Horses that bite
 
 

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Horses that bite

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  • Horse that bit a person face off
  • Horses that bite humans

 
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    07-12-2011, 08:45 AM
  #1
Foal
Horses that bite

Hey /h/orse

I was having a bit of an argument with some people at work today about the general training of animals, but it came around specifically to horses. I was quite horrified to hear somebody say that they believe that if you have a horse that bites the correct thing to do is to bite it back (that is to say, you as a human being, use your teeth to bite into the horse's nose) because "it's the only language they understand".

I like to think I have a fairly good grasp of general animal psychology, and would have thought this was a very dangerous thing to do, not to mention the fact that I cannot imagine a horse learning anything from this, and might actually become confused or dangerous to the person attempting to bite it.

Can anyone here confirm that this isn't the correct thing to do. I'm at least open to the possibility that this is a "done thing", but I'd very nearly bet my left nut it's completely inappropriate.

Oh the same people said you're also meant to bite a dog on the face. Personally I wouldn't want to be in a biting contest with a horse or a Rottweiler, because I'm pretty sure both could quite effortlessly tear the face off a human being. So you know, you can give your opinion on that too. I believe both people actually own one of the animal they were claiming you're meant to bite, so somebody's face might depend on your answer.
     
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    07-12-2011, 08:59 AM
  #2
Yearling
I've heard of that - maybe it works, maybe it doesn't! If a horse bites me I just smack them on their chest, withers etc. and shout, "NO!" I don't hit them around their head though. I think that is easier and more effective than biting them back. Besides - I think that is just a bit gross!
     
    07-12-2011, 09:22 AM
  #3
Doe
Weanling
Roflmao

Sorry but that's another of those entirely moronic tips from people who cannot think beyond the length of their.........er little finger and have never actually worked with a real horse, just some massively broken overbred marionette of a pony.

Trust me of a horse REALLY bites you, you'll be too busy picking up fingers or trying to patch up a chunk of missing flesh larger than any Texas steak!

Fortunately what most people see is a nipping behaviour. For us it's lucky that horses will kick first and actually reserve the real bites for when they seriously want to kill something.

As for dogs......well firstly I'd be wanting to know why the dog wants to bite me in the first place. I've worked with literally hundreds of dogs, and (touch wood) I've been bitten once, which was the family poodle when I was 3 and I startled him whilst asleep. Of course the dog shouldn't bite you, but much with horses, if you got bit, you screwed up!

Incidentally, what can work with dogs as a surprisingly strong (so only to be used on rare occasion) discipline measure is to hold their muzzle shut with a hand. They will give out a little squeal when they submit and you can let go. In many breeds the mother does this to puppies to discipline them. It causes no pain but psychologically it's powerful. So like I say, remember to the dog it's an incredible put down, so only use it for those once in a lifetime moments when the dog has really stepped across a line (and not just crapped on the carpet)
     
    07-12-2011, 10:07 AM
  #4
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doe    
Roflmao

Sorry but that's another of those entirely moronic tips from people who cannot think beyond the length of their.........er little finger and have never actually worked with a real horse, just some massively broken overbred marionette of a pony.

Trust me of a horse REALLY bites you, you'll be too busy picking up fingers or trying to patch up a chunk of missing flesh larger than any Texas steak!

Fortunately what most people see is a nipping behaviour. For us it's lucky that horses will kick first and actually reserve the real bites for when they seriously want to kill something.

As for dogs......well firstly I'd be wanting to know why the dog wants to bite me in the first place. I've worked with literally hundreds of dogs, and (touch wood) I've been bitten once, which was the family poodle when I was 3 and I startled him whilst asleep. Of course the dog shouldn't bite you, but much with horses, if you got bit, you screwed up!

Incidentally, what can work with dogs as a surprisingly strong (so only to be used on rare occasion) discipline measure is to hold their muzzle shut with a hand. They will give out a little squeal when they submit and you can let go. In many breeds the mother does this to puppies to discipline them. It causes no pain but psychologically it's powerful. So like I say, remember to the dog it's an incredible put down, so only use it for those once in a lifetime moments when the dog has really stepped across a line (and not just crapped on the carpet)
I studied this a bit more and this is exactly what I've been reading. I made the mistake of assuming horses only bite because they're angry, like most dogs do, but that's only one reason out of twelve for horses. If you bit or agitated an angry horse you might seriously get injured, but if you bit (I can't believe I'm talking about a homo-sapiens biting a horse) a horse that was playing or trying to exert dominance you *might* get a fairly neutral non-response, although your dentist would probably kick you in the ass.
     
    07-12-2011, 10:11 AM
  #5
Weanling
I guess it could work...if you want to put your mouth on a horse, go right ahead

I'm just thinking it would be difficult for our small mouths and teeth to make very much of an impact on a horse's skin. We would probably hurt ourselves before the horse ever felt anything more than a little prick.

There are better ways to correct a horse for biting, certainly.
     
    07-12-2011, 10:40 AM
  #6
Foal
I have been bitten by my horse, and he was out to hurt--he knocked me to the ground, but it was not a dominance fight, because he immediately scooted away from me out of reach. He was saying something larger, but that's another topic altogether. Point is, if you're really bitten you won't be able to correct the behavior--nipping however gets a hard smack on the mouth. Once, and then its over. Just like every other behavior you correct, the reaction is immediate and quick and then I move on. Its not so much what you do (bite, yell, smack, etc) as when you do it that makes it effective.

After that bite, I did get up, brush myself off and put him in the roundpen to see if there was any larger respect problem, but he was perfect. That is something you also want to consider when correcting; is it behavior related, or is your horse telling you something?
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    07-12-2011, 11:11 PM
  #7
Yearling
Rem use to be a bad biter, not mean, but 'attention deprived' bites.
I started grabbing his nostrils and not letting go until he moved his head away from me. Then everytime he would pucker those lips at me to bite, I would grab those lips or nostrils again. This worked for him, but not for my mare who then thought it was a game :/
Horses all learn differently you just have to find out what they don't like lol
     
    07-13-2011, 12:07 AM
  #8
Super Moderator
I actually have heard of people biting their horses to try and teach them not to nip. But I just can't see how you could physiclaly get there quick enough and make enough of an impression for it to be a useful tool in disciplining a horse. And, who wants a mouthful of hair.
     
    07-13-2011, 01:53 PM
  #9
Foal
It works... bite hard on the soft part of the nose, I have seen it done

Getting bit isn't fun horses can bite HARD

Yes watch your herd in the pasture... they bite one another to move them constantly, most of the time if they bite you they think your another horse they can move out of their way.

That horse is quicker, can kick and bite much harder than you can... you have to establish who's on top of the pecking order... keep your bluff in on them which is to say you don't beat the snot out of the horse but form a healthy relationship.

Now on the nippy horses such as a studdy gelding you give them a smack on the nose if they get mouthy
     
    07-13-2011, 02:36 PM
  #10
Doe
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by ledge    
It works... bite hard on the soft part of the nose, I have seen it done
Soft part of the nose.....where you can very easily crush the nose and cause permanent respiratory damage even with your fingers? Horses don't bite each other on the nose, and as I say when they really bite, and not just nip, they MEAN it! A horse will never think we are another horse, anymore than we will forget they have 4 legs and suddenly decide to invite them to a dinner party.

I too have seen a lot of things done. That makes them no less moronic. Why just the other day there was a post here about tying dead chickens around a dogs neck..........
     

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