During my lessons, when my instructor wants me to go into 2-pt position, she tells me to grab the horse's mane to steady myself (I'm still learning my balance).
When I did this on the lesson horse, he didn't bat an eye.
When I did it on my new-to-me mare on Monday during our lesson, she obviously felt it and didn't appreciate it. It's like she suddenly woke up and said, "What in the H.E. Double hockey sticks do you think you're doing?! Get off me!" So I started just resting my hands on either side of it and that solved the problem.
She also doesn't like it when I brush it. I can tell it hurts or something because she starts dancing around and trying to move away from me when normally she's a snuggler.
I thought manes were without feeling. Was I misinformed? Is there something else going on here?