Geeze, how do you desensitize a horse to that?
I don't think you can. I think all you can do is have your horse trust you enough to stay with you. I was off and walking and if he really wanted to, he could have bolted down the road without me but he stayed with me. Even tho he was trying to flee from it, when he felt the pressure on his rope, he stopped. I had it connected to his rope halter - it was not attached to his bit. If I had been on him, probably a different story. I don't know. I don't know if I could have gotten him to safely stop his feet long enough for me to get off.
He knows a one rein stop and a put your nose on my foot stop but with kind of thing coming at him...... he's just a horse and he thought he was going to die at that moment.
I was just determined to NOT let go of him because he might have felt like I thru him under the bus to fend for himself. With me still attached to him, he might have felt safer.
He's a horse that has been thrown under the bus by his previous owner and he has very little confidence in himself. I have worked very, very hard to gain his trust and have him trust in my ability to lead him.
He is finally getting it and trusting me now. When I first got him, I couldn't lead because he would plant his feet and he had NO flexion. He only knew how to fight pressure. He didn't have a rider who gave him release.
So we went back to ground work and basically started over as if he was a youngster.
When I have him in front now, there are times when he's not sure he can do it or go thru a scary area but I really use my seat to tell him to keep going and I talk to him which relaxes him. I have a tiny bit of contact with his bit when he's worried - this calms him. I guess because he feels like I'm still there...
More like a contact, release. Not to slow him but it comforts him for some reason.
Now when something really spooks him, he needs to move his feet otherwise if you pull back on him, that makes it so much worse. Like he feels trapped.
So when the big parasail came at us - my brain had to really focus on so many things at once!!! DON"T let go of him, rope pressure but then release, talk to him.....!!!! And just hope for the best.
I was able to get back on him after we cleared the area and he was just fine - like nothing ever happened. If he had gotten away from me, I don't know if his trust would have been there and who knows how many steps backwards we would have taken.
YEARS ago we lived by a train track. It was a rental house with 2 acres and the pasture butted up again the track. Horses would hang out back there and the first few times the train came, those horses FLEW back to the barn!!! After a while, they could care less about it. They just stood there eating grass as that noisy train went by.