I know response posts, that is posts that respond or disagree with a post a fellow blogger has written are very popular but I think they can sometimes come across as a bit judgmental and everyone should be free to express their thoughts and feelings so I’ve sort of avoided them up until this point.
I read this post by brunette in breeches a while ago and it’s stuck with me. Brunette in breeches is one of my favourite blogs to read and this is in no way a criticism or implying she’s wrong. She wrote a beautiful post that was well reasoned and no one who’s read her blog could doubt her love for her horse, this is simply my thoughts on the topic:
“Your horse doesn’t love you”
When I first started reading this post I thought ok I’m not going to agree with any of this. I am. Very much a sunshine, rainbows and love everywhere kind of person: of course your horse loves you. As I kept reading though, she has some valid points. I guess the main point of her post tries to get across is what wee interpret as love is actually trust, respect, rituals and reliance. Where our opinions differ is wether horses are even capable of love.
“Because I am a human, with human emotions… I am capable of having that feeling. (love)”
I believe horses love, I believe I’ve seen horses love.
One particular RDA horse is ridden, groomed, fed and cared for by us RDA volunteers and coaches and he most definitely respects us. He’s a lovely horse but he only truely comes alive when he’s with his owner. I’ve seen this with lesson horses too. Despite all their riders and careers sometimes they have one rider that they just well love, they connect with and are willing to give 110% for even if the rider isn’t particularly skilled.
I’ve also seen horses grieve for the lord of an owner or friend. They say Man O’ War died of a broken heart after his groom suddenly passed away. Now don’t get me wrong I’m not saying horses experience love and emotions the same way we humans do, science says they don’t. Due to the structure of the horses brain they are unable to rationalise their emotions, they simply feel them. (Holistichorse, Ryan Gingerich)
In summary I guess I like to think all the horses I work with love me, in reality they love the attention, grooming, scratches and treats rather than me but so I believe that that magic love between horse and human exists? Absolutely!
I would highly recommend you check out her blog she writes some great posts: brunetteinbreeches.com