What the difference between a bite and a nip ( warning minor injury photo)

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newforest

Somewhere in the solar system
Mar 15, 2008
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Um, if they draw blood is probably a bite.
But it's a small area so a nip.
Either way, she's pretty piddled off!
 

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carthorse

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Ouch, I hope it wasn't too bad once you got it cleaned up. That's going to bruise though :(

I wouldn't say drawing blood makes it a bite, and to be honest I'd still call that a nasty nip given the size of Tilly. I've been on the receiving end of what I'd call a bite, and seen a few others, and for me they are worse than that if a horse really means it. A bite there would have either gone round your arm or torn into the muscle, either way it would have left a heck of a mess since what I call a proper bite is essentially a crush injury, with tearing if they pull away without letting go.

Jim got me once when I moved between him and Little Un when he was about to give him a telling off - I hadn't seen him lunge and he hadn't seen me until too late - and although he let go the instant he realised what had happened his teeth left serious indents and drew blood on both sides of my upper arm and in less than a quarter of an hour the bruising was such that I couldn't move my elbow or shoulder fully. He'd let go immediately and it was more or a punch bite to correct, I actually think if he'd gone for me nastily he could have ripped the flesh off my arm and possibly my arm off given there was a wall between us. We really do underestimate just how dangerous they can be, if a horse chose to attack us and meant it then we really wouldn't stand a chance. A friend had muscle partially ripped off one by a bite.

So no, sore as it's going to be I'd call that a sharp nip. She still deserved tobe in serious trouble though, that's unacceptable.
 

Kite_Rider

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May 18, 2009
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Blimey! That’s going to hurt tomorrow. What did you do to deserve that?
 

newforest

Somewhere in the solar system
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I went to catch her while she was looking at something.
She simply swung her head round lightening fast and said **** off. My reflex gave her neck a firm tap and she walked off. She knows that's not acceptable.

I told her to stand while she was walking away, caught her and carried on as if that just didn't happen.
Well ok I wiped the blood with a non clean glove and carried on.
I guess all herds have a spat now and then.
 

Trewsers

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I got bitten badly off a stallion once and I couldn't move my arm properly. Sister in law nurse said I was lucky not to have a lot more lasting damage. I don't think I ever took a photo, I know when OH saw it he felt sick and my mother (who has a VERY strong stomach) was really quite shocked. I guess I should have got it checked over properly but didn't - I did let sister in law see it though. Another inch and it could have done something really awful. Put me off stallions forever. Prior to that I had treated him just like everyone else on the yard did:eek: I had no idea to give him a wide berth and to not touch him. The kids all played happily with him. But I suppose he just took exception to me touching him one day. I'd often stood and stroked him but not on that occasion - he just must have not wanted me near him. Guess I'll never know.
 

Trewsers

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I went to catch her while she was looking at something.
She simply swung her head round lightening fast and said **** off. My reflex gave her neck a firm tap and she walked off. She knows that's not acceptable.

I told her to stand while she was walking away, caught her and carried on as if that just didn't happen.
Well ok I wiped the blood with a non clean glove and carried on.
I guess all herds have a spat now and then.
Storm used to do that quite often - she'd swing round and nip if something wasn't to her liking. It's not acceptable and yet I think they are all capable of it. They are animals - we are humans. We have to be quick sometimes. And read the signs - if there are any.
 

Ale

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I only know one person that's been properly bitten by a horse and they now have a hole in their thigh! That's a nasty nip though!
 
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newforest

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Storm used to do that quite often - she'd swing round and nip if something wasn't to her liking. It's not acceptable and yet I think they are all capable of it. They are animals - we are humans. We have to be quick sometimes. And read the signs - if there are any.
First time since she has been here. It's not regular but she can on occasion take offence.
And you know about it.
 

carthorse

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I only know one person that's been properly bitten by a horse and they now have a hole in their thigh! That's a nasty nip though!
Yes that would be a bite. I once knew someone who had lost half his hand to a bite years earlier, and he counted himself lucky as the horse had been going for his face!

I think it's another word we maybe use too freely, yes if a person had inflicted that it would be a bite but for a horse it's minor though the behaviour and attitude behind it needs dealing with. Teeth and feet are not to be used on humans, that's one of my most basic rules and it's set in stone. Likewise barging, which is far more dangerous than many people seem to realise though they'd miss their ribcage - briefly! - when it's been flattened.
 

carthorse

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She might not have done it if she belonged to you?

I can say never bites, because technically she's got a firm nip.
Who can say, she's not mine and I wasn't there so it would be stupid and arrogant to say she wouldn't have done it to me.

If someone was going to have to handle her for something she wasn't going to like I'd warn them she could have a swift nip! With horses I'd never say never, they seem to delight in making us look like liars or idiots - or both :rolleyes:
 

Jessey

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Oo that’s going to be sore 😒 someone I know lost half his bicep to a bite, they can be really nasty. I don’t care if it’s a nip or bite, my rulebook says teeth never contact my skin, not even grooming me, nuzzling is fine but the minute I feel teeth there going to get a shock.

Bo bit me once (when he was still entire), as I climbed through the fence he launched and sunk his teeth into my thigh, thankfully I have enough padding he couldn’t get his jaw around to bite down properly but he left some pretty decent teeth marks, he got far more than a tap.
 

Trewsers

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I always warn anyone who might have to handle Zi he can nip - I wouldn't say he bites - literally a nip (sometimes gentle sometimes firmer). He does get reprimanded for it. You could say it's a bad habit, when I'm picking his feet out he will "make enquiries" for treats and either remove my hat with his teeth or sometimes (and he does get told off) he'll nip my arm or bum:eek: My farrier is used to him and knows his ways - and doesn't stand any nonsense. I always apologise profusely in advance if I think he might try for rooting in her pockets or hair or hat...........................

Whenever Storms nipped me it's been really either out of frustration or directed elsewhere and I've been standing in the line of fire. She's not one for ever nipping a stranger. In fact, she's as good as gold for anyone else bar me. Reading that back, that makes me sound like a rubbish handler. I'm not! I don't know why but she's a model horse and her manners are lovely around other people.
 
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Mary Poppins

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Ben bit me once. He was having steroid injections and the vet said that this makes some horses grumpy for a few days afterwards. I thought he was nuzzling me but then he took a great chunk out of my leg. I had a huge purple bruise but no blood. In 9 years he has never done anything like that before or since.
 

chunky monkey

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Billy use to mouth alot when i first had him. He would grab my jacket to mouth but if you let him persist the teeth soon sunk into you. Fortunately he has grown out of it. He will on occasion still try but i just move out of his way and he gives up.

I dont think Chunky has ever tried to bite me for the heck of it. But he did swing his head round on a couple of occasions a few years ago when his back was really sore. Which told me something was very wrong, it was so out of character for him to do that.
 
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newforest

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Who can say, she's not mine and I wasn't there so it would be stupid and arrogant to say she wouldn't have done it to me.

If someone was going to have to handle her for something she wasn't going to like I'd warn them she could have a swift nip! With horses I'd never say never, they seem to delight in making us look like liars or idiots - or both :rolleyes:
Yes the vet is fully aware that having her teeth done could present us with issues. They had her in horsepital so they know her mindset.
 

Jane&Ziggy

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Reading what @Mary Poppins said reminds me that Ziggy did bite me once. I hadn't had him long, about 6 weeks, and the physio came to him. She found him tight and in pain absolutely everywhere, from his poll to his tail and round under his belly back up to his throat. Poor little chap. She did some gentle treatment but it must have really hurt him, because he bit me on the arm as I held his lead rope. I was so surprised I just said "Ziggy!" in tones of enormous disapproval, and he turned his head away as if he was ashamed. He never touched me with his teeth again, the dear. I am sure it was just the pain.
 
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