The Art of Natural Dressage

Working with the Horse's Initiative
It is currently Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:51 am

All times are UTC+01:00




Post new topic  Reply to topic  [ 23 posts ]  Go to page Previous 1 2
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 9:04 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2007 3:20 pm
Posts: 1822
Location: Norway
I'm sorry - I just read your last post now....

I can feel your pain.

I have two things to say.. ;)

1. Let go of your expactations - just be there....

2. Start clickertraining!!


I have worked as a dog-instructor some. And I have seen the most uninterested dogs change over night!

I want to tell you the story I love the most (guess other here have herad it but...).


Few years ago i held a course for owners wanting to competite in obedience with their dogs. There was one owner there with a clumber spaniel. She had joined ALL the courses in the world. But the dog had absolutely NO interest in her, her treats, her play, her games - whatsoever. She (the dog) ONLY wanted to go around and sniff the ground. (She COULD make her sit and so - she even did agility - but the dog had absolutely NO interest). During the first lesson I had no idea what to do with the dog - as it seemed like nothing worked....

BUT - int he end of that lesson I asked if I could try something with her. And I managed to fool the dog with the clicker. To lay down, get the click and reward - AND believeing it was HER idea!!! And the last thing I think is the most important thing! It was HER idea!! SHE was in charge for what would happen! Suddenly she gained interest in the treats!! (Wich we did not even manage to put in her mouth a few minutes earlier... :funny: ). We did only a few (2-3) repetitions that day, and the owner went home.

next week - I could not beleive my eyes!! I thaught she had braught a different dog! I actually had to ask! (as I know she has more of the same breed). Before we even started, the dog sat, stood, laied down - anything - without any any any questions for it. She was SO eager to have fun with her owner!!


I have no idea how things went for those two later - but the change I saw then was absolutely amazing....

You might say it is for the treats only - but hey! This dog didnæt WANT the same treats before! She had NO interest in them!!!




Relaxe, have fun - don't expect mirakles ower night. Your horses loves you! They are just not used to be such a big part of the deal! NH-training makes horses like this! And I guess it maybe takes longer time to let them feel free when they have been trained with pressure this way - and especially to listen to your lightest pressure. They will ALWAYS read some pressure from you then... I guess you have to be very very calm in your body and signals a periode - to prevent them reading pressure. Chew, gasp, turn away from them - anything you know your horses use to do when they are calming down pressure signals.....


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 1:38 pm 

Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:33 pm
Posts: 33
Location: New York, USA
Thank you so much for your reply Kirsti. I really loved your post! Stories like that make me feel so much better! :yes: :yes: :yes:

I'm a bit sorry I made that post...I was feeling pretty upset, and probably should have waited a bit before posting. I had just gone out to see my horses. It was so windy out, and they were all gathered in and around their shed. When I showed up, no one even flickered their ears towards me, except for Cal. He looked at me and layed his ears flat back. :ieks: He never acts like that! I took it personally, I really shouldn't have, I know. Another thing for me to improve! :smile: I've been thinking about it, trying to think why he would react like that. He was very much telling me to stay away. At this point my conclusion is that he still does expect me to do things with me, and there was no way he wanted me to take him away from his shelter from the wind.

In any case, I went back out later (after I made that post), when all the horses were out eating hay, rather then hiding from the wind. It was such a difference. They saw me and every perked their ears and came walking over. What?! Where did this come from? Haha. My horse Buttons was following me all around, and everyone else was eagerly trying to get attention (Buttons kept chasing everyone else off).

So the situation when you see your horses obviously can really affect their attitude. I didn't hang out long in the first situation. I'm wondering now if I should have stuck around and entertained myself some before leaving. I'm curious what people here think of the old idea that you should always end on a good note or stop when ever something really awesome happens. Do you feel that it makes a difference when you end your time with your horses?


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 2:36 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 9:58 pm
Posts: 1620
Location: Western Cape, South Africa
Well it seems you have two threads going now....but that's great!!!
Please don't feel bad about your post, it's all a stepping stone to learning.
You have had some great replies so I'm hoping you are now inspired......

With Morgan at the beginning he didn't want me sharing his space and it was really hard for me to respect that. Sometimes he would go off to snooze under the tree. If I went over he would move away and then come back again and take up his snooze stance. I very much believe horses are just like people. If it was raining and I had just found a dry spot and got comfortable and someone wanted to show me something, I don't think I would come!!!!
Equally Morgan hated having his hay time cut into. He doesn't want to be bothered by me. When he moved stables he had his own agenda getting to find his slot in the herd and I had to respect that. So I think what I am saying is do something else if he doesn't want to be with you and come back later. When he does show interest, be prepared to make it worth his while coming over.

For me it's always a good note. Even if Morgan doesn't want to do what I want to, we find something we enjoy together. Your horse will normally tell you when he has had enough (if he is at liberty he will leave) but sooner or later you will find he never wants to leave you and then it feels bad to leave them at the gate!!!!
When you really let go of expectations you will find things changing.

_________________
Annette O'Sullivan

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans. - John Lennon


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 3:19 pm 

Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:33 pm
Posts: 33
Location: New York, USA
I am definitely getting some super inspiration from everyone here. I love it! Almost everything everyone says makes so much sense to me. Like how you just said:
Quote:
For me it's always a good note. Even if Morgan doesn't want to do what I want to, we find something we enjoy together.

Such an amazing attitude! :love: I want to be like you!

And your example about it raining. That's exactly what I started thinking after I finally got over bieng upset. I have so much to learn, and I love how everyone here is so open about sharing their experiences and giving advice. (I spent some time in the Parelli Savvy Club, and on their forum they had a rule that you couldn't post anything asking for or giving advice. It was extremely frustrating!)

I just had so much fun out with my horses! I think this place is already rubbing off on me!


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 5:21 pm 
Site Admin

Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:44 pm
Posts: 1937
Location: The Hague, Netherlands
Hi Jen,

Such happiness in your pictures!! Great to see! Don't worry too much all will figure itself out!
Welcome here!

Kind regards

Bianca

_________________
Image


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 10:36 pm 

Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:57 pm
Posts: 146
Daft as it sounds,but have you tried asking your horses what is up? Or say "what can I do for you?" or "what do I need to do?". You could try running through the ideas you have about yourself in your head and feel each one and see what your horses respond to. So when your horses turned away what were you feeling and thinking? When they followed you what were you feeling and thinking? Horses always mirror us emotionally. The energy in your pictures shows me a person who already has what she is looking for, even if she does not realise it. My guess is that your horses are simply waiting for you to figure it out. They are trying to teach you something about yourself. If they turn away from you, is it because you are turning away from them in some way, or -more likely- turning away from yourself? Not feeling good enough often takes us out of the moment and away from who we really are and the horses sense that. If I feel inadequate and insecure around Monty he gets insulted as if to say "I chose you because you are worthy of me, and here you are behaving like you are not. Come back when you believe in my choice, otherwise go somewhere else. While you behave as if you are unworthy/ not good enough then you are. If you behave like the strong, authentic person you really are then I will be there and we can have fun."

Klaus Hempfling has a good way to look at it, he gets people to play with a ball or something near but not with their horses, this way you forget your thoughts and your desires and are in the moment. The horse always gets curious when they see the authentic human before them. When we play we are innocent again and free from doubt and fear. When we have an agenda other than being ourselves they feel that too.

In my own life I have always found this to be the case. I have tried it with a few of my friends and their horses also. One friends horse always backed away from her and would not come readily towards her. We played around with different emotions and found it was because she was afraid to let him come too close because she didn't want to burden him, plus she didn't naturally reach out to others for help, she thought she had to do it all alone. When she gave him the choice rather than deciding for him, and asked him if he would help, he was there for her, and has been ever since, as long as she remembers to involve him more. That, he says is what he is there for and why he is such a big, strong horse! :D :l: :l: :l:

I hope some of it makes sense, it is hard to explain.


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 12, 2009 11:22 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 4:10 am
Posts: 3688
Location: Pacific Northwest U.S.
Natalie wrote:

[...]

In my own life I have always found this to be the case. I have tried it with a few of my friends and their horses also. One friends horse always backed away from her and would not come readily towards her. We played around with different emotions and found it was because she was afraid to let him come too close because she didn't want to burden him, plus she didn't naturally reach out to others for help, she thought she had to do it all alone. When she gave him the choice rather than deciding for him, and asked him if he would help, he was there for her, and has been ever since, as long as she remembers to involve him more. That, he says is what he is there for and why he is such a big, strong horse! :D :l: :l: :l:

I hope some of it makes sense, it is hard to explain.


I can't speak for others (though I expect some agreement) but it does make sense to me, and you explained it exactly as it should be explained.

How relationships are built, human or equine, or human to equine.

It is, to me, a kind of clumsy but fun sort of activity if one doesn't get too serious and too full of outcome intent. Like a great romance, it starts with having fun, a little testing, some risk taking, some glee and silliness, some moments of "oh God what have I gotten myself into," and then back to more glee and silliness.

Kate and I still have lots of silliness and we've known each other for coming up to 40 years now.

Notice that, as you say, acting like one's self, is exactly what the HORSE does to us. And it's a kind of silent invitation to be ourselves too. I've put up with rain and snow and more rain, and now more snow is coming, and have not have all that much time to just go and be with my horse Altea, and her new baby, Bonnie, but I do make a real pest of myself, and yet still let them express their disgust with me, and turn away, or accept and welcome their curiousity at this weird creature the comes into their world with yummy food, delicious scritches and rubs, and makes foolish sounds then hands out treats.

I have a feeling, since I did such things with adult horses in the past, that what I do with Bonnie the baby, is exactly what I do with any new relationship. I take the risk of being silly, of her being put off by me (due to her wild instincts still being intact -- and I intend they will stay that way) but still both of us coming back for more as we work out "how we will be with each other."

It is the essence of respect in relationship to NOT be stuffy, and to NOT be afraid of being the fool from time to time. Sometimes Bonnie is all over me, and other times she is coy and shy and dodges behind mom, but I just let it pass and often within a few seconds she changes her mind and wants to nibble my jacket elbow to test for taste.
Or to see what I will do.

Those horses that are essentially gentle, as most are even if they are shy, will still play if you present yourself in a way that will start the ball rolling.

And yet each horse is so different, and each relationship so unique.

I read recently that Joycelyn (Horsefever) in Canada sings to her horse while working on his hind foot. SINGS! She's NUTS! But then if it works, I want to be nuts in the same way.

Whatever works with your horse. There is no formula. None, anyway, but building a friendship.

And horse can teach us how if we don't know already. Better than any clinician in the world, even better than ;) ME!

"Keep exploring," I would say to your friend.

The Buddha said, "don't just do something, stand there." Or possibly he didn't really say anything.

But then standing there IS doing something that is most often needed.

I wonder if there is any limit to what we might do with our horse to open the door to the relationship? Including, Natalie, to change our own inner state of being (that horses really do read so well) by "asking your horses, what is up."

I do not believe that horses know human words, other than symbols, but I do believe they know a language of our body even better than we humans know it ourselves. It is exceedingly hard to lie to a horse. So asking makes perfect sense. Along with letting go of our outcome goal oriented intent.

Donald

_________________
Love is Trust, trust is All
~~~~~~~~~
So say Don, Altea, and Bonnie the Wonder Filly.


Top
   
 Post subject: Re: Hello!
PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2009 3:17 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:01 pm
Posts: 1479
Location: Quebec, Canada
Quote:
I read recently that Joycelyn (Horsefever) in Canada sings to her horse while working on his hind foot. SINGS! She's NUTS! But then if it works, I want to be nuts in the same way.

Guess what Donald: I'm always singing when I'm in the barn. I have a satellite radio and have my country music on. I know all the songs so I'm always singing. I've taught Corado a few dancing steps and now I'm teaching Magik.

Just a note to tell you Jen2Cal I know how it is to start a new relationship with your horses. I too was in Parelli for a few years. Loved everything about it except phase 3-4. I couldn't do it anymore.
For the last 1.5 years, I've been putting all my energy on my relationship and having fun. I started off my horses wanted nothing to do with me at liberty. If you read my daily training, you'll see I was pretty frustrated when trying to play with them. They have been at liberty for the last year (they are now home with me since last June) and now they are closer to me than when they were haltered.
They run to me (not all the time but sometimes). If one doesn't want to play with me, fine I'll play with the other. For sure, they don't like that, they do get jealous and then he will come back. when that happens, I gently ask him to leave, I no longer want to play with him. I feel bad about that but he chose not to play with me in the first place. And I continue playing with my other horse. They both understand and don't get frustrated when they are pushed away.

I also clicker train which changed EVERYTHING!! I took online courses and now I can teach my horses anything because they know the cue.
Lately, I've taught Corado to stretch. I would click when he would urinate. Right after, I would stretch my leg and say "stretch". It took one week. Then out of the blue, he was standing beside me and he stretched his front leg. Wow, he got clicked and super treated.
They love this kind of training and it does get them motivated which is good.
Anyways, I also agree with everyone. Take your time, and start a clicker training program. YOu will have as much fun and they are having.

Good luck and we are all here to help. Of course, we all learn from one another so I'm sure I will learn from you.
Jocelyne

_________________
Jocelyne
[Hug your animals everyday. You never know!


Top
   
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic  Reply to topic  [ 23 posts ]  Go to page Previous 1 2

All times are UTC+01:00


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Limited Color scheme created with Colorize It.