Horse Won't Respect Owner's Privacy, Keeps Opening Door

TripwirePublished: October 11, 2017Updated: October 23, 20176,102 views
Published: October 11, 2017Updated: October 23, 2017

The owner of this horse named Sapphire cannot get any private time at all! When she closes the door to get changed, Sapphire has none of it - she just flings open the door to see what is going on and nearly knocks her over in the process! Sapphire is an Anglo Arab and she is 14 years old. She has become accustomed to being with her owner all the time!

Usually, when we think of an animal that has zero respect for <a href="" target="_blank">personal space</a>, we think of cats instantly. Those things can really step on you! But maintaining personal space with any animals that you keep as a companion is crucial, both for safety and for bonding sake.

Maintaining the integrity of personal space when working with horses is also crucial for these same reasons. It helps ensure a successful partnership with these animals. Uninvited penetration of a handler’s personal space is a behavior that is preventable and manageable yet often overlooked. Likewise, awareness of the horse’s personal space is just as important as defending our own.

In the wild horses are generally well spaced out with at least a body’s length between them. Crowding of handlers is common in horses considered to have behavior issues or a lack of training. Handlers unknowingly reward crowding behavior with treats or scratches. Crowding is more often a case of poor handling or training rather than disrespect or ill intent.

Asking the horse to move out of one’s bubble requires the horse to move away from a stimulus. The stimulus could be pressure from your hand, a tap from a whip, or a swinging lead rope. It is considered a good practice to move the horse away twice as far as it came in while refusing to give ground by keeping one’s feet still. This type of training is good for any horse as working with humans dictates that horses must learn to move away from pressure when prompted. (source:

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