[QUOTE=smrobs;1329573]Or, on the other extreme from what Saranda mentioned, how would you deal with a horse that just didn't like people, didn't trust them, and had no desire to be around them or make friends at all
. I only ask because I have one of these on my property and no matter how nice you are or how many treats you give him, he will take the offered treats....hesitantly, and then go back to the opposite side of the paddock and basically ignore you. He avoids you if you even think of advancing toward him.]
That is a really good question and again, a bit out of my league because I'm pretty new to this myself. My impression is other people have gotten through to horses like him by going through FT. Part of it is about setting a consistent pattern - turn up same time same place every day to share food & then, when you get to it, to do the training. It also works if you can't get there every day, just takes longer. Part of it is about only using pressure to stop them doing something that could hurt you. For some horses it can take a long time. Others progress quickly. Maybe check out the FT website (Friendship Training
) or join their yahoo group? They are quite friendly & there are a lot of interesting discussions.
My boy didn't seem to like people at all when I first met him, although he did like me. I think most of his problem was his previous handling had been harder than was good for him, although not intentionally harsh. I recently met people who knew him as a youngster and he had been fairly spooky and untrusting then. He was 8 when I met him and had spent the previous 18 months in a station paddock where no-one could get near him.
I don't know why he liked me. I was new to horses when I met him - had only been learning to ride 3 months, and he wasn't the sort of horse I would have considered buying (I was thinking old and experienced and calm...). I had seen him jumping away when fed and not wanting to be touched by a person all the other horses got on well with and liked to be with. Later that morning I saw him looking at me and went and stood at his gate to see what he would do, and after a bit he walked up and sniffed noses and then gently pressed his muzzle against mine for a few seconds, rubbed his face very gently on my chest and let me stroke him for an hour. He blew me away, I couldn't believe it. That was it, I couldn't walk away from him after that, so I begged his owner to sell him to me and we have been on a very interesting learning journey ever since.