Liberty w/ 12 yr old pinto mare, SUPER trustworthy - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 01-31-2020, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
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Talking Liberty w/ 12 yr old pinto mare, SUPER trustworthy

hey, so i really want to do liberty work with my mare, like the whole follow w/o and ride w/o ANY tack. Any suggestions?
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post #2 of 10 Old 01-31-2020, 05:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DollyMama3265 View Post
hey, so i really want to do liberty work with my mare, like the whole follow w/o and ride w/o ANY tack. Any suggestions?
I just started with Liberty with my dappled mare and I looked at some liberty training books and I sometimes made up my own methods along the way. I watched youtube for the beginning.

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post #3 of 10 Old 01-31-2020, 06:24 PM
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Learning the principles of 'clicker training' would really help you understand how to train this without relying so much on negative reinforcement/punishment.
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post #4 of 10 Old 01-31-2020, 06:37 PM
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My daughter has been using this book and it's been going really well:

Trick Training for Horses: Fun Ways to Engage, Challenge, and Bond with Your Horse
This is more about "tricks" than about just having your horse follow you. If you want your horse to follow you, just keep cookies in your pocket LOL. But it lays a good foundation for training your horse.


For bitless / bridleless, I liked this book:

Riding Free: Bitless, Bridleless or Bareback
They spent a LONG time going over groundwork and making sure your horse understood cues before actually getting to the neck circle riding stuff. Which is as it should be -- important to get a solid foundation first.
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post #5 of 10 Old 02-06-2020, 01:56 PM Thread Starter
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thanks, i really want to start doing liberty work with her bc shes super trusting, i think it would be a good way for us to really connect more
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post #6 of 10 Old 02-06-2020, 02:58 PM
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^Liberty is a great way to gain more trust ,& a better connection too.
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post #7 of 10 Old 02-06-2020, 03:05 PM
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I recently started the basics of liberty with my mare. Check out Sam Vanfleet on YouTube she has some good liberty videos on there!
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post #8 of 10 Old 02-10-2020, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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post #9 of 10 Old 02-24-2020, 02:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ACinATX View Post
For bitless / bridleless, I liked this book:

Riding Free: Bitless, Bridleless or Bareback
They spent a LONG time going over groundwork and making sure your horse understood cues before actually getting to the neck circle riding stuff. Which is as it should be -- important to get a solid foundation first.
^^^^^^^ This before anything else.
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post #10 of 10 Old 05-20-2020, 04:49 AM
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I started liberty with my mare by positively reinforcing each time she showed any interest in me. Even the smallest amount of interest, like her ears being on me or even taking a single step toward me when I called.

The logic behind it at the time I didn't understand, as I was just maybe 8 or 9, but basically if your horse shows ANY interest in you at all, release ALL pressure and reward. The best kind of positive reinforcement, I have found, is treats. If I were you, I would make sure your horse has very good food manners to not become pushy while you are working on teaching liberty.

So, to start off, make sure your horse has good food manners. Next, ensure your horse has good groundwork skills ON the lead rope. The dictionary definition of liberty is "the power or scope to act as one pleases." So, even your horse just allowing you to tack them up without being tied anywhere or forced to stand still is liberty, just not what you are wanting. As long as you give your horse a choice, it is liberty. Your horse WANTING to be with you without being forced, now that is the hard part. And it is not because you're terrible and your horse doesn't like you, but it is just in their nature to want food and be in an environment in which they can survive, and following you around doesn't always offer that.

So, how can you reinforce your horse being around you? Well, that brings us right back to positive reinforcement. For a quick rundown so you can skip whatever I am about to ramble on about, positively reinforce yourself like you are teaching your horse how to do a basic command like back up. Be repetitive and communicate what you want in a positive way. Use less negative reinforcement (taking off a bad/annoying thing, like pressure) and use more positive reinforcement (adding on a positive thing, like treats). It is so hard to have a horse that wants to be with you because it is intrinsically rewarding for them, however it isn't impossible. Besides, you have to start somewhere. If you can get your horse extrinsically motivated to be with you, then find out what they enjoy doing and start doing it with them. Show them being around you is better than being alone, so then they will want to be with you just to be with you, not for a reward.

This is my first post on here, so I am not sure if it will make sense as I am new at writing stuff like this lol. But I hope you, or whoever may be reading this, can find some value in my nonsense. And, if you have any questions or want to talk one on one feel free to message me. I'm up to talk to anyone and try to help anyone, don't hesitate to shoot me a message!
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