Join Date: May 2013
Location: Central Florida
• Horses: 0
I definitely think that it carries over,,the more scary/moving/noisy things he learns to accept and be calm around (Vs just tolerating briefly), the braver over all he will become.So that seems to help with say unexpected things that you have not desentized him to. After all, we can't possibly include every single thing, right? At least, that was my experience with Sonny.
Be creative and have fun. If you feel safe, do some of it while riding,,, along with the groundwork you're already doing. It's easier for the horse to be brave to a new object if YOU are on the ground and in the front (ie You are closer and likely to get eaten first, giving him time to run). It's a different situation when you are on the horse and he is closest to the scary object. I've used jacket on the fence-can I pick it up, rub him with it, put it on and take it off (while mounted), a child's floaty toy on a barrel--can we ride up to it, will he put his nose on it,,,can I get him to put his ribs up close or on it, can I pick it up and swing it on both sides of him,,,,a pole of pvc pipe laid across 2 barrels with a plastic bag on one end--can I pick up the pole and walk around the remaining barrel without having to drop it--if I do drop it does he remain calm----can we sidepass up to a mailbox-open it and take something out, then reclose it ? (things I've seen at obstacle trail competitions) Doing some of the desentizaion from the saddle , imo, really carries over to the horse being braver under saddle.) He learns to trust that if you 'say' its ok, it's probably ok.
Be as soft as possible, but as firm as necessary--Pat Parelli