Some folks think horses are dumb; after all, they let us take their freedom and boss them around. While it’s true no horse has written a major symphony or discovered a comet, it is evident they can solve problems, communicate, and figure out ways to take advantage of the people who think they are dumb.
For instance, last month I saw several horses using tools to do something. Only a few animals like higher primates and some clever birds are credited with the ability to do this, but I witnessed my favorite animal turning trash into a handy device.
Two horses of my acquaintance were picking up the woody stalks of weeds in their recently-mowed pasture, and using the fan-shaped panicles of seed pods to swat flies off their bellies behind their forelegs. This is a hard area for them to reach with either their heads or their hind legs, so they improvised fly-swatters! How’s that for innovative and smart?