What Does The Horse Noises Names Mean?

Jessica McDaniel
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What’s My Horse Noises are Saying? Snort, Blow, etc.

Here is a short list of horse noises and what they mean in comparison to the sounds we make as humans.

Snort– Exhaling and inhaling concurrently while inhaling air through the nose and exhaling through the nose and mouth. Snorting usually occurs when a horse is irritated, nervous, cold, tired, or uncomfortable.

Blow- Same as a snort, but the horse exhales through the nose and mouth and there is even more air being pushed out. Horses usually blow when in pain or when experiencing colic.

Burr- This is similar to blowing but less forceful, often heard when the horse is moving.

Happy- Short snort with a sigh at the end. Similar to our laughter and means the horse is relaxed with the company or situation.

Cough- Usually associated with respiratory problems.

Neigh- Used as a warning or a friendly signal to other horses.

Kiss- A soft snort, when the horse is content.

Neigh-snort- A loud "ha!" or "neigh!" sound followed by a snorting noise.This signifies a warning, but can often sound like the horse is angry. This sound is most frequently used when a horse or horse and human are meeting for the first time.

Whinny

(neigh) and Neigh

A horse whinnies or neighs to attract his attention. A neigh is usually longer than a whinny and often used to alert a horse of danger.

A whinny or neigh is distinct from a nicker. A nicker is used in the company of other horses and means hello. It’s like saying hi when you enter a room full of people. You’ll notice horses nod their heads in rhythm to make the sound. One head movement equals one nick while two head nods is two nickers.

Nicker

In human terms, nicker is when a horse whinnies. This is also referred to as a short whistle. When you are in communication with your horse, this will mean he is alert to your presence. It is a way for them to get your attention.

It is also a way for your horse to be in contact with other horses in their group or herd. It is less of a signal for danger or alarm as it is a way for them to remind the other horses that their attention is required. This happens if they need to regroup, feed, or move to a new location.

Snort

A snort is usually a sign of displeasure, especially when accompanied with a stomping of feet or kicking of a hind leg. If your horse snorts at you, it may be a sign that he is annoyed with you. Stay away from the horse and don’t approach him when he is snorting. Avoiding the horse at this point can prevent him from becoming aggressive.

Snort from Horses

Snort is a snoring noise that horses make while sleeping. They do this with a slight inhalation before exhaling powerfully. Snorting is a fairly common occurrence in horses and it is not considered a problem.

However, they should be periodically checked out by your veterinarian to ensure that this is not a potential health hazard and that there is nothing wrong.

Snorting may occur during heavy sleeping whereby the muscles in the nose relax and the horse snores throughout the night. This is most often seen in horses that have been in one stable for years and take a long time to wake up.

If you are experiencing loud snorting, you may want to move the horse to see if the snorting stops. If it doesn’t stop, you may want to have your vet check the horse to ensure that he is not ill.

Horse Noises: In Summary

Here's a quick summary of what's been covered in the article so far.

[BAWNING] Bawl.

[BLEATING] Baa.

[BUCK WHINNY] Neigh.

[CACKLE WHINNY] Cackle.

[CHICKEN WHINNY] Cluck.

[COOING WHINNY] Coo.

[EAR WHINNY] Neigh.

[MOAN WHINNY] Moo.

[MOO WHINNY] Moo.

[NEIGHWHINNY] Neigh.

[PARPING] Poke.

[PEEP WHINNY] Peep.

[PIG WHINNY] Grunt.

[PIPPING] Poke.

[POKE WHINNY] Poke.

[PURR WHINNY] Purr.

[QUAIL WHINNY] Quack.

[QUIRP WHINNY] Quack.

[QUEEN WHINNY] Snort.

[QWARK WHINNY] Quack.

[RABBIT WHINNY] Snort.

[RABBLE WHINNY] Snort.

[ROCKING WHINNY] Pump.