Horses appearing in your dreams usually have something significant to say.
But these particular dream symbols can be difficult to unravel, as there are many possible reasons why your subconscious might include horses in your dreams.
The overarching symbolism involving horses is linked to your own inner sense of freedom. Picture, for example, a wild horse running free, and you’ll soon see why.
Let’s take a closer look.
Why Do We Dream?
There’s no straight answer to this one. It’s more like a path with many different forks and run-offs along the way.
It has been suggested that one of the reasons why we dream is to allow our brains to ‘reset’ after the day, cataloging our experiences in the right places in our memory.
Some believe that dreaming is a way of connecting with their ancestors, or a collective unconscious that can serve as guidance, wisdom, and even glimpses of the future.
Others believe that dreams reflect the unconscious self of the dreamer, allowing that which is repressed to come to the surface, including forgotten memories, regrets, and unconscious desires.
No matter what you believe, dreams add a little more magic to your life, and looking to decode them only heightens the experience.
But what do horses mean in dreams?
What Does It Mean To Dream Of Horses?
Horses are a common dream symbol, and directly reflect your own experiences and associations with these beautiful animals.
But that’s not the only thing they embody in your dreams. Below are a few of the most common interpretations behind horses appearing in your dreams.
Inner Wellbeing, Strength And Power
In cultures across the world, horses are seen as powerhouses of strength.
Dreaming of horses therefore represents your innermost strength and power, and also the state of your inner wellbeing, too.
There’s a reason we have the phrase as healthy as a horse.
For example, a dream of a struggling or ailing horse can indicate that you need to adjust your choices in waking life in order to better your physical, mental, or spiritual well being.
If you dream of a horse in the picture of health, this reflects your strength of mind, character, and your wellbeing.
Horses in dreams represent freedom. Not only the freedom to choose your own path, but to remember that your life isn’t constrained by expectations, routine, or location.
It’s a big world out there. Sometimes horses appear in your dreams to signal that you’re longing for the unexpected, for days to look completely different to what they do now.
Maybe you feel trapped in a certain way of life, job, place, or relationship.
We’ve put horses to work for thousands of years, to pull and handle things that we could not. These beautiful animals (see also article about dreaming of gorillas) are highly dependable, strong, and will keep going for as long as they can.
Similarly, horses in dreams embody perseverance, and dedication, especially if you see horses tethered to carts or machinery.
But pay attention to the state of the horse in your dream. If it fights or looks exhausted, this reflects your own feelings of needing some time to yourself.
If the horse gets on with its task without an issue, this mirrors your satisfaction that you get out of the hard work you put in, and the visible difference you make.
Don’t Take Things Too Seriously
Horses are very playful creatures. If you see horses playing in your dream, or trying to play with you, this is your subconscious telling you to put down your responsibilities and worries, and just enjoy life for what it is for a while.
Death Or Change
White horses, or ill or dying horses often signify death. More often than not, this is a spiritual death, where something in your life is coming to a close, allowing room for something new to take.
They can also embody your fear of death (see also article titled ‘Dreams Of Zombies And What They Mean‘), either of your own or of someone you love.
Common Horse Dreams And Their Symbolism
It’s worth taking a look at the most common horse dreams and their meaning, as the symbolism behind horse dreams hinge heavily on the context in which you saw them.
Wild Horses In Your Dream
Wild horses are the ultimate image of freedom in dreams, as well as limitless potential and the opportunities you have to shape your life as you see fit.
This dream is common for those who are celebrating a new sense of freedom, or for people who feel that they don’t have the freedom to choose their own path.
Maybe you are a creative person, but you feel blocked in some way. Or, you feel you cannot express yourself or make your own decisions without something hanging over you.
If you attempt to tame or ride the wild horses in your dream, the horses represent the things standing in your way, preventing you from achieving your dreams.
Dreaming Of A Horse Pulling A Cart Or Carriage
If you dream of a horse pulling a cart or a carriage, this reveals that your problems are stacking up, and you need to work hard in order to clear them.
It also points to the need to focus on one thing at a time, or you’ll end up not getting anything done at all.
Dreaming Of Being A Horse
Dreams are wild experiences to say the least, and they often contain impossible things, leaving us at a loss to explain them.
Dreaming of being a horse is an interesting one, and it directly relates to your own associations of horses, and the color and behavior of your ‘horse’ self points to the meaning.
More often than not, dreaming of being a horse is a desire to be wild and free without consequences.
Seeing A Flying Horse In Your Dream
Dreaming of a flying horse is the ultimate desire to be free. If this is a recurring dream, you’re longing for something to change, but you don’t know where to start.
Dreaming Of A Talking Horse
A talking horse in your dream is an interesting one. Consider the words or intent the horse displayed in your dream.
Talking horses in dreams embody inner wisdom and intuition, and it can also be a way of your subconscious talking to you directly, trying to pull something from your unconscious mind to the surface.
Buying Or Selling A Horse In Your Dream
Dreaming of watching someone selling a horse is a warning.
Not everything is as it seems, and if something seems too good to be true, watch for the signs that sing of dishonesty, or things not turning out as you hope.
If you dream of buying a horse, and you don’t get exactly what you pay for, be careful of those in waking life who might have a reason to deceive you in some way.
Dreaming Of Betting On A Horse
A dream where you bet on a horse draws your attention to risk and uncertainty. Maybe you’re taking chances in waking life, and you’re waiting to see where the chips fall.
If you dream that the horse wins, this embodies your own confidence of the outcome and of your intuition.
If the horses lose in your dream, this embodies your anxieties about failure.
Riding A Horse In Your Dream
Dreaming of riding a horse can refer to power, control, and authority, either over yourself, or the power you hold over others.
Alternatively, dreaming of riding a horse can represent how you like to control every situation, and every detail within it to the best of your ability.
You may not even be aware of this compulsion, and your dream encourages you to explore why you do this.
It may also point to a tendency to try and manipulate or boss people around in order to get what you want.
If the horse tries to throw you off, this can point to problems with authority in the future, or how people will challenge your perspective and power.
From a Freudian perspective, dreaming of riding a horse represents a great struggle in controlling your sexual desires.
Falling From A Horse In Your Dream
Dreaming of falling off a horse is directly related to losing control, just as riding a horse is about possessing power and control.
If you dream of falling from a horse, an aspect of your waking life is spinning out of control, or you feel powerless in a situation.
This dream may be warning you to adjust your approach or priorities before things get out of hand.
Being Attacked By A Horse In Your Dream
If you dream of being attacked by horses, this points to lying to yourself in some way. You wish things were different, and this wish is powerful enough to make you want to hide from reality and the truth.
This dream is a warning to face the truth, no matter how hard or heartbreaking. It’s only then that you can begin to move forward.
Being Kicked By A Horse In Your Dream
Being kicked by a horse in waking life is a complete disaster, and has the potential to be fatal.
In a dream, dreaming of being kicked by a horse foretells disaster, reflects current worries about failure or health problems, or feeling directionless or powerless in waking life.
This dream calls on you to examine what you can change, and let go of what you can’t.
Crossing A Stream On A Horse In Your Dream
This is a positive sign. Dreaming of crossing a stream while on a horse represents your ability to be calm and collected under pressure, and adapt to changing situations.
It represents the ultimate control over your emotions, and how you let your intuition guide you.
If you felt nervous while crossing a stream on a horse, or you fell into the stream, this can mean that there’s potential for your emotions to rule you soon.
You’ll be confronted by a challenging situation, and it would be easier to give into your emotions and ignore your intuition entirely.
Your subconscious is warning you to stay focused.
Dreaming Of A Dying Horse
Dreaming of a dying horse represents a difficult period of time in waking life, where you will suffer from a diminished sense of control and power over your own life.
The dying and not dead horse is actually a good sign. It suggests that it’s not too late for you to change things around, and there’s the potential of achieving great things if you put your mind to it.
Dreaming Of A Dead Horse
Dead horses in dreams relate to a fear of death or the end of something in your life.
This may not actually point to death or the end of something, but rather your fears of both, which is distracting you from enjoying the good and important things from life.
It can also represent a loss of purpose, feeling absent or lonely, where you need to search for new meaning in your life.
Dead horses in dreams also represent misfortune, bad luck, and emotional turmoil, particularly if you have a sinking feeling when you see this dream symbol.
Dreaming Of A White Horse
White horses appearing in your dream are a mixed bag. Depending on how you felt when you saw the white horse, it may be a great sign or a bad omen for the future.
If you dream of seeing a white horse from a distance, or you feel uneasy when you see the white horse, this represents obstacles in the way of achieving your dreams.
It also represents a twist in your life’s path, one which you’ll hate to begin with, but as you adjust, you’ll come to see that it’s for the best.
If you feel relieved or happy seeing a white horse, this reveals good luck in your future, and a period of tranquility.
It may even point to a new relationship which will bring a lot of meaning and color into your life.
Dreaming Of Black Horses
Similarly to white horses in dreams, black horses have positive and negative associations.
In a negative light, black horses can represent your passions or desires completely ruling you. You may also have unrealistic expectations of your abilities or ambition right now.
More positively, black horses embody good luck, wealth, and victory over hardship.
They may also represent those elements of life which remain completely uncertain or unclear, but will shape your life in some way once they become clear.
Dreaming Of Brown Horses
Brown horses in your dream represent the importance of being grounded, as well as strength, power, and authority.
They may also represent a shift in your priorities, a transfer of power, or new responsibilities.
Horses in dreams can represent a myriad of meanings, depending on the context of the dream, the appearance of the horse itself, and when it appeared.
For example, if you were in the middle of a ‘quest’ in your dream, and a horse arrived at the exact moment you needed to get somewhere or rely on something, this represents your faith in your own strength and power, which you can call upon when you need to.
But not all horse dreams are positive, as you’ve seen from above. If you dream of a dying or dead horse, this refers to the need to let go of things that you’ve outgrown, especially a way of life that’s no longer sustainable or realistic.
It may also point to failing relationships, your sense of freedom being inhibited, and responsibilities ‘stifling’ your creative freedom. These dreams urge you to seek a new outlet for your creative self, and find a new path if your current one no longer serves.
A horse in your dream may also call on you to make your own decisions, rather than letting circumstances decide them for you.