Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Hour and a Half from Town!
I spend way more time hanging out with my horses than I do riding them.
I go out in the field about three times a day to check water, groom, pick, check for injuries, and just a general handling. I don't feed on a regular basis nor give treats, they have plenty of pasture/hay/minerals that keep them healthy and shiny. So I know when one or normally all comes to visit every single time I go out there it's because they want to and not for food.
I can catch and halter all three without having to walk them down, and they certainly didn't come that way! I can safely feed them in the winter without them bowling me over or worrying about getting kicked CAUSE I'M THE BOSS and they know it!
Rick was a mess with his feet but now with all the time I've handled his feet loose in the field he will gladly take a nap while the farrier does his trims.
Just yesterday Rick could have very easily trampled me when I got knocked down at the gate, but instead he stood his ground while the other (much larger horse) knocked him over too and took off like a lunatic.
He didn't get that way with hours of lounging and training, just a few times a day of just being with him (and me asserting myself daily as herd boss out in the field) kept me safe.
So when I see posts about not being able to catch an ornery horse, or one that won't tolerate having it's feet messed with, etc, I wish they would just spend more informal time with them out in the field.
YES, I totally agree that most of this type of behavior is attained in formal training, but daily informal interaction is just as important!
You can get a lot further with a ladder than you can with crutches!! What do you mean what do I mean?