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Can horses feel love for one another?

This is a discussion on Can horses feel love for one another? within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        12-22-2012, 02:34 PM
      #11
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tianimalz    
    That sort of thinking gets a lot of people hurt.

    Horses do not "love" as we do, they do not think in the same abstract or romantic ways we do, it just is not part of how they are built.

    But they love in their own ways, to a horse to love someone is to depend on someone. Maybe that person brings them food? Maybe leads them to greener pastures, maybe makes the pain go away, or the best of all maybe they make them feel safe. A horse that feels comfortable with someone, in his own sense "loves" that person (or horse). They do get depressed, upset and lonely when they're "loved one" dies or moves away, but like a above poster said they eventually get over it and go back to their old selves. Just be there for your guy, make him feel comfortable and make sure he is eating and drinking okay.

    I'm sorry for the loss of your mare
    I agree that they love in their own way. Horsie love, lol.
    I would also like to think that my horses like me a tad more than the next person.
         
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        12-23-2012, 04:42 PM
      #12
    Foal
    Im possitve they can, I had a quarter pony gelding and my brother has an egyption arab mare, they were insepratable and when the time came and I out grew my pony I sold him and my brother had is arab out at the time and the two touched noses and it was like they said their goodbyes, when ranger left it was in a red stock trailer and its as if justice,my brother arab, remebers exactly what it was, we never ever had a bad issue or habit out of her at all until ranger left, when the trailer pulled away justice went crazy she started bucking and rearing and doing anything she could do to get to ranger. It wasnt like she was the knly horse left and she was lonely either cus we had 4 horses. Now everytime she sees a red stock trailer she freaks out and starts whinnying. Once at a show there was a red stock trailer and a red horse trailer a few rows down from the stock trailer. She didnt even care about the horse trailer but as soon as she seen the stock trailer she went crazy. And there was also a time when we were riding down the road and there was a group of horses riding towards us and a smaller horse behind them, I couldnt see them well as I had forgot my glasses at homethat day justice immaidtly perked up and whinnied I thought it was just becus there were other horses but then she stared running to them and my brother couldnt stop her, she never does this, anyhow, she ran to the smaller horse in the back and calmed down and she was fine, when I caught up with her on my horse I relised the horse she was so excited to be with was ranger. Now knowing that they live close we sometimes go riding with them and when we do I always say to justice "let go ride with ranger" and she perks up and prances the whole time until we meet up with them. I've also noticed when me and my brother were talking about ranger by the pasture or w.e justice always whinnys and nuzzles us. And I have an old halter of rangers that I kept hanging on the barn wall and sometimes we let the horses out and they will just hang in the yard sometimes justice will go in the barn and pick up rangers halter with her teeth and just carry it around with her... its kinda weird but its cool to know that she never forgot abot her best friend
    Thunderspark likes this.
         
        12-23-2012, 06:28 PM
      #13
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BreannaMarie    
    Im possitve they can, I had a quarter pony gelding and my brother has an egyption arab mare, they were insepratable and when the time came and I out grew my pony I sold him and my brother had is arab out at the time and the two touched noses and it was like they said their goodbyes, when ranger left it was in a red stock trailer and its as if justice,my brother arab, remebers exactly what it was, we never ever had a bad issue or habit out of her at all until ranger left, when the trailer pulled away justice went crazy she started bucking and rearing and doing anything she could do to get to ranger. It wasnt like she was the knly horse left and she was lonely either cus we had 4 horses. Now everytime she sees a red stock trailer she freaks out and starts whinnying. Once at a show there was a red stock trailer and a red horse trailer a few rows down from the stock trailer. She didnt even care about the horse trailer but as soon as she seen the stock trailer she went crazy. And there was also a time when we were riding down the road and there was a group of horses riding towards us and a smaller horse behind them, I couldnt see them well as I had forgot my glasses at homethat day justice immaidtly perked up and whinnied I thought it was just becus there were other horses but then she stared running to them and my brother couldnt stop her, she never does this, anyhow, she ran to the smaller horse in the back and calmed down and she was fine, when I caught up with her on my horse I relised the horse she was so excited to be with was ranger. Now knowing that they live close we sometimes go riding with them and when we do I always say to justice "let go ride with ranger" and she perks up and prances the whole time until we meet up with them. I've also noticed when me and my brother were talking about ranger by the pasture or w.e justice always whinnys and nuzzles us. And I have an old halter of rangers that I kept hanging on the barn wall and sometimes we let the horses out and they will just hang in the yard sometimes justice will go in the barn and pick up rangers halter with her teeth and just carry it around with her... its kinda weird but its cool to know that she never forgot abot her best friend
    Thats adorable! ^__^
    Thunderspark likes this.
         
        12-31-2012, 10:52 PM
      #14
    Banned
    This thread is old I know, but I had to share this! A good friend and I were just discussing this very thing at our barn. At the place where we board, horses are divided into a gelding and mare pasture. Each pasture is around maybe 90-100 acres. Drifter has a HUGE crush on my friends mare. And she has a HUGE crush on him. They hardly ever see one another, but when they do- they are all over one another. When Drifter was put up in a small paddock that shared a fence with the mare pasture, my friends mare would visit him every morning and evening.

    This morning I went to the barn to find the barn hands fixing the gelding pasture fence. Apparently some geldings had been rough housing and broke it, which led to the entire herd escaping into the mare pasture. They rounded them all up, and couldnt find Drifter. They found him standing apart from the main mare herd with my friends' mare, Dallas.

    And just as proof that they are into each other, here is a picture from this afternoon of her trying to steal him away ;)

    Do they love one another? Who knows. But they definitely like each others company. Due to our conflicting schedules my friend and I have only been able to trailride with the two of them ONCE. And it was only for about 30 minutes. They had never seen each other prior to that. Then they started nosing over the fence, and now everytime she is in heat and comes calling by the gelding pasture gate, Drifter fixes me with the stink eye like he can't believe I had the gall to have him gelded.

    Horses. They crack me up:lol

    Here she is trying to 'steal' him away today during our ride through the mare pasture. I had stopped to talk to one of the barn hands (very sweet older man, means the world to me! He is 'good people' as my grandmother would say) and Dallas just came right on up and was like "dump her and run, man!".
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    Ladytrails and Thunderspark like this.
         
        12-31-2012, 11:38 PM
      #15
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by LadyDreamer    
    Depends on how you define "Love". I don't know if their brains produce the chemicals that scientifically define "love", but they do form strong bonds with other horses. They become possessive of horses. They learn to depend on one another for their social needs. They understand and trust one another, sometimes more than others. They form strong attachments.
    Posted via Mobile Device

    If you define love as a strong attachment and affection based on mutual need and compatibility then "yes" horses can love.
    If you define love as the unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another, then "no" horse do not love.
    They are social animals though and seek companionship. They also develop strong bonds with their herd mates. When we sold the lead mare of our herd a few years ago, the entire herd dynamic changed as the remaining ones sorted out their place without her. Some of the horses personalities seemed to totally change. It was very interesting to watch.
    Thunderspark likes this.
         
        01-01-2013, 02:15 AM
      #16
    Yearling
    I think horses do bond with each other, they take a liking to one and they hang out with that one in the pasture. I don't know if it's love like humans but I think it's close to being love.....they do grieve when one they bond to passes and they need time to grieve like we do, we all grieve at different lengths so no one or no animal is the same grieving time. So sorry for your loss :(
         

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