Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Canberra Australia
I think bsms is giving you some good advice. And like him, when I hear the word “Bond” in relation to horses it tends to send a shudder through me. My advice would be to forget about some “bond” (stick with me here, I’ll get to the good bit where you get a real relationship in a minute).
The first and foremost thin you have to have from your horse is respect, even if it doesn’t particularly like you, respect is what counts. For your part, you have to make sure that you gain and keep the horses respect appropriately, and CONSISTANTLY give it the guidance it needs to give you that respect. Keeping the respect can be hard, and loving on your horse with pats and scratches and treats, and just being there irritating it all the time, in the wrong ways, is a sure fire way to lose it. Try to think of the relationship you have with your horse as a very dynamic one in which the horse will rather be in charge. It will challenge you in ways you won’t even notice, unless you know what to look for, and if you don’t maintain discipline, the horse will start to get dominant. So even if the horse is all friendly now, doesn’t mean it will be later if you are not careful.
The “bond” comes when the horse sees you as a fair, reliable and consistent leader. Whatever you do with your horse, make sure it can succeed when you ask it to work. Do this, and over time, the horse will “bond” with you. If you spend enough time in the saddle once you have maintained that kind of relationship, your thoughts will turn into the horse’s movement. THAT is the real bond. There’s nothing mystical or supernatural about it, it’s just that you are a reliable leader, the horse is a reliable mount, and you both become so physically accustomed to one another that all action transcends consciousness. That is the bond to go for, and it all starts with respect.