The Art of Natural Dressage

Working with the Horse's Initiative
It is currently Thu Nov 15, 2018 2:44 pm

All times are UTC+01:00




Post new topic  Reply to topic  [ 65 posts ]  Go to page Previous 1 2 3 4 5 Next
Author Message
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 5:51 am 

Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 9:30 am
Posts: 289
Location: Australia
OH MY. Seeing that as a posted message, it is even longer than I thought. :ieks: SORRY!!!! I don't know when to shut up. :blush: :blush: :blush: :blush: :blush: :blush:

Oh Jess I am so sorry that happened! :ieks: How terrifying. I understand completely why you are so angry. :evil: :evil: :evil: I would be the same!!! :sad: :evil:

:f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f:


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:03 am 

Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 9:30 am
Posts: 289
Location: Australia
Okay, even when I am embarrassed at the length of my other post, and worried about what I have written, it seems I cannot keep away. :blush:

Josepha wrote:
As an alpha is chosen, I can not believe a horse would ever choose someone who is abusive as alpha.

Therefore the matter resolves itself.

Being a dominant bully or dictator... the moment your 'subjects' have the chance to ridd themselves of you any which way, they shall.
That is only natural, instinct of self preservation.

Be it horse, human or otherwise.

Josepha,

I agree that no one would "choose" someone who is abusive or a bully or dictator. That is, if they have a real choice. But the cruelest people I have ever known had dogs and horses that fawned all over them. Followed them everywhere. Could be 'free', loose, and did not leave. Sometimes the instinct of self preservation says that the best, the only safe thing to do is to stay with this person and do everything they ask, never hurt them or run away even if you have the (physical) opportunity to do so. And maybe even have ears up and look okay with it, if that is what they want. (But usually you can see in the eyes that they are not okay at all). And by 'cruelest people' I mean extremely cruel, not that they just used stronger pressure in their training than I would. I mean shockingly cruel.

But... I also think the same result can be achieved with methods that would perhaps not be considered 'cruel' by most, but are still very harsh. The horse realises that the best and only option is to behave in this certain way with the person. But it is not that they have chosen to do this because they like or trust them, even though it may look that way at a glance. (Of COURSE, I am not saying that anyone who uses pressure, and seems to have a relationship with their horse, has achieved it like that - I know people who use pressure and bits and lunge and do everything fairly traditionally, and do have truly wonderful relationships with their horses.)

Just an observation...


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 9:10 am 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6072
Location: Dresden, Germany
kate wrote:
I'm sorry if I sound defensive. That's what it is - defending my own views, not attacking anyone or even trying to argue. :sad: :sad: :sad: I'm just sharing my own personal thoughts and experiences, I hope that's clear. :sweat:


Oh Kate, to me you do not sound defensive or attacking at all, contrary. And while I was reading your post, I thought "yes, yes, yes" all the time. I so agree with you on everything and I want to thank you for posting it! :)

One point I wanted to pick out is what you said about showing an attitude. I could not agree more. For me the ones I really trust, no matter if human or horse, are those who are honest in showing their emotions, because then I can rely on them as I know what is going on. When I think about the people I really trust, nobody of them has an expression of slight arrogance (those slightly arrogant and ever so confident-looking people I maybe can admire, but not depend on). Those who I trust and would put my life in their hands honestly show me when they are afraid or worried or sad. They never try to prove their position to me. Their worth for me is proven by their actions and for me that is more than enough.

Not saying that it is the same for everyone, just my own perception of things. :smile:


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 9:52 am 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:40 pm
Posts: 4733
Location: Belgium
kate wrote:
Okay, even when I am embarrassed at the length of my other post, and worried about what I have written, it seems I cannot keep away. :blush:

Josepha wrote:
As an alpha is chosen, I can not believe a horse would ever choose someone who is abusive as alpha.

Therefore the matter resolves itself.

Being a dominant bully or dictator... the moment your 'subjects' have the chance to ridd themselves of you any which way, they shall.
That is only natural, instinct of self preservation.

Be it horse, human or otherwise.

Josepha,

I agree that no one would "choose" someone who is abusive or a bully or dictator. That is, if they have a real choice. But the cruelest people I have ever known had dogs and horses that fawned all over them. Followed them everywhere. Could be 'free', loose, and did not leave. Sometimes the instinct of self preservation says that the best, the only safe thing to do is to stay with this person and do everything they ask, never hurt them or run away even if you have the (physical) opportunity to do so. And maybe even have ears up and look okay with it, if that is what they want. (But usually you can see in the eyes that they are not okay at all). And by 'cruelest people' I mean extremely cruel, not that they just used stronger pressure in their training than I would. I mean shockingly cruel.

But... I also think the same result can be achieved with methods that would perhaps not be considered 'cruel' by most, but are still very harsh. The horse realises that the best and only option is to behave in this certain way with the person. But it is not that they have chosen to do this because they like or trust them, even though it may look that way at a glance. (Of COURSE, I am not saying that anyone who uses pressure, and seems to have a relationship with their horse, has achieved it like that - I know people who use pressure and bits and lunge and do everything fairly traditionally, and do have truly wonderful relationships with their horses.)

Just an observation...


Indeed so. It might seem that they follow out of free will.
Maybe it seemed all Germans followed Hitler, all Russians love Stalin and all Belgians agreed with a King torturing and exploiding an African country....

The huger the fear, the more difficult it becomes to see a way to break free. Because if there is only the smallest chance, that one will not succed, the retribution will be to horrible to bare.
To more abuse we take, the less courage we have. And what about those left behind?
Think about women who are beaten up by their husbands. "Just leave him" everyone says... but appearantly, it is not that simple. Now would a massive eartquick not be a great chance to get away, let those behind think you died?

Horses, much like slaves, do not see a way out.
What if they do make a run for it? They know what is out there. Cars, buildings and more people, probably like the one they are dealing with now.

And this brings me to a question I ALWAYS get
(So thank you for bringing this up):
"If you let a horse free like you do, let him decide if he obliges or not, then you will be in serious trouble when there is a life treathening situation where you horse HAS to obey. For instance in traffic or when he is broken free".

I get that constantly.

And my reply is this:
First of all, I can not believe a human can have a 100% control over a horse as a horse simply outnumbers a human at least 5 to 10 times by weight alone. So it does not really matter if the horse is very obedient, it is never a 100% water tight. Look at all the 'accidents' around the world everyday. Mostly with horses who are really obedient all the time and do not seem to have a mind of their own. And all of a sudden they spoke and run off... leaving a human very hurt on the ground.

Second, if one does not force a horse into anything, but offers the horse the choice to find out if the chooses we humans make are of benefit for him, and they actual are.... Then the trust kicks in.
Communication starts and if we are lucky, even love.

When that point is reached, it is an ongoing process of learning to know and trust each other.

If one truely experiences over the years, that an other ALWAYS not only means well, but actually DOES well;
The moment panick rises, the horse will turn to that person. Just as any human would to such a person. Who do you go to when disaster strikes?
One you love and trust and never forced you into anything?
Or those who can make you do anything because you dare not say no?

Now the other way around. When one is always forced to take the decissions of a dominant person, be it good or bad for you...
The moment panic arises, you will not even hear that person, or you shall take advantage of the fact that you can finally really get away.
Even if it could mean sudden death (for you or that person)... you do not care, freedom is all you can think of. And it is normal, instinct takes over, to safe you.

Certain memories come to mind. The one where Owen and I were at a clinic and he broke free from the paddock and was running towards the road when people called me. I ran outside and I saw him go... I screamed with every ounce of love and fear I had in my soul, I screamed his name: OWEN!!!!
He stopped death, turned and came running to me...
To the auditors astonishment...

When my first horse love Jimmy was in the hospital fighting for his live, with a survival chance of 10%, the professor who handled the case said with an astonished face:
"I never incountered a horse which fights so hard for his life!
Normally, they give up really fast. But this one keeps fighting. I am a man of science. But for the first time I am wondering if this one maybe has something to fight for... something he longs to return to?"

I believe that be it man or animal, we can be prisoners of our own fear. because of the instinct of selfpreservation, and often because we want to protect others in the same situation, especially horses being herd animals.

I believe that selfrespect and love for our self and others can set us free, as soon as the occasion arises.
And it always does... sooner or later.

Warm regards,

Josepha

_________________
www.equusuniversalis.com


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 10:02 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:45 pm
Posts: 788
i am sorry if my posts have been taken in a different context as they were intended. i move around in herds of around fifty. most of my horses are rescues and they have past issues. one of the newest members is a hand reared and extreamly agressive and dangerouse horse. it is not his fault, but still, i use no agression, but i do have fairly strong bodylanguage when needed.

i have had a situation recently, where a yearling needed attention. it was bad weather, and the herd was in protection mode. the mare, whos yearling it was, had called the herd. now, i dont think that many of you could grasp the situation, as i am not sure how many have handled yearlings, and by the sounds of it there are not many here that have been in such an enormouse herd. (the herd of fifty actually has three seperate herds in it, but an interesting thing happens when there is an injured horse, they all group together to protect. now they know me, but they do not know vets)

now, we have a several hundred acre paddock, that opens to another the same, some one had opend the gate allowed them into a resting paddock. the mare called, the herds all came galloping. i walked forward to about 10 meters in front of the mare and filly, and all i had to do was lift my energy, lift my hands and ask the galloping herd to stop. i stand with belief that they will listen, and they did. the entire herd stood in front of me, and i was able to walk backwards and beckon them to another area while the filly and mare were taken away.

i did not use agression, but i do believe that i can ( i am editing this, as it came out wrong) i do believe that i can do the job, not i do believe that i can use agression. i dont believe i can do that). this to me is agorance, not because i arogantly believe that i can control them, i cannot. but i believe that they will listen because they know i will only do what is best for them. (i just edited this too, i really should read it befor i post it. i wrote that i woud do what is best for me, ahhhhhhh, it is not what i intended!!!)

it is very easy for those that have few hores to do things without even using bodylanguage or to have to be leader. but i am responsible for looking after a great amout of horses and when things do not run smooth, you need to be the leader.

as a young girl, befor and after school i used to feed and take care of over 100 horses that were all rescues. it was a doctor pair that dedicated their lives to rescues. i learnt an incredible amount there., i also learned alot from real country men. ( they are not all hard and horrible) they would spend alot of time with herds of wild brumbies. i learned alot from these people. i took on information that suited me, and worked in a way i was comefortable with, but i disreguarded alot.

what it comes down to i think is that it is great to have these discussions. we all have so much to learn. each person needs to " make their own recipe" for how to best look after horses. i have done this by dedicating my entire life to rescues, and by studying herds, (large herds, andmostly problematic horses) and i have discovered a way of communicating without any pressure or cruelty or agression, and it works well. all my horses end up completely fogiving people, and i think that this is the big reward.

there is no sense for me to try to explain how i use bodylanguage in large herds, as i dont think that i can explain it properly. i do not need to "drive horses away strongly" so i do not think that my words were understood at all. i know that i have alot to learn, but i know that each person has different horse personality types, different herd sises, and different ways to comunicate. it is sad that so many of us have seen so many bad things done by humans to horses, that words used in this forum, like alpha, and leader, and bodylanguage, and energy, all can have negative feels. because i feel totally that everyone on this forum is looking inside themselves, and searching for ways to be more in sync with our equine friends :love: we are all here with love for our horses, and we all have so much to learn.

_________________
just keep swimming, quote from nemo!:)
love jessy


Last edited by jessplum on Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 10:35 am 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6072
Location: Dresden, Germany
jessplum wrote:
the mare called, the herds all came galloping. i walked forward to about 10 meters in front of the mare and filly, and all i had to do was lift my energy, lift my hands and ask the galloping herd to stop. i stand with belief that they will listen, and they did. the entire herd stood in front of me, and i was able to walk backwards and beckon them to another area while the filly and mare were taken away.


That is exactly what I mean when I say that for me it is a situational thing. :smile: And in this context what you wrote here...

Quote:
i did not use agression, but i do believe that i can. this to me is agorance, not because i arogantly believe that i can control them, i cannot. but i believe that they will listen because they know i will only do what is best for me.


...is what I would want to do, too. BUT, and that is the important point for me, that is how I enter my little herd when what you call arrogance (and I maybe call energy or expression of confidence, but what's in a name) is necessary. When I need them to listen to me. I do not have this confident expression (in the sense of knowing that they will listen to me) when there is no reason for them to do what I say and accordingly I don't feel that arrogance, like in our training when I suggest things but it is completely up to them to listen to it or not. Then I don't want the slightest bit of arrogance to be involved. It's just neither the feeling I am having nor the message I am trying to send out then.

From what I saw in your videos I am sure that we don't actually differ in that point. :)

I am very happy to be able to read about your experiences with your herd. That is SO interesting. You are right, it seems like not many people here do have that many horses. But it might be good to remember that over here everyone is talking about his own situation. When Kate writes how she is doing things with her horses, understanding this as something that she does herself instead of as a judgement about or instruction for anyone else might help to see it as something that you can take or leave, without making inferences about anyone not knowing what he is talking about... because what she talked about was her way of doing things, and there she clearly is the expert. ;) If you feel that this is not what you want for your own interaction with your horses, that's just fine. Nobody is suggesting to take over her opinion or her ways.

I really appreciate your writing about your interaction with your horses and I can understand that NHE probably made you feel like others wanted to judge you. But this is not the case here, so no need for defense. :)

Warm Regards,
Romy


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:17 am 

Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2009 9:30 am
Posts: 289
Location: Australia
I will reply to everyone properly later, when I have a chance, but I just want to say now that Jess, I'm sorry, I think you might have the idea that I was having a go at you. I wasn't trying to at all.

Quote:
i do not need to "drive horses away strongly" so i do not think that my words were understood at all.

I didn't mean to imply that you did!! It's just that most people do this and suggest this, when they talk about using energy etc. or being 'a leader'. I wasn't only replying to your post, but talking about this topic in general.


Quote:
i have done this by dedicating my entire life to rescues, and by studying herds, (large herds, andmostly problematic horses) and i have discovered a way of communicating without any pressure or cruelty or agression, and it works well. all my horses end up completely fogiving people, and i think that this is the big reward.

And that's wonderful! I'm really sorry, I didn't mean to imply that I think you're wrong, or doing anything horrible to your horses, because I don't believe that AT ALL. :sad: I wish I hadn't said anything now.


Last edited by kate on Tue Mar 27, 2018 3:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:43 am 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:45 pm
Posts: 788
:f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f: :f:
i sm sorry to have upset the harmony of this wonderful forum, last night my baby was awake from 2 am, to 6 am, and i have only slept three broken and interupted hours. :sad: :sad: :sad: i have been taking personal offence to everything today. i chose to stay away from my horses today, and i should proably have stayed off the forum for the day too :blush:

being on NHE did get me defencive, especially about herds. i dont mean to knock anyyones knowledge of herds, i dont want to imply i know, but everyday i find myself defending my ways to people who want to do it differently, and lately, i have found that i have had alot of persecution. especially about the way i am with my stallion. people do not understand.

:D i am so happy to be here, and Romy, i feel seriously that you are one of the greatest horse persons that i have ever seen :love:

actually, i have so many new heros here on the forum. it was me, i was tired and have been bursting into tears still over gren! :sad: i just have found that all the pressure seems to hit at once. :f: :f: :f: :f: so my deepest apologies to anyone that i may have hurt, i am just super sensitive at the moment :love: :love: :love:

_________________
just keep swimming, quote from nemo!:)
love jessy


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:56 am 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:20 am
Posts: 6072
Location: Dresden, Germany
Image

I hope you will feel better soon... I can only imagine how you must feel about Grenny, I already got crazy when my sister simply took Titum for a walk without asking him or me several years ago, and that sure was not that horrible for him.


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:35 pm 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:40 pm
Posts: 4733
Location: Belgium
Hi Jess :)

Maybe I am missing something here, but your post starting with: "i am sorry if my posts have been taken in a different context as they were intended..."

To whom where you speaking?

Anyway, if it was to me or Romy, maybe I am just not able to explain my thoughts clear enough?
Allthough we (you and I ) use perhaps different words (And I explained what meaning I give to those I use), with every new wonderful discription of your large herd experience, you describe exactly what I (and I think Romy) mean and how we see things :yes:
This means, as before, I soooo agree with all you said (just use different terms thats all).

Which is wonderful to read for me! :clap: Seeing as I have learned the same things, even though I had only small herds to learn from and probably are not as advanced as you in communicating with a whole herd, lacking the experience.
Again, the things you tell, that is exactly how I teach horse culture in my cources, so this to me is sooo wonderful. Now I can tell a tale about a jess with a very large herd who has experienced this all first hand :cheers:

And I know to who I can turn if I have questions regarding the herd :applause:


So you are not upsetting the forum. (I so wonder why you think that...)

The only thing I was doing is explaining that we see things a like, but just use different terms. :) :f:

If that was al already clear to you, then just disregard this message and tell me to take a cup of coffee :green: :blonde:


Glad you are here! :friends:

_________________
www.equusuniversalis.com


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 1:41 pm 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Tue May 15, 2007 2:40 pm
Posts: 4733
Location: Belgium
Quote:
For me the ones I really trust, no matter if human or horse, are those who are honest in showing their emotions, because then I can rely on them as I know what's going on.


That is so beautiful Romy and soooo true I think!!!

And I also believe that this is the great gift horses have for humans:
That is the reason why humans finally can find themselves again, if they choose to be with horses with a pure heart, rather then use horses for some gain.

This is for instance, why Knights only became true knights after they were able to build relationships with horses.
That is the very core of Ralph's and mine academy TAONARA.

Warm regards,

Josepha

_________________
www.equusuniversalis.com


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 6:54 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 8:56 am
Posts: 247
Location: Austin, Texas, USA
This is such a terrific topic. I think that as it is really the core of how we work that it is naturally lending itself to impassioned discussion. One thing I hate about the on line world is that it is so easy to take anything wrong. We have no tone of voice, no volume, no inflection, no BODY LANGUAGE to lend warmth and tenor to our worlds. Little offenses are easily perceived especially by sensitive types. I am assuredly prone to this, but I believe that AND is a safe place. FEEL THE LOVE EVERYBODY :love: :love: :love: :love: :love:

I hope to sooner or later get my a new computer (not that this one is not great) so that I can use the first good Mac voice recognition software (which runs only on Intel Macs and I of course have the last non-Intel Mac :yawn: ). My hands really do not want me to use the computer. It drives me crazy, as the days I have some time I want to write, here and in many other places (like my journal), but if I do not rest the hands they do not get better. I'd really like for them to get back to something like normal. I shot the past two days and they are all ouchy. I dream of voice recognition software as I am a writer and I miss it so. Needless to say, I'd love to enter into this meaningful discussion in a meaningful manner, but should not at this moment. :sad:

There are so many tiny differences, both real and semantic. To me, what I am seeing is not such a huge gap, but variations on the theme of leadership. Not superiority. Something complex and deeply personal. I think many of us express leadership qualities when there is a need. This gets me from the dominance side of leadership (though you know I do not mean DOMINANT) but to the responsibility side of leadership. To meet our responsibilities as our horses guardians in a world where we are enabled and they are disabled, we must meet our role as responsible guardians which requires times of leadership. That's like so many people who drive me crazy screaming about their rights this and their rights that and have never uttered anything about responsibility. These things always go hand in hand. We are all in this society at some level/in some fashion and we all have all of it on our plate.

Woo - stop typing now. Arm already complains. But... there's a cent worth, anyway.

_________________
______________________________
Looking for the beauty in the truth and the truth in the beauty.


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:03 pm 
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 2:32 am
Posts: 3270
Location: New York
Hi everybody!

As someone who's herd experience is, in any real way, limited to a herd of 2 (plus Leigh the horse wannabe ;) ), this has been a fabulous conversation!! I've learned a lot!

Jess and Kate, reading from a distance, I think that you have, ultimately, very similar approaches to one another -- as well as to Romy and Josepha (and I would guess many of us here). And while you both have apologized for feeling defensive, nothing that either of you wrote was in ANY way offensive! ;) Beautiful, passionate, thoughtful articulations of your experiences and the conclusions that you've drawn from those experiences.

I think that often when it feels like we're having very different opinions (especially about something that we know a lot about, and feel passionate about, and have gotten grief about our beliefs about before!) the differences are really often about how we try to understand the nuances in our words.

I know we all have words that catch us and bother us because of how their meaning settles into our heads and experiences. For example, I have a "thing" about the word "training" with horses because it suggests to me that it's all about form and submission. Romy, if I remember right, doesn't mind the word training, but hates the word "teaching." (I think for many of the same reasons! ;)) The words mean different things to us, but I think we're actually really close in how we think about it.

And it looks to me that those of you who have experience with herds each have different ways of processing ideas that are really quite similar.

Again, using what Romy has written (sorry, Romy! but I just love how you think and it always challenges me to go deeper into my own thinking! so you're my sacrifical victim... ;) )

Romy is, as she writes here, is more comfortable than I am with identifying herself as the leader of her horses. However, in practice, Romy respects her horses and from moment to moment gives them more freedom to make choices than almost anyone here. (Including me!!!! Bigtime!!! I aspire to have the competence and courage that she does with her guys, the openness, the patience!) (And then there is Josepha's gentleness, which brings me to my knees, it's so beautiful to watch...)

Edit!! :) In yet another case in point about the vagaries of online communication -- I was remembering/extrapolating from what Romy wrote about situational leadership in a way that I don't think she intended! Oops! :blush: Sorry, Romy! So I made sense in my head of what I read/remembered as a different comfort level about claiming leadership than she meant! So, I illustrate, without meaning to, my point about nuance! ;)

So, as I think about this, a lot of how I am working these ideas has to do with my groping to find the right place to start for me, emotionally and intellectually, so I can go in the direction that feels so right for me. If I'm brutally honest with myself, a lot of my thoughts about leadership vs. equality have to do with how I HOPE to be with my horses, what I'm working towards, and is less true in practice than I'd like. So, for me, working towards NOT thinking of myself as a leader is really helpful.

Anyway, I certainly don't think any apologies are necessary from anyone! And I hope that you both feel, Jess and Kate, heard and respected and appreciated! Because you most certainly are.

So I'm offering some virtual cake :^: and a cup of tea :coffee: and some flowers :giveflower: to everyone here, because I think it's a wonderful party!

:friends:
Leigh

_________________
"Ours is the portal of hope. Come as you are." -- Rumi
www.imaginalinstitute.com


Last edited by Leigh on Thu Jan 29, 2009 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 7:55 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 28, 2008 7:15 pm
Posts: 123
Location: the Minnesota prairie, USA
The defensiveness saddens me because I have spent so much time thinking about this wonderful small world internet horse society (the whole online horse world) and I don't like the "only if you are promoted heavily do you know what you're talking about" attitude. Too many kind but less than aggressive people can get the message that they are not fit to be 'in the know'. (and only artists who have been promoted and patronized have any talent - yeah right :yawn: - ) of course some of each who are promoted do great work - don't want a total stereotype!)

Thankfully it is the opposite here :cheers:

While I'm far away from my horse I continue to enjoy your journeys - be blessed and happy along your way and give your horses and honorable-shetties a nose smooch and a hug from me --okay? you already know they are the greatest teachers.

mouschi


Top
   
PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2009 8:50 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 4:10 am
Posts: 3688
Location: Pacific Northwest U.S.
NATURE'S WAY OF MAKING US BEHAVE.
Odd title, no?

Long ago, when I first had the light bulb moment (which only took about 10 years to come on) about our symphonic communication system I was struck with how difficult it might be to make it all work in concern. 8) (yes, pun intended).

There are folks that are extraordinarily good at body language with horses. Pat Parelli comes to mind. He's a ballet dancer in this regard.

On the other hand, since we have all the senses the horse uses, especially vision, smell, and sound, if we are to be deliberate in our message to the horse we will have to have the coordination of a juggler. No, BETTER coordination.

To me there is only one answer. I've said it before. And that is to be genuine.

If a horse is in a moment of stillness, for instance, reluctant to pass through a doorway, as an example, the orthodoxy of horse handling tells us to push him forward with voice, crop, and motion.

But the fact is, if you become still as the horse, watch his expression, you will know the moment he is about to wheel and run, or, more desirable, to take that step or leap forward.

In your stillness the horse can read you, and read you he will. Does your calmness indicate and transmit confidence and support? Are you giving off signals instead of anxiety and anticipation of a blowup?

If you clear your mind, and focus on a quiet success for the horse, you won't jiggle your leg, or flutter a finger, or flash your eyes suddenly at the horse, and he will not be inclined, for your message, to wheel and run.

He will be suspended in space and time with the challenge before him waiting for his own courage and confidence and your support.

I urge you, if you ever have access to the Parelli DVD of Pat putting a little dark Mustang looking horse (it wasn't) over a tarp you will see all this take place. Stop just before the horse approaches the tarp that final time before he crosses, and put it in very slow speed, and watch pat. And the horse.

While the buildup to the moment is very much a dance of pressure release (negative reinforcement) the final moments move very much into what you and I might think of as an AND approach. Pat is "asking" the horse to cross as quietly as a whisper. He is still, and his body makes the tiniest whisper. As does his hatbrim. As I recall it was his right hand and the hat brim together than whispered to the horse, "you can do it."

NOT, "get across there before I chase you over."

Is the horse our equal if we develop these sophisticated methods?

If we are patient and supportive while we wait for our friend to make up their mind, but we keep in our mind and our unconscious messages to them our genuine desire for a particular outcome, are we not still equals?

Is it not a two way communication?

People that watch me train a horse to get into a trailer sometimes have a difficult time understanding why I might put the horse toward the trailer a step and then back off, or circle away. Or just as the horse for the first time puts a foot in, ask him to back, and take him away from the trailer.

It is often that he is not ready for more than that one step, and he told me so by how he approached, and how he took that step. When he tells me, on the next attempt, that he is ready for two, I'll take him away only after two.

Is he my equal? Yes, in the sense that our communication is as fully as possible two way. Though we have different languages, and he has been gracious enough to try and learn mine, we are still, in the end, equals.

Equals if I am clear, intentional, uncomplicated, and direct. No lying to the horse. No tricking the horse. No 'cleverness' at the horse's expense.

Of course when we play we may agree that both of us can break the rules we have for more serious things such as trailer loading. :D

When someone says to me their horse doesn't respect them I often have to bite my tongue to not say, "then it's obvious you have failed to communicate your respect of him."

Donald

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


Top
   
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic  Reply to topic  [ 65 posts ]  Go to page Previous 1 2 3 4 5 Next

All times are UTC+01:00


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 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:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Limited Color scheme created with Colorize It.