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Training In General
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Training In General

Just about any person who handles horses is in some form a trainer. Horses learn from people whatever they teach them, be it good or bad. 

If your horse develops bad habits, it's usually 1 of 2 things. Either there is a physical, emotional issue that needs to be addressed by a vet or You're doing something to teach the horse the habit. Oooh did I step on some toes with that one? If you just cringed, then perhaps you need to look at what you're doing to cause your horse to throw its head, rear, buck, back away, shy, be fearful etc. 

Horses while a strong, amazing, animals, they are sensitive & fragile. Horses respond by pressure. The more you use, the more the horse responds & if you put enough pressure on the horse, it will push it into its Fight or Flight mode. 

If you buy a horse & it comes with problems, be prepared to take longer to un-train the bad behaviors & re-train the good ones. A fresh horse that is young & hasn't had much more than halter-leading training, you pretty much have a clean slate & can train it the way you want. However, if you train it for only a few things & decide later to sell, you might have a smaller chance of finding someone to buy it because of its limited training. 

Deciding ahead of time how much work you're willing & able to put into a horse will give you an idea of how far you can take the horse in its training & how valuable it will be later on when you're done. 

While I mentioned in the beginning that virtually anyone who handles horses is a trainer of sorts, it doesn't mean that everyone CAN train horses. There are good trainers & bad trainers. You can tell the difference by how they handle their horses & how the horses react to that trainer. Should you decide to take your horse to a trainer or hire one out, do your homework & use your detective skills to find the best one for the job. 

If you're a beginner in the horse world, learn all you can about how to handle your horse in the quietest manner possible. Learn how to use the pressure & release & pay attention to how your horse responds. Learn why people use cues, both verbal & with a crop & some who don't use anything but their body to create pressure & when to release it. 

From handlers, to groomers, to riders... we all train our horses, sometimes without even knowing it. 

If you are new to training, take things slow & only teach 1 thing at a time. Building a foundation will help your horse excel & not backslide. Don't move on something new for at least a week even if it's something simple, but during your training sessions, don't over do it either. Do it 5 times right, then quit & rest. Let it sink into your horses mind what he just did. Let him "chew" on it for a bit. You want your horse to make these new things a good habit. If you do it more than a total of 10-15 times, your horse may become bored & become disrespectful or he may even do what you don't want him to do. 

If training seems to be over your head, or you're unsure how to begin or where to start, find yourself a good trainer. Ask questions, do research, read books or find articles online. There is a ton of information out there for you to soak up if you so desire. 

There are no bad horses.... horses learn from people & it would be great if everyone learned from horses, then maybe there wouldn't be any "bad" horses. 

Thanks for taking the time to read my blogs & for voting if you like them. I appreciate each & every vote & comment. Have a blessed day & now..... Go Ride! :) 

 

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Leave a Comment

  1. Terri AP Widdowson
    Dear Rene, Thanks so much for you kind words of encouragement. It sounds like you're really enjoying your horse! Terri
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    1. Rene Wright
      Rene Wright
      My pleasure Terri! I do hope all is well with you. :) I am so loving my Cookie girl. She's a blast! lol
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  2. naturegirl
    There is a lot of information in this article that makes sense to me, except one thing. I totally agree that horse learn habits - good or bad - from humans. However, how much does horse's personality impact this training? I'm sure they each have their own stubborness at some point. I can only compare with cats, which is the only animal I've ever trained, and although they are much harder to discipline than a horse, there are surely some similarities. I managed to train my baby girl to the point where my voice was enough to make her stop something I didn't want her to do (well, when I was around, anyways!), but my baby boy was impossible - I swear, he was the exact opposite of her. (Thank God he was adorable and affectionate! It made up for his lack of discipline threefold!) Anyways, I voted ,because I know you have a good deal of experience with this and know what you're talking about. And I agree that you need to get truths that hurt out. People will get over it! My new post is about naturopathic care. Stop by when you can!
    Log in to reply.
    1. Rene Wright
      Rene Wright
      You're right about personalities. They do play a part, including stubborness. The methods you would normally use for one... may not work for the other & you have to change your antics or thoughts on how to get your horse to do what it is you are asking. Sometimes you have to get real creative. lol! Cats are funny creatures. Both of my girls know when I tell them to get down, it means get down because if I have to get up I'll swat you with a newspaper. Now, you know cats aren't scared of really anything (except thunderstorms - at least mine are) so when they see me coming, they run off a few steps & then come back for a playful ankle attack. Crazy girls! I don't know about yours, but my cats & dogs think they are far more superior than us humans. lol Thanks for your vote. :)
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      1. naturegirl
        My girl thinks she is superior, that's for sure! My boy doesn't. He's cool as a cucumber and the friendliest cat I've ever seen - he's pretty much like a dog in that sense (so I got a 2x1 deal - two pets in one!). But as for who's superior than who, he has no standard. He just likes everyone the same. as for ankly swats... my boy never does that, and my girl is telling me that she's pissed off when she taps my ankles. It doesn't hurt, though - she's declawed and it feels more like being hit by a large Q-tips because her fur is incredibly thick on the bottom of her paws. And neither of mine is scared of anything. I HAVE met cats in the past that can't be around anyone they don't know and they hide - an ex-roommate and I even lost one of hers for a few days because the cat got studk in her hiding place!!! We were freaked out because we thought the cat darted out the door without us knowing, and we even fought over who wasn't paying attention, but it turns out she was stuck behind the water heater, which is surrounded by counters and the oven. She didn't do any of her business while there, too. Impressive. I think she got stuck there because I pulled out the bottom drawer of the oven to clean it out and she must've run in there when she heard a noise or something.
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  3. arabobsession
    arabobsession
    Interesting article and true, all my prior horses were easy to handle and ride, but my current mare moves to a different beat, I have had to rethink everything I know, learn more, and constantly try different methods, it is both hard work and rewarding. Oh yeah I have only owned mares, and they have all been part Arabs, so I guess personality does play a part.
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