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What Is A Rig Horse?

What Is A Rig Horse?

When you have a concise overview of What A Rig Horse Is, and of the many types of horses, you can better relate the character qualities your horse demonstrates most often to how he could react to different situations. This information may assist you in making the most informed choices about the instructional strategies. It will also help in the timetable you use and how you ride your horse.


What Is A Rig Horse? Key Traits

A masculine horse can be a real rig if it holds either one or both testicles hidden in its belly. This condition gives the horse the appearance of a gelding, yet it acts and behaves like a stallion. These horses have a condition known in the veterinary world as cryptorchidism, which literally translates to “the hidden testicle.”

Rig Horse Diagnosis

Any masculine horse that does not visibly have testicles but has begun acting like a stallion should have an examination to see whether or not there is any residual testicular tissue present.
To determine the levels of estrone sulphate in horses that are older than three years, you need to do a single blood test.
Keep in mind that taking two blood samples from younger horses can be necessary. You can take the first sample immediately after an injection of the human chorionic gonadotrophin hormone. To take the second sample one day later is okay.

Fake Rigs: Your Horse might not be a Rig!

The “fake rig” term refers to an aggressive gelding that still exhibits male-dominant behaviour, despite having both of its testicles removed. The aggressive behaviour of false rigs, which is sometimes compared to that of stallions, is not caused by testosterone and can only be managed well via the use of appropriate management practices.

Before or shortly after birth, the testicles should make their way from the upper abdomen into the scrotum. However, on rare occasions, the testicles may not make the journey or could get misplaced along the way. This condition is known as cryptorchidism. It is a regular occurrence since around 15 per cent of two- to three-year-old colts are rigs.

The Legal side of the picture

It is common practice to sell rig horses in wintertime when they are less inclined to engage in undesirable behaviour. Because of the potential threat these creatures provide to other horses and their owners, it is unsafe to sell them unless provided with this fact.

If the horse is skilled at his work and the owners are informed about managing animals of this sort, then a fair price can be reached between the parties. It is recommended, however, to have the horse tested to confirm that he is not a real rig. This might result in additional expenses for the surgical intervention of the retained testicle.

The causes

Rigs are a possible outcome when both testicles cannot descend into the scrotum successfully. Also, when an unethical surgical procedure removes just one of the testicles that have already fallen out from the scrotum.

The unusual surroundings of the abdomen or inguinal region prevent testicles from developing typically. However, they can generate male hormones, and, in certain situations, the patient may still be fertile.
People who purchase horses of this particular type can be at risk of believing that they have purchased a gelding.


The surgery of castration on a Rig horse may be challenging and requires examination of the belly to identify the testicle; as a result, it should only be performed in a veterinary hospital because of the complexity of the procedure.

In many instances, the aberrant testicle is located under the skin in the groin, making its removal simple. However, in other cases, the testicle is located in the belly, making its removal far more complex.
Regarding surgery planning and cost estimates, knowing the location of the aberrant testicle may be of great assistance.

Last but not least – the Treatment

It has been shown that almost ninety per cent of horses examined for stallion-like characteristics are false rigs. Negative rig results of the test can set an owner’s mind at ease, knowing any breeding engagement must not lead to a pregnant mare; nonetheless, the behaviour must still be handled to prevent unwanted pregnancies.