It is well known that horses are terrified and frightened for the simplest reasons, even if there is no cause for fear at all. There is even a British proverb that says, “Horses are afraid of their shadow”!
Have you ever asked yourself what caused this exaggerated fear? What makes horses to panic more than other creatures smaller in size (such as dogs)? How to Calm a Fearful Horse
Horses live in the jungle as prey endangered all the time, so you find that horses constantly scan the surrounding environment and sense any upcoming danger, and are always on alert and ready until they can escape at any moment when they feel in danger (when a predator attacks them, for example). that is, they have Instinctively obsessed that there is a danger that is about to be invaded at any moment, this instinct makes horses feel fearful when they hear a loud voice or sudden movement occurs around them or other things that often do not cause fear and do not represent a real danger at all. for example, they may feel The horse panicked when a group of children ran around him while they were playing, causing the horse to try to get away from them and avoid them, and the horse might just fear that there is a plastic bag flying in the air near it! Therefore, if you are walking with your horse. it is very possible (but certainly) that you will meet some situations in which the horse feels fear for any reason. This fear requires you to have a special deal and an understanding of the nature of the horse. meaning that you must understand that horse fear is instinctively not He has a hand in it, and has your temper and does not get excited if you see that the cause is trivial and does not call for fear. Rather, calmly try to keep the horse from the source of fear and seek as much as possible to calm and reassure the horse.
You should be calm and gentle the horse by fondling his hair before riding it and also while driving, because this works to calm and relax the horse, and if you meet anything that scares the horse. you should not be bothered by the horse’s actions because its fear is normal, and it should not show you any kind of fear or panic Because the horse will be able to read and translate your feelings, for example if you are walking with a horse and a dog barks toward you. the horse will feel terrified and your role as a leader in this situation is to contain the situation and calm the horse and notify you that you are in control and that you can pay the danger about it, but if the horse finds that you are afraid Just like him, his fear increases to the point that it will be difficult to calm him down.
Get your horse’s attention
Horses by their nature cannot focus on two things together at the same time, so if you come across something that scares the horse. you have to draw its attention as much as possible so that it focuses with you and does not look at this thing in the sense that focusing on something makes him ignore the other thing, and try to order the horse to move forward and was something He wasn’t even straying from the source of fear as much as possible.
Ask the horse for a simple task like making him run in a circular shape because this task makes him ignore the thing that scares him whatever.
Use lateral bending
Lateral curvature is a tensioning of one end of the driving bridle (one end, not two), which deflects the horse’s head on one side, and this movement is used during horse riding when you want to reduce the movement of the horse in preparation for stopping, and this movement is very useful for horses when you feel terrified Because, of course, when you encounter something that scares her. the first option you think about doing is to run away to get away from the source of fear, and therefore when you tighten one of the ends of the bridle you make the horse’s head bend from what prevents it from starting. the other benefit of lateral bending is that it has some kind of pressure on The horse’s neck and this pressure distracts the horse’s attention, meaning that it will focus on the pressure on him more than the fear he feels. For these reasons, the lateral curvature is considered one of the most important and fastest things to do when the horse feels intimidated.
Stay away from the horse when feeling at risk
If you fail to calm your horse or distract him and feel that he has become overly fearful, it is advisable in this case to descend on the ground for your safety because the horse during fear may do some actions that may harm the person riding it, such as being erected with his front feet, which may expose you to falling from his back and worse This is because the horse itself can slide its hind legs and drop its weight on your body, which can result in serious injury.
You should not exaggerate in this matter, i.e. it is normal not to descend from the horse’s back when it is afraid but we are talking here about the necessity and that is when you feel that the horse has become scared to the point that you may be forced to make a move that might harm you, so you must first try to calm The horse will contain the situation and make the idea of getting off the horse the last option you make when things get to the point of danger.
Do not accustom yourself to descending from the back of the horse at every big and small for two reasons. The first is that by descending you from the horse, the horse will feel that you are abandoning him and that you are just as afraid of him, which increases his fear and panic. He may later make him use this against you, i.e. pretend to be afraid and terrified to get you to go off his back.
Confinement of horses
Horses that are locked and prevented from going out for long periods, for example during the winter season, they become somewhat more cowardly than normal and when they come out of their lockers they act strangely and exaggeratedly towards unfamiliar movements and sounds, and even horses that are placed in the stable most of the day they have susceptibility Fear and panic are relatively more than horses that spend a great time outside, because spending a lot of time abroad gives horses a kind of acclimatization to the various sources of fear.
The true leader
In the herd the leading horse is completely dominant, and he is the bravest of the rest of the horses for being able to pay any danger to the herd, and when the horses feel threatened they look at him because he is the only person you trust. and you must be with these characteristics and look at you The horse has the same outlook as the leader of the herd, so you must be a true leader characterized by courage, strength and intelligence, or in other words if you want the horse to look at you as a true leader and therefore respect you and trust you. the horse must feel secure while in your vicinity by proving that you can pay Any danger hovering with a horse and therefore you should never feel panic in order not to shake the horse’s confidence in you, but rather must contain the situation as possible by calming the horse and reassuring it and keeping it away from the source of fear.
If your horse’s confidence in you is shaken, he will gradually start not respecting you, starting from breaking into your own area and ending with biting or kicking, because he looks at you as a weak person and considers himself higher than you in the rank.
Check the horse’s eyesight
One of the things that continually causes horse panic is that it has vision problems, so if you notice that your horse has become more intimidated than before, you should not rule out the presence of health problems related to his eyes, so you should visit the veterinarian in order to examine the horse’s eyes and address any problem It may be present.
Fear is linked to pain
Horses that feel pain or discomfort in general are more likely to fear and panic relatively more than horses that feel comfortable, and the manifestations of discomfort vary. for example, the horse may have a health problem such as colic or stomach ulcers or problems with the teeth of the horse, meaning that the physical pain It causes the horse to panic quickly from any loud sound or sudden movement, so you should see a veterinarian and have a medical examination of the horse if you notice his fear more than usual.
One manifestation of discomfort is that the saddle has been incorrectly placed, causing strong and painful pressure on an area of the horse’s body, which needs to remove the saddle and re-install it.