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Help Your Horse Feel Safe With You

This is a discussion on Help Your Horse Feel Safe With You within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category

     
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        12-02-2009, 01:43 AM
      #11
    Trained
    You could be right and it probably has alot to do with how much time you spend with them.
         
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        12-02-2009, 07:50 AM
      #12
    Started
    I do agree with the video, at least for the most part. Horses do react to and read body language, and I can certainly see that a tense-acting human who normally isn't could throw up a red flag to the horse if he doesn't see why the person is tense.

    I see it more as projecting an air of confidence than about just loving the horse into calmness. Absolutely yes, I love my horse, and I like to think that those between-feeding nickers aren't just begging for snacks. But when you become the leader (at the risk of going to NH terminology), the horse looks to you as he would the boss of his herd. There was a brilliant Ken McNabb episode that focused on herd dynamics. The whole 23 minutes was the camera following one of Mr. McNabb's smaller "herds" of saddle horses, and showing how the established pecking order effected things within the herd. If a lower pecking order horse spooked, only horses lower than him spooked with him. Higher-rung horses tended to ignore whatever whas going on until it affected them. If the boss horse spooked, then everybody flinched. Do they "love" each other? Who knows... I'm a human, they're horses. I can communcate my wishes and read their reactions, or read their general attitude, but we can't sit down on the couch with a pint of Ben & Jerrys and talk about our feelings. We can just bond, maybe that's close enough to a "feeling fest" for them. I look at myself like the lead horse in my little herd, and I can definitely see the value in "checking your baggage at the door" to have a more fun, productive, and safe ride. Shoot, it can't hurt to try compartmentalizing that way. If your horse behaves no differently, you can always go back to whatever mood you were in before.
         
        12-02-2009, 08:47 AM
      #13
    Yearling
    RiosDad- No, you didn't offend me at all, thanks for thinking about it though. It's just how I think your attitude was, when you said that, kinda like when someone texts you something and you can hear how their tone of voice is in your head? Yea that's how I put it, anyways, nope, I'm not that easily offended :)

    I actually do agree with kevinshorses, I think she may have taken it a little too far at some points with trying to mix human emotions and horses emotions.
         
        12-02-2009, 09:41 AM
      #14
    Showing
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kevinshorses    
    Horses don't bond with people because they like our personalities they bond with us because they like the comfort that we offer rather it is food or rest or security. The bond only lasts as long as the horses needs are met. Horses don't love people. They look to us for thier needs and not much more.
    Kevin, while I completely agree on many stuff you are saying I disagree on that one. When I boarded my horses I didn't feed them, and even now my mom feeds them for most times (because of my work schedule unfortunately). Plus I bring all those scary stuff and makes them go thru them (like vacuum or (OMG!) trimmer). Still when my car is parking they are waiting by the fence on back field. And they don't look for treats when I come to the field - they just want attention. In same time they didn't care AT ALL about the BO who fed them, and don't care much for my mom who spends good amount of time with them.

    As for the video, I agree with most part of it: it's NEVER a good thing to go work with horse (or dog) when you are nervous/angry/anxious. And yes they DO feel that. Of course not telepathically , but from the voice/ movements.
         
        12-02-2009, 12:02 PM
      #15
    Yearling
    I watched the video twice and could not find anything wrong with it at all.
    VERY positive message and good advice.
    This is geared for folks that at having problems with their relationship and if people could follow it then I feel that it could help.

    Tough rodeo cowboys are going to feel that their manhood is being threatened by a message like this and they always will.


    OH no I am a cowboy....Help!

         
        12-02-2009, 02:52 PM
      #16
    Yearling
    Marecare-haha I LOVE the way you think! You couldn't have said it better about those cowboys.
         
        12-02-2009, 03:02 PM
      #17
    mls
    Trained
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kevinshorses    
    Just because a rider is nervous doesn't mean the horse will be and vice versa.

    Horses don't bond with people because they like our personalities they bond with us because they like the comfort that we offer rather it is food or rest or security. The bond only lasts as long as the horses needs are met. Horses don't love people. They look to us for thier needs and not much more.
    I am going to disagree with you on both counts here. I am by no means a touchy feely type person however - - -

    A horse WILL respond to the rider being nervous or confident. I teach a lot of novice riders and train horses. HUGE difference when you can keep the human and equine calm.

    As far as not bonding due to personalities - please explain why some horses respond to one person vs another. Both humans do the feeding, cleaning, caring etc. One of my personal horses is 100% my horse. I really didn't believe in the hogwash a lot of folks spout "my horse only likes me". This mare follows me like a puppy, shies from others, dumps excellent riders and is a PITA for the vet and farrier unless I am the one holding. I don't treat her any differently than my other personal horses. She picked me.

    Horses CAN bond with an individual. Yes, I will admit a lot of the boarded horses we have know me as the food lady - but they also know they can trust me as I am a constant in their lives. Thus - there is a bond.

    I also feel horses can form a very quick dislike to people. New horse just arrived on Sunday. Sale horse so he is being kept separate. I am the only constant in his life right now. Four people have ridden him, handled him, etc. With only one of those individuals did he act up - fuss, paw, prance, etc. IMHO - the woman is a flake and I truly think he picked up on that.
         
        12-02-2009, 05:07 PM
      #18
    Started
    Good video, I agree with most of it as well. My gelding is a big one to play off from moods and this will cause his night and day reaction to whomever is handling him. If you walk into his pasture grumpy and hurried, you get a very angry horse. While his case is extreme, he is GREAT for teaching people how to do what this video explains. He is also GREAT for showing them it is not "a load of crap".
         
        12-02-2009, 05:22 PM
      #19
    Banned
    One of the boarders at my barn (who has since left) used to say "the horse picks the rider as much as the rider picks the horse". Which to a certain extent, I think is true. My gelding is a real butthead to everyone but me. He's leadable, he respects space and all of that basic stuff, but they haven't put in the time with him to earn his respect and he lets them know it. After a hard workout, he'll stand in front of me, close his eyes and rest his forehead on my chest and heave a big sigh. He'll stand like that for a few minutes and then turn like he's ready to be lead. That's just his version of a hug, and it only happens every once in awhile. He doesn't do anything like that to anybody else.

    I think a lot of this stuff in the video is just common sense--of course, you can't make your horse feel safe with you even if you do all of these things. A horse is going to go on its gut instincts, and if those instincts say you're someone to be wary around, that's exactly whats going to happen.
         
        12-02-2009, 08:35 PM
      #20
    Yearling
    I am trying to face the fact that in our area the NEED for a horse to gather the OTHER stock and get them branded or doctored is almost over and people that ride are looking for a different product.

    The product has words attached to it like "Bond" and "Relationship" and "companionship" stuck to it and that is the market.
    In days past it just would have been called "Stock",but not here and not now.
    I would love to step into the old Marecare time machine and go back to the way it was.
    But this is the way it is going because horses are entertainment now for the most part.
    A lot of 40 and 50 year old new riders that are very aware that they break pretty easy and the clinicians are cashing in on the fear.

    The people still want the relationship and still have the fear so here you go.
    The message is valid for those people and they are making up more of the market all the time.
         

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