Teen Forum Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: South East Texas
Yes, I have trained my own horse.
I started working with Sour when she was about 7 months old, pretty much unhandled except for an experience with some very rough men until she came to our farm. She was agressive, mean spirited, and dangerous.
I'll admit it right now- it was absolutely stupid for me to take her. I was a 12 year old girl with little horse experience who grew up watching Black Stallion and thinking that all horses were perfect. I'll also tell you right her and right now that given the chance, I would do a lot of things differently.
I taught Sour everything. Leading, handling, grooming, lunging, and eventually driving. However, along the way I screwed up many times and I'm still amazed that I didn't ruin her. A lot of her bad habits that I've spent the last year or two trying to correct have stemmed from the holes that I left in her training as a young horse, and from rookie mistakes that could have been prevented, had I been given access to a trainer. She has hurt my multiple times and I have a nasty scar on my arm from being bitten by her, and I've been kicked once by her as well. Again, all my fault- and I freely admit it.
She's four years old, I'm sixteen now. A lot has changed and I am now working under two very experienced trainers, learning how to correctly train horses. I DID train Sour to drive a cart by myself, but I was under the care of a driving instructor the entire time and could always go to her when I needed to. Before that, I had taken two years of driving lessons from her to prepare myself for training Sour. I now break miniature horses to cart for other people, and I do it very well. I turn out well tuned, confident, steady horses- but only because I've listened to those who taught me. Same for the OTTBs that I am helping train. I've retrained two so far by myself, an older gelding and a 4 year old mare- but it is only under the close supervision of trainers that I've done this.
There is a big difference between being an inexperienced horse person that decides' hey, I'm going to raise a baby so that we can bond and love eachother forevers and evers!' and between being an educated owner that takes the correct precautionary steps in finding a trainer to help them train their own horse. Horses are dangerous animals that should not be taken lightly. It takes one person to be able to ride a horse but it takes a completely different kind of person to be able to communicate clearly enough with it to train it.
Everyone in your life is meant to
be in your journey, but not all of
them are meant to stay till the end.