You always knew horses were trying to teach you something, didn’t you? In this post (the second of 2), we’ll consider 12 proverbs that draw their wisdom from horses.
1. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.
This proverb, which you’ve likely heard before, reminds you that you can only do so much to help a person or provide them with opportunities. The person must take the final steps on their own.
2. Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.
Another common expression, this one warns you not to be ungrateful if someone gives you a gift. The idea is that if someone happened to give you a horse, it would be rude to check the horse’s teeth right in front of them.
3. Don’t put the cart before the horse.
That’s a funny image, isn’t it? A horse trying to push a cart from behind! This idiom is warning you not to do things in the wrong order.
4. Don’t change horses in midstream.
In other words, don’t change your plans in the middle of an activity.
5. Don’t shut the stable door after the horse has bolted.
This expression warns you not to try to deal with a problem after it’s too late.
6. Live, horse, and you will get grass.
This proverb is reassuring you that if you keep going through a difficult period, you will eventually get a reward. The story goes that a farmer planted grass for his horse, then told the horse that it would need to wait for the grass to have time to grow.
7. There are horses for courses.
This idiom implies that since everyone is better at certain things than others, we should stick to the activities and tasks that we’re good at. The phrase is referring to the way that some horses are better suited for one type of racetrack over another.
8. If wishes were horses, beggars would ride.
This Scottish proverb reminds you that wishing for something does not make it happen. Rather, you must work to achieve what you want in life.
9. Give a beggar a horse, and he’ll ride it to death.
To continue with the beggar theme, this expression claims that a person who suddenly acquires wealth will use it irresponsibly.
10. A ragged colt may make a good horse.
This Irish idiom points out that, just because a person acts a certain way now, that doesn’t mean they will be that way forever.
11. If two ride on a horse, one must ride behind.
This proverb points out that, if two people are completing an activity, one must act as the leader.
12. Every horse thinks its own pack heaviest.
Imagine a horse, so focused on its own burden that it doesn’t notice that other horses are also carrying loads. Like horses, we tend to assume that our own problems are worse than other people’s.
Do you know any other horse proverbs? Let us know in the comments!
Hello, My name is Shelby Gatti, and I am the owner of Shelby Ranch. I love being able to share my passion for animals with you and your family. At Shelby Ranch you can expect a ton of family adventure from horseback riding to mechanical bull riding & axe throwing.