Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
Horses do vary in personality, but they mostly all respond well to the same training approach: Make sure they understand what you are asking - that they have been trained to understand. Ask clearly. That is why one of my horses prefers a bit, because it is easier to be clear when using a bit. Don't nag, but don't take no for an answer. Only one of you can have ultimate responsibility for what you do as a team, and it had better be the human. Be fair. Any punishment needs to be proportional and timely. There are big differences between "I don't understand", "I don't feel like it" and "I'm afraid". Respond accordingly. Let the horse know you care about its well-being. That can be as simple as squaring a horse up before cleaning its feet rather than grabbing a leg of an unbalanced horse.
Horses do have differences in personality. My mare is much more high-strung and excitable than my Appy gelding, but "Firm, fair and consistent" per Foxhunter's post will get her as far and as fast in a training direction as her individual nature allows. The underlying training approach doesn't change, only how much she progresses and how quickly.
"People can teach us the rules, but only horses can teach us the art of riding."
Last edited by bsms; 11-28-2012 at 08:35 AM.