There is a big difference between friendly and gentle when it comes to horses. A friendly horse might be the kind that comes to the gate for scratches and treats. He is easy to be around and enjoyable, except that his education may be lacking in important areas, such as how to move away from pressure, how to operate on a lead rope, how to draw and how to move away. This horse is perfectly quiet, so long as things go the way they expect or how they like. When things happen that they aren’t prepared for or don’t prefer, they can be quite dangerous.
A gentle horse is one who’s education can fill in the gaps of human error. This horse may be friendly as well, and enjoy attention, but has the necessary framework to help him through unplanned events such as getting tangled up in rope, working through tough scenarios, or handling new experiences they haven’t seen before.
To create a gentle horse, it isn’t enough to make them enjoy human contact. Education is absolutely necessary to make them safe.