I had an amazing encounter with this horse today. Or, is it the other way around, I wonder?
Since I was early for an appointment this morning, I stopped by the side of the road and observed a small herd of horses grazing. Just before continuing my journey, I thought I’d get out and walk up to the fence and just say hello to the horses.
They noticed me, but carried on grazing as I approached. Just before I got to the fence, a slight rustle made me look half back, and I saw myshadow did not contain only my shape, it had someone or something else’s shape too. I whirled around and discovered a large dog right behind me.
I got a fright and backed up against the fence, where immediately and out of the blue, one of the horses put his head over my shoulder, and snorted. The dog backed off a little. The horse stamped his hoof lightly. The dog barked, but backed off a little more and stood staring at us.
The horse nuzzled me and I stood, returning the love by rubbing his neck. I was not about to move and find out if the dog wanted to attack or not. I felt very safe right there with the horse.
All of a sudden, a car came driving by, and the dog ran off.
Immediately, the horse left me, and returned to calmly grazing.
What I think happened was that the horses had not only lifted their heads sligthly at my approach, but had also taken in the presence of the dog, which I had missed altogether. They were not concerned with the dog, though, and had carried on grazing.
When my fear spiked, the horse closest to me (and possibly some of the others too – I was keeping my eyes on the dog, and did not look back at the rest of the herd) responded to my raw feeling.
Perhaps he was saying, never fear, the dog is harmless, calm down. Perhaps he was saying, stick to me, I’ll kick him if he comes any closer. I don’t know. But what I do know is it felt like I was getting such immediate feedback from the environment this morning, and it was mightily sweet.
Although I have seen and felt immediate feedback from horses time after time, the last time I experienced such a lightning fast response was with wild horses. I feel exceedingly special to have received such attention.
Does it sound crazy to say I am ridiculously happy to have been in line for a potential dog bite this morning?