Thanks Mayfieldk, glad I'm not the only one who thinks some of the conclusions here a little silly
While I believe in each to their own, I suspect some comments may not have been fully thought through, and some seem to have been said only to make me seem silly too, so here are my (respectful) rebuttals….
This is a statement that I’m sure we’ll all think of as silly, but seeing as the comparison with humans has already been brought up, here’s another analogy… The more a child learns, the duller they will become. I wonder why it is less silly assuming this of horses?
Okay, yes trick training is very different, as in I find it useless information. Lets keep in my they are horses, not dogs. I would find that teaching a horse to properly lift up its hooves, is a little more relevant than teaching it to bow?
So you don’t personally like trick training as you perceive it? Perfectly fine. I don’t like a lot of tricks I see people doing at shows, for eg. It’s my personal preference. I’m not going to knock you for doing it tho. The comparison with dogs is a curious idea – I’m guessing you think I treat horses like dogs just because I like teaching particular tricks & some people like to teach their dogs tricks too?? Where’s the logic in that?
I find the whole idea of being against ‘useless’ trick training for horses a little weird tho, because many ‘tricks’ such as retrieving, for eg are
useful. Your eg. Of bowing is one ‘trick’ I find useful for getting a horse to stretch & supple up before exercise. Many other ‘tricks’ are great for helping horses become calmer & braver in the human environment. But conventionally popular tricks, like passage & piaff for eg, apart from looking nice, don’t seem to have any point whatsoever. I don’t get why there should be a line drawn between some tricks & others.
But this is all largely beside the point anyway, as I only mentioned tricks as one more thing you could
teach your young horse if you got bored with other stuff.
So you are a hoof care practitione May I ask just what methods of hoof care you choose to follow?
Sure. I don’t really believe in ‘following’ any one ‘method’ tho. I’ve learned from a number of sources, including conventional farriery, but my thinking seems to be most in line with Pete Ramey & the likes.
I don't know what your paddocks look like, but pretty sure mine are fairly well maintained...Not too cushy... Not too firm... Nope just right.
I have no idea what your particular property is like of course, and if it were set up with Jaime Jackson’s idea of ‘Paddock Paradise’ for eg,(you can google it) it might well be perfectly adequate. But it seems that most people’s idea of an ‘ideal’ horse property is far from it, with regard to the long term soundness & health of the horse. If you have a conventional set up, with good grazing, little hard rocky ground, etc, the horse is unlikely to get adequate exercise, not to mention hoof stimulation.
**I am not asking anyone to take my word for it, change their property/practices because I said so or anything, but if
you know nothing about the disadvantages of normal domestic horse management, you might want to look into it & not bag my opinions, at least until you know more.
You're telling me that you knew mostly everything you needed to know by you were 10?... upper level mathmatics, classic British literature, philosophy, theology. … as you still don't know the nature of an analogy.
I didn’t expect anyone to take me that extremely<G>. I also said most
. Call me ignorant, but I didn’t think of things you list above as ‘needs’. Interesting assumption about analogies(aside from that being another unnecessary). My comments that you took so literally were to point out that I thought that analogy was not an appropriate one to the discussion. Beside the point again, but I do think that even in this day & age, a 10 yo child does actually know(or at least can, with good tuition) the basics of about everything he will need to survive, and since we’re talking analogies, who’s to say I was talking of modern, western civilisation anyway? Consider the necessary knowledge of a 10yo a few hundred years ago for eg.
Yes they do know everything they need to know to get through their life in a few months... in the wild. When we take them out of that environment though and are requiring them to learn added forgien, behaviors we are introducing new patterns into their lives. We are expecting them to respond with a desired behavior to a stimulus. This is not instinctual learning and they most certianly would not be learning these behaviors on their own. Any creature that has too many stimuli introduced in a small amount of time will begin to stress.
So because there are different things to learn in a domestic environment as to in the wild we should desist in teaching them to babies? Because a foal is domestic means that he shouldn’t be expected to cope with anything like the same level of learning as a wild foal? I don’t get that attitude. What is the real difference, aside from different lessons needing to be learned? I don’t think of learning as instinctual at all, except if you mean the desire
to learn appears to be instinctive(so therefore why not encourage that & teach?). No behaviours are really learned ‘on their own’ either, in the sense that they are not linked to some ‘stimulus’.
I agree with your last sentence completely tho. Never once suggested ‘too many stimuli’ should be introduced in a short time. I tried to emphasise this previously. But that sentiment is precisely one of the reasons I believe in starting learning young. Why wait & have to pile a whole new world onto a 3yo(for eg)? Why not start young so you can introduce it gradually, take your time?
You also seem to be suffering under the misconception of "old dogs can't learn new tricks." Oddly enough, old dogs can learn new tricks! Lets take a parade for example. If you were to take a three month old foal and put it in a parade, it would freak because it would be over stimulated, no matter what kind of prep the foal has had. In another scenario we can take a ten year old horse that has been brought along slow and easy and put it in the same parade with much different results. Yes, the ten year old will be spooked, but not nearly so much as they have learned from a life time of experience to trust their handlers.
There are some big assumptions there. Firstly, I never ever suggested you couldn’t teach an ‘old dog’ or anything of the sort. But by the same token, horses are precocial, and it seems that generally speaking, all animals(human included) are
rather more ‘plastic’ mentally when young than as adults, so they do tend to be more open to learning, particularly where it involves getting confident with different environments, situations, things. Just ask any canine behaviourist when is the easiest & most effective time to socialise a dog, for eg. Dogs aren’t precocial either, BTW.
I’m interested in evidence you may have for assuming a well handled, well travelled, trusting foal(you said regardless of handling) would freak & be ‘over stimulated’ at a show, or that a 10yo(or whatever age in maturity) horse with little away from home experience would necessarily cope so much better. I suggest the complete opposite is the norm and your scenario would be quite unusual.
Or maybe you just haven't really had experience with hot horses? Perhaps the horses you think are very sensitive and responsive are actually plugs to the rest of the world.
By the same token I could be equally justified in assuming that your comments mean that you’ve only dealt with ‘hot horses’ who are likely that way because of their lack of experience by the time they’re expected to cope with everything thrown at them. I don’t however believe I’d be justified in that belief. We don’t know each other in the least and I do not profess to know whether you are good, bad or otherwise with your horses. I’d appreciate it if you don’t make disrespectful, unfounded assumptions of me either.