Vindictive horses?

Discussion in 'Problem Horses' started by Court Eagle, Nov 2, 2009.

  1. Court Eagle

    Court Eagle Well-known Member

    Hi guys, just wanted everyone's opinions if there is such a thing as the 'vindictive horse'. The one that throws temper tantrums and goes out of their way to destroy something, the one who sorts out who is who amongst people and will wait their chance to try bite, kick or harm them, also the unforgiving horse that will try to get you back.

    Does anyone have or have known a vindictive horse?
  2. I don't think they are vindictive, I don't think they are evil/nasty etc - those are HUMAN traits.

    I believe horses like this are very dominant, very self assured a lot of the time and probably don't have much truck with anyone they feel might be the slightest bit wary of them. In the wild, this sort of horse would be the fattest, safest horse of the herd. He'd get all the best feed, he'd have the best mares to mate with, he'd be the last one a wildcat would tangle with.

    Horses like this can also be in pain. I know of a couple of horses labled as outright nasty pieces of work and it turned out one had a back problem and one had a major issue with her pelvis being out of line and they were in agony all the time. Got these issues fixed up and almost instantly over half the 'nastiness' went away. The rest is on its way out as the horses learn that life doesn't hurt any more.

    Sometimes dominant horses go outright dangerous due to mishandling or abuse. They never forget who and what has hurt them.

    Sometimes stress and sourness is a huge factor with horses like this too. They tend to be very intelligent, and woe betide any dumb human who tries to force them and get into a fight with them. Horses like this need very specific handling to bring out the best in them, and in the wrong hands can very quickly take a turn for the worse.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 2, 2009
  3. Naomi

    Naomi Well-known Member

    I believe they do exist. I think neurological issues could be partly to blame. Genetics could also play a part in an aggressive temperament. 9 times out of 10 I think human intervention would be to blame though.
  4. Bon & Ted

    Bon & Ted Guest

    horses just don't have that in their genetic makeup.

    If your horse is outwardly aggressive like that, I would assume either man made issues (mishandling, abuse etc), hormonal issues, neuro problems etc. But just being nasty for the sake of it - nope, I have yet to meet a horse that is genuinely nasty that has had perfect handling/training etc.

    My rising 2 year old filly is an extremely aggressive little pony. I have sought professional help with lessons and training, but we are beginning to suspect hormonal problems. She's off to the vet next week for an ultrasound.

    She is outwardly aggressive one day, and sugar sweet and quiet the next :confused:

    3 days ago she had her ears pinned to her head (and not when I was in the paddock), and was rearing, charging etc. Yesterday she was listening to me, and was SOOOO quiet. Her behaviour is totally abnormal.
  5. Sharaway

    Sharaway Guest

    Carefull Bon & Ted, I had one exactly like what you describe and it did not end well for the horse.

    Ok as we have no other term to use other than a human one because horses have yet to reveal a spoken language to us then I will say YES.

    YES horses can be vindictive, sneaky evil cunning and attention seeking little shites, and anyone that wants to tell me differant is very welcome to come and spend a day with me and Chantelle, where you can witness these acts first hand as I have.
  6. Bon & Ted

    Bon & Ted Guest

    Which is why I am taking her to the vets ASAP and have pretty much stopped handling her for safety's sake.

    I don't believe it is a neuro problem, as she is having all of the classic symptoms of it being hormonal/testosterone overload. If she is put on treatment, requires surgery etc, she will have everything neccesary done then will be sent out for around a year.

    I believe they are clever etc, but vindictive? As in trying to hurt someone with intent - after revenge ??? mmmm... that would have to be a very "special" horse to think that way *#)
  7. Sugar's Mum

    Sugar's Mum Gold Member

    I think there are horses out there that are savagely dangerous. Yes I have no doubt that some of those are out to get the human they are near. I have seen a stallion set out to savage a man. Thank god he got to the fence in time.

    I have no doubt there are horses that are insane and there are those who have learnt the best way to keep out of trouble is to make a human scared of you and the majority of those would have reason because of bad handling but there are horses, dogs, humans and other animals who are simply born with something missing in their brain leading to massive handling problems.
  8. Sharaway

    Sharaway Guest

    Revenge, jealousy, spite, I dont know what human term for it is, but I know when I give my attention to another horse the shit rolls down hill, and the nearest horse to her will cop a flogging for it, or she will wait to take the opportunity to dole out some revenge on same horse.

    Or you will find her one cranky lumpy horse to ride or lead.

    I dont give a toss if people dont believe it, as Ive seen it with my own eyes, DAILY, invite still stands for anyone that wants to tell me Im humanising my horse.

    The bloody horses thinks it owns me not the other way around.
  9. equus

    equus Well-known Member

    Ditto all said by Sharon re Chantelle. One very clever and jealous gg who thinks she should be an only horse.

    I know of a horse that hated one particular person and would target them at every opportunity. With good reason mind you, He used to be used by the Ag Dept for blood agar plates and this person (vet) had the job of bleeding him.
  10. Sim

    Sim Well-known Member

    Am not meaning to stir the pot here B&t, or be derogatory, but unless you have an equine science background, specialising in genetics, I don't think you are qualified to make a statement like that.

    Can humans be born bad? If so, why can't horses? Goes back to the age old debate of nuture or nature really doesn't it?

    At 12 I was lined up and double barrelled in the head by an arab pony that didn't want to leave his mates. Evil? not sure, but he repetitively did nasty things to humans and other horses from day 1. To be fair, in those days we didn't have all the resources to find out about why our horses acted the way they did, but as my mum says, there was always something a bit skewiff about that pony.

  11. PetaBizz

    PetaBizz Well-known Member

    I absolutely believe that it is possible.. I had a mare foal down at my place, lovely quiet soft mare and the foal was just evil from day dot! He tried on various occasions to knock both myself and my daughter down, kick, bite,rear! It was foul and I think that in many instances that if I had a gun, I would have shot it. I have never felt this way before, nor have I ever had ANY horse behave like that around me.. It was a dog and most certainly in its make up, it WAS NOT a learned habit or a habit brought on by abuse..
  12. ChevalNoire

    ChevalNoire New Member

    I think possibly what Bon & Ted meant was that horses are incapable of such human reactions because horses lack the same power of reason that enables humans to be vindictive or vengeful.

    More likely is that they learn a response to a particular situation (the bleeder vet) or style of handling (savvy arabs with slightly less savvy owners - previous or long ago owners perhaps).

    Most inappropriate behaviour can (or could possibly) be traced back to a human interaction which may have been compounded now to the point of seeming to need no trigger at all.

    If a horse had such a great memory for details like who doesn't give them what they want or treat them in a certain way then all horses would be on TV starring in movies or whatever because that level of thought (being vengeful) would mean they could also learn great things and be famous. Ever tried teaching your horse to count or fetch the newspaper?

    They're just not capable of such complex thought processes, which revenge and vindictiveness are.

    I'd be looking at health (as Merrylegs said) or neurological issues but also at how human perception can become reactive and therefore unclear on the actual problem rather than the perceived one.

    I've seen a good many horses in forty odd years of "being poor" and I've never met a bad one. Many who were terribly misunderstood yes but none I'd say were capable of genuinely evil and pre-meditated bad behaviour.

    Any creature, human or equine will work out who is who and will try and push the envelope if possible. One of my menagerie is a green arab mare who is constantly pushing the envelope but we know this and are always one little step in front of her so she never gets away with anything too bad. Given the chance, she would quickly turn the inch we give her into several kms (as would a child, given the chance) and soon be leader of the pack (horse and humans alike). She never gets this chance though but in unknowing hands she could quickly become a disaster waiting to happen. Horses are opportunists, nothing more or less.

    Just some thoughts and I hope no one takes offence at anything I've said as that wasn't my intention :D

    Good question and great to hear everyone's experiences :))
  13. amber sunday

    amber sunday Well-known Member

    we've got one.... but its only me he hates, he liked me up until about a month ago, when i got there one day and he just went for me.. anybody else(including kids) can walk in and out of his yard, but he sees me coming and backs straight up to the fence and starts kicking it.. nothing changed when he decided he didn tliek me, he was getting cuddles and pats on the tuesday, when igot there on the wednesday.. bam! he will bite, kick, strike out, charge, rear and everything else you can think of. little b*****d
  14. Court Eagle

    Court Eagle Well-known Member

    Thanks for the replies, great to hear everyones experiences!
    Im also wondering(a little off topic) whether horses accociate 'time out' the same way that you teach kids and puppies.
    For example, as soon as i see my horse attacking another horse, i go pull her out of the paddock and put her in by herself. She hates it and goes nuts, but theres no way to stop her singleing out horse in the paddock. As soon as shes calm and back to grazing, i will go put her back out with the others.
    What do you guys reckon?
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2009
  15. ChevalNoire

    ChevalNoire New Member

    What does she do when you return her to the other horses?

    Maybe she just doesn't get on with a particular horse depending on who is more dominant.

    We once had a horse who couldn't be put in the same paddock as one of our ponies (or even in the paddock next to his) because he'd always try and kill it - he just didn't like the pony. He was fine with everyone else.

    Not all horses can be kept together as they have personalities like people and some just can't get on.
  16. Court Eagle

    Court Eagle Well-known Member

    It depends on her mood for the day. She is a very dominant, stubborn and aggressive horse.

    The vindictiveness(if thats a word?) that i was originally quering about she displays is when she gets seperated due to her being nasty to the other horses. When she is is the seperate paddock she will go out of her way to literally stamps on the trees growing, or throw her weight repeatively back and forth on the gate post, trying to knock the fence down(ive never seen a horse display such actions) its like she saying "is that all youve got......this is what ive got".
    And to rule out a few things for her behaviour, i have had her tested for hormonal unbalances, blood tests to check for any deficeincies, she had acupuncture and bowen to test for any injuries, has teeth and feet done regularly, not fed fizzy food, is having lessons, has had different horse communicators try and talk to her, has had bach flower remedy mixes, herbal formulas from herbalists, nothing seems to help her behaviour. I think she is very intelligent and quite vindictive.
  17. Bon & Ted

    Bon & Ted Guest

    wow racy beast, sounds like you have your hands full!!

    I can sympathise with you right now!!! Have you had your mare ultrasounded?

    Another thought, maybe she needs some chill out time, spell her for a while with dominant horses to teach her a bit more about pecking order etc ?? Maybe she is a bit sour?

    And Cheval Noire, that's exactly what I was getting at, you put it much more eloquently than I can :))
  18. Lauren

    Lauren Gold Member

    If you look at the most evil humans in the world all have been born evil and have showed weird behaviours from the second they were born.
    So why can a horse not be the same???
  19. Kateee

    Kateee Guest

    RacyBeast, do you still have the animal communicators numbers, I am interested in getting one to come and speak to my mare.
  20. Court Eagle

    Court Eagle Well-known Member

    have replied in your thread**)

Share This Page