5. YOU & YOUR HORSES BEHAVIOUR
I would not like to imagine what horses would be like without feelings, a personality, energy, choices, yet over and over again I encounter riders who would like them to have none of the above so they can simply sit pretty and push buttons to get the desired result without learning.
Why are bombproof horses something so many seek, yet never find? This is because horses have feelings, choices, good days and bad days, just like any other living creature. A horse that is bombproof can be made into something else.
The majority of trainers out there will agree, a horse can be turned into a dangerous animal in a matter of seconds with the right / or wrong situation. A bombproof horse can be made into a nervous wreck with the 'right' treatment.
-A horse is a herd animal
-A horse weighs much more than a human
-A horse has a fear and flight stampede instinct.
-A horse will respond with aggression when annoyed / upset constantly.
-A horse will not want to be caught if they don't trust the catcher
-A horse will not want to be ridden if they don't trust the rider
-A horse will be nervous if the rider is acting nervous
Horses will react according to how they are treated / their environment.
This is where those who seek to ride must always do so with the right support network and information to make sure the learner is not doing things to make the horse react badly, so they understand what is going on.
I have seen horses turn nasty in a few seconds and vice versa just with a little bit of misunderstanding or lack of knowledge on the riders part. So many times I see horses which love being ridden go to a new home where the rider seeks physical tuition that attempts to dominate the horse...then watch the horse go from a placid, sweet, caring animal to a sour, hateful, sad creature which misbehaves more and more. All beginners need to understand this and not attempt riding without learning constantly from the right source, because horses can be trained or untrained in seconds.
So sorry to all those looking for a shortcut horse that will absorb all their wrongdoings, that horse does not exist. Much like a quiet obedient well mannered child would not remain the same in behaviour if treated unfairly.
If you manage to acquire a lovely bombproof horse, and you are just starting out, please do the right thing by your horse and don't try to dominate it or instill fear of you into it. Create a fair, gentle relationship with it and you will cement a great horsey future for the both of you.
If you don't, you may find your horse turns into something not so lovely.