, 
sweep up the passage behind the horses, and 
sprinkle disinfectants, water the horses, sponge 

Horse Attendants and Stable Dttties. 183 

nostrils, eyes, etc. Feed with oats or bran 
after watering, and then with hay as 


" Shift horses into spare stalls and out 
on to the deck when practicable ; pick out 
and wash the feet and examine shoes. Any 
loose shoes to be fastened at once, and 
slight injuries attended to. Thoroughly 
groom the body, brush and hand-rub the 
legs, brush out the mane and tail, and 
sponge nostrils and face. 

" Each stall to be thoroughly cleaned, and 
platform to be raised and cleaned. Deck 
underneath to be dried, and disinfectants to 
be freely used. 

'* When the horses are clean, water and 
feed them as ordered. 

184 Horses on Boai'd Ship. 

" After dinner the horses to be fed with 
hay for an hour. 


" Rake the stalls well out, sweep up, 
sponge nostrils, etc., as In ' Morning Stables.' 
Water and then feed with oats or bran as 
ordered. Stable men to feed horses with 
remaining portion of hay." 

When 7'einounts are sent without troops, 
there Is generally one helper of the ordinary 
workman or street loafer type to from fifteen 
to twenty animals. The superintendence of 
these men, who are sometimes foreigners 
Ignorant of English, Is generally entrusted 
to a head-foreman and three under-foremen, 
supposing that there are about 500 horses on 
board. Instead of having a landsman to act 

Horse Attendants and Stable Duties. 185 

the part of head-foreman, it is much the better 
plan, as a rule^ to get, if possible, one of the 
mates of the ship (the Chief Officer for 
preference) to perform this duty, because he 
will be able to enforce his authority over 
the men under him much more effectively 
than an outsider could do. A non-official 
head-foreman cannot take the law into his 
own hands, and in the event of a difficulty 
with his men, he will have to refer the 
matter to the Chief Officer or Captain^ 

In the heterogeneous crowd which consists 
of horse attendants or " cattle men " (I cannot 
call them grooms or strappers), lads or young 
men are generally better than their seniors, 
because as a rule they are more amenable to 
discipline, and accept rough work with 
greater equanimity. Such men, whether old 

1 86 Horses on Board Ship. 

or young, cannot be expected to have any 
experience among horses, which is not a 
matter of great moment, provided that the 
foremen, as they should do, possess that 

Not counting the foremen or watchmen, one 
man to every fifteen horses or twenty mules 
will be a fair allowance for the mere water- 
ing, feeding, mucking-out, and general care 
of these animals during the day. They 
should promptly report to their respective 
under-foremen anything they may see amiss 
with their animals. In the case of a hired 
transport all such reports should be brought 
without delay to the remount officer or 
veterinary officer in charge. 

In the case under consideration, six watch- 
men will be required, three being on watch 

Horse Attendants and Stable Dttties. 187 

at the same time. Their time can be 
divided as follows : — 

6 a.m. to 12 noon. 
12 noon to 3 p.m. 
3 p.m. to 6 p.m. 
6 p.m. to midnight. 
Midnight to 6 a.m. 

The arrangement of two dog-watches of 
three hours each, makes the above division 
of time equitable. The men on night duty 
should carefully look after the horses of 
their respective divisions, and should call 
their foreman in the event of help being 
required. During the day, the watchmen 
on duty should be available for odd jobs. 
It Is well to make them responsible for the 
halters or head-collars, as the case may be. 

1 88 Horses on Board Ship. 

' — ■ — -■----—-■■■■■ > * — ■ 

Each attendant should have a quart 
measure for serving out the corn and bran 
to his horses. 

I have found the following division of 
work to act well : — 

5.30 a.m. Water and feed. 

7.30 a.m. Hay. 

8 a.m. Men's breakfast. 

II a.m. Water and feed. 
12 noon. Men's dinner. 
1.30 p.m. Hay. 

5 p.m. Water and feed. 
5.30 p.m*. Men's tea. 

8 p.m. Hay, before which water may be 
given In hot weather. 

As board-ship horse attendants, whether 
military or civil, rarely know much 

Horse Attendants and Stable Duties. 189 

about the proper management of horses, 
their attention should, from the first, be 
called to certain details which play a large 
part in the welfare of the animals under 
their charge. On land, grooms almost always 
approach stabled horses from behind, but at 
sea the animals are turned the other way 
about. When an ordinary working man or 
boy who is unacquainted with equine pecu- 
liarities, passes by a box or stall from which 
the head of a horse protrudes, he almost 
always, either from ignorant fear of being 
bitten or innate cruelty, strikes more or less 
severely the animal's muzzle, which is par- 
ticularly sensitive to external violence. As 
the upper lip of a horse is his organ of 
touch, he naturally advances it towards any 
passing object, which he will do without the 

190 Horses on Board Ship. 

slightest intention of inflicting injury, unless 
he has been rendered savage by previous 
bad treatment, which in this case has con- 
verted curiosity into vice. Teasing a horse 
by offering him objects to smell or eat, and 
then pulling them away, will also teach him 
to snap at passers-by. This deplorable 
custom of striking and teasing horses at sea 
is the cause of quickly making the large 
majority of them try to bite or violently 
throw their heads upwards and backwards, 
so as to get out of harm's way when any 
one goes past them. Hence, before horse 
attendants commence their duties on board 
ship, they should be seriously cautioned 
never to touch or threaten a horse's muzzle ; 
and that when they are obliged to come up 
to an animal which is* at all nervous or 

Horse Attendants and Stable Duties. 191 

Inclined to snap, they should hold up their 
hand at about the height of the upper part 
of his head, with the open palm turned 
towards him, and should gently pat his neck 
or rub his forehead with it while speaking 
to him in soothing tones. Everyone who 
has anything to do with horses should bear 
in mind that the human voice Is one of the 
best and most powerful means for quieten- 
ing and .controlling horses. Both with troops 
and with " cattle men " I have had very 
disheartening experience of the brutal manner 
In which they often treat horses at sea ; 
their fault In this respect being probably 
due much more to ignorance and timidity 
than to deliberate cruelty. 

In all cases, one or two experienced 
blacksmiths should be on board in order to 

192 Horses on Board Ship. 

look after the shoeing of the horses, and to 
give special help as may be required. These 
men are particularly useful in cases of acci- 
dent or emergency, on account of their skill 
in the handling of horses. 



We have seen (p. 146) that in a temperate 
climate, such as that of the sea between Mel- 
bourne or Buenos Ayres and Cape Town, 
mucking-out is not always imperative. But on 
a voyage across the Equator, such as that 
from Europe to South Africa, or one through 
such hot climes as those of the Red Sea and 
Indian Ocean, we may accept the fact that its 
fairly frequent enforcement, say, once every 
two or three days, is essential to the health 
of the horses on board. When military 
horses are accompanied by their own men, 

daily mucking-out can be easily performed ; 


194 Horses on Boaj'd Ship. 

. ^ 

but the task is difficult in proportion to the 
lack of attendants. Although a week may, 
without detriment to health, be allowed to 
elapse between each complete mucking -out, 
when the weather is cold, such a long in- 
terval ensures the accumulation of an amount 
of duno- which would entail much trouble to 
remove, and which might cause inconveni- 
ence to the horses, especially to those on 
the windward side, by raising their hind 
quarters too much, and thus putting an undue 
proportion of weight on the fore legs. When 
each stall has a separate breast - board, and 
when there is plenty of room in front of the 
stalls, each horse may be taken out of his 
stall, and put back into it after it has been 
cleaned out. In other cases, the best general 
way will be to take out two or more horses at 

Mucking- Out. 195 

one end, muck-out their stalls, take out the 

division-boards of the nearest stall, shift the 

horse in it to the first stall, replace its division 

boards, clean out the stall thus vacated, and 

continue on in the same way, until there are 

left at the other end two vacant stalls, into 

which the first two horses are placed. 

In a ship with freeing-ports, the dung will 

be thrown overboard through them, in which 

case the dung from the stalls below will have 

to be carried up to the deck that is provided 

with freeing-ports. For convenience sake in 

mucking-out, the stalls containing freeing-ports 

should generally be kept vacant (Fig. 23, 

p. 197). If the wind is on the port side or 

quarter, the dung should as far as practicable 

be thrown overboard through the starboard 

freeing-ports ; and vice versa. 


.196 Horses on Board Ship. 

In a flush-deck ship, which has no freeing 
ports, the dung will have to be carried to the 
flush deck and deposited over the side. The 
dung can best be removed from the stalls by 
means of shallow wicker-work baskets (skeps). 

Mucking-out is necessary, not only for the 
removal of dirt and bad smells, but also to 
obviate the heating effect which the decom- 
position of dung and urine would have. 

In mucking-out, only the dung and the wet 
portion of the hay which is under the horse 
should be removed ; the remainder of the hay 
being left to give soft and secure foot-hold to 
his fore feet. No attempt should be made to 
clean the stalls by flushing them with water ; 
because any effort In such a direction would be 
limited to one or two stalls (except when the 
two lower division boards are removed, page 









Mucking- OtU. 199 

124), and would cause the dung in the neigh- 
bouring stalls to assume the consistence of 
mud, with the result that it would be difficult 
to remove, and would soil everything In reach. 
Besides, It would be difficult to remove such 
a filthy mess. 

After all the dung and wet hay has been 
taken out of a stall, any damp or dirty spots on 
the floor can be disinfected by sprinkling 
powdered gypsum, quick-lime, or some anti- 
septic powder (McDougall's, for instance) over 
them. Gypsum (plaster of Paris), which very 
readily absorbs ammonia, is probably the 
best. Quick-lime, which has great affinity 
for water, should be used with care, on 
account of its corrosive action on the feet 
of horses. Chloride of lime should not be 
employed, because the chlorine given off from 

200 Horses on Board Ship. 


it has a very Irritating effect on the eyes and 
organs of breathing of horses and men. 

The daily quantity of disinfectants, per 
animal, allowed on remount horse ships is : 
5 oz. McDougall's powder or chinosol, ^ pint 
phenyle, and 2 oz. powdered gypsum. 

The greater portion of the horses' urine 
escapes through scuppers, or gets soaked up 
in the dung and is removed when mucking-out. 
If one side of the ship (as, for instance, the 
windward side or the one on which the water 
tanks are not so full as on the other side) is 
unduly high, the urine on it is apt to collect 
at the lowest parts of the deck or decks in 
question ; because it cannot escape by gravi- 
tation through the scuppers oi the side upon 
which it was deposited by the horses, In which 
case it should be removed a couplt^ of times 

]M ticking- Oti t. 2 o I 

a day by suction pipes, balled out by means 
of shovels or scoops, or soaked up by putting 
down hay. More or less of this urine will 
gravitate down to the lower side of the 
ship, unless It Is prevented from doing so 
by fittings. 



Before taking a horse out of his stall, 
the route by which he has to proceed, 
should be carefully laid down with matting,, 
grain bags, hay, or rugs, as the case may 
demand. Instead of shifting a sick or injured 
animal to a vacant double stall, it will often 
be more convenient to put one of the 
horses which are next to him into it, or 
into an empty single stall, and thus give him 
a double stall without moving him. Or all 
the horses between him and the nearest 
vacant stall may be shifted one stall away 

Changing Horses from Stall to Stall, 203 

from him, by removing and replacing the 
respective division - boards. If a horse Is 
quiet and In no way IncHned to tease his 
neighbours, he may be let loose In a double 
stall, and especially In a stall which consists 
of three sinp'le stalls. 



Good grooming is of great benefit to horses 
which are travelling by sea during hot 
weather, and when ventilation is imperfect ; 
because it removes dandruff and hair, and 
stimulates the action of the skin. When the 
protective action of the skin against cold 
has to be fully utilised, grooming should be 
dispensed with, as is done with horses which 
are " turned out " during winter. The more 
active is the skin, the more it reduces the 
bodily temperature by evaporation, and, 
besides, it removes impurities from the 
system. The question of grooming on board 
ship is closely connected with that of oppor- 

Grooming. 205 

tunity, labour and risk. In a steamer in 
which there is plenty of room for taking- 
horses out and abundance of efficient help, 
horses can be groomed during fine weather 
almost as well as on land ; but the danger 
of accident should not be lightly incurred. 
When the attendants are unskilled in stable 
work and are few in number, the grooming 
had better be restricted to such small details 
as : sponging out the eyes, nostrils and dock ; 
going over the body with a dandy brush ; 
picking out the feet ; and setting the 
mane and tail straight. In all cases, the 
yards of the horses should be drawn from 
time to time, and the sheathes cleaned 
and sponged out. If this be not done, the 
sheathes will become swollen and the animals 
will have difficulty in staling. 



Exercise is one of the best preservatives 
of the health and especially of the soundness 
of horses which have to remain on board 
ship for a fairly long time. I do not think 
that it is necessary when the duration of the 
voyage is not more than a fortnight ; provided 
that the systems of the animals are in a " cool " 
state. Also, the smoother the passage, the 
more beneficial will exercise be, which state- 
ment is proved by the fact that horses' legs 
are more inclined to ''fill" during fine 
weather than when it is rough ; because 
prolonged rest greatly . interferes with the 

Exercise. 207 

circulation of their limbs. As exercising 
horses at sea is almost always accompanied 
with more or less risk of accident, we 
should, when resorting to it, take every 
precaution for safety. For this object, the 
portion of the deck which forms the exercis- 
ing track should be covered with coir mats, 
or coir matting, which is made up in rolls, 
so as to prevent the animals from slipping, 
which is their chief cause of danoer in this 


case. Twenty minutes' walking exercise a day 
will generally be sufficient for the preservation 
of the soundness of their feet. 

Althouo'h facilities to exercise horses are a 
very desirable condition on board a ship 
carrying horses, they cannot often be ob- 
tained, especially when the number of animals 
is large. 



During the three years I lived in Calcutta, 
I saw many instances of the bad effects of 
premature work after landing, among large 
numbers of horses imported from Australia 
and New Zealand. In this case, the passage 
takes from a month to six weeks. Experience 
with many thousands of these animals showed 
buyers the necessity of refraining from putting 
them to hard work before giving them a 
gradual preparation for it of at least three 
months. Here laminitis (fever in the feet) 
is the great danger. .This disease may be 

Precautions after Disembarking. 209 

fatal in bad cases, and even in mild ones 
it more or less unfits the sufferer for severe 
work for the remainder of his life. As a rule, 
not even one per cent, of a shipload of horses 
which had stood in stalls during a month's 
passage would have laminitis before disem- 
barkation, but probably 50 per cent, of them 
would get it if they walked and trotted for 
ten miles immediately after landing. Even 
a walk of two miles from the pier to the 
remount depot at Port Elizabeth has been 
a fruitful means of setting up laminitis in 
the horses whose feet showed no signs of 
this disease on landing. I have seen scores 
of similar cases at Calcutta. Here the danger 
is inversely proportionate to the length of 
time between landing and resumption of work. 

Horses landed off a ship in which they have 


2IO Horses on Board Ship. 

had no exercise for, say, a month, ought not 
to be obliged to walk more than half a mile to 
a place where they can be put up in loose 
boxes or small enclosures, so that they may 
gradually accustom themselves to narrowly 
restricted movement for some days, and their 
exercise should then be increased little by 
little until all danger of laminitis has past. 
The limit of three months before the resump- 
tion of hard work after a voyage of, say, a 
month's duration, is in accordance with the 
opinion of all veterinary surgeons who have 
had experience in this subject. In cases of 
extreme necessity, such as those of war, it 
might be reduced to three weeks, but even 
then the resulting percentage of loss would 
be high. If horses have been exercised on 
board, they will of course be able to resume 

Precmttions after Diserubm'king. 2 1 1 

work much quicker than If they had been 

kept all the time standing still. 

As horses, when under natural conditions, 

spend a very large portion of their time 

moving about In search of food ; their limbs 

are 111 adapted to bear the bad effects of 

inaction, particularly when the animals cannot 

relieve the consequent congestion by lying 

down. The Immediate 111 consequences of 

long standing, on the feet of horses, Is far 

less Injurious to them than the Inability to 

bear even moderate exercise which It Induces, 

supposing that the animals are put to work 

soon after the completion of the voyage. The 

danger to be specially feared in these cases 

is the occurrence of lamlnltis (fever In the 

feet), to which disease horses are specially 

liable, owing to the fact that their feet are 


2 12 Hoi'ses on Board Ship. 

enclosed in an unyielding box of horn. In 
laminitis caused by premature work after a 
long period of idleness, we have a case some- 
what akin to frost-bite, which is produced by 
the coldness of the air causing the blood to 
leave the blood vessels of the part, the result 
being that the longer the blood is absent, the 
more irritating will be its effect on the blood 
vessels when it returns ; and also the degree 
of irritation will be proportionate to the 
suddenness of the return. Consequently, if 
the blood rushes violently back to blood 
vessels which have remained comparatively 
empty for a considerable time — as would 
happen in the event of a frost-bitten person 
or animal entering a warm room or approach- 
ing a fire — more or less inflammation will 
ensue, with the probable- result of mortification 

Precautions after Disembarking. 213 

to a greater or less extent. Hence, in an 
attempt to restore the circulation of a frost- 
bitten part, it is well to rub it with snow, 
so as to produce a slow return of the blood, 
in order that the blood vessels may gradually 
resume their ordinary work which has been 
kept in abeyance by cold. Neglect of this 
essential precaution of obtaining gradual res- 
toration of a disused function, has been the 
cause of the death of thousands of army horses 
during the present South African war. Instead 
of giving lately-landed animals, at the very 
least, three weeks, during which to gradually / 
accustom their feet to normal conditions, our 
Generals at the front, being badly in want f 
of horses, adopted the disastrous plan of 
ordering the new arrivals to be promptly sent 
up country, with the result that the average 


2 14 Horses on Bom'd Ship. 

duration of life of three hundred and odd 
thousand remounts has been about six weeks. 
Had these Generals taken the precaution to 
consult their veterinary staff, they would no 
doubt have learned that moderately service- 
able horses in three weeks' time, would be 
more useful for military operations than dead 
ones. Besides, the mounting of men on 
horses which were incapable of enduring a 
single day's hard work, has been the cause . 
of the death of great numbers of our young 
men and boys in South Africa. In such 
cases, the crime of ignorance is no less 
serious than that of heedless disregard of 
life. Some excuse might be admissible for 
this deplorable folly, if the war had been 
finished in the supposed six months' time. 



As Instances of moderate charges by a first 
class line, I give the following rates by steamers 
belonging to Messrs. Thos. Wilson, Sons and 
Co., from Hull to the following ports : — 

Bombay ..... £2^ o o 

Alexandria . . . . ;i^i2 o o 

New York . . . . ;^8 o o 

St. Petersburg . . . ;!^5 o o 

and a guinea for ponies from Riga to Hull or 


' In all these cases, except In thai of ponies 

from Riga, the Company furnishes portable 

horse - boxes, and always drinking water. 

Attendants on the horses are carried generally 

2 1 6 Horses on Board Ship. 

at reduced fares, which the owner of the 
animal will have to pay. He may also be liable 
for the return passage of the man or men. On 
short trips, such as that to St. Petersburg, an 
arrangement can generally be made with the 
captain of the steamer to get one of the ship's 
hands, for instance, the carpenter, to look 
after the animal or animals. 

Messrs. Sewell and Crowther, of Cockspur 
Street, S.W., who are passage brokers, give 
me the following quotations by tramp 
steamers : — 

Melbourne . . 50 gs., and logs, for horse-box. 
Durban. . . 35 gs. (including box and fodder). 
Buenos Ay res . 15 gs., and 10 p.c. on value of horse 

(including horse-box). 

The large number of horses sent over 
every year from Australia to India are 
usually taken by " ocean tramps " at the 

Cost of Transport. 217 

very moderate rate of from £\o to £12 a 
head, although the passage lasts as a rule 
from a month to five weeks. The cheap- 
ness of freight by this route is due to the 
fact that ships homeward bound from 
Australia, often find difficulty In obtaining a 
full cargo ; and as the exports from India 
are much larger, their owners are generally 
glad to take a cargo of horses to Calcutta, 
Madras, or Bombay, even at a slight loss. 

Captain Ross-Smith tells me that " during 
the early part of this war. Government 
awoke to the fact that thousands of horses 
and mules were required to replace casual- 
ties, and to mount more men than were 
originally considered necessary. Tenders 
were hastily drawn out and placed to charter 
vessels at exorbitant rates for the convey- 

2i8 Horses on Board Ship. 

ance of these animals to South African 
ports. For instance, the ss. Mohawk was 
chartered to carry animals from New Orleans 
at about ^25 a head. A large proportion 
of these ships which were hurriedly taken 
up were unfit for their purpose, and they 
arrived in South Africa with horses and 
mules packed like herrings in a barrel, and 
stowed away in all sorts of places, even on 
bridge decks and in coal bunkers, as I have 
seen. The first consignments were 25 or 30 
per cent, more than the respective steamers 
could properly accommodate. The fittings 
were often disgracefully bad, and were con- 
structed from the cheapest materials. The 
contracts for steamers taken up only for the 
voyage to South African ports, were far 
more costly to Government than ships on a 

Cost of Transport. 219 

time charter, say for six months at so much 
per gross ton per month. For instance, 
the ss. Montezuma, which was hired only for 
the voyage, made two trips in Httle more 
than three months, and turned over to her 
agents ^16,000 or ^17,000 on the transac- 
tion. Had she been a numbered transport 
she would have saved the Government a 
third of that sum. In view of national 
emergencies, some of the best cattle boats 
should be subsidised for use in time of war, 
and as they get old they should be replaced 
by new ships. Thus, for a nominal yearly 
expenditure on subsidies, large sums of 
money would be saved at some future time. 
The same plan might, with advantage, be 
applied to steamers intended for the con- 
veyance of troops, or of troops and horses." 

2 20 Horses on Board Ship. 

Steamers have recently been taken by 
Government for the conveyance of horses 
to South Africa at ^15 to ;f i6 a head, with 
£2 extra on all landed alive. These rates 
include cost of fittings, forage and attendants. 




Before embarkation, every horse should be 
carefully Inspected by a veterinary surgeon 
to see If It Is suffering from any contagious or 
Infectious disease, in which case, the affected 
animal or animals should, if possible, be ex- 
cluded from participation In the voyage. The 
narrow limitation of space on board ship 
greatly facilitates the spread of such diseases, 
and renders their successful treatment and 
the proper segregation of the patients far 
more difficult than on land. In this respect, 
the maladies which should occupy our special 

222 Horses on Board Ship. 

attention are glanders, Influenza (pink-eye), 
strangles, and pneumonia. 


The attention necessary to be paid to the 
Investigation of glanders varies greatly accord- 
ing to the country of export. Thus, although 
the consideration of this terrible disease may 
be ignored with regard to Australian horses, 
we should diligently search for it among 
horses about to be exported from the United 
States (especially the Southern States), Canada, 
and even from England, where its preven- 
tion Is deplorably neglected by our legisla- 
tive authorities. It was particularly rife in 
Cuba, whence many infected animals were 
brought to the Southern States, after the 
Spanish American war. . I need not touch 

Veterinary Re7narks, 223 

on its symptoms and on its diagnosis by 
mallein, as these subjects are discussed in 
veterinary text-books. If glanders is found 
among horses at sea, all those which show 
clinical symptoms of the disease should be 
promptly killed and put overboard. Those 
which give diagnostic reactions with mallein, 
without external symptoms, may be isolated 
or destroyed. The danger of infection from 
such isolated animals is not very great. An 
observer who is guided only by symptoms, 
should bear in mind that the symptoms of 
ulcerative lymphangitis (Nocard's) and epi- 
zootic lymphangitis (Rivolta's) closely resemble 
those of farcy, and that these two forms of 
lymphangitis have been sometimes mistaken, 
even by veterinary surgeons, for farcy. The 
distinguishing test is naturally mallein. I 

2 24 Horses on Board Skip. 

need hardly say that farcy and glanders are 

merely different forms of the same disease. 

The only case of ulcerative lymphangitis 

which I have seen was In Cape Colony ; 

the animal being a remount from the United 


In ordinary strangles, I have found It well 
to rub the swelling under the jaw with 
binlodlde of mercury ointment (i to 4), as 
soon as It became hard. In this case, the 
binlodlde seems to act as an antiseptic In 
checking the formation of pus. 


This disease had best be treated by careful 
nursing and attention to the state of the 

Veterinary Remarks. 225 


These ailments are frequent causes of trouble 
among horses on board ship, especially during 
fine weather ; and their best remedies are 
exercise and cotton wadding bandaging. 
In many cases, exercise has unfortunately to 
be restricted to that which can be obtained 
from the rolling and pitching of the ship. 
'The object of cotton wadding bandaging Is 
to supply evenly distributed pressure, which 
has the effect of quickening the circulation of 
the bandaged part, and thereby preventing the 
escape of an excess of watery material from the 
blood vessels into the tissues, and hastening 
the removal of such an effusion, If it be present. 
The method of applying these bandages Is as 
follows : — " Take two yards of cotton wadding 
(which can be obtained from any draper), and 


2 26 Horses on Board Ship. 

cut it down the centre, so as to have two pieces 
of wadding a couple of yards long and about 
ten Inches wide. Wrap the leg round with this 
wadding, one piece over the other ; apply 
round It, rather loosely, a calico bandage (which 
can be got ready-made from any chemist, or 
can be constructed out of a piece of unbleached 
calico) about six yards long and three inches 
wide, so as to keep the wadding in Its place ; 
and tightly apply another and similar calico 
bandage, so as to afford firm and evenly 
distributed pressure on the leg, and secure it 
by tapes, sewing, or by a safety pin. With the 
amount of wadding which I have recommended 
to be used, there Is practically no danger of 
putting on the second bandage too tightly." — 
Veterinary Notes for Horse- Oiuners. 

]/eterinary Remarks. 227 


Colic as a symptom of indigestion from 
improper feeding and watering, is not an un- 
common malady among sea-going horses. It 
is often due, on board ship, to very trivial 
causes, owing to the want of exercise from 
which the patients suffer. With respect to its 
removal, good results can generally be obtained 
by a drench consisting of a bottle (i ^ pint) of 
linseed oil and 2 oz. of oil (spirits) of turpentine ; 
or by a 4-drachm ball of aloes, followed, if 
necessary for the alleviation of pain, by a 
drench composed of a pint of water and a 
quarter of a pint of spirits (whisky, brandy, or 
rum) or an ounce of chlorodyne. Here, as 
Gamgee remarked many years ago, we require 
the removal of the cause (undigested and 
generally fermenting food), which we can 


228 Horses 07t Board Skip. 

— a ■ — 

usually effect by means of a laxative, such as 
aloes or linseed oil. Merely treating the pain 
would naturally be a false application of 

Giving a drench chiefly composed of linseed 
oil Is often an uncertain and disagreeable task. 
A modern remedy for ordinary colic Is eserlne 
by itself or combined with pilocarpine (i or 
lyi grain of the former to 2 or 3 grains of 
the latter), dissolved in i or i^ drachm of 
water, and Injected subcutaneously or intra- 
tracheally. Eserlne, especially when combined 
with pilocarpine, acts as a rapid and effec- 
tive purgative (see Finlay Dun's Veterinary 
Medicines). An ounce of chloral hydrate 
dissolved In water may be given as a 
drench If a sedative be required. Chloral 
hydrate relieves Intestinal spasm ; It is an 

Veterinary Remarks. 229 

antiseptic, and does not check the action of 
the bowels. 


These wounds are of frequent occurrence 
among horses on board ship. The animals 
sometimes rub their tails to a severe extent 
(Fig. 24) by hanging back in their stalls, 
especially when the upper edge of the top 
haunch board has not been bevelled off. I 
have found that tannoform is an excellent 
antiseptic for the treatment of these injuries, 
as it quickly forms a dry scab, and in this 
respect is greatly superior to iodoform. It 
is comparatively cheap, free from any un- 
pleasant smell, very absorbent, and is soluble 
in spirit (methylated spirit for instance). I can 
strongly recommend its use, particularly as a 

230 Horses on Board Ship. 

dry dressing, dusted on or gently rubbed in 
with a finger, if necessary. For the same 
purpose Colonel Nunn advises the use of 
iodide of starch, which is made by mixing 
I part of tincture of iodine with 2j^ parts of 
starch. Tincture of myrrh and aloes, and 
Friar's balsam are fairly good applications to 
small superficial wounds. 


Horses which stand for many days on a 
damp surface — especially if it contains decom- 
posing matter, such as urine and clung — are 
almost certain to suffer from thrush in an 
aggravated form, and to have the soles of 
their feet more or less rotten. It is almost 
needless to say that if horses are landed off 
ship in such a state they, will take at least a 

Fig. 24. — Horse with tail badly rubbed. 

Veterinm^y Remarks. 233 

month to get their feet in proper working 
order. As preventive measures, the feet should 
be kept dry, and should be picked out at least 
once a day. As a rule, the hind feet will 
require much more attention in this respect 
than the fore ones. In the tixatment of such 
cases, I have had good results with burnt alum, 
equal parts of paraffin oil and sweet oil, and 
equal parts of oil of turpentine and sweet oil. 
Mr. Desmond advises a solution of i part of 
formalin to 9 of water. 


This disease, with or without the complica- 
tion of pleurisy, is undoubtedly the most 
common cause of death among horses which 
are carried in large numbers at sea. It' appears 
to be contagious, because it not only affects 

2 34 Horses on Board Skip. 

horses in badly ventilated positions, but also 
those in places which have the freest possible 
ventilation, such as stalls facing large open 
ports on the windward side of the ship. My 
own experience and that of others leads me 
to conclude that this aggravated form of 
pneumonia never appears except under con- 
ditions of overcrowding. Therefore I am 
inclined to regard it as a contagious disease 
which assumes a peculiarly virulent type on 
account of unsanitary surroundings. Horses 
fresh from grass often suffer from a somewhat 
similar, though very much milder, disease, 
when placed in heated and badly ventilated 
stables on land. I believe that I am cor- 
rect in saying that this board-ship form of 
pneumonia is generally complicated by 
pleurisy. I have seen -it break out among 

Veterinary Remarks. 235 

horses on board ship, three days after 
leaving England. 

Symptoms. — The animal Is depressed, more 
or less off Its feed, and hangs Its head. The 
eyes are generally closed, to a greater or less 
extent, and are sometimes " weeping." The 
mucous membrane of the eyes Is of an intensely 
red colour, which becomes darker as the disease 
progresses. If pleurisy also exists. Its presence 
will be indicated by the heaving of the flanks 
and abdominal breathing. The nostrils are 
greatly dilated, and the breathing, which is 
always hurried in such cases, often attains a 
rate of over 40 respirations in the minute. 
The pulse is very frequent, often over 70 In 
the minute. Although the appetite Is more or 
less In abeyance, the patient will sometimes 
continue to nibble his hay to the very end, and 

236 Horses on Board Ship. 

not unusually dies with some of it between his 
teeth. As a rule, he drinks very little water, 
apparently on account of the hurried state ol 
his breathing. The disease generally runs its 
^course in about six days, during the last two or 
three of which there is a watery discharge from 
the nostrils in varied quantities. Sometimes it 
merely moistens the opening of the nostrils and 
the muzzle ; but at other times it runs freely 
from the nostrils, in which case the animal 
often licks it off his muzzle. The discharge is 
at first colourless, but later on it assumes a 
rusty red tint, which indicates that putrefac- 
tion is present in the lungs. It always has 
a foetid smell, which increases in intensity 
according to the progress of the process of 
decomposition in the lungs. Occasionally 
the animal dies suddenly, but death is 

Veterinary Remarks. 237 

usually caused by exhaustion and inability 
to breathe. 

The large majority, probably about go per 
cent., of horses which become affected by this 
disease, die. 

Treatment. — The only treatment which I 
have found at all beneficial is careful nursing 
and change of air, for instance, to a deck 
(preferably the exposed deck) above the one 
on which the patient became affected, or from 
the leeward to the windward side. The only 
way to be successful in this attempt is to begin 
the treatment at the very onset of the attack. 
If constipation be present, back-raking, an 
enema, and a dose of Epsom salts might be 
tried. As a stimulant, spirits (a quarter of a 
pint of whisky in a pint of water) or carbonate 
of ammonia (2 drachms in a ball) may be useful. 


Horses on Board Ship. 


The Army Veterinary Department allow the 
following list of drugs and necessaries for loo 
horses for a passage on board ship of 30 
days, as well as those in a Veterinary Field 
Medicine Chest, which is supplied to each 
horse-carrying ship. 

^Chlorate of potash 

Boric acid 

Carbolic acid, liquid 
■^Camphor compressed 

Copper, sulphate of 
^Gentian, powdered 

Corrosive sublimate soloids 


Liquid ammonia, strong 

Acetic acid . 

Opium, powdered 

Epsom salts . 
*McDougairs sheep dip . 
*Nitre .... 
^Acetate of lead 

Soft paraffin 

Tincture of myrrh and aloes 

Spirit of nitrous ether . 

Oxide of zinc 
















14 o 

2 O 
I O 

6 o 

Veterinary Remarks. 


Sulphate of zinc 
*Ginger, powdered 

Laudanum . 

Oil of turpentine 

Chlorodyne . 

Tincture of iodine 

' Coated aloetic balls, 4 drachms. 

5, carb. amm. balls, 2 drachms 
Bandages, handloom, sets 
Scales and weights, 4 oz. set 
Vety. Field Case Book — Army Book 
Catheter, male 
Thermometers, clinical 


lbs. oz. 

1 o 
4 o 

2 o 
10 o 

2 O 
I O 

o 8 









Linseed oil . 
Vinegar .... 
25 doses of Mallein. 
One Mallein syringe. 

If any special drugs are asked for by the 
attendant veterinary surgeon, they are supplied 
within reasonable limits. 

I have marked with an asterisk certain drugs 
in the above list which I think might be dis- 
pensed with on ordinary occasions. I would 
suggest the substitution of tannoform for 

240 Hoi'ses on Board Skip. 

Iodoform, and the addition to this list of 
50 yards of cotton wadding and 12 yards of 
calico, for making into bandages (6 yards long 
and 3 inches wide), to use with the cotton 
wadding (p. 222). 

From the foregoing list an approximation 
may be made of the amount of drugs required 
under varied conditions of number of horses 
and length of voyage. 




The present transport arrangements which are 

carried out by the Admiralty and which consist 

in the selection and fitting of horse ships, 

leave little to be desired ; and our country 

owes a deep debt of gratitude to its naval 

officers for the intelligent way in which they 

have brought their professional knowledge and 

practical experience to bear on this branch 

of the Service. 

The actual superintendence of horses on 

Government transports is, however, chiefly 

in the hands of the Remount Department, 


242 Hoi'ses on Board Ship. 

which consists of officers who have no special 
quaHfication for the technical work they are 
called upon to supervise and execute. Even 
the slight recommendation of belonging to 
the Cavalry or Horse or Field Artillery is 
not insisted upon ; for we find many of these 
gentlemen are recruited from the Infantry, 
Militia, Volunteers, and even from the Navy, 
without proof being required that they possess 
any acquaintance with horses. In England, 
horse-owners generally leave the control of 
their hunters, trappers, and polo ponies so 
much to their grooms, that the large majority 
of them have little or no practical experience 
of stable management, and are consequently 
incapable of directing its details, which need 
far more intelligent supervision at sea than 
on land. 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 243 

The War Office authorities enact that each 

horse ship is to be provided with a combatant 

officer (remount officer or Cavalry officer) 

and a veterinary surgeon, the former being 

in command of the horse department, and 

the latter having no more authority with respect 

to the animals than a full private. As a rule, 

the working of this anomaly is not so disastrous 

to the horses as might be expected ; because 

the amateur, being aware of his own ignorance, 

generally leaves the professional to do the 

work of both. Occasionally the unqualified 

gentleman commits the mistake of using all the 

authority entrusted to him by a too confiding 

government. For instance, when the ss. 

Cervona, on one of her horse-carrying voyages 

to South Africa, arrived one day in Algoa 

Bay, the inspecting veterinary surgeon who 


2 44 Horses on Board Ship. 

came on board, and who is an Irish 
friend of mine, was informed by the re- 
mount officer in charge that in consequence 
of an outbreak of glanders, 254 horses 
had been shot, and that he would have 
destroyed the remainder, had not the in- 
clemency of the weather prevented him from 
throwing more carcasses overboard. A strict 
veterinary examination was thereupon held 
on the survivors, with the result that not 
the slightest indication of glanders was found 
among any of them. When the amateur 
pathologist was asked his reasons for saying 
that glanders was present among his shipment, 
he stated that the animals exhibited the un- 
failing diagnostic symptom of a "cheesy 
discharge from their nostrils ! " And thus, 
over ^10,000 of public .money was needlessly 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 245 

expended to feed Atlantic fishes. It is only 
fair to say that the idea of glanders being 
among the horses on board the Cervona 
originated with the attendant American veter- 
inary surgeon, who had been appointed by 
the War Office without reference to the Army 
Veterinary Department and without making- 
inquiries as to his qualifications. After this 
American gentleman had sanctioned the 
slaughter of eleven of the suspected animals, 
it appears that he changed his mind with 
regard to the correctness of his diagnosis ; 
but the remount officer, not being troubled 
with doubt, took the responsibility of con- 
tinuing the butchery. 

The person who was most to be pitied in 
this affair was the Captain of the Cervona, 
who was naturally inconsolable on account 

246 Horses on Board Ship. 

of the unmerited obloquy which had been put 
on his ship. During an interview with the 
veterinary officer who had first come on board, 
he bitterly complained of his bad luck. The 
genial Irishman chaffingly replied In a tragic 
tone of voice : " Sir ! On you lies the re- 
sponsibility. You could have saved the situa- 
tion by your revolver!" "You are right,' 
said the Captain sadly, " I ought to have shot 
them both." 

The officers at Port Elizabeth were greatly 
divided in opinion about this Cervona case. 
Some said "court-martial," others, "lunatic 

Our military rulers seem to be always ready 
to accept the counsel of any amateur, provided 
that their adviser holds an official position. 
For instance, a remount* officer persuaded the 

The War Office and Horse Transport, 247 

Cape authorities to cable home the suggestion 
that all remounts should be sent out to South 
Africa without shoes, because there had been 
a few cases of horses getting hurt by kicks 
during disembarkation. This gentleman and 
his trustful superiors appeared to be totally 
unaware of the fact that unshod horses In 
stalls on board ship would knock their fore 
feet about a good deal during a voyage to 
South Africa, and that it would be impossible, 
under the present conditions of this war, to 
have large numbers properly shod on landing. 
On a steamer In which I went to South 
Africa with remounts, my commanding officer 
was a Militia subaltern who, by his own 
showing, had had no practical experience with 
horses. He was, however, very keen to take 
veterinary charge, and decided to do so, on the 

248 Horses on Board Ship. 

favourable opportunity which he obtained by 
my breaking a rib and otherwise hurting 
myself In a fall I had down a bunker 
hatch which had been negligently left 
open In an alley way, In front of the 
horses on the port side, one evening w^hen 
we were coaling at Las Palmas. As we 
were in port at that time, the Militia officer 
Immediately wrote off to the Remount Depart- 
ment In London, saying that the accident 
would keep me on the sick list for the re- 
mainder of the voyage, and that he would 
look after the horses. Next morning he came 
into my cabin and asked me in what part 
of the veterinary stores he could find the 
mustard, which had been apparently concealed 
from him under the word sinapis. I inquired 
what he wanted with • that condiment, and 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 249 

he replied that as several of the horses 
were breathing rather heavily, he intended 
to blister their sides. I told him that that 
was my affair, and not wanting amateur experi- 
ments to be tried on my equine friends, I 
called the steward, got him to raise me up 
(for I was unable even to turn in my bunk 
without help) and put me on my legs, and 
I then informed my commanding officer that 
I was no longer on the sick list and that 1 
would remain off it for the remainder of the 
voyage. The pain which the carrying out 
of this resolution caused me was amply repaid 
by the satisfaction I felt in saving my dumb 
shipmates from amateur doctoring. As I was 
under no agreement to obey anyone on that 
voyage, I committed no breach of duty by 
refusing to give up veterinary charge of the 

250 Horses on Board Ship. 

horses. Although, previous to my next 
voyage, I signed an agreement to implicitly 
obey my commanding officer, who was a 
lieutenant in the loth Hussars ; I had no 
interference, for he was a hunting man and a 
lover of horses. 

An amusing feature in this second fiddle 
game is the observance of the principle that 
les extremes se touckent, in the appointment 
of remount officers and veterinary surgeons 
on board transports ; old veterinary surgeons 
being sent with young remount officers, and 
■vice versa. In one case, the remount officer in 
command was a Militia lieutenant of 9 months, 
and 22 years of age. The appointment of a 
veterinary surgeon on board a government 
ship is an inconsistency under present con- 
ditions ; because the remount or cavalry officer 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 251 

has entire charge of the horses, and is In no 
way bound to consult his quaHfied assistant. 
Therefore we need not wonder that many 
veterinary surgeons are not anxious to occupy 
this false position. 

Few remount officers would disregard the 
welfare of their own pockets sufficiently to 
be their own stud grooms, or to buy horses 
for themselves without consulting a veterinary 
surgeon ; but when public money can be played 
with, they consider themselves, and are re- 
garded by the War Office, to be thoroughly 
competent to superintend the management 
and to undertake the selection of horses for 
Government. When sent to purchase re- 
mounts they are supplied with veterinary 
surgeons to help them In deciding questions 
of soundness, but these qualified men are 

252 Horses on Board Ship. 

In an entirely subordinate position, and 
have no executive authority whatsoever. 
For this duty, the remount officer, who 
usually does nothing more than write 
descriptions of the horses, is paid £2 a 
day ; and the veterinary surgeon, who does 
practically all the work, £1 a day. On one 
occasion, in a West of England town, when 
a Cavalry officer who was assisted by a well 
known Army veterinary surgeon, was pur- 
chasing remounts, a horsey bystander wisely 
remarked: "The Vet. could get on jolly well 
without the Captin ; but I'm blessed if the 
Captin could get on without the Vet." In 
such cases, the veterinary surgeon and a clerk 
could do all that is required. 

To emphasise the advantage which horsemen 
would derive from veterinary training, I do 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 253 

not think that I can do better than give my 
own experience in this matter. I was brought 
up among horses in Ireland, did a fair amount 
of riding school w^ork during three years at 
the Royal Military Academy and during six 
years as a subaltern in a field battery, and 
spent several years training, racing, and 
steeplechasing in India, through the entire 
course of which time I became more and more 
impressed with the consciousness of my 
ignorance about horses. Being anxious to 
remedy this deficiency, and being then in 
the Bengal Staff Corps, I utilised my furlough 
on different occasions to go home and study 
at a veterinary college, with the result that I 
took my diploma not long after I left the 
Army. I am glad to say that my time was 
well spent, because I learned at the college 

2 54 Horses on Board Ship. 

at least ten times more about horses than 
I had done before entering it. I can now 
confidently state that If I had been appointed 
to the Remount Department, previous to 
going through this course of study* I would 
have been Incapable of efficiently performing 
remount duties, owing to lack of knowledge 
about horses. Consequently I consider that 
the large majority of remount officers, who 
certainly have not more experience with 
horses than I had in my unqualified days, 
do not possess the knowledge requisite for 
their work. In fact, they are amateurs who 
do their best to carry out highly technical 
duties. I would therefore urge the advisa- 
bility of the Remount Department being 
officered by members of the A.V. D. As 
I have never belonged to the A.V.D. or 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 255 


to the Remount Department, and am Ion 
past the age at which I could again enter 
the Army, I venture to hope that my opinion 
In this matter may be considered to be free 
from any personal bias. 

Officers of the Royal Artillery, Royal 
Engineers, Royal Army Medical Corps, and 
Army Veterinary Department are required 
to go through long courses of training before 
respectively engaging in their technical work. 
Even hospital nurses are specially educated 
for their duties ; but Government demands 
from remount officers no preparation, no 
qualification, beyond the possession of a 
commission in the Navy, Army, Militia or 
Volunteers and of course the necessary 
interest, before putting them In charge 
of work which needs years of study 

256 Horses 07i Board Ship. 

and practical experience for Its Intelligent 
performance. Trained ability of this kind 
is a valuable asset In the commercial 

At the beginning of this war, the utility 
of veterinary surgeons In looking after horses 
on board ship was repeatedly Ignored, as we 
may see by the large number of .horses and 
mule carrying steamers which went to South 
Africa without veterinary surgeons In them. 
For instance, the ss. Isrnore left Liverpool 
for South Africa with a detachment of the 
loth Hussars and 201 remounts, but no 
veterinary surgeon. Shortly after sailing, 
"pink-eye" broke out among the animals, 
and the Officer Commanding and the Captain 
of the ship agreed to put Into Milford Haven 
for veterlnarv advice. Havino- touched at 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 257 

that port, the Ismore again sailed without 
a veterinary surgeon, whose services on this 
occasion would not have been of much avail, 
because the ship was lost in St. Helena 

Inability to obtain the aid of veterinary 
surgeons was not the cause of the Minister 
of War's failure to engage them, if I may 
judge by the enquiries I have made among 
my professional brethren, and by the fact 
that as soon as this war broke out, I wrote 
to the War Office offering my services in 
taking charge of horses proceeding to South 
Africa ; but my application was refused. 
Later on, I had the honour of meeting the 
Director General of the A.V.D., and he most 
courteously informed me that he was only too 
glad to give me the employment I desired, 


258 Horses on Board Ship. 

because he was greatly in need of experienced 
veterinary surgeons to send out to the Cape 
with horses. In fact, so short-handed was 
the A.V.D., owing to the mismanagement 
of the War Office, that there were only six 
military veterinary surgeons in the United 
Kingdom at that time. The D.G. of the 
A.V.D. has tried his utmost to impress on our 
Government the value of veterinary help 
throughout this war, and his patriotic efforts 
would have obtained the success and recogni- 
tion they deserved, but for the fact that our 
Army Is managed more on social than pro- 
fessional lines. The Yeomanry authorities 
Ignored the A.V.D. so completely that they 
appointed an unqualified man to be the 
Veterinary Lieutenant of the Yeomanry con- 
tlngfent which went to South Africa in the 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 259 

ss. Kent with 236 horses, out of which 
34 died, the mortality being 14 per cent. 
Also, our military authorities, without con- 
sulting the A.V. D., gave veterinary appoint- 
ments to Colonial and American men who 
did not possess a veterinary diploma of any 
kind. By this remark, I make no adverse 
reflection on Colonial veterinary graduates 
who received veterinary commissions from 
their respective governments, and who are 
on war service and under the orders of the 
A.V.D. in South Africa. The Imperial 
Government, by accepting the services of 
Colonial troops, are bound to recognise the 
Colonial veterinary graduates who came with 
these troops. The graduates of the Melbourne 
Veterinary College are specially worthy of 
recognition, because the four years* course 


26o Ho7'ses on Board Ship. 

at that College is Identical with that laid 
down by the R.C.V.S. of England. The 
Government recognition of Colonial quacks, 
who assume veterinary standing, is not only 
an insult to English veterinary surgeons, but 
is also a cruel wrong to Colonial veterinary 

From extended enquiries among Army and 
Civilian veterinary surgeons, I am convinced 
that the dearth of qualified candidates was 
solely due to the poor pay and inferior 
status offered to them. In this, I think our 
profession is somewhat to blame for not 
pushing their claims more strongly. There 
is no doubt that one of the best means for 
the removal of a grievance is to appeal in 
a straightforward manner to the governing 
authority. As a case in point, I can cite 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 261 

the fact that the first time I went to South 
Africa with remounts I was kept nearly a 
fortnight at Cape Town waiting for a troop 
ship to take me back. I might have returned 
at once in a mail steamer, but the mlHtary 
authorities would not sanction the extra 
expense. During my detention, I received 
I2S. 6d. a day for the first week, and after 
that 7s. 6d. a day ; although five half crowns 
was the smallest daily sum for which board 
and lodging (to say nothing of Incidental 
expenses) could be procured at any of the 
hotels Fortunately this apparent loss of 
time and money did not injuriously affect 
me, because it was more than made up by 
the valuable opportunities I got for photo- 
graphing types of horses I could not have 
otherwise obtained. On my return to Eng- 

262 Horses on Board Ship. 


land, I wrote a letter to the D.G. of the 
A.V.D. pointing out that the Inadequacy 
of the detention allowance was a hard- 
ship on veterinary surgeons which ought 
to be rectified, and that I had no per- 
sonal grievance In the matter. I am happy 
to say that this letter, which was for- 
warded to superior authority, helped to 
obtain the welcome concession of a pound 
a day detention allowance for veterinary 

In ancient times, doctors occupied a position 
somewhat similar to cow-leaches, and the 
barbers and surgeons of London belonged 
to the same corporation until the year 1745. 
Even fifty years ago the village medical 
man was rarely admitted Into county society. 
Since then, the medical profession has, by 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 263 

improved education, obtained full public and 
private recognition, as we may learn from 
the fact that the surgical attainments of 
Lord Lister have procured him entrance into 
the peerage. The officers of the R.A.M.C. 
have combatant rank, which many of them 
value much more highly than their pro- 
fessional status, on account of social con- 
siderations. The veterinary profession is 
following fast in the footsteps of the medical. 
In the year 1844 the R.C.V.S. was formed, 
and the veterinary art was recognised as a 
profession by Royal command. For several 
years after that time a veterinary diploma 
could be obtained by a short and elementary 
course of study. Subsequently, a three years' 
college course was instituted, although a 
smattering of the three r's was sufficient for 

264 Horses on Board Ship. 

matriculation at some of the teaching schools. 
Up to the 27th of August, 1881, any quack 
could with impunity call himself a veterinary 
surgeon. In 1896, the veterinary matricula- 
tion examination was made equal to that 
required from medical candidates, and the 
veterinary course of study has been extended 
to four years. With respect to the social 
advance of veterinary surgeons, I may point 
out that a few C.B.'s and D.S.O.'s have 
been distributed, and since June, 1883, veteri- 
nary officers are allowed to be presented at 

The high officials at the War Office ignore 

the great progress In education and efficiency 

v^ made by the veterinary profession, and try 

their utmost to keep the Army Veterinary 

Department In a degraded position, despite 

The War Office and Horse Transport. 265 

the brilliant services rendered by its officers 
during peace and war. Their pay and pensions 
are practically the same as what they were 
thirty years ago. An Army veterinary officer 
is the only Army officer who has no authority 
over his subordinates. For instance, if an 
Army farrier commits a breach of discipline, 
his Veterinary Colonel has no power to punish 
him, although a last joined subaltern would 
be able to do so. The authority which 
veterinary officers should have over their 
men has often been asked for, but always 
refused, on account of the military caste / 
prejudice which rules our unfortunate Army. 
Hence, many capable young veterinary 
surgeons prefer private practice to the 
poor position which the War Office offers 
them. And yet our military authorities 

266 Horses on Board Skip. 

wonder that they are unable to obtain an 
efficient veterinary machine, which is essential 
to the welfare of the country, especially in 
campaigns that demand the employment of 
large numbers of horses. 


Ability to bear transit by sea, i. 

Abrasions, 229. 

Admiralty, The, 241. 

Air-scoops, 40, 44. 
Alfalfa, 176. 

Aloes, 227. 

America, 12, 13, 14, 222. 

Anderson, Col. John, 169. 

Argentine remounts, 7, 146, 147. 

Army Veterinary Department, 245, 

252, 254, 257-262, 265. 

Australia, 8, 12, 13, 14. 

Australian shippers, 53. 

Austria, 12, 14. 

Azoturia, 5. 

Baltic, 39, 116. 

Bandaging, cotton wadding, 225. 

Bay of Biscay, 13. 

Beam, 28, 29. 

Bilge keels, 24. 

Blacksmith, 191. 

Blue Gown, 95. 

Bran, 168-172. 
Breast-boards, 119. 
Brows, 32, 61. 
Buenos Ayres, 13, 14. 
Bulk -heads, 34. 

Calcutta, 208. 
Canada, 12, 13, 222. 
Captain, The, 23, 
Cart horses, 2. 
Cattle men, 184-186. 

,, steamers, 16, 21. 
Celtic, The, 17. 
Cervona, The, 243. 
Chloral hydrate, 228. 
Chloride of lime, 199. 
Chlorodyne, 227. 
Chop, 175. 
Clipping, 55, 116. 
Clothing, 115. 
Clove hitch, 136. 
Cocoanut matting, 97, 98, 100, 
Colic, 226. 


Horses on Board Skip. 

Concrete on decks, 32. 

Corn, 2-8. 

Cost of transport, 215. 

Cotton wadding bandages, 225. 

Cranes, 61. 

Cruelty to horses, 189-191. 

Cuba, 222. 

Cuts, 229. 

Cymric, The, 14. 

Deck covered with boards, 30, 31. 

,, covered with concrete, 32. 
Decks, 16-21. 

,, kept dry, 35. 
Derricks, 61. 

Desmond, Mr., 57, 79, 233. 
Disinfectants, 199, 200. 
Division-boards, 123, 125. 
Disembarkation, after, 208. 
Disembarking horses, 56- 
Doctors, 262. 
Draughts, 37. 
Drugs, 238. 
Duck, Colonel, 146, 158. 

Edmond's steam jetter, 50. 
Electric lights, 32. 
Embarking horses, 56. 
England, 12, 14. 
Eserine, 228. 
Etiropean, The, 33. 

Exercise, 4, 10, 206. 

Fans, exhaust, 47. 

Farmers, 8. 

Feeding and watering, 182, 188. 

,, , principles of, 178. 

,, troughs, 95, 156. 

,, utensils, 156. 
Feet, horses', 53-55, 230. 
,, , fever in the, 5, 53, 104, 208- 
Filled legs, 224. 
Fittings, security of, 9. 
Fiume, 12. 

Floor of box, 95, 97, 98. 
Flush deck ship, 26. 
Food, 167. 
Foot-hold, 10, 145. 
Foremen, 184, 185. 
Freeboard, 22. 
Freeing-ports, 26. 
Fremona, The, 14. 
Frost-bite, 212, 213. 

Gangways, 58. 
Gear, Government, 165, 
Glanders, 222, 244. 
Golden, Mr. 124. 
Gout, 3. 
Grain, 2-8. 
Grandeau, 169. 

General Index. 


Grass, 7, 8. 
Green vegetables, 3. 
Grooming, 204. 
Gypsum, 199. 

Halters, 109. 
Hatches, 28, 108. 
Hatchways, 40. 
Hay, 4, 5, 52, 167, 174. 

,, nets, 163, 
Head-collars, 109. 
Horse-attendants, 180. 

,, box, portable, 80, 81, 83. 

,, ,, , cost of, 1 01. 

,, carrying ships, 15, 29, 30. 
Horses, management of, 102. 

,, into stalls, changing, 202. 

,, , cruelty to, 189- 191. 

,, , mortality of, 12. 

,, , preparation of, 51. 

,, , welfare of, 9. 

,, , wild, 52. 
Hyson, The, 14. 

Idaho, The, 146, 168. 
Inspection, Veterinary, 221. 
Iodoform, 229. 
lona. The, 14. 
Ireland, 12. 
Isfnore, The, 256. 

Kelvingrove, The, 146, 161. 

Kent, The, 259. 

" Know your own ship," 15. 

Las Palmas, 248. 

Laminitis, 5, 53, 104, 208-214, 224. 

Legs, filled, 224. 

Light in the water, 26. 

Lighters, 78, 79. 

Light-ship, 23. 

Lime, chloride of, 199. 

,, , quick, 199. 
Linseed oil, 227, 228. 
Lucerne, 176. 
Luff, Dr. 2. 
Lying down, 10. 
Lymphangitis, 5, 223. 

Magician, The, 33. 
Mail steamers, 34. 
Mallein, 223. 
Mangers, 95, 156. 
Mangolds, 168. 
Medicines, 238. 
Michigan, The, 33. 
Midship stalls, 107, 
Mooring bits, 34. 
Mortality at sea, 1 1, 213, 214, 
Mount Royal, 14. 
Mucking-out, 193. 
Mules, I, 12. 14, 164. 
Muntz, 169. 


Horses on Board Ship. 

North Sea, 39, 97, 116. 

Nose-bags, 162. 

Nunn, Colonel, 58, 164, 230. 

Oaten hay, 175. 
Oat-bruising machine, 164. 
Oats, 172-174. 

,, bruised, 175. 
Ossory, 95, 99. 
Overcrowding, 9. 

Pedestrianism, 2. 
Pens, 25. 
Pilocarpine, 228. 
Pink-eye, 224. 
Pitching, 36. 
Pneumonia, septic, 233. 
Politician, 33. 
Ponies, 2. 
Prince lo, 95, 99. 

Quick lime, 199. 

Rations, board-ship, 176, 177. 

Remount Department, 241-256. 

Revel, 39, 116. 

Rolling, 35, 96, 97. 

Ross-smith, Captain, 32, 33, 149, 

Round turn and two half hitches, 


Scuppers, 32. 

Scuttles, 44. 

Sea, ability to bear transit by, i. 

Ship, colour of, 35. 

Ships, horse-carrying, 15, 

Shoeing, 53-55, 247. 

Simpson, Mr. 161. 

Slippery hitch, 136. 

Sling,'disembarking, 77. 

Slinging horses, 62, 141. 

Slings, 142-144. 

Spar-decker, 16. 

Speed, 24. , 

Stable duties, 180. 

Stability, 22, 

Stalls, 119. 

,, , cost of, 126. 

,, , Government, 127. 

,, , position of, 104. 
Starch, iodide of, 230. 
Steady, 23. 
Stiff, 23. 
Strangles, 224. 
Surrey, The, 14. 

Tail, rubbing the, 229. 
Tanks, water, 150. 
Tannoform, 229. 
Tender, 23. 
Three-decker, 15, 21. 
,, island ship, 26. 

General Index. 


Thrush, 230. 
Transport, cost of, 215. 
Tropics, 12. 
Tying-up, 135. 

Uric acid, 3. 
Urine, 200. 

Vegetables, green, 3. 
Ventilation, 10, 37. 
Ventilator, cowl, 44. 

,, , electric, 48. 

,, , steam, 48. 
Victorimi, The, 33. 

Veterinary remarks, 221-240. 
,, surgeons, 263-266. 

Voyages, successful, 14. 

Walton, 15. 
War office, 241-266. 
Watering horses, 149. 
Weed, 5, 

Well-deck ship, 25. 
Windsails, 43. 
Work without corn, 7. 

Yeomanry authorities, 258 





BooI(s of Travel. 

oo^ a j ' C^^ 


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6 S'TBV^ © 





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\ ■ 

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