Does the human voice calm horses? – Interesting research

In addition to being cautioned to move slowly around horses, many new riders are also instructed to speak in a soothing tone, in the belief that it can make the animal calm. A recent study investigated whether such advice had a beneficial impact on the horse.

According to Katrina Merkies of the University of Guelph, “Anecdotally, we know that horses respond better to calm and soothing tones, so our hypothesis is that speaking in a calm and pleasant voice will inspire calm behaviour in a horse.”

Equine Science Update

For more details see:
Does the human voice have a calming effect on horses?
K. Merkies, H. MacGregor, M. Ouimette, E. Bogart, K. Miraglia
Proceedings 2013 Equine Science Society Symposium
J Equine Vet Sci (2013)Volume 33, Issue 5, May 2013, Pages 368


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I ride horses and compete in Dressage, Showjumping and Eventing or Horse Trials. I also own and run an Equestrian property to the East of Melbourne, Australia. In my spare time I run a couple of websites including and To afford all this I work a full time job, so the definition of spare time is usually after dark. Sleep is over rated ;-) In my Blogs I try to tell what I am doing with the horses, give some updates with regards to the equestrian events I am attending and any relevant news about horse health and performance. I also give reviews on any new products I get my hands on related to my horsey activities If yuo want to buy or sell horses or anything equestrian related try

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