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8 Body Language Signs that Show Your Horse is Trying to Tell You Something

  1. Ears Upright.

Relaxed horse ears

If you horse’s ears are standing up, is usually indicates that they’re content. This is a relatively passive sign and occurs when the horse is relaxed, too.

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2. Ears pointing forward.

Pinned forward

When the ears are aimed forwards like little radars, your horse is attentive. Your horse is ready to work, or it may have spotted something that it wants to know more about.

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3. Ears are back.

Ears back

Your horse may be anxious or afraid if its ears are pointed backwards. You’ll notice ears in this position when a horse is spooked.

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4. Ears pinned back and down.

Ears are pinned back

When the ears are pinned back and against the head, your horse is in an aggressive mood. Horses like this are dangerous, and they’re trying to tell you that they’re ready to confront anyone that opposes them.

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5. Snaking the head.

Horse snaking its heads

If your horse lowers its head and swings it side to side, they’re trying to intimidate something or someone else. This should be considered a warning flag; it may turn into more overt aggressive behaviour.

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6. Stomping.

Horse about to stomp

Horses sometimes lift a hoof and stomp it back into the ground. This indicated that the horse is irritated. The degree of irritation can by more difficult to know, sometimes a horse will stomp because is it being annoyed by a fly. Keep watch and make sure the behaviour doesn’t escalate.

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7. Teeth clacking.

Teeth clacking

Submissive horse will push their heads forwards and click there teeth. This happens most often in foals, who are weaker than other horses and often try to avoid confrontation. The signal means that the horse doesn’t want a confrontation and is willing to accept the other horse’s leadership.

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8. Flaring nostrils.

Flared nostrils

Horse flare their nostrils to breathe in more oxygen. It keeps them alert and allows them to be more responsive to situations. You’ll see this when your horse is being exercised, but you may also see it when the horse is being particularly attentive or thinks there may be a threat nearby.

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READ MORE: Why Dressage Letters Are Those Letters. 

GALLERY: Kids & Their Horses. 

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