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Liberty and groundwork

This is a discussion on Liberty and groundwork within the Natural Horsemanship forums, part of the Training Horses category

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        11-16-2013, 06:45 PM
      #21
    Showing
    If the thought strikes me I will sometimes go into the pasture and stand beside on of the horses, facing the same direction. I mimic his actions, even bending down and mussing the grass with my fingers. One time I turned around while "grazing". My bum was about his front leg and next thing I knew the horse was nuzzling my back and hips, as it would a foal. As my back began to complain, instead of straightening up I turned away from him and then walked past his face before straightening up. When I looked at the horse his muzzle was almost touching the ground while he licked and blinked. Not sure what it means but it was interesting.
         
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        12-06-2013, 02:22 PM
      #22
    Weanling
    Saddlebag-My pony does that occasionally while I stratch her someplace she likes. Prehaps some sort of grooming ritual?
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        12-06-2013, 02:23 PM
      #23
    Weanling
    For me too its almost always across my back and hips.
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        12-06-2013, 02:49 PM
      #24
    Super Moderator
    The best way to bond with a horse is to look after it - food, water, grooming - that's what they appreciate, not being run around, made to do tricks they see no point in or even ridden
    That doesn't mean there's no point in doing groundwork but the basics of being led correctly, moving over and backwards should all have been achieved as part of the handling and grooming process that makes a horse safe and easy to be around - not a stand alone thing later on down the line
    No horse is too old to be taught something new
    I find the easiest way to teach a horse to back up and move over is with firm pressure from your hand and at the same time use a verbal cue and if you are interested in clicker training that's a good time to introduce that. Once they understand the verbal command you can usually just use that and nothing else
    I'm not a 'rope wiggler' because I don't always have a rope attached to the horse when I want them to back up - in fact most of the time I don't.
         

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