Horses are not vindictive in the human sense.
However, they can certainly have negative experiences and link them to actions.
We’ll clarify why this plays a crucial role in dealing with animals in the following sections.
In this article, you will learn why horses are not resentful, but can still be negatively conditioned. These are crucial factors for keeping, caring and riding.
So read on to help you understand your horse even better.
What does “resentful” mean in horses?
People are called “resentful” when they cannot forgive for a long time.
So they hold a grudge against someone, hold it against that person over and over again, and may even take revenge.
The term is often used pejoratively.
However, upon closer examination, it becomes clear that a person has been hurt and has not yet processed this. Forgiving or forgiving a serious (emotional) injury is not easy.
This is especially true if the person who caused the injury does not apologize and work to improve their behavior.
There are many parallels between humans and horses in this area. However, horses are not really vindictive.
They do, however, deal with wrong or negative associations differently.
We’ll explain how this plays out below.
Why are horses not resentful?
Horses don’t know emotional injury from an insult or a derogatory remark.
They act and react much more situationally than humans, and they don’t want to get even by being insulting or stubborn on purpose either.
So they do not want to return the injury in order to feel better about themselves.
What is given, however, are experiences and connections, of course.
If a horse repeatedly collects negative experiences with people because they are too rough with it, are loud or even inflict pain on it, it understandably develops a dislike.
This negative conditioning can go very deep and express itself in a variety of ways.
Why do people think horses are resentful?
When a horse does not behave as desired after an unpleasant experience, many people associate it with human behavior.
This is normal. We transfer many things to animals that only humans feel in this form.
This is why we often hear the phrase “He does that on purpose”. What is meant by this is that a horse intentionally annoys a human being.
However, this is not the case with animals.
Why do horses appear resentful?
Horses react situationally, for one thing. This is important so that they do not take a risk in potentially threatening moments.
If they have already been treated badly by a human, if a moment of fright or pain occurred, they are negatively conditioned to this.
They will therefore avoid such or similar situations. This can manifest itself in the fact that they:
stand still and cannot be moved
refuse to perform actions they were previously accustomed to
Because of their size and weight, this can quickly become dangerous with horses.
Nevertheless, realize that a horse is not doing this to annoy you. The triggering situations must either be avoided or built up in a new and positive way.
This takes time and therefore requires a corresponding amount of patience. An individual approach is also necessary.
Some horses recover more slowly and need more opportunities to regain confidence. For others, less effort is sufficient.
In any case, it is important to first identify the cause of the unusual behavior.
When is a horse trainer useful?
If you have the impression that your horse behaves differently than usual and wants to “annoy” you in certain situations – you should take two measures.
First, an examination by the veterinarian is useful.
Pain is not unique to horses and can cause them to undergo a change in behavior.
A comprehensive diagnosis of otherwise unexplained shying, rearing or other problems such as aggression is always necessary.
Underlying causes can deteriorate rapidly and must be addressed early. Otherwise, it may be too late for simple therapy.
On the other hand, a horse trainer can be useful. This is because the expert knowledge and the changed perspective make it possible to recognize faults more easily.
The best basis for ensuring that your horse never appears to “hold a grudge” consists of a good bond with you, appropriate handling and the early detection of health restrictions or pain.
You should also take fears seriously and deal with them in a way that is adapted to your animal. Often it already helps if you know that it does not want to annoy you or take revenge on you.
The handling is then much more relaxed and you can find a solution faster.
My name is Mark and the senior editor
I take great pride in being the best possible author and giving you the knowledge that i have on all different types of animals!
I have spent a lifetime learning about pets and animals, and have worked in the pet and vet industry for over 20 years now!
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