Dreaming?

C1airey

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27 August 2014
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Happened to look in on my horse earlier and found him lying down and very sleepy (eyes closed, muzzle smushed into his bed). Watched him for a bit and his feet started to twitch in a rhythm. It looked a lot like he was dreaming of cantering.

Do horses dream?

I'd always assumed that if he did dream, it would be about endless buckets of oats and carrots...
 

Princess16

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Lol not with my pony but watched mare in adj field twitching her legs and kinda snorting as well ! Soo funny . She must have sensed me tho as she then rose and got up bless her !
 

fburton

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Yes, I think horses do dream.

In addition to the twitching limb, I've also seen rapid eye movements until the eyelid. These movements have been shown to correlate with dreaming in humans (although I believe evidence has emerged recently to show that we can dream in deep, non-REM sleep phases too).

Many years ago now, I was sat on the ground right next to a pony stallion exhibiting these signs while sleeping in his paddock. After he woke up, he leaped to his feet, looked around as if for another horse, neighed loudly, and briefly grew a fifth leg. One can therefore speculate about the subject of his dreaming!
 

fatpiggy

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I had a 40+ pony in my care for several years and she used to lie in the field and dream busily. Lots of snorting, little whinnies, and cantering action. The sweetest thing though was that she would lie down in the usual manner and take hold of a mouthful of grass to try to keep herself for collapsing out flat. It didn't work for long of course! I never understand why people think humans are the only species that do certain things, whereas animals don't because they are "only" animals. The last time I looked we were animals too. It isn't that they do things like us, we do things like them.
 

Shavings

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yes! 100% believe they dream!!
Levi has given the yard staff panic attacks when he first turns up, he loves to lie down for a nap, but my gosh he snores!!! might as well have the tractor on!!
but his legs move, his head and ears twitch and he has even been to chuff away to him self!
 

muckypony

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I never used to , but now I do think they dream.

I have 3 ponies, 2 have been together since the day dot, and the other started living with them March this year - he is besotted.

At least 4/5 days a week they will be lying down when I get there in the morning (live out) and a few weeks ago, big boy ('newer' one) was flat out, completely unaware that I had even arrived. The other two were up and cam to say hello. He was still flat out, started having a little canter in his sleep - didn't last for long though, as usual! After a few minutes of twitching he sat up, looked over to us and started whickering and of course I thought 'oh my gosh, how cute, he's pleased to see me after a sleep!!' He got up, still whickering quite loudly, and went marching over to my littlest one, gave him a good smooch on the nose, and then carried on his day!

I am certain he was dreaming about the other pony. Judging by the fact that he has suddenly taken a huge disliking to manholes, I reckon he had a dream about the little one falling down a drain :D
 
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