After some thinking (oh no!) recently and viewing/posting on some various threads, I got to wondering about "desensitizing." As the word stands, to me, I understand it to mean teaching a horse not to react to "scary" outside stimuli. However, are we teaching our horses not to even care about outside stimulu, or are we presenting situations for our horses to become increasingly aware of surroundings and CONFIDENT in their abilities to discriminate dangerous situations from plastic bags?
What is your opinion on the outcome of desensitizing? Should a horse learn to ignore spooky things? Should a horse learn to acknowledge spooky things and then move on quietly? Or do you have another goal?
Personally, I am an advocate for removing the "reactionary impulses" from domesticated brains, in animals and people alike ;) I favour a thinking brain over a reacting brain, and both over an apathetic brain.