3. DOMINATING YOUR HORSE VS RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR HORSE
Yes never the two shall meet. If you use dominating techniques with your horse your relationship with your horse is shot to pieces, sorry.
You tell me. If you had a relationship with a person and you kept simply making them do as you asked by force, do you think the other person wouldn't run a mile? Because they have rights and they know it.
Based on the facts of how a horses' brain functions your relationship with it should be very similar to that of a parent and child.
If you simply force a child to do things, they rebel. If you persuade and make it enjoyable and set a boundary line also for their own good, ie; they must do as you say, consequences for not doing as asked, you're the boss, that is not dominating but being a loving parent.
BIG DIFFERENCE and the difference between a rebel and an angel child.
Believe me, I did youth work for years with rebel children who'd been kicked out of schools, homes, and had no-one.
I did exactly what I do with horses, I didn't try to control them, treated them normally with enforced boundaries and they were all turned into extremely well behaved little angels.
Don't confuse behaviour with the person / horse, it's just behaviour.
Horses, like children, have emotions, agenda's, choices and rights, and have a parental figure to guide them, but this must be whilst respecting them as a being with rights.
If you don't you'll get nowhere fast. Horses know when you are fair, you see this all the time,when a horse nips you cheekily for example, playing, and you reprimand it, it doesn't end up scared of you, no, it gets a knowing look on it's face and pulls it's head in thinking "fair enough".
I'll never forget an example of this. I was out in a paddock on our property one day with broodmares and foals etc...
There was a young foal there with her mum, and I was cuddling and playing with her. We had a lead broodmare which kept an eye on things, not the foals mum, about 100 meters away.
The foal got a little cheeky and went to kick up at me, well, the lead mare saw this and galloped flat tack to the foal and nipped it extremely hard on the bum, then walked away.
The foal just stood there quietly and went cheekily subdued, no loss of fiestiness, or happiness, only stepped back inside that mental boundary the lead mare had taught her, she must not kick people for no good reason.
If the mare had done that and the foal had not done anything wrong it would be thereafter terrified of that mare, but it knew full well and so was fine and accepted it as a consequence for doing the wrong thing. All horses will also respond this way to FAIR human discipline.
When you have a good relationship with your horse you go and have a chat and a cuddle, for no apparent reason.
You take your horses feelings into account and treat the horse with respect.
You ask quietly for everything, you don't demand. If they don't listen, sure, like a parent, up the anti kindly and enforce, but always respect them by asking nicely first, just like with children.
I'll tell you something that will shock you: I have been asked to re-educate mad bucking broncs which have killed people in my time.
Some of the best toughest horse "trainers" had tried and failed to make them behave.
I treated them gently with respect, when they ran over my boundaries I showed them their new boundaries and enforced them kindly and consistently and when they understood them and still tried to cross that line, for example bucking, I enforced they were not to do that anymore in a manner that the consequence equaled the act done enough to cause them to prefer and choose not to do it again.
I also showed them how enjoyable being good can be, they got lots of cuddles and treats and incentives. There has never been a horse that has continued their rebel behaviour after this.
It's not the horse just behaviour.
Sure dominating horses works 90% of the time to allow people to achieve the performance they want.
What I am saying is it's not right by the horse, and they horse will not enjoy it or have that bond with you.
There is a much better way that works with 100% of horses, even the worst rebels out there.
TIPS; THINGS THAT WILL KILL YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR HORSE:
-DOMINATING YOUR HORSE
-APPROACHING A NEW HORSE DEMANDING IT COME TO YOU
-MIND GAMES OF ANY KIND
-MAKING RIDING ETC... UN-ENJOYABLE
-TOO MUCH TRAINING PRESSURE
-WORKING TOO LONG
-GEAR THAT'S UNCOMFORTABLE
-TREATING THEM LIKE A MACHINE
-ONLY VISITING TO DO SOMETHING UN-ENJOYABLE etc
There is a lot of education out there today that has people playing mind games with horses.
I know because I have them come to me in tears when they get to the point their horse hates them and is un-rideable because of it and we fix the problem in 5 minutes by re-creating an honest, up front loving relationship between horse and rider with respect and fairness and eliminate the games.
Do you like it when someone plays mind games with you?? It is disrespectful and kills relationships.
If you want a horse to walk on a float just ask it normally and kindly, don't stand there twirling a lead at the poor thing for goodness sake.
You may get the horse on the float that way but you would have just killed your relationship. And relationship would get your horse loading itself kindly and relaxed into that float every time.
Be up front, fair and kind to your horse and it will create a bond that will see you through any equine sporting or recreational demands, and will grow stronger in time.
Your horse will be happy, express itself more and more and be the content horse it has a right to be.