Stallions: a Bromance

What do horses like? Horses like food and being with other horses. Stallions are no exception – in the wild they are intensely social, but due to their high value and the way we keep our breeding stock, they are often kept in isolation, which works about as well for horses as solitary confinement does for people.
A few years ago the Swiss National Stud experimented by turning their stallions out together in the non-breeding season. This video shows what happened. Horse fights are generally of the “all mouth and no trouser” variety (featuring a side of “someone hold me back, Barry, or I’ll have him”), and these studs are no exception, but they soon settle down to synchrony, and harmonious grazing. Nobody got harmed, although one pair still seem unable to “leave it out, Barry” at the end of the film. But we all know people like that, don’t we?

PS. The sychronised prancing reminds me of the illustration in the banner of this blog. I’ve seen seventeenth and eighteenth century images of haute école horses performing all sorts of moves together at liberty in their fields – perhaps these illustrations weren’t so fanciful after all. Maybe the Duke of Newcastle et al just turned ’em all out together.

Published by Susanna Forrest

Writer Amazons of Paris, The Age of the Horse and If Wishes Were Horses.

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  1. they look like nothing more than my local riding school’s herd of geldings hanging out in the paddock by the end…with the two nippers being just like the two ponies in that crowd who take every opportunity to mouth at their friends and try to take a bite of any horse that happens by :)

  2. Glad you published a blog post. I’ve been thinking of you and don’t have your address. I hope you’re well. Take care.

    1. Hello Amro, I am here and sadly all over Twitter and Facebook when procrastinating about finishing book two. I can’t find your email, but mine is to the top right, under “Email” and a grumpy message about being asked to advertise products x

      1. I’ll have a proper look on my computer – nothing shows on the mobile app.

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