Opinions on Horse body language - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
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Opinions on Horse body language

Hi All

Not posted in what feels like ages, and not sure if this is the right forum catergory.....
This is just a general interest question really. I went to meet a really lovely mare today who is a generally unhandled 3 yr old. She so sweet natured and stood by my side in a halter, even when the others decided to have a bit of a go at each other.
She has the most gentle eyes I think I have ever seen, and her general mannerisms from being caught, to be lead, was great for one that hasnt really been handled.
However, her ears were back the whole time, but it didnt seem in a nasty way at all.....So just curious what you would read from this horses body language.
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post #2 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 03:34 PM
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From those photos I see a little bit of uncertainty and insecurity, kind of like she is trying to figure it all out. Bordering on relaxation, but I do see a tiny bit of tension around her nose and combined with the ears slightly back, makes me think she was a tiny bit unsure. I agree, those are NOT the aggressive or mean ears back you see on some horses. She looks sweet.

I may read the photos a bit differently than others, though, and pictures don't always tell the whole story. I look forward to other input.
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post #3 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 03:45 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by karliejaye View Post
From those photos I see a little bit of uncertainty and insecurity, kind of like she is trying to figure it all out. Bordering on relaxation, but I do see a tiny bit of tension around her nose and combined with the ears slightly back, makes me think she was a tiny bit unsure. I agree, those are NOT the aggressive or mean ears back you see on some horses. She looks sweet.

I may read the photos a bit differently than others, though, and pictures don't always tell the whole story. I look forward to other input.
Thank you. Thats how I read it too, but was a little unsure. She has been pretty unhandled from birth, but accepts a head collar well, and was caught fairly easy considering. She has stood next to the aplha mare of the herd, which I thought may have added to the tension too.
We are thinking of taking her on, as she is a rescue. I think she just needs some one on one and a trust in humans. Overall she just seemed just a sweet mare, I couldnt see any malice, but I wanted some expert opinions, and welcome others opinions too x
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post #4 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 04:25 PM
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she looks like a really cute little mare! if she was that good for not being handled much, i would be interested in how she will be in a little bit of time if you or someone else does get her and work with her! she will probably be so good and kind and sweet!

i agree with karliejaye. just seems a little unsure and is trying to figure things out. also looks a little relaxed as well. definately not ears back as in a mean way.
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post #5 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by khorses23 View Post
she looks like a really cute little mare! if she was that good for not being handled much, i would be interested in how she will be in a little bit of time if you or someone else does get her and work with her! she will probably be so good and kind and sweet!

i agree with karliejaye. just seems a little unsure and is trying to figure things out. also looks a little relaxed as well. definately not ears back as in a mean way.
Thank you. She is so cute, I was surprised as expected a really unhandled mare, but she took it all in her stride. She seemed to like the scratch on her withers that I was giving her.
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post #6 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 04:58 PM
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She looks uncomfortable, but definitely not sour or mean. How is she health-wise?

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post #7 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 05:00 PM
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Looks bottom of herd so uncertain, ears aren't flat back with aggression but still back as in not happy or most likely waiting to be pushed back by a higher herd member.

I'd say shy and unsure of herself or people but looks like she'd be great with proper one to one handling given some time and patience. Pretty cob pony :)
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post #8 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel View Post
She looks uncomfortable, but definitely not sour or mean. How is she health-wise?
Hi Sky, not 100% sure on health. She looked quite fit and well, possibly in foal, actually almost sure she is in foal. She hasnt been wormed for god knows how long, and has never seen a farrier.
I would get the vet out to her to give her a once over and keep a close eye on her. I thought pain as well, but she moved freely, and was happy for me to touch her most places. Thats why I broached this question... maybe be naive, I thought ears back meant pain or agression, but everything else about her came across as a gentle soul
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post #9 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by klstarrs View Post
Looks bottom of herd so uncertain, ears aren't flat back with aggression but still back as in not happy or most likely waiting to be pushed back by a higher herd member.

I'd say shy and unsure of herself or people but looks like she'd be great with proper one to one handling given some time and patience. Pretty cob pony :)
The herd leader was next to her at this point, and she was quite wary of her (alpha mare). Mind you when the herd kicked off, she didnt go to run, she stood by me, so a little unsure. Im hoping with lots of one on one and lots of trust building, she should come real good. Her nature seems very sweet and genuine.
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post #10 of 27 Old 12-08-2015, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by daisy1981 View Post
Hi Sky, not 100% sure on health. She looked quite fit and well, possibly in foal, actually almost sure she is in foal. She hasnt been wormed for god knows how long, and has never seen a farrier.
I would get the vet out to her to give her a once over and keep a close eye on her. I thought pain as well, but she moved freely, and was happy for me to touch her most places. Thats why I broached this question... maybe be naive, I thought ears back meant pain or agression, but everything else about her came across as a gentle soul
I would agree with getting vet out... looks young/unhandled.. she does have a pretty round tum which could be foal or heavy with worms but from pic her ears back isn't aggression it's insecurity and feeling unsure and may take a lot of gentle handling but could end up a brilliant mare if you have the time and money to work with her.
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