In the same way that humans do, horses have differing personalities and traits.
Some horses can be very wild and outlandish, while others can be extremely timid and nervous. If you’re concerned about your own horse’s self-esteem, read on to discover how you should handle your animal to help them overcome their difficulties.
Why they may be nervous
There are a lot of reasons for why your horse could be nervous.
First of all, their natural personality is arguably the biggest reason behind their nervousness. Other than that, previous experiences can also lead to their timid output. Riding horses can be nervous from previous falls while out with their owner, and once they’ve been affected, training a nervous horse can be extremely difficult as they’ll be fearful of riding again.
Anxiety in horses can be effected by other factors too, including moving to a new stable. Being surrounded by new companions and a new environment can be very intimidating and nerve wrecking, but it can also get better overtime.
The same reaction can occur with any changes in their personal circumstance such as health and separation anxiety, due to their dislike of being moved.
Signs of anxiety in horses
Horse anxiety can be an issue for many breeds, and if you want to know if you’re dealing with an anxious horse, then there are a couple of things that you need to notice in order to help them feel better.
Some of the signs to look out for include bucking and bolting, as well as not wanting to go outdoors. These are prime examples of anxious behaviour in horses, and if you’re unable to curb their issue, this can lead to potential injuries when bucking and bolting are present. By getting horse insurance, you can guarantee that you’ll be protected if an injury came their way.
How to help their confidence
Despite anxiety and nervousness being a personality trait of many horses, there are many things you can do to help them overcome their anxiety. These include:
Bond with your horse
Like all animals, horses need love.
A good bond with your horse can help them feel more comfortable with their surroundings. A firm bond doesn’t develop overnight, it takes plenty of effort, so by grooming your horse regularly, the regular interaction will allow them to become less anxious over time.
Continuous activities of any kind will help the pair of you build a trusting relationship. It’s even more beneficial for horses who race, as with a companion they bond with, their training will improve in the meantime.
Be confident yourself
If you can convey confidence, then it’s going to rub off on your animal.
Horses are very talented when it comes to detecting weakness and fear, so by putting on a supremely confident persona, they’re going to feel more confident from the energy you’re giving off.
Build-up to their fears
Can you understand why your horse’s anxiety is so bad?
Over time it will become apparent what their fears and insecurities are, and this is when your training expertise comes into play. Say, for example, your pet is afraid of the outdoors, by exposing them to it in dribs and drabs, as time progresses they’ll very more comfortable in their surroundings, so much so that they’ll become fearless.
If you’re struggling to understand what makes your horse anxious, speaking to an animal physiologist can give you a firmer idea of what these issues are. What’s always important to remember is that horses need plenty of care and attention, and by neglecting their needs you’re going to be powerless when it comes to helping them overcome their troubles.