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Mar 16, 2022
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Hi All :)
I rescued a 6 month- old (at the time, three months ago) miniature horse from a kill pen and finally found him a buddy who is a stallion, 2020 colt and rescued from a neglect situation but was said to be a pasture buddy to other horses but then those horses got sold. Cooper, my original mini, was shy when he first came but quickly started to approach me in the paddock and let me halter him and start to pick his feet, lead line, blanket him, etc.

His new friend came in super amped (I’m not sure if he had been outside or seen another horse in a long time) and started charging the fence with his penis dropped, cantering all a round and he was so amped he broke my fence and ran through it to see Cooper. He ended up calming down and just eating and standing together mostly so I kind of had to keep them together from the start.

They do seem to be eating from the same haynet, standing in the same shelter (even though I have 2 separate shelters for them each incase they didn’t want to share) and take naps together and walk around together. However…..when I do go into the paddock, Cooper no longer lets me halter him and he runs away from me now again and kiwi, the new guy, also will start to chase him & nip& hold at his neck or sniff his butt to mount him when I’m around. Cooper will turn his butt and kick at him to F off. I watch them closely and this doesn’t seem to happen much when I’m inside the house and they can’t see me though.

How should I respond? Should I spray bottle Kiwi when he does this or give him a smack or shoo him off with pressure? I am getting him gelded in two weeks. Does Cooper consider him a friend or is he stressed out from being bullied and I should find him a better match? Should I be worried that Cooper is so young and learning bad behaviors?

Thanks for your help everyone!


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How long have you had Kiwi? I wouldn't panic or do anything until after he's gelded. You haven't had Copper very long and he now has a buddy after being alone as a baby so it's not unusual for him to revert back to old behaviour that he hadn't really gotten over but was sort of faking to have company(you). It sounds like it could be when you got in with them Copper gets wound up/nervous and Kiwi responds to it. I would maybe put up something in the paddock so you can feed then grain each in their own small space and start handling them alone in there once they get used to going in. It looks like you can get hold of Kiwi? Try going in and just haltering him and handling him and ignoring Copper. If it happens when you go in and don't handle them then try catching Kiwi and taking him around with you when you are doing everything in the paddock. Don't spray bottle either of them ever, if they are rude when they are near you wave your lead around to keep them out of your space. If Kiwi is rude when he's on a lead same thing, move him out of your space to the end of the lead standing still, don't chase, they will learn to have manners near you but they can do their thing when they are away from you. You might find that they both settle down pretty quickly after Kiwi is gelded. If they are good together when you aren't there I wouldn't be trying to find a different friend for Copper and get rid of Kiwi, Time and patience should work I think unless things are bad when they are alone together. Just ideas, it's really hard to know what's going on without being there and seeing it but if no one's getting hurt I'd give them time.
Super helpful and comforting! Thank you for the guidance and your thoughts and time. I really appreciate it. I’ve only had kiwi 2 days 😅 just wanted to be responsible and thoughtful of Cooper. Thanks for the clarification on not spray bottling, but waving kiwi away instead, but not feeling like I need to step in when they’re not with me.
Hope you’re well and have a wonderful day!
If it's only been 2 days they are still getting used to each other and Kiwi is still settling in, give it time. Let us know how it's going and someone should have some more ideas if you're still having problems. For that matter I'm sure someone will have more ideas now so check back :)
Oh, if you see any signs that it's getting rough when you aren't around then you might need to split them but only if one or both have chunks missing. Horses playing and sorting out who's in charge can look really rough but it's not to them. I really think it will settle down in a bit and more after gelding :)
Great paddock by the way, I love the pool under the hay bag to catch the bits! Lucky boys.
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Can you make 2 paddocks for them? That way they can be separate but still be company for each other. I have two that are great buddies but they can't be turned out together because one gets very aggressive toward the other. One goes out for awhile, then I'll turn out the other. They can still see each other that way and life is peaceful(er).
They are both soooooo cute!!

Boys play so rough!! As long as you don’t see any marks on them, then I would say they are doing great… but even if you do see marks, it’s only been a few days since they have been together so I would give it some time. Gelding will definitely help.….. But if they eat together and arent chasing one another off, then I would say they are best buds already 😍

Here are some videos of how rough mine play…
My little boys always let me catch them. Every once in a while I will go to get one, then one gives a look and off they go playing and rough housing. I just stand there and watch and laugh. 🤣 It doesn’t happen too often, but it does happen occasionally.

I dont think he is learning bad manners. I think they are just young and having fun! I don’t really call it “mounting“ since all mine are gelded, I call it piggy back rides LOL LOL My Breezy is 2 and LOVES going on “piggy back rides” LOL LOL

Keep us updated! 💕💕
I loved watching the video! Thank you 😄 and thanks for the measurement of how to tell if it’s too rough (marks) but to not worry too much too with boys playing rough and the piggy back rides hahahaha they’ve settled down a lot so I feel way less worried 😅

thank you guys for being such a great community and resource!!!

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