How to Cure Horses That Are Buddy Sour

Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images

It is no secret that horses are herd animals who prefer the company of others to living a solitary existence. However, when two horses become overly bonded to one another they can become difficult to separate, a condition that may be referred to as buddy sour. Nervous, green horses are more likely to display buddy sour behavior than older, calmer, seasoned animals. Horses being ridden and cared for by novices may also be more prone to acting up when asked to leave a buddy. If your horse is buddy sour, your best option will be to have a professional horse trainer work with you to correct the behavior.

Step 1

Separate the buddies. The first thing you need to do to if you want to eliminate buddy sour behavior is to take your horse's buddy away from him. Put him in a pasture with multiple new horses, remove the buddy to a different pasture. Separating the horses will break the bond between them.

Step 2

Spend time developing a bond with your horse. Your horse may not trust you as a leader, which is causing him to panic when he is removed from his pasture-mate. Get professional help from a riding instructor or trainer who can assess your horse's behavior and help you establish your relationship with the horse as well as teach the horse to look to you for companionship and guidance.

Step 3

Do not tolerate buddy sour behavior from your horse. When you are working with your horse, keep him focused on the task at hand so that he does not spend his time whinnying for his buddy and misbehaving. Do not cut your ride short to keep the buddies together. Do not let your horse bolt back to the pasture. Keep your horse under your control and focused on what you are asking of him when you ride.


  • Buddy sour horses can panic or become dangerous. If your horse exhibits dangerous behavior such as bucking, rearing or bolting and can not be controlled, you need consult a professional trainer to handle his behavior.

Photo Credits

  • Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images


Jen Davis has been writing since 2004. She has served as a newspaper reporter and her freelance articles have appeared in magazines such as "Horses Incorporated," "The Paisley Pony" and "Alabama Living." Davis earned her Bachelor of Arts in communication with a concentration in journalism from Berry College in Rome, Ga.