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Stupid stuff your horse is scared of?

67 replies

Ellybellyboo · 04/01/2018 09:08

What weird stuff is your horse scared of?

DD’s horse - 15hh, 18 year old cob. Usually pretty bombproof and gentle.

DD was riding her in the indoor school last night. Did a few laps absolutely fine, then DD changed the rein. Got 3/4s of the way round when she stopped dead, snorting and poncing about. DD got her going again, but was trotting sideways and wouldn’t go near the corner. I peer over the fence to see what the problem is - a bright pink poo picker. Exactly the same bright pink poo picker that we own and use in her stable pretty much every day.

The yard tractor - but only when it’s been driven into its parking space. Yard owner drives it around, it beeps when being reversed, he drives it pretty much into the barn when moving straw and hay around and not a murmur. Drive it into its parking space and it’s out to kill her.

DD was out hacking a couple of weeks ago - we go along a bridle way for a bit then come to a road which you have to cross before rejoining the bridleway. We’ve done this hack a million times before. She’s mooching along, DD stops at the road, all clear so sets off again, except horse won’t move, snorts and ponces about and tries to turn back. DD gets her going again only for horse to execute a perfect jump - over a set of double yellow lines. Not fussed about the double yellow lines on the other side of the road, just these ones.

And our yard owner when he’s not wearing his woolly hat - he has one of those hats with ear flaps and strings and looks like a penguin. Loves him when he’s wearing his hat, thinks he’s some kind of horse murderer when he’s not

OP posts:
Liz38 · 04/01/2018 09:24

Ah yes. So many things! Although she's died now so not scared of anything but... horses in a field. Doesn't matter if they were grazing peacefully the other side of 40 acres, the snorting and prancing and rocking horse would start. If they did that really annoying thing of galloping up and down the fence line shouting at her we'd be doing a brisk extended canter down the road. For several miles. She nearly stuck me in the moat of a stately home that way once. Only time in 15 years i got off and walked.

Green. As in docks, nettles, plants at the side of the road. Not all of them because that would be predictable and manageable. Just some of them.

Parked cars. Absolutely fine with any moving traffic you care to mention including a white van going way too fast that skidded to a halt next to me and I put a hand in his wing mirror (yes, that close). Parked cars, work of the devil. Parked camper vans with people moving around inside? Don't go there.

Gates. You could reduce her to rubble by asking her to walk along a lane with a gate on either side.

But she was lovely!

WhyDidIEatThat · 04/01/2018 09:29


Sometimes everything sometimes nothing, not a very consistent mind. I relate to this. He has developed a deep mistrust of pheasant feeders, even if we are out with half a dozen other horses and riders all passing one without a glance he’ll be paralysed with fear. Sometimes he prefers to turn round and walk past it backwards Hmm I suppose you can’t be too careful when you’re a horse?!

Ellybellyboo · 04/01/2018 09:49


There doesn’t seem to be a lot of sense in the stuff she doesn’t like

She’ll walk past the huge stack of straw bales without a problem yet a couple of weeks ago a single one had fallen off the stack and was laying a few feet away and she almost put me in a ditch trying to get away from it

Always flicks the red hay net over the fence in her stable, quite happy with the red one

Funny creatures.

OP posts:
Ellybellyboo · 04/01/2018 09:51

Oops, quite happy with the green hay net

OP posts:
lastqueenofscotland · 04/01/2018 15:56

I have an ex racehorse who has been round Cheltenham and aintree so has seen it all, you could probably hack him down the m6 on the buckle.

Terrified of chickens... to the extent we had had to move yards before.

britnay · 04/01/2018 18:36

Mine is terrified of random things on the way out when hacking, but will happily mooch past on the buckle end when going back home... Hmm I had to get off and lead him through a field of sheep on the way to a lesson, but he completely ignored them once returning home... pillock!

Tiddlywinks63 · 04/01/2018 18:46

Drain covers, manhole covers, the shadow of telegraph poles across the road (seems to think she has to jump them but normally hates jumping).
Dock leaves, little puddles (happily walks through fords and large puddles.
It changed every single day!

Fireinthegrate · 04/01/2018 20:17

Hacking along a bridleway the other day and a lady walking 2 dogs kindly put them on leads and stood to the side making both dogs sit. Well that was it! Complete meltdown. Couldn't possibly walk another step towards them! She went backwards, sideways, all ways but forward.
In the end I asked the lady to just walk towards us as normal. Both the dogs were straining at the lead towards my horse, but my horse was fine! And carried on along the path!
How dare the lady be so polite as to stand to the side!

Greyhorses · 04/01/2018 20:40

Mines also terrified of horses.

Not the ones in the field, or that we are hacking with but god forbid we meet one out on a ride it causes world war 3. Even more so if it's going the same direction or is doing anything faster than a slow walk Confused

Even worse are those annoying horses that canter around as you pass the field, these are the reason I've invested in a body protector Shock

yawning801 · 04/01/2018 20:43

One of the horses at my yard is scared of plastic bags, the yard owner's Land Rover, her own reins when they're going over her head and... er... me. She's not my horse but I accidentally kicked her water bucket over while cleaning it out when she first came (it was empty, but it made her jump) and she hasn't forgiven me, even though I've bent over backwards to be lovely to her!

Booboostwo · 05/01/2018 21:05

A butterfly. I had an idiot horse go ballistic over a butterfly which had the tenacity to fly around his head. The same horse walked next to a working combine harvester without batting an eye lid but had a meltdown over a butterfly.

Yellowpokadotbikini · 05/01/2018 21:13

Flowers and wheelie bins... you know those stickers of flowers people put on wheelie bins to make them look pretty? Work of the devil apparently 😂 couldn't hack out on bin day!

Ellybellyboo · 05/01/2018 21:37


They’re such funny things.

We had a bit of a panic about her rug tonight. Took her turn out off and draped it over the stable door while I put her stable rug on. Lots of snorty stomping about until I put it away.

OP posts:
Moanranger · 06/01/2018 03:55

Mine: rectangles. So drain covers on ground, signs along the road, if they are rectangles - terrifying. Any other shape, doesn’t bat an eyelid.

Also ponies, to some extent. I think he twigs they are equines, but cannot get his head around their size. Perhaps he thinks there is some sort of horse-shrinker lurking in the bushes, ready to pounce.

britnay · 06/01/2018 07:59

We used to have a mini shetland on the yard, and the bigger horses were VERY unsure about him to start with. Then they fell in love with him because he was an adorable little scamp :D

brizzledrizzle · 06/01/2018 08:10

Carrier bags and speed humps, they put a speed bump in where one wasn't there before and it resulted in said horse trying to do a pirouette in the middle of the road.

DiseasesOfTheSheep · 06/01/2018 12:32

Mine has a phobia of butterflies, and birds - the smaller, the scarier. Giant red kite taking off next to him? Fiiine. Tiny robin lands on the fence and he has an attack of the vapours. Regularly jumps out of his skin at the sight of a horse-eating butterfly. He's hilarious.

Little mare isn't convinced that there aren't monsters lurking in the undergrowth around the school, but I think this is mostly laziness. The middle child's not afraid of anything, but he did once have a moment over a field of equicidal haylage bales Grin

elQuintoConyo · 06/01/2018 12:52

I don't have a horse so sadly nothing to add - but these are hilarious! Especially the horse-murdering man not wearing his penguin hat and walking backwards past a pheasant feeder.

Squirrel26 · 06/01/2018 17:55

I rode a riding school pony once who had a fit over a pot of paint, which was minding its own buisness in the corner of the school.

My loan pony had a terrible encounter with a plastic barrier recently. It looked very much like the plastic barriers that he sees Every. Single. Day in the indoor school, but it had moved 2 feet to the left from it's usual position so it was obviously trying to kill him, and what do I know? Hmm

Juststopit · 06/01/2018 18:02

His own farts. Farted then leapt forward nearly unseating me. And anything small - shetlands, small dogs, small children. Big brave 17.2 850kg shire horse!!

pinkhousesarebest · 06/01/2018 23:42

Am reading this out and we are laughing. Goats with bells on. Which sounds scary except they live in next doors field. On the outward journey, every time he's dancing and frothing and won't walk past until I get off and lead him. Coming home he trots blithely past, not a bother.

BluePheasant · 06/01/2018 23:52

Don’t have mine anymore but she used to be scared of one of those 30mph speed limit signs painted on the road. Rode past it 2-3 times a week but acted like it was a new thing every time, snorting in annoyance at it for surprising her 🙄

Farmerswife36 · 06/01/2018 23:53

Her own reflection

GothMummy · 06/01/2018 23:58

Oh mine is also scared of people who put dogs on leads and very politely stand still! Daft creature.

WhereTheFuckIsWonderWoman · 07/01/2018 00:09

I'm loving all these 😂
The strapping quarter horse that I ride froze recently when needing to pass quite close to a stationary, silent digger and would only carry on when the wee Dartmoor pony that DD was on showed her how it was done. Then we hit a main road and she was quite happy will all the tractors trundling past Hmm

I've also been known to take a ridiculously long way around the village because the temporary roadworks sign simply wouldn't let us past. No roadworks in sight. Just the sign.

Oh and the full gallop up a long hill because the breeze caught a branch as we were passing Confused

There's a brilliant picture I once saw (but can't for the life of me now find) which shows two horses going out for a Hack with one saying to the other "what shall we get spooked by today then?" which pretty much sums it up Grin

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