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RE: [RC] re: mares and girls - heidi

Heidi, I know that female horses and female humans differ biologically; 
I am focusing on the similarities in behavior and mood, not on the 
underlying, completely dissimilar processes causing the discomfort. 

First of all, I fail to see the "similarities in behavior and mood" that
you are talking about.  Mares in heat want to back up to anything that
might remotely resemble a male, and get bred.  Women with PMS or
menstrual cramps tend to do just the opposite.  

We 
still don't know why some women get PMS, and we still don't know why 
some mares get "mare-ish". 

We sure do know why mares get "mare-ish"--it's the influence of the
hormone estrogen, which has some very powerful effects on behavior. 
Women, on the other hand, retain fluid and feel bloated (not something
that happens with extrogen influence), and the spasmodic aspects of
what is happening in the uterus lead to cramping--not something that
goes on during estrus in mares, either.  Occasionally mares may have
brief bouts of pain during ovulation--but not commonly.  Otherwise,
there is absolutely no evidence that mares in heat are in pain, as many
women are during menstrual periods.  

Not knowing the cause doesn't mean that 
reality is nonexistent.....  It may turn out we DO share something with 
equine females--but that doesn't matter particularly to my original 
point which wandered into a different pasture long ago....

Sure, we share something with equine females--we are female.  We are the
ones who have cyclic hormones and have babies.  But trying to draw a
parallel between periods and heat cycles just doesn't equate.

I also don't have a problem with anthropomorphizing as long as it 
doesn't lead to misunderstandings such as, "that horse did that to piss 
me off...."  Anthropomorphizing is an excellent way to relate to 
another species--the only way really.  Just ask Temple Grandon (sp?).

I think Temple Grandon would be about the last person to
anthropomorphize--she doesn't ask people to look at livestock handling
facilities from a human viewpoint, but rather asks people to look at
them from the livestock's viewpoint.  And she is pretty good at it 
Anthropomorphizing is a really poor way to relate to other
species--because they don't have the same priorities as people, and
don't look at things in the same way.  The only way to truly "relate"
to a critter of another species is to try to see the world through
their eyes, instead of through human ones.  To use Temple as an example
once again, her entire premise in redesigning handling facilities has
been to QUIT thinking that cows or horses will react like people, and
to instead try to think how the facility looks to a cow, so that it
will be logical to a cow to go in the right direction and therefore
less stressful, since there won't be humans trying to jam it somewhere
that makes no sense to the cow with a hot shot.

Heidi


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