A difficult horse can cause copious amounts of frustration. I get it; some days you just want to hop on your fuzzy friend and go for a relaxing ride. Sometimes a sassy horse may have other ideas. This was my experience with my first horse.
The first few years I owned her, I was almost constantly trying to figure out how to ‘deal’ with her issues. Many people told me to sell her. I was determined to keep her because I had waited forever to get a horse, and I was not about to give up. Let me tell you, that horse made me the rider I am today.
That horse was the moodiest animal on the planet, but I knew she had so much potential. I would take kicks, bites, and pinned ears just so she and I could make progress. She was much like a human in the sense she had a lot of personality and emotional walls I had to break down. Every day was a puzzle, but that is what taught me to think critically about behavioral issues.
She also taught me to get over fear. There were many times I was afraid to ride my mare. Sometimes, I was even afraid to be near her; I learned that it was okay to be afraid, but that I eventually had to get over my fear.
It took blood, sweat, and tears to get her where I needed her to be. I never gave up on her and that was an important lesson for me. I learned how to train hard and the right way. That moody horse became my dream horse.
Eventually, I started getting compliments on how we were the perfect pair. This horse—that caused me so much grief—became my best friend. We were a great team. I went on to do small gymkhanas and she never disappointed. If you are reading this and you are dealing with a problem horse, don’t give up. They have so much potential and likely just need more time. I promise you will learn just as much as they are.
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