Equine Communication Guide
Monday 20 September 2010
When looking for a horse for sale, knowing how they communicate is one of the most important horse care aspects. By recognising the different equine communications and knowing what they mean, you can be confident in your care.
Horses for Sale UK – Ways of Communicating
There are various ways in which a horse will communicate. These include:
• Vocalising – squealing, whinnying, nickering
• Touching – nuzzling or mutual grooming
• Body language
It’s fair to say that body language is probably the main means of communication from a horse. Ear position, height of head and neck, movement, foot stomping and tail swinging are all used to convey a feeling or message by a horse.
In a horse herd, discipline is controlled and maintained through body language and gestures. Failing this, contact becomes more aggressive in the form of biting, kicking and nudging.
Horses are able to interpret body language in other creatures that they think are predators. This is often the case at first when horses spend time with humans, and it is up to the human to make sure he is not seen as a threat. On the other hand, humans must also be weary of acting afraid as this could lead the horse to believe he is in charge.
When the horse’s ears are pointing forward, this means he is concentrating on something in front. When the ears point in different directions, this could be an indication that the horse has divided his attention. The ears may go back when the horse sees something coming up behind him.