Saturday, August 14, 2010

Reading your horse's face

Sometimes ordering the wrong book takes you
to fascinating places.

Somewhere along my journey with horses, I picked up this book (click on it for ordering info). The title was misleading - I actually thought I was getting the one about how to DO T-touches (which I did eventually order - it's here).

This one is actually about judging a horse's personality based on the shape of various parts of it's face and body. Weird, I thought. Then again...

Right before I got this book, I was in a big meeting and they had a person who did face reading, and it was... chillingly accurate.

So when I got this book in the mail, I wasn't completely opposed to the idea, although it seemed a little like horsey horoscopes. But the more I compared horses I knew to the pictures in the book, the more uncanny the accuracy.

I thought that I'd run Smokey through the book and see what I came up with. This will be in two parts, because it just might bore you to death otherwise. :)

Special thanks to my assistant, Mireya, who helped me match the pictures. She was sort of my impartial judge. After all, elementary school is ALL about pattern matching.

You are supposed to look at the features that seem most prominent, or different from others. For example, some horses have widely set eyes. But if eye set is average on your horse, that characteristic probably won't tell you much.

So let's run him through the ringer.

First, the profile.

There are 12 different profile types (with helpful sketches) in the book ranging from straight, to dish, to moose nose and more.

Smokey most closely matches the straight, flat profile - "a horse that is very "uncomplicated" and learns easily."

He has no bumps/bulges I could see, there are three types of those - between the eyes, just below the eyes and much further down the profile, each of which indicate different personality traits.

Dish faces, for example, indicate sensitivity, but when combined with a 'moose' nose, indicate uncommon intelligence.

The muzzle

There are 7 different types of muzzles - Arabs tend to have a teacup muzzle, for example, a muzzle small enough to get into a teacup. Those reflect intelligence and sensitivity. Smokey's muzzle is no teacup, that's for sure. He most closely matches the square muzzle - tends to signify "a stable, uncomplicated nature."

The jowl.

Jowls come in small, medium, and large. This one was the toughest for me, I'm guessing Smokey's a medium - that means an average ability to learn - large is more intelligent, small is a little slow and lack of confidence.

While we're here, let's check the mouth. It also seems medium, which, according to the book, doesn't indicate anything, really. Short mouths can mean inflexibility. Long is sensitive, and can get bored.

The eye

I'd say it's large and soft, more round than triangular. I think most of us feel this kind of eye is "kind" and the author notes this indicates a trust of people. Pig eye is inflexible, triangle shape doesn't really indicate anything.

The Chin

And finally, the chin. There are 7 kinds of chins. Long and flat, pointed, short and rounded. Even a double chin! Smokey seems to have the round, soft chin - "easy going and uncomplicated."

Next time we'll check out the ears, nostrils, lips, and swirls.


Leah Fry said...

I find such things fascinating whether there's any real value to them or not. I guess it's like horoscopes. Sometimes they're right on, other days it could be describing anyone.

Carol said...

Interesting. Even if it isn't 'science' it is fun to see how your horse matches up.

Cara said...

Interesting! It would be hard for me to give an unbiased description of my horse's face. It would be impossible for me to give an biased personalty profile.

I'm not sure if he could give an unbiased account of me either. I DO know that the popularity I enjoy depends on NOT getting him out at feeding time!

Beth said...

I love Linda Tellington-Jones. I find her personality observations fascinating. I have been planning on analyzing Corrie but just have not gotten around to it.

Looks like you are a real winner with that boy!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Very interesting!

Smokey has a handsome profile :)


Shirley said...

Smokey's profile reminds me of Beamer's. And the personality descriptions match Beamer too. Interesting. Awaiting the second installment!

Fantastyk Voyager said...

That sounds very interesting! Smokey has a gorgeous face. He is a very pretty horse. It was good that you had Mireya's help. Grade schoolers are honest and to the point.

That sounds like an interesting book. I was glad you mentioned the dish faces. What about the forehead bulge. What does that mean? Also, what exactly is a 'moose' nose?

Melanie said...

Too funny! I remember reading this book, or one similar to it, waaaaaay back when. I used a Tteam practioner to help one of our horses heal from a fracture to their tail.

And, if I recall, it was pretty accurate. I had to laugh at the description of a dished face with a moose nose, because that is Bo to a!!!

Grey Horse Matters said...

Hmm, interesting. Wonder if there really is any validity to this stuff. Even if it's nonsense though it's always fun to compare pictures.

smazourek said...

I just got this book too! at $1.81 it was just too cheap to pass up for a fun read. So far using it to analyze my horses has been hit and miss.

DraftXRider said...

Great post -- very interesting book! (BTW, where did you get that fabulous rope halter with the fancy part over the nose? Looks really great on your horse!)

Kristen Eleni Shellenbarger said...

very interesting for sure! :)