Are they really as gender-neutral as we've come to believe? Research has so far failed to find any differences in the way horses respond to male and female humans — not just during ridden work, but also when handled.
The researchers conclude that, assuming a similar riding ability between riders, there is no fundamental difference in a horse's stress responses elicited by male and female riders.
Recent studies have demonstrated that horses can recognize humans based simply on visual information.
Many experts agree that horses do, in fact, remember their owners. Studies performed over the years suggest that horses do remember their owners similar to the way they would remember another horse. Past experiences, memories, and auditory cues provide the horse with information as to who an individual is.
Horses read humans in various ways, such as through our body posture, facial expressions, and attentiveness. Small actions such as a happy facial expression when approaching the horse can allow for a positive experience with the horse.
Horses also understand words better than expected, according to the research, and possess "excellent memories," allowing horses to not only recall their human friends after periods of separation, but also to remember complex, problem-solving strategies for ten years or more.
Of 69 horse owners, 79 per cent of them reported that horses felt jealous, although the specific contexts in which this jealousy occurred, or whether a horse or human relationship was being threatened, was not explored.
One of the more popular Internet horse searches begs the simple, sweet question, “Can a horse love you?” The short answer, of course, is a resounding yes. We know that animal love is a different emotion than that of human love.
Yes, they do. Very much so. And they have long memories for both the humans they've bonded with in a positive way and the ones who have damaged or abused or frightened them. The depth of the connection depends greatly on several things, not the least of which is the amount of time the human spends with the animal.
But women develop loving and even romantic feelings towards horses—because the connection with the horse is how a woman's psychological gifts enable her to gain beauty, grace, swiftness and strength.
Recent study results have shown that after only eight weeks of riding sessions, women gained considerable dynamic muscle tone in their thighs, hips, and torsos, said Yong-Seok Jee, PhD, at Hanseo University's Research Institute of Sports and Industry Science, in Seosan, South Korea.
“So because much of what's considered 'masculine' behavior is typically more assertive—a projecting voice, a determined gait—horses may perceive men as more predatory than women.”
Affection in Horse Terms
Kissing and hugging are human ideas of affection. Horses do “spar” (play fight) and bite at the lips, but that's even more of a reason not to kiss them there. Keep your horse's lips away from your lips. You don't want him to think you're playing and be bitten.
Horses aren't just for humans to show one another affection. Did you know that horses hug too? Just make sure that you're on the horse's good side before hugging them, and remember that if they start licking you or breathing on you it is often because they appreciate your company.
Horses may stare at you when they want your attention. If you are distracted or out of reach, your horse may stare at you to get you to focus on them. If there's a barrier such as a fence between you and your horse, they may stare at you since they can't reach you to nudge you.
In the wild, as well as in domestic care, horses will show affection to one another by sharing breath with one another. Horses will put their noses together and then share the air. This tendency extends to horses showing love to their owners as well.
Do horses smile? They sure do. Recent study results suggest horses have specific facial expressions that reveal positive emotions akin to “happiness,” in a sense. And while those expressions might not be the cheesy cartoon grin or the human ear-to-ear, they do represent the “equine happy face.”
Horses have incredible hearing, with the ability to hear the heartbeat of a human from four feet away. In the wild, horses will synchronize their heartbeats to the other horses in the herd in order to sense danger more quickly, and recent studies have shown that they use those tactics in domesticated life as well.
Researchers confirmed that horses can smell specific odors in human sweat that reflect emotions like fear and happiness, which could open doors to a whole new way of understanding emotion transfer from human to horse, they say.
The shortest answer to this question is yes, horses like to be ridden. There isn't any reason that proves that horses suffer when humans ride them. Moreover, we all know horses are beautiful and powerful animals. So, most can easily toss them off if they don't want a human to ride them.
The short answer is yes. Except in extreme cases, horses are capable of trusting humans again.
It really depends. They may show signs of sadness, much like when they leave a favorite herd mate. On the other hand, if you weren't that close they will likely have no emotional response to being sold. If they do appear sad, it's only time before they get comfortable in their new home and let go of those feelings.
Horses can read human emotions, too, often in uncannily accurate ways; alerting us to our sadness or nervousness, sometimes before we've even consciously registered it.
The quivering lip is a sign that he's comfortable and relaxed. It's just the same as a human mouth falling open when they're asleep. And just as a human will quickly close theirs when they wake up and realise, a horse will too.