Join Date: May 2011
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
I bond with my horse through grooming, 'games' and hanging out. I'm usually at the barn every day and I like to mix things up to keep my horse curious and engaged. For example, one day I'll pull him out of the field, give him a leisurely grooming and reinforce the act of standing while tied. Then, I hand graze him while I carry on a one-sided conversation. The next day, I might take him for a walk on the trails, or jog him around. The third day, I jog around the round pen while he follows and we work on gait transitions as I call them out. On the fourth day, I might turn him loose in the dusty arena and let him roll and get completely messy while I sit on a barrel and read a book to him.
Bonding just happens through time and effort. If you're trying to force a bond, you're going about it the wrong way. It needs to evolve naturally.