Originally Posted by Horse Poor
SonnyWimps, What is the point to having a horse follow so far away?
In a herd situation, the lead horse is ALWAYS ahead of the rest of the group when they are walking together. Never is another horse next to him. You as a horse owner take the place as the lead horse, therefore, you leading infront of the horse is natural.
I've done it both ways....Sonny by my side, and now behind me. Each time I had him by my side he would get pushy....not really bad, but enough to show that he's trying to dominant me.
Where as when he's behind me, he follows without questions, and it does give me enough time to react if he spooks.
Most of the time if a horse spooks he'll either go forward or to the left (meaning if he bolts he'll go in that direction). Why not to the right? Because when you have him on your side you are "protecting" him or "shielding" him from that scary lawn mower or the evil plastic bucket. So if he spooks you'll either get dragged or he'll ram into you and almost run you over.
But when he's following from behind, yes he can spook right, left, and forward, but it gives you enough time to react. Even on grass you can hear the pace of the horse...you can tell when he speeds up....so if he spooks forward you can tell that he's going fast towards you, giving you enough time to get out of the way or to try to stop him.
Also since horses are prey animals, they are usually claustraphobic. Most horses tolerate you being there, but for an untrained horse, they won't let you get near them and stay there...they'll go everything they can to get you away from their personal bubble
Let me also say that I'm horrible at explaining things lol...I'm sure I did a horrible job at it.