Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Higgins, TX. YeeHaw!!
Oh the joys of training horses for other people. You get them going really well; they're soft and responsive and relaxed. Then you send them home and tell/show the owners how to ride them to keep them that way only to have the owner say that some other way has worked for them in the past (if they were so good, why are they sending the horse away to train?). Perfect example is a little buckskin horse that a guy sent to my dad to train. It was a 4 year old and they wanted him as a horsemanship/WP/reining type horse for their granddaughter (who shows in 4-H). They had bought him green broke and immediately put the girl on him. She was about 12 years old and "one of the best horsemen to ever live". When they brought the horse here, he carried his head stuck straight up in the air and WOULD NOT stop or turn for anything. If you asked for more than a walk, he would take off at a dead run that was impossible to stop, plus he was about 150 pounds underweight. Anyway, Dad kept him over the winter and worked on his training. By this spring ('09) he was going really REALLY nice. He would walk, jog, and lope with perfect control on a swinging rein. He would stop hard when you softly made contact with the bit, picking up the correct lead and doing flying lead changes all with a level topline. He had put on weight and was healthy. They came to get the horse and Dad spent an afternoon showing the girl how to ride and handle him and the whole time they spent saying things like "JimBob told us to put a tie down on him to get his head lowered", "Isn't Jane such a wonderful rider, she wins every class she enters at all the 4-H shows", "She knows how to handle that horse, SHE IS SO GOOD AT EVERYTHING." Anyway, they pay the last bill and take the horse home. I just saw her riding him at a 4-H show this week and 'lo and behold, he is strung out and hollow with his head up in the air. He won't stop so she goes to yanking on him and that causes him to gape his mouth and rear. He is super skinny again and incredibly arena sour. She has to have someone lead him through the gate to get him in there. It turned my stomach to see what she had turned him into because I know how he rode when he left Dad's house. She entered every single class they had and never took better than 4th (and that was in a class of 4).
MC, I truely hope that somone can see past all the spur marks and white scald scars to see the heart of the horse underneath. It seems that no matter what you tell people like her, HER way is always better, SHE is a better trainer, THAT couldn't possibly work , WHATSHISNAME said that this would work better so SHE wants to try it even if simple common sense screams that it is completely wrong.
You just can't fix stupid.
Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/