Originally Posted by thesilverspear View Post
I think I ruined "War Horse" for my husband because I could not stop myself from pointing out all the times when it was bleedingly obvious to me that the horse was exhibiting some learned behaviour in response to cues from an off-screen handler, rather than responding to the on-screen actors in a normal equine way.
Oh, that entire movie disgusted me. Even the children's book that it was based off of was less "OMGSUPERFRUITYMAJIKALHORSEYBOND" nonsense LOL.
I'm sure I ticked off the rest of the theater in the scene where the horse was afraid of the collar so the boy put it on his own neck like "See there, horsey? It won't hurt you, it didn't hurt me" and then the horse just immediately was like "herpty-derp......OKAAAAYYY". That made me want to go to Spielberg's house and dump a decade's worth of horse poop in his bedroom.
Anyway, back to the subject at hand LOL. Yes, horses will bond to people but like others have said, it is not a "majikal" bond like you see in the movies where the kid feeds the wild horse carrots or sugar cubes and talks to them and then they are suddenly the bestest of friends and ready to ride off into the sunset.
I have a "wild" horse that I got as an unhandled stud and trained myself. His previous owners tried to win him over by showing him all kinds of love with treats and talking and he repaid that "love" by learning to pin his ears and charge them so that they'd run out of his arena and leave him alone.
Now, after earning his respect by treating him as a horse
in a herd where I was the herd alpha, we have a wonderful relationship. Yes, I love him, yes, he is bonded to me but there is nothing magical about it. He respects and follows me as his leader because he knows I will keep him safe and he trusts me. I respect, trust, and love him because I know his heart and what he is and isn't capable of...and I know that he'd hurt himself trying to do what I asked before he ever quit.
There has been more than once that he's kept me safe in very dangerous situations, but I know it was because he was acting on his own survival instinct and I just happened to be able to stick with him. He got himself
safely out of the situation and I just happened to be with him at the end of it.