In chapter 4, Beauty meets Ginger, who is not too fond of his arrival. She feels that Beauty has displaced her, which is a "very strange thing for a colt." Beauty explains that he had nothing to do with the decision and had been placed there by a man; he assures Ginger that he simply wants to live in peace with other horses. Ginger is not swayed by his words and tells him that she doesn't want to speak with "a young thing" like Beauty.
A while after this rather icy exchange, Ginger leaves, and another horse, named Merrylegs, tries to provide some context for Ginger's behavior. Ginger is known for "biting and snapping" because of her previous owners. Merrylegs acknowledges that this is a very bad habit but says that Ginger was "ill-used" before arriving at Squire Gordon's stable. Since arriving, Ginger has bitten James, a gentle and pleasant groom, which has fairly frightened Miss Flora and Miss Jessie. As a result, they no longer bring treats to Merrylegs, which disappoints him.
Merrylegs is hopeful that Ginger can overcome her biting tendencies. He points out that James and John do all they can to help her, so perhaps Ginger will develop a better personality. Ginger simply doesn't trust people after they have treated her poorly and can't imagine why she would want to be kind to humans; after all, humans are responsible for the great pain she has experienced in the past.