Why do horses nudge you?

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By Rachel

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Why do horses nudge you? It’s their way of saying “hey, pay attention to me!” But sometimes, it can also mean they’re uncomfortable or in pain. Taking care of your horse’s health and nutrition is crucial for their well-being and can prevent behavioral issues. So, make sure to give your equine companion proper veterinary care, dental and hoof care, and plenty of water and food. A happy horse is a healthy horse!

Why Do Horses Nudge You?

Have you ever been standing next to a horse and suddenly felt a nudge on your arm or back? It’s a common behavior among horses, and it can mean a variety of things. In the previous parts of this article, we discussed some possible reasons for horses nudging, such as seeking attention or communicating discomfort. But what about the health and nutrition aspect of this behavior? Let’s explore some advice on how to keep your horse healthy and happy.

Horse Health

First and foremost, it’s crucial to keep your horse healthy. This means regular check-ups with a veterinarian, proper nutrition, and exercise. A healthy horse is less likely to exhibit behavioral problems, such as excessive nudging.

One important aspect of horse health is dental care. Horses have teeth that continuously grow throughout their lives, and if they don’t wear down properly, it can cause discomfort and pain. This, in turn, can lead to behavioral issues such as head-shaking and excessive nipping or nudging. Regular dental check-ups and floating (filing down sharp edges) can prevent these problems.

Another crucial aspect of horse health is hoof care. A horse’s hooves are their foundation, and any issues with them can cause discomfort and pain. Regular trimming and shoeing can prevent issues such as lameness and can also improve a horse’s gait and overall movement.

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Horse Nutrition

In addition to regular veterinary care, proper nutrition is essential for a horse’s health and well-being. Horses are grazing animals and need access to fresh grass or hay throughout the day. They also require a balanced diet of grains, vitamins, and minerals.

One common issue with horse nutrition is overfeeding. Horses are natural grazers and can eat continuously if given the opportunity. However, overfeeding can lead to obesity and other health issues such as laminitis. It’s essential to monitor your horse’s weight and adjust their diet accordingly.

Another important aspect of horse nutrition is hydration. Horses need access to fresh, clean water at all times. Dehydration can lead to a variety of health issues, including colic and kidney problems. In addition to water, horses also need access to salt to maintain their electrolyte balance.


In conclusion, horses nudging can mean a variety of things, from seeking attention to communicating discomfort. However, it’s essential to consider the health and nutrition aspect of this behavior. Regular veterinary care, dental and hoof care, proper nutrition, and hydration are all crucial for a horse’s well-being. By taking care of your horse’s physical needs, you can help prevent behavioral issues and ensure a happy, healthy equine companion.

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