Advanced search

Aggressive horse in field I have to walk through... Help?

(27 Posts)
TinyDancingHoofer Wed 10-Sep-14 21:13:51

Hi, so there is a public footpath I have to walk through two times a week, it saves me about an hour of hiking and pushing through hedges so is worth it. I am horsey, have worked in show jumping and racing yards and ridden since I was four.

There are two horses in the field a lovely old bay and a grey. Normally they ignore me or a couple of times have slowly walked over but only got to me as I am climbing over the sty.

The last time I went through the field the grey trotted over and started circling, bucking and lunging forward at me. He was really aggressive, there were no ears back he was just really hyped up. He was kicking out and almost got me a couple of times. I had a dog lead on me so started swinging it and shouting at him, after a few more kicks he turned and cantered off. But even then he kept turning toward me and looking to come back, he didn't, mostly because I was growling at him really loudly.

I did nothing different from every other time I have been in the field, the only change was the grey had a grass muzzle on. Normally at dusk they are eating hay in the corner but they were still out in the middle of the field

I was honestly quite scared, I have been in fields of frisky horses plenty of times but I don't know this one and had nothing on me bar the silly short dog lead. I had no idea what to do and am now a bit worried about the next time I have to go through the field. Any advice would be really helpful. Sorry this is so long i just wanted to give you all the information. What would you have done in my situation?

Lally112 Thu 11-Sep-14 01:00:30

what is it? mare? gelding? rig? could be a change in the feed or something but if its not your horse theres nothing you can do except what you have done already.

Bonkey Thu 11-Sep-14 10:23:21

Are the owners on site?
Can you take a minute and knock on the door?

A public footpath is a public footpath - can they not fence a walkway.
Someone round here does that more so that people aren't actually in with the horses and bothering them than being aggressive.

TinyDancingHoofer Fri 12-Sep-14 11:25:15

It's a gelding, no owners around. The horses shelter is made out of tarps and rubbish so I don't think they are going to build a fence.

Just wanted some practical advice on what to do when a strange horse is charging at you and swinging his arse round trying to kick my face off in the middle of a field. What would you do?

mrslaughan Fri 12-Sep-14 12:01:57

Honestly - I wouldn't go in the Field. I just think if he is acting like that, the downside of being clipped by a flying hoof is too great. Maybe it's your dog that is upsetting idea really

TinyDancingHoofer Fri 12-Sep-14 13:15:18

Thanks for the reply. Don't have the dog with me in the field just happened to have a lead in my pocket. I really do have to go through the field as going around it would take over an hour extra which is just silly and involves lots of hiking up and down.

Middleagedmotheroftwo Fri 12-Sep-14 13:18:34

I would get in touch with the council and find out who owns either the field, and get in touch with the owner of the horse. I'm sure there will be some kind of rule about allowing an agressive animal out in a public place (which a public footpath is).

In the interim, could you carry a stick and use that to wave the horse off/defend yourself?

sunbathe Fri 12-Sep-14 13:24:10

What would have done previously with other frisky horses?

mrslaughan Fri 12-Sep-14 14:17:55

I think turning its arse to you and kicking is beyond frisky.....been in fields with plenty of frisky horses, they tend to stay well away from you while arising around.
I would try and trace the owners - thing is if you even look like you might hit someone horse with a stick - I think they will get quite upset. I did laughingly think - carry a lunging whip....but I don't think this is a solution at all in reality

TinyDancingHoofer Fri 12-Sep-14 16:52:33

Should say when I say frisky I mean lively not randy.

In previous situations I've known the horse and been in riding gear so probably just felt more confident that the horse is just showing off and isn't a maneater.

Horse is massive fat 17hh(ish) lump and I am 5ft nothing so I don't think I'd ever be able to hurt it, carrying a stick might be the way forward, I could leave one at each end of the field when I cross it. Maybe attach a scary carrier bag if the waving stick doesn't work?

TinyDancingHoofer Fri 12-Sep-14 16:56:05

Thanks for all the help. I feel really stupid having to ask for help walking through a field, I have handled stallions and lunatic TBs and this stupid grey has me scared sad

Bonkey Fri 12-Sep-14 17:38:21

Don't feel stupid!

Its bad vibes - I had a 13.2 NF that scared the shit out of me ( he knew it which made it worse!) but I think nothing of larking about with my TB.

Thats a hell of a lot of horse to come at you in a field!

I second trying the council and seeing if they can at least contact the owners. I doubt you will be the only person walking through and if someone gets hurt it could be horrendous!

frostyfingers Fri 12-Sep-14 18:47:16

Does the footpatch cross the field? If it were me, and even if it were a long way round I think I'd go round the edge so at least I could keep the hedge behind me. It sounds as though it's beyond a deep growly voice, which can often work wonders with naughty horses, I'd wave my arms at it and tell it to bugger off. Hopefully it's just a phase, rather than intentionally mean although it does sound scarey.

randomfemale Fri 12-Sep-14 19:02:56

Deffo ring the council and complain. A public footpath is just that - public. One of my regular dog walks takes me through a horse field and a couple of times one of the horses has shown a bit too much interest in me and my dog. Luckily horses don't scare me so a swift tap on the nose usually gives them the idea.

weaselwords Fri 12-Sep-14 19:12:48

I like your carrier bag on a stick idea. Another one, if it's facing you is to open your arms wide and spread your fingers abruptly, whilst hissing and staring it in the eye. I've stopped horses dead that have charged me with that. This doesn't help when it's got its bum to you, however.

Clearly the bucket muzzle and enforced diet aren't improving its mood!

Pixel Fri 12-Sep-14 19:55:38

I'd rather walk for an hour than go through that field tbh! My next door neighbour was on a public footpath with her friend last year (no dogs) when one of the horses in the field charged down and was very aggressive. It bit the friend badly on the head and she ended up in hospital.

You mentioned hedges, does that mean there is a hedge around this particular field or is there a fence? If it was a fence I'd be inclined to stay next to it so I could climb over or through if I needed to. I'd rather be accused of trespassing than attacked by a massive horse.

However if you just want something to deter the horse how about carrying a black bag in your pocket and flapping that about? My horse wouldn't be bothered by a carrier bag (I've tried putting one on the end of my lunge whip to liven him up a bit to no avail) but something bigger might make him think twice, at least for long enough to allow an escape.

Another who agrees you should contact the council.

FlorenceMattell Sun 26-Oct-14 12:27:33

Any update on reporting to the council.
We have a similar situation where I live.
I usually walk along a footpath near me at weekends for exercise with dog on lead. However one field now has horses who approach as soon as you reach the gate. Not sure if they are aggressive I have turned back. My dog would bark at horses so don't want to upset them.
New owners of the property.
They have put signs on the gate -next to public footpath sign threatening police for any antisocial behaviour.
Bit silly in all the years I have walked this path only seen locals walking dogs.

Peanutbutterandnutellanutter Sun 26-Oct-14 18:16:08

Sometimes when I go to catch the horse I ride other horses in the fields I have to walk through will trot over and bother me, I find saying "shoo" firmly in a low tone works normally, but then again depends how aggressive this horse is.
Agree you should report it.

Booboostoo Mon 27-Oct-14 14:09:23

Most horse will back away from aggressive body language but the ones that won't can be exceptionally dangerous. I was once beaten up by a Shetland on a public footpath - yep a tiny, little Shetland! I've owned horses all my life but this little chap refused to acknowledge all my knowledge and experience! He was rearing up and striking me in the chest with his front legs, then turning around and double barreling me.

If you can't identify the owners, the Council's Rights of Way Officer is your best bet. Some are less proactive than others though. Meanwhile take a lunge whip with you and wave it in a circle around you.

MortaIWombat Mon 27-Oct-14 17:40:02

Would a water pistol squirted in his face be viable?

Booboostoo Mon 27-Oct-14 20:08:48

I'd be weary of that solution Awesomewellies. I would imagine that many horses wouldn't mind the water and would keep coming anyway, but any that were startled by it would turn around and double barrel you. Ideally you want to keep an aggressive horse well away from you.

JudgeJudy79 Tue 04-Nov-14 20:15:33

If you had a plastic bag near my horses they would presume you had food.
If I saw someone taking a lunge whip in with my horses I would go and punch their lights out!
Why don't you just leave a note for the owner? They might not be aware there is a problem and gives them the option to move said horse. If its ignored and horse is still being a pest then contact council.

Maybe the grass has gone and horse is getting hungry? Just a thought if he was ok before.

sharanel Wed 05-Nov-14 09:43:32

my 13.1 cob x can be food aggressive - ie if you have a bucket he will weave in front and try and herd you - it drives me nuts and I wave at him - if he threatens me with his bum I do get nervous. If you don't have a bucket he's fine.

I would definitely ring the council if you can't find out who the owners are - before I rang I would try and find out though as it less confrontational than involving council. Horses shouldn't be on public footpaths - not least becuase people feed them and are stupid about them (ie I caught one mother letting her child feed my pony maltesers over the fence hmm)

Katy007Lb Sat 11-Feb-17 11:48:49

Hi I know this feed is quite old but my friend and I were chased by horses then it turned and tried to kick her in the face/body we were trailing this route for the children . What can I do as other people could probably get stuck in the same situation. The council said call the police . Any help would be great

Garnethair Sat 11-Feb-17 21:27:45

Is it a private field you were walking through?

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: