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MissingStar 05-16-2013 12:57 AM

Bad habit alert, look away now . . .
OK, I know I'm probably about to be shot down in flames for allowing my horse to do this but, hey, it's a forum, we're here to share . . .

My 6 year old Samson has this habit of gently nuzzling me until he has a piece of material between his lips (a sleeve, a jacket hem, etc). Sometimes it's in his teeth, sometimes not (and here I shall emphasize gently as I can easily pull away from his grasp, he isn't clamped on for dear life). Then he will sigh, his ears droop, his eye glaze over and zzzzzz . . . He would stand for hours like this sound asleep, with me attached, if I let him.

In 40+ years of horses I've never had one do this before and I find it kind of endearing. It puts me in mind of a child taking comfort from his security blanket, only I'm "blankie".

*steps away from screen to don flak jacket and helmet*

tinyliny 05-16-2013 01:24 AM

that IS cute. Hey, if it works for you, who would dis you for doing that? Not me! (as I allow Z to rub on me after a ride that makes his big lug head really itchy).

Honeysuga 05-16-2013 01:27 AM

I dont see a problem as long as he doesnt get to biting. Its sweet that you guys have such a bond.
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AlexS 05-16-2013 01:34 AM

Here's the response you expected... I don't agree, you won't know you are hurt until after it happens, and you are already hurt.

My horse is mouthy, he holds the cross ties, he holds the lead rope. I see no reason for him to hold me.

What's the reason? What's the gain?

MissingStar 05-16-2013 01:35 AM

Thanks guys! I thought I might be banished to the "naughty step" for allowing such bad behaviour.

Maybe I should start a thread on "quirks". Every horse I've known has got at least one up his sleeve that makes him unique. Should make an amusing read!

Honeysuga 05-16-2013 01:39 AM

That would be a good thread!

And dont worry, the naughty step isnt so bad, been there done that. ;)
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Phly 05-16-2013 01:40 AM

This reminds me of yesterday. If this is of topic please delete. My gelding has always always always like to lip our daughters hair. He's been scalded for it a million times. But he's her best buddy even still. She can go do anything shed like to him and he would never do anything more then lip her hair. It goes against what I like to see, but he's never ever been aggressive towards her and he's so gentle.

I'm not gonna stop scalding him for it, but I can see where you're coming from.
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tinyliny 05-16-2013 01:42 AM

I think it's always up to the rider how much "bad" behavior they are willing to tolerate. the horse will always oblige you with bad behavior if you allow it. but, if it doesn't matter to you, or hurt you or someone else, then it's your choice.

You might get nipped one day, but I gather it's a risk you are willing to take.

I do insist that Z wait to rub on me until I "invite" him, with a towel in my hand. I do not allow him to just rub on me any time. But, I know that I am proably not correct in allowing it at all. It's the cuteness factor , messing me up again.

MissingStar 05-16-2013 01:46 AM

Alex there's no "gain" in it.

He only does it when he's sleepy. He isn't mouthy at any other time. I never feed titbits by hand or otherwise, nor do I keep food in my pockets, which could cause an issue with some horses. In the 5 years I've owned him it has never escalated from this so I can't say I'm overly concerned in his case.

And, yes, I was expecting such a response from someone. I shall take it on the chin!

tinyliny 05-16-2013 01:50 AM

NOw I am feeliing really guilty. I hand feed , too.

(shame on me!)

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