Horses were domesticated over 4,000 years ago and soon became the workhorses, so to speak, of human civilization. These hardy animals’ ability to pull plows and haul heavy loads revolutionized agriculture, increasing production. With more food being produced by fewer people, this meant more people could do other kinds of work. The consequences of this were profound. Horses have also found roles in transportation, warfare, entertainment, and even gambling. With the onward march of technology, horses today are increasingly being kept as companions rather than as working animals.
Being herbivores, horses are typically pretty calm and placid, even if they’re always on the alert for trouble. However, they do sometimes engage in rather odd behaviors. Horses that spend too much time inside and don’t get enough fresh air and exercise can become bored and act out with “stable vices.” Some classic “vices” are chewing on wood, biting on wood while sucking in air, rocking back and forth repetitively, kicking walls, pacing obsessively, pawing the ground, and gulping down food too quickly. The best treatment for stable vices is to prevent them in the first place: make sure a horse gets outside regularly so it can enjoy some roaming around the pasture. Horses are individuals and even a horse that’s well cared for and gets lots of pasture time can still have… Eccentricities.
In the video we’ve posted below, you’ll see a young filly who enjoys having her hindquarters scratched. She even knows which human does this best: her owner’s brother. During one of his visits, the horse can’t get enough of this expert scratching. When he takes a break, she backs up toward him, demanding more. When he finally has to insist that the day’s session is over, the horse has an unexpected but totally hilarious reaction.
How did you like this horse’s very direct style of communication? Have any good stories about eccentric horses? We’d love to hear from you in the Facebook comments. Be sure to like and share, too!