How to Respond: When a horse
in a wild herd orders around another
horse and takes away food, he is the
dominant horse. If your horse nickers
at you to ask for individual treats,
he may think he’s dominant, and
that can impact all aspects of your
relationship. Here’s what to do:
1) Don’t let the nicker be a signal
that you should go give your horse
extra food or a treat.
2) If the nicker only happens when
you’re feeding all the horses at a regular feeding time, that’s acceptable.
3) Don’t feed a horse in the
moment that he is showing aggressive behavior. Wait for him to calm
down and only feed when he is
calm—even if it’s just for a moment.
snort; /sn rt/
an explosive sound made by
the sudden forcing of breath
through the nose.
What it is: The snort is an alarm.
If a horse does it and holds his head
high, he has detected a threat.
What it Means: The horse can
add a rattling sound to the snort
when he is highly alarmed, or he
may just blow as a milder alarm. The
snort may also be used during play;
when he wants to practice his flight
response, he’ll often snort first, then
run. You may hear your horse snort
on a trail ride if he detects a strange
scent. Here, in the Rocky Mountains,
the horses will often snort when we
approach elk on the trail.
How to Respond: If you hear a
horse snort, stop and make an assessment. It could be one of two things:
1) Look where the snorting horse HEIDIM
Snorting is a
sound of alarm,
often when a
horse senses a
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Horses may squeal
when meeting a new
barnmate or as a
warning for others to
A snorting horse is
and may be willing
to act out.