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-   -   Socializing with the Herd? (http://www.horseforum.com/horse-training/socializing-herd-77469/)

AllThePrettyHorses 02-01-2011 05:29 PM

Socializing with the Herd?
 
I really enjoy going out to the field and sitting/standing there (or sitting on my horse's back) watching all the horses. When you really watch and listen, they seem to have a lot to teach, simply by being themselves.

I know it's bad to say [that I'm not usually otherwise], but when I'm out in the field, I feel like more of a...horse. Whenever a horse invades my space in the field, I just send them away-I don't take it personally or get angry or frustrated or have a bruised ego-because I see that it's not personal-they aren't targeting me specifically just to p*** me off. I'm sorry to say, but I am guilty of getting angry and frustrated with my horse quite a bit, but in the field with her, I think I'm able to act more rationally and basically, like part of the herd.

All the horses in the herd see me as leader-well, at least they all yield to me and get out of my way when I tell them. Whether it's because they actually see me as the dominant one or are simply trained to respect humans, I don't know. But anyways, on to the point of this thread (:-P): I was wondering if my "leadership" in the field will transfer over to when I get my horse out away from them-will she still see me as a dominant herd member? I realize that I need to continue being a good partner and leader and always be calm and level-headed as well. Will my actions in the field make her respect me more overall?

mbender 02-01-2011 05:49 PM

I believe so! As long as you stay a leader outside as much as inside. I'm very happy that you do this. Its a great way to feel out horse dynamics! Knowing how to use their language to communicate in my opinion is key to training.
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thealabamaredhead 02-02-2011 08:35 AM

i can spend hours out in the field with my arab herd(mom,baby,gelding). we always get a grooming chain going. i'll scratch one of them and they will groom the next horse lol, it's so cute :) horses seem to respond better if you bond well on the ground before riding them.

mbender 02-02-2011 09:05 AM

Agreed! Its like establishing yourself in the herd. I love it. For me, with the alpha mare, it takes a look or one slight body language from me to get her attention. But I had to challenge her. Was very scary but had to be done. Not recommended for inexperienced people. Really have to know what you are doing and have an out if things get unsafe. I am seen as herd boss! That's the way it should be. She isn't afraid of me but **** she has a ton of respect for me. I didn't even touch her or whip her or anything to establish that communication. Just confidence.
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