I wonder about this whole affection thing.(I might P someone off)
I like AlexS statement about the horse comes to me and drops his head.
I think this horse knows the pecking order and at that time AlexS was leader.
Then there is the time when the horse comes to you to test the pecking order.
This could be in the form of nudging, nipping your clothes, biting, etc...
When this occurs I will usually pinch their nostril and they stop or back up one step.
I feel that I just established the order by my reaction and they yielded.
Celeste's last post made some key points about relationship.
I have even seen my horses grooming one another I will call it.
This may go on with nibbles on their neck or near their mane.
After 15 minutes it may end with a nip and one moves off.
Was this grooming or a casual test of the order?
"while you ride so that the two of you work like one spirit"
Celeste pointed out a handler/animal relationship quite well.
I don't so much agree with all these huggy kisses stories about one's horse.
My daughter is thirteen, we have taught her to ride, she has felt a little pain
Though never really been injured other than pride.
I am happy to say she does not look for affection from them like a dog.
Stepping down from soapbox.