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training & behaviour

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Training and Behaviour


A young cowboy was working some horses in a round corral. An old cowboy came by, watched for awhile, then asked, "Young man, would you like to know the secret of good horsemanship?" He said he would. The old man made a fist and said, "If you can open my fist, you will learn the secret of good horsemanship." The young guy poked, pried, thumped, pinched, squeezed, pushed, punched, and shoved the fist. He finally said, "I can't get it open. What's the secret of getting your fist open, so I can learn the secret of good horsemanship?" The old cowboy said, "You could have asked." (Source: unknown)


It's a shame we often see a lot of poking, pushing and shoving going on by people with horses. Something that's totally unnecessary and something which is seen by horses as human behaviour they totally don't understand.

So, before you start training a horse it's quite necessary to understand the natural behaviour of a horse. Horses act upon instinct and survival abillities, and don't have behaviour patterns like we humans have. They don't take revenge, or pick on you or act in a human-like way, as much as we would like to think they do. Sure, some horses seem to devolop a sense of humor and some horses are more emotional than others, but they can not have hardship feelings or be as sly as to plan some kind of trick on you at some stage! They just behave naturally or as they have been taught to behave through experience. Now it's up to you to give the horse good experiences, to be able to build a partnership with him based on trust. This is what I define as true horsemanship..

Here are some articles about training and behaviour. I thought it would be best to split this section in to these two parts and chapters, adding a chapter everytime I think of something useful to write. Like I said, I am still learning a lot my self, but I think you might find some sections useful. :)



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