Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: East Central Illinois
I've always had a small herd, so MY horses are top, middle and bottom ranked. What is interesting is where my 15yo mare fits in with the two 7yo geldings. She is, food-wise, 3/3, BUT they both depend upon her for confidence and when she wants to be pushy she gets to be the boss. She also gets spoiled by me. Often, when I take them out of the pasture, I let her graze in front of the barn, while the "boys" stand tied. They know that this is how it is, and don't complain.
Truthfully, it isn't where you horse IS in the herd, it is more about turning your horse out in a herd with SANE horses. There are some horses who don't know how to socialize with others and often they are bullies. If your horse has to defer to one of those your horse gets hurt.
With my current herd, everybody plays, but nobody bullies.
In fact, my two geldings have been imitating the way my two dogs(same age, 6yo's) play with each other. They play "chase & scream", and "tug-o-war" with their feeding buckets,, JUST like the dogs.