You’d be surprised how much you can gather by observing a horse’s ears. By simply identifying some of these common ear positions, you may be able to figure out what a horse is feeling.
Pricked ears indicate he is interested in something. Perhaps you are holding a treat?
One or both ears facing backwards can mean that your horse is angry, listening backwards, is afraid, or is sleepy. If you are riding, it is probable that your horse is listening to you speak to it.
If your horse’s ears face forward, this is a sign of listening. Flared nostrils and stiffened ears can signal fear.
If his ears flop naturally, you can assume he is calm and relaxed.
Flattened ears may indicate he is angry. This may be accompanied by showing the whites of his eyes and baring its teeth. It means business, especially if with other horses. It could also mean that the horse is concentrating, especially if the other angry signs are absent.
Of course, these are just some general things to look for. Even though ears can reveal many things, it’s important to understand that ears are NOT the only factor when it comes to better understanding horses. There are many other factors, such as noises that a horse makes, and body language. We will be covering more related topics in upcoming blog posts!