Do you kiss your horse?

Bear with me: I know this is kind of a weird question. I also know that it’s weird that it’s been on my mind.

I give Tristan at least one kiss every time I see him. Frankly, I usually give him a lot more than that. I press my whole face into the soft side of his nose. I squish my nose right onto his nose and inhale deeply. I tuck my forehead into the groove right behind his ear. I rest my cheek on top of his head, between his ears, when he presses his head into my body. I do these things almost constantly – before rides, after rides, in the stall, in the crossties, in the field. And most times I do any of those things, I end it with a kiss.

When I leave the barn, I do two things. I double-check the door latch, and I give Tristan a kiss and I tell him I love him with all my heart. Sometimes I get more effusive than that, but I never, ever, ever fail to give him a kiss and tell him I love him. I’ve almost always done that. For the decade and a half of our partnership. As soon as he could bear someone touching his face (which took a while), I was kissing him. If I don’t also tell him I love him when I leave I feel like something’s left undone behind me. What if something happens? I want to always, always affirm how much I adore him, and to know that if that’s the last thing I told him, then he knows.

Maybe it’s sappy and weird? Maybe I’m vastly more tactile than the average horse person, or the average person in general? Maybe it’s just a weird habit that I’ve developed over years of being weird about my horse? Maybe it’s a family trait – I do have a very physically demonstrative family? (Possible additional evidence: my dog gets a LOT of kisses as well.)

Here’s the thing I only recently realized, though.

No one else at my barn seems to kiss their horse? I mean. I am sure it happens sometimes. But in the last few weeks since I started to realize this, I’ve been paying closer attention and…I don’t see it?

So I come here, to the internet, where I confess my weirdnesses for the whole world to see. Is it unusual? Do you kiss your horse? Do you do it a lot or only sometimes?

9 thoughts on “Do you kiss your horse?

  1. I give him lots of scratches and pats, but I never kiss him. To me, kissing seems like a very human form of affection that just doesn’t make sense in a horse context. But I think it’s sweet and I wouldn’t change what you’re doing if it makes you happy!


  2. The horses at home get goodnight kisses with their last treat and Ernie gets a goodbye kiss with his last treat before I head home. I do sometimes throw in some extra kisses, especially to Phoenix, since I need to get them in while I can! I love the feel of their soft noses.

    Now I will have to pay attention to whether others kiss their horses around me at the boarding barn lol.


  3. 100% in camp smooches lol…. also, legit every single person who meets my horse (even the surliest most world weary professionals and vets etc, men and women) literally *cannot resist* planting one on charlie’s giant smooshy schnoz, probably bc he basically demands it by sticking it directly in your face. resistance is futile!


  4. Yep, my horses gets lots of kisses too! When I kiss Eros’ nose, he kind of lifts it at me which makes me think he’s kissing me back. I realize he’s probably not. But whatever. I’ll take it.


  5. I would’ve loved to give a little peck to our daughter’s horse, but he literally would bite the hands that fed him, so I didn’t dare or he’d have taken my face off. However, I plant smooches on the top of my dog’s head, and figure that this gesture of human affection is perfectly OK considering that I have to accept a swipe of my dog’s tongue as a gesture of canine affection when spit is not actually something I like šŸ˜€ (If I had a horse–a big, bumbling, friendly gentle one–I’d definitely be a-smooching.)


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