Horses are sensitive creatures that can easily get scared and confused by the things humans do, even experienced riders can make mistakes that make horses feel uneasy. From invasive veterinary care to feeding by hand or putting them in a trailer, there are many common things that can scare and confuse horses. Horse enthusiasts must ensure that their horses feel safe and comfortable by being gentle, patient, and understanding. So, next time you’re around a horse, remember to be kind and considerate to them.
10 Common Things Humans Do That Scare and Confuse Horses
As a horse enthusiast, I’ve seen many things that can scare and confuse horses. Even experienced riders can make mistakes that can make horses feel uneasy. In this article, I’ll share 10 common things humans do that can scare and confuse horses.
Invasive Veterinary Care
When horses are sick or injured, they need medical attention. However, some veterinary procedures can be invasive and scary for horses. For example, inserting a needle for an injection or drawing blood can be painful and cause anxiety. To avoid scaring your horse, try to make the veterinary visit as calm and relaxed as possible.
Horses are not used to being patted like dogs or cats. When you pat a horse, it can feel like a sudden, unpredictable movement, which can be scary for them. Instead of patting, try stroking your horse’s neck or shoulder. This will help your horse feel more relaxed and comfortable.
Picking Up Feet, Hoof Trimming, and Shoeing
Horses’ feet are sensitive, and they don’t like having them touched. When you pick up your horse’s feet, it can be scary for them. This is especially true if you’re trimming their hooves or putting on shoes. To make your horse feel more comfortable, try to be gentle and patient. Use a soft voice and reward your horse with a treat after the procedure is done.
Grooming Sensitive Areas
Grooming is an important part of horse care, but some areas are more sensitive than others. For example, horses don’t like having their ears or face touched. When you groom your horse, be gentle and avoid these sensitive areas. If you need to clean your horse’s face, use a soft cloth and be careful not to get water in their ears.
Pulling or Clipping Hairs and Whiskers
Horses have sensitive skin, and they don’t like having their hair or whiskers pulled or clipped. This can be painful and cause anxiety. If you need to remove hair or whiskers, use a pair of scissors or clippers. Be gentle and take your time to avoid scaring your horse.
Spraying Them with Chemicals Such as Flyspray
Flies and other insects can be annoying for horses, but some horses don’t like being sprayed with chemicals. This can be scary and cause anxiety. To make your horse feel more comfortable, try using a natural fly repellent or a fly mask instead of spray.
Feeding by Hand or from a Bucket
Feeding your horse is an important part of bonding, but it can also be scary for horses. When you feed your horse by hand or from a bucket, it can feel like a sudden, unpredictable movement. To make your horse feel more comfortable, try feeding them in their stall or pasture. This will help your horse feel more relaxed and comfortable.
Putting Them in a Trailer or Horse Box
Transporting your horse can be stressful, especially if they’re not used to being in a trailer or horse box. To make your horse feel more comfortable, try to make the trailer or horse box as calm and relaxed as possible. Use plenty of bedding and make sure the trailer is well-ventilated.
In conclusion, horses are sensitive animals, and they can be scared and confused by many things humans do. As horse enthusiasts, it’s our responsibility to make sure our horses feel safe and comfortable. By being gentle, patient, and understanding, we can build a strong bond with our horses and create a happy, healthy relationship.
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