Cribbing, stall kicking, weaving, and any number of other self-destructive or barn-destructive behaviours have historically been categorized as ‘vices’. They were held to be transmissible from one affected horse to another by observation, and they made it more difficult to sell a horse. Some vices were connected with physical ailments, and for all these reasons they were often physically prevented. What is the modern take on ‘vices’, and how do we deal with them?
Progress is made, but progress is also lost. It can be hard to remain committed to the training job and push through without getting discouraged. Here is what you need to know about training through relapse so that both you and your horse come out the other side encouraged and with the trained response you were trying to achieve.
Where did our word ‘aid’ come from, in reference to the cues we apply to our horses to provoke a response? Its history is pretty interesting, as well as the effect the literal translation can have on our actions. Do our aids today do what they were invented thousands of years ago to do? Continue reading
Did you wish your horse would slam on the brakes right when you ask? Do you make it halfway around the arena before he finally halts? Or worse, do you reach the barbed wire fence a little too soon? Retraining the stop response is fairly easy — here’s how. Continue reading
Conditioning is a major part of the horse’s skill training regime, which is usually what I talk about here. An understanding of how muscles work is essential to being able to train and use a horse without causing injury. This is a summary of basic, necessary, scientific information. Continue reading
Lazy, pushy, ill-mannered, stubborn, dumb, crafty, forward, dominant, alpha, moody, sassy, difficult and rebellious—all of these words are regularly used to describe horses with exactly the same problem.
Following exercises and taking quizzes to develop feel and timing are all well and good. But once you have begun developing this skill, how do you know where to apply it, when to use it, and how it works best? Continue reading