How do you deal with your horse rubbing their head on you? - The Horse Forum

 7Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Arizona
Posts: 76
• Horses: 0
How do you deal with your horse rubbing their head on you?

It seems some people think its a sign of affection while others think its a sign of disrespect. I'm leaning more toward a sign of disrespect, and I want to get her to stop, but I don't want to hit her on the head being as she is already pretty head shy. And that's another thing, I don't want to punish her when she gets her face close to me, since she already has problems with it.

How do you deal with head rubbing? Is there a fine line between affection and dominance, or is it completely unacceptable? I know she is itchy as well, so I don't want to completely ignore the fact that she's itchy. :P Thank youuu

Dressage for me please!
dejavuchicka is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 01:24 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: In the saddle.
Posts: 5,157
• Horses: 1
My horse gets a sweaty, itchy head after rides.
He waits to be untacked and unbridled and for me to get his rubber scratchy mitt on my hand before he starts itching.
He dis not rub in his bridle, on his leg, or on me, walls are OK when his bridle is off.

You just have to tell her what is acceptable and what isn't. You don't have to hit her, she just gets to smack into your elbow, or your fist, or if you really need it, a hoofpick, when she tries to rub on you. Back it up with a verbal "Uh-uh" or something, and maybe a touch on her neck or shoulder. Then eventually a touch and a verbal commend will get her to stop scratching.
I also find it useful to provide an acceptable rubbing surface, a bar, or a wall or in my horse's case his rubber mitt (which he loves lol). So that you can direct their scratches in a positive way instead of saying - no scratching ever, which can be hard to enforce because you will have to be constantly correcting them.

Good luck!

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
~*~anebel~*~ is offline  
post #3 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 01:25 PM
Weanling
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 262
• Horses: 0
I was told by my trainer it was disrespectful. Really it doesn't bother me, but in the interest of instilling proper manners I give a "No, sir" and push Remy's nose away.
Remy410 is offline  
post #4 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 01:37 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
Posts: 8,847
• Horses: 4
When we got back from riding this morning, my mare rubbed her head against my shoulder. I just gave her head a shove with my forearm, because I don't want her rubbing against me just whenever.

However, I then gave her a quick rub with my hand, and then held my hand firm while she rubbed her face, nose & one ear against it. She was itchy and wanted a rub, but we'll do rubs on my terms. I'll hold my hand up as long as she needs, but we're not going to have her noggin rubbing against my shoulder anytime she wants. She is too strong, and I can imagine bad things coming from it...
Ripplewind and RunSlideStop like this.

"There goes Earl!"
bsms is online now  
post #5 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 02:13 PM
Trained
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: In the saddle.
Posts: 5,157
• Horses: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by bsms View Post
When we got back from riding this morning, my mare rubbed her head against my shoulder. I just gave her head a shove with my forearm, because I don't want her rubbing against me just whenever.

However, I then gave her a quick rub with my hand, and then held my hand firm while she rubbed her face, nose & one ear against it. She was itchy and wanted a rub, but we'll do rubs on my terms. I'll hold my hand up as long as she needs, but we're not going to have her noggin rubbing against my shoulder anytime she wants. She is too strong, and I can imagine bad things coming from it...

My favorite story is the lady that got strung up by her bra strap in the horse's curb chain when she let the horse rub his head on her -snickers-

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
~*~anebel~*~ is offline  
post #6 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 02:15 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Middle of Nowhere, Saskatchewan
Posts: 2,582
• Horses: 5
I'm not a fencepost :P I tend to just push them away and then offer a scratch where they're itchy on the face. I just don't like it when they go to rub and push you around, so I push back!

"all I ever dreamt about was makin' it; they ain't giving it, I'm taking it"
QHriderKE is online now  
post #7 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 02:16 PM
Weanling
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Central Maine
Posts: 671
• Horses: 1
My mare was headshy too, and I understand not wanting to scare them off. However, it IS disrespectful, and dangerous. (What would happen if they bumped into an elderly person, young child, or someone physically disabled in that manner???) If your horse is sensitive, a harsh NO or BACK OFF might work just fine. With my mare, I combined that with a strong push away in place of a slap, since she had issues being headshy as well. With her she stopped being headshy after I had her long enough to build up some trust. I make her wait and don't let her rub on me. When she is backed off and being respectful, I scratch her allllll over and tell her what a good girl she is. Once I have all her gear off and have my hands on her, she's allowed to lean into my hands and rub in whatever direction she's itchy in. The second she tries to rub on my body, we're done. She's pretty patient and well-behaved with it now.
dejavuchicka likes this.

A horse is the projection of peoples' views about themselves--strong, powerful, beautiful--and it has the capability of giving us escape from our mundane existance.
Amlalriiee is offline  
post #8 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 02:16 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Surry, Va
Posts: 4,712
• Horses: 0
you need to teach her to respect your space, I use a hand wave side to side parallel t the ground under their face as a reminder. But that is level one after training them to back up with a crop first. Basically just waving it and my hand and walk towards them, If they don't back up they get told "BACK" and smacked in the chest with the crop. Then you rub them a bit with the crop. Basically wave wave "BACK" smack. Pretty soon they will get just the wave. COmes in handy at feeding time,
Joe4d is offline  
post #9 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 05:17 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Missouri
Posts: 3,734
• Horses: 3
I teach horse to back by running hand down face, while using command to back, and that is what is used in fields, paddocks or stalls. That also is used to get horse to step away from me as needed.

I don't allow rubbing like this, as it can throw you off balance, and is bad manners on horse's part too.
HagonNag likes this.

Horses make me a better person.
Palomine is offline  
post #10 of 18 Old 06-19-2012, 05:23 PM
Started
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Middle-of-Nowhere, Illinois
Posts: 2,225
• Horses: 1
I always let Victor rub on me after I take his bridle off. It's kind of a ritual for us. He never does it unless I allow him to, though. In his case, I don't see it as disrespect or affection. He's just itchy.

I wouldn't do that with a disrespectful horse. If you don't want your horse to do it, give her a smack on the neck and tell her no. Maybe scratch her with a curry comb instead. :)
SpiritLifter likes this.

"A musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write, if he is ultimately to be at peace with himself.
What a man can be, he must be.
" Abraham Maslow, 1968
Jessabel is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.



User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.


Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Head rubbing gksohyes Horse Talk 3 03-29-2011 09:46 PM
My head versus my horse's head? I lose! Rowansgirl Horse Talk 15 03-09-2011 05:35 PM
Pony/Arab dressage head piece $70 or trade for black horse sized english head piece! Gidget Tack and Equipment Classifieds 4 12-22-2010 03:01 AM
Crazy head!!! Help for a horse with 'head raising probs'???? trot-on Horse Training 20 09-17-2008 11:29 PM
Rubbing head ... on ME! melinda27858 Horse Training 25 03-19-2008 03:11 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome