What is a Group of Horses Called?

Groups of Horses

What is a group of horses called? Worry no more! In this article, we will look at some of the names used to refer to a group of horses. A variety of terms can refer to groups of horses. The terms range from “horse group” to “team.”

When referring to horses pulling items together or participating in “team-like” activities together, the term “team” is prevalent. It has been in use for decades and is still widely used today.

What is a Group of Horses called?

A herd of horses is the most common term for a group of horses. It is a collection of horses or other animals that live and travel together for protection and socialization. The term also describes horses engaging in herd-like behavior, such as moving from one location to another in a group.

Group of Horses

Collective Nouns for Different Horse Genders

Today, many other names are used, some more popular than others. Names can differ depending on the context, the gender of the horses in question, and other factors such as the horses’ purpose. The horses’ location also determines the name. Let us look at how a name could be used as a collective noun for horses:


This is an alternative name for a stud farm. It is used frequently by studs in French-speaking countries.


This is a horse herd raised for breeding purposes. They are also known as stud farms and play an essential role in preserving a breed, including developing a studbook (a breed registry of horses of a specific type).

Rag/Bachelor Herd

This term refers to a group of colts (uncastrated male horses four years old or below four years). Again, this is something you’ll see in wild horses and not domesticated horses.


A group of horses that compete in a sport together is referred to as a herd. For example, team-penning requires at least three horses and three riders. Horses used to pull carriages are another example.


A string of horses is a group of horses that you own or frequently use for sports or other activities. A polo player, for example, will have a string of polo ponies.


It is a group of horses used in the military. Troops are also used as horse guards.


A band is typically a smaller subset of a herd.


This one may appear strange because it frequently refers to the horses’ structure. However, it also refers to a group of horses regardless of the type of housing in which they are housed.

Can You Call a Group of Equines a Herd of Horses?

The term herd can be used to describe groups of horses, but only when referring to horses that interact with one another outside. For example, a herd of horses spends time together in a pasture. They behave as they would in the wild, resting, grazing, and interacting with one another.

A herd of wild horses is also an acceptable term. Wild horses frequently form herds in the same way that other animals do. The main distinction is that packs of horses are typically made up of smaller, individual bands of horses. These bands usually have three to five members each.

Wild horses

Horse Herd Ranks and Dynamics

The Structure of the Herd

The Stallion’s Function

There is usually a lead stallion and a lead mare in a herd. Their job is to keep the pack safe and moving. They lead the flock to food and water, with the lead mare in front and the stallion pushing from behind.

The stallion also plays a secondary role in wild horse herd dynamics, resolving conflicts between other horses. From an observational standpoint, it is fascinating to note that the stallion intervenes in some situations but not in others.

If he believes that it is in the best interests of the horses involved to fight it out alone to learn a particular lesson, he will allow a conflict to occur while keeping a close eye on the proceedings.

In instances where the fight becomes more serious, endangers the herd, or jeopardizes his position as the lead stallion, he will intervene with aggressive body language. In most cases, this entails lowering his neck and flattening his ears towards the opposing horse, frequently with a quick charge.

If that isn’t enough, he will follow up on all this with a bite or kick. After receiving the message, the stallion becomes passive and resumes his activity before the conflict, such as eating or grooming.

The Hierarchy of the Herd

The rest of the herd is organized in a pecking order, beginning with the highest-ranked horse to the lowest. This is after the lead mare and stallion. When you first introduce a horse to the herd, it is placed at the bottom of the pecking order. It is up to them to challenge and gain the horse’s respect above them to work their way up (or not!). 

They accomplish this by occupying the space occupied by the higher-ranked horse. 

When the higher-ranked horse is not paying attention, a good opportunity for a social climber arises. Suppose the lower-ranked horse chooses to take advantage of this opportunity. In that case, he sneaks up on the other horse, attempting to physically move them away from that specific piece of land. If they are successful, the lower-ranked will claim that space and gain a higher rank.

Although this is one of the most common methods used in herd dynamics, it is not the only way for rankings to shift. Another example is when a colt matures and is ejected from the herd, his position becomes “vacant” and is ready to be filled by another horse. 

It is worth noting that, while the dynamics and pecking order are constantly changing, individual horses rarely make significant leaps in the ranking. A higher-ranked horse will typically have a more dominant personality and stay near the top, whereas a lower-ranked horse will be more passive and accept a lower position. 

New members gradually rise from the bottom to the rank that best suits their personality and vice versa.

Herd Dynamics of Daily Life

Horses have a daily routine and pattern that they adhere to. This varies depending on their living environment and the time of year, but they usually begin the day by eating and grooming each other.

This is the best time to observe group bonds– many horses appear to have a “best friend” who is their favorite grooming companion and with whom they spend a lot of time.

In addition to grooming, the horses may take advantage of the opportunity to rest, either by lying down and soaking up the sun or by remaining on all fours and half asleep. Others remain awake to keep an eye out for predators.

They then proceed to the water hole, where they drink or take a bath before rolling in mud to protect themselves from the sun. They frequently return to grazing after that, and the cycle begins again.

Here are a few key points to understand about herd dynamics:

  • Horses prefer to be led.
  • Some horses are passive and do not want to move up the pecking order, so they willingly accept a leader. Others may be more assertive, attempting to catch you off guard to move up the pecking order and become the leader.
  • Horses are accustomed to and enjoy routine.
  • When a human assumes the role of leader, it is their responsibility to keep the horse safe, fed, and watered and participate in joint activities such as sleeping, grooming, or side by side walking.
  • Horses with intense bonds frequently physically position themselves in each other’s “heart areas.” The “heart area” refers to the body area that extends from the head to just behind the shoulder. This appears to be a suitable location for communication.
  • Conflicts are resolved by the leader issuing an immediate reprimand. The leader becomes passive immediately following the reprimand and resumes their previous activity; they do not hold grudges.
  • Horses are social creatures who enjoy interacting with others and have an innate desire to move forward.
Four wild horses

What is a Group of Unicorns Called Then?

So, what is a group of horses called? You now have the answers, although some of the names are no longer in existence. On the other hand, what do we call a group of unicorns? A unicorn is a mythic creature that resembles a horse but has a single horn on its head. 

Seeing a unicorn is thought to bring good luck and fortune, which is why a herd of unicorns is referred to as a blessing. How wonderful!