5 Things Your Horse Will Always Remember!

From Nancy Sue Ryan
5 Things Your Horse Will Always Remember!

"Horses have an exceptional level of awareness meaning that they can understand situations much more deeply than other animals. They are so attentive that they can pick on other people's emotions through body language, voice, or just the general vibe you give off. This type of awareness can lead to much more intense experiences for horses. Here are some experiences your horse will remember forever!

1. Places
Horses have quasi photographic memory, meaning that they can remember places very clearly. It can be positive or negative, depending on the experience they had in a particular place. Imagine your horse witnessed a very traumatic event. Most likely he will never forget the place or event and move away from that area. If your horse seems hesitating to go somewhere, listen to him, comfort him and trust him, he knows what he's doing!

2. People
As horses have an almost photographic memory, it’s no surprise that they remember people by their faces. Show them the picture of someone they know and they will probably react. Horses can even recognize people after years of being apart! But their memory goes far beyond our general appearance. Horses can read our facial expressions and remember them for later, too.

As part of the study, horses were shown pictures of people with happy or sad expressions. After meeting these people in person (with neutral expressions), the horses reacted based on the original expression they had memorized in the photos. If you meet a horse for the first time, then you have to make a very good impression on him!

3. Emotions
Besides places and people, horses have an innate ability to recognize human emotions. Horses have a tendency to perceive body language, even the most subtle, which helps them determine a person's feelings. If we are feeling stressed, sad or angry, our physical appearance tends to reflect this. Same goes when we feel happy or excited! Horses can not only read emotions, they also remember a person based on the last emotion they felt from their last interaction. This is a useful strategy for horses to avoid any possible aggressive encounters.

4. The other horses
Humans aren't the only ones who can leave an indelible imprint on a horse! Horses can remember and recognise other horses from their social network. Whether it takes a few years or decades, one horse will never forget its relationship with another. This doesn't mean as much they will pair up with each other if they ever get together. One horse will only react to another if the bond they had was particularly strong. If he knows a horse from a previous encounter, he may treat it differently than others.

Other important bonds between horses, like the one that unites a mare and her foal, are known to last a lifetime. As horses also remember smells, this can help a mare recognize her baby, even years after separation.

5. The words
Horses are able to understand words much deeper than we thought, but not in the traditional sense we give words. They understand the words by tone, height and length of the voice. Words with fewer syllables tend to stick better to horses. They can tell when someone is insulting them and when someone is complimenting them. Don't underestimate their intelligence, because there's a good chance they're listening very attentively to every word you utter.

Horses are incredibly gifted animals, and should be treated as such! Having an idea of the memories horses hold with them forever will allow you to understand and communicate with them even more deeply. Whatever the experience, good or bad, you can be sure your horse has felt it fully. Do your best to give them a good memory, and they will surely do the same."