The Art of Natural Dressage

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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:06 pm 

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 5:26 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Dallas County Texas
(Catching up)

Quote:
I like the idea but it is the first time I hear of such a thing as horse buddies in a herd. I have always looked at a herd as an environment of dominant ranking challenges for all horses.


Madeleine, I'm fairly certain that in any and all ethologists studies, white papers and books that the 'Peer Attachment' relationship will be mentioned. Different ethologists refer to it by different names such as: affiliated pairing, nonsexual bonding, pair bond, mutually beneficial coalitions or preferred associates.

In fact, here's an article about grief response in the Peer Attachment relationship.

(Reprinted with full permission of the author.)

Grief Response Management
(The stress of loss)

By Dr. Kenneth L. Marcella DVM

Ben and Doc had been together for a long time. They were born in the same area and lived and actually worked together, side by side, for many years. They retired to the same place and had been spending their elderly days quietly. But Doc hadn’t been feeling well lately, became ill and then, quickly, passed away. Ben was devastated. He stopped eating, didn’t want to move around much or to do any of the things that had occupied his previous days. He wouldn’t interact with anyone around him and he became severely withdrawn. Without his friend to do things with, he became inactive and started losing weight and muscle condition. His arthritis, which had been doing well, became worse. Not eating enough began to weaken his energy and his immune system. He started to become anemic and dehydrated and showed all the signs of physical and psychological depression.

This is not an unusual scenario and the loss of a close friend or a loved one can be seriously stressing to people, especially to the elderly. But Ben and Doc are horses and while the “stress of loss” is not commonly addressed in equine veterinary medicine, it can still be a very real problem and a cause of concern. Loss and bereavement is more commonly dealt with as it applies to the feelings people have after losing a pet. Veterinarians have become so aware of their special role in this potentially devastating event that some clinics and veterinary schools now have “grief counselors” and there are many reference sources, support groups, and even “pet loss” chat rooms to help people deal with this trauma. But there is almost nothing written and virtually no research, surprisingly, dealing with the reaction of animals to the loss of a partner or close herd mate. Animal behaviorists caution that it is not always correct to think and speak anthropomorphically (giving human feelings and characteristics to animals) but owners and trainers feel that they can tell when a horse is feeling happy, playful, contented, angry, bored, tired, upset or any number of other emotions. And most veterinarians, even if they do not use these terms, recognize similar behavioral expressions. In cases like that of Ben and Doc, the surviving horse often shows signs of classical depression and, in the words of most of horseowners, acts sad.

There may be more science to the way animals seems to act, however, and Dr. Crowell-Davis, DVM, Ph.D. and board certified animal behaviorialist at the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine assures us that these interpretative evaluations of how animals “feel” in response to certain situations are fairly accurate. “The use of PET scans (positron emission tomography) provide researchers with an evaluation of mental states based on brain activity and neurochemical changes noted in response to specific stimuli,” explains Dr. Crowell-Davis. A person is presented with a stimulus that causes them to be happy, for instance, and the PET scan records their pattern of brain activity and the chemical changes that occur in the brain during that time period. Additionally, certain drugs can be given that produce specific feelings and the resultant brain activity and chemistry can be recorded. “When animals are recorded showing the same patterns of brain activity and the same brain chemical changes that correspond to a particular human emotion or mood state,” says Dr. Crowell-Davis, “ it would not be logical of us to assume that they are not experiencing similar feelings”. Based on how closely some horses correspond to the classical signs of clinical depression and on how intense the individual responses can be, the loss of a close companion is felt as sadness by horses and they can certainly express grief.

While it is not known how animals interpret or understand “death”, many owners and veterinarians feel that there is some form of comprehension. When one of a pair of horses dies, the remaining horse may be severely affected or may show little response. Dr. K. Houpt, DVM, Ph.D., physiologist and animal behaviorialist at the New York State College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University points out that there is a tremendous variation in the amount of attachment shown by individual horses, “some horses tend to form stronger and more numerous “friendships”,” and in the attachment shown for a particular individual, “ a specific horse may be extremely bonded to one other horse and yet exhibit no concern for other horses in the same group”. Equine maternal behavior follows this pattern of variability as well and when a young foal dies the mare may respond strongly with vocalization, anxiety and frenzied activity. This response may be mild to severe and will last for differing durations depending on the mare. Both Drs. Houpt and Crowell-Davis recommend allowing the mare to spend time with her dead foal. Most mares will examine the foal and move away, return, and move away again repeatedly. Depending on the variability of the individual, this process will take several hours but the mare will eventually begin ignoring the foal and it can then be removed. Mares treated in this way show much less vocalizing and anxiety. They grieve and “ as far as we can tell at this point, they come to some realization of death”,” according to Dr. Crowell-Davis. Actually any time a horse dies it is recommended that other horses that may have been close to the deceased horse be allowed to spend time near it. The “grief response” seen in horses given this opportunity seems to be lessened and the amount of time until a return to near normal behavior is far shortened.

Even when allowed to spend time with a departed herd mate however, some horses, like Ben in our example, show an exaggerated depth of depression and can present with physical problems that are really physiologically based. The appropriate treatment for these horses is similar to that used with depressed humans. Supportive therapy should address any metabolic concerns such as arthritis, dehydration and poor food intake. Behavioral treatment is aimed at getting the horse interested in its environment again. Special foods, increased play and interaction time with the owner (even something as simple as additional grooming can be very beneficial) and communication with other horses may be required. The introduction of other horses may be probablematic however as some horses, especially older animals, may resent new herd mates and this additional stress may worsen the situation. Dr. Houpt recommends adding a new horse to the herd, when possible, before one of an older pair of horses becomes ill. This is not always possible but, if early illness is noted, another horse can be added to the group so that there is a pre-existing bond with this new horse to help with the loss of an older herd mate. Many owners and trainers can identify this “universally acceptable” herd mate on their farm. This is a special horse that seems to “get along with everybody and be liked by everybody”. This is the older gelding that serves as companion for all weaned foals and is the first horse that newcomers to the farm are turned out with. It is not known why these special horses are so accepted but they make excellent choices for the horses to introduce to a pair of ailing geriatrics or other situations where one horse may die soon. It is important to “pair-up” horses of similar dispositions and activity levels however and care and attention should be paid to choosing a new mate for a horse that is soon to lose an old mate.

If behavioral treatment is not sufficient then medical treatment may be needed. This is especially true for those horses that show such severe grief that they are in danger of colic, anemia, dehydration and kidney problems or of any other metabolic concerns made worse by clinical depression. Initial treatment with Valium can lessen anxiety and stimulate appetite. Since this drug produces a quick effect it is most commonly used as the first step in treatment. Fluoxentine Hydrochloride (Prozac) is the drug that then would be used as a longer-term treatment. Prozac is much slower acting and the dosage range is quite variable so an exact dose will need to be worked out for each individual horse. This combination of Valium followed by Prozac has been helpful in lessening the extreme grief and depression seen in some horses. Methylphenidate (Ritalin) has also been tried as a means of decreasing anxiety but is not as rewarding as the Valium/Prozac approach. After horses return to more normal activity while on the Prozac, herd additions can be made and if successful, the dosage of Prozac can be gradually decreased and then discontinued.

Anyone who has spent time around horses will tell you that they can be happy and pleased or angry and discontent They do have emotions and they can certainly interact with their environment and feel things. When horses die, other horses close to them exhibit grief-like behavior, which can become excessive at times. Recognition of this phenomenon is important for equine veterinarians because clients will seek help in dealing with these situations. Being aware of “grief loss” in horses and being willing to help treat these situations will allow you to help both horses and their owners. It is likely that we will eventually find that many behavioral and emotional states currently assigned only to humans, such as paranoia, schizophrenia, attention deficit disorders and many others are all found in horses. Their recognition, diagnosis and treatment will help improve life for many horses that are currently thought of as “un-trainable”, “spooky”, or simply “crazy”. It actually may be far crazier to assume that these horses do not feel many of the same things that we do, and need treatment just as much.


Chuck & Kids
Lady, Able, Sundance, Boss & Combustion
( And Rebel & Nikki )

_________________
We can not solve the problems WE have created with the same thinking that created them


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 6:34 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2008 11:55 pm
Posts: 23
Location: California
Josepha wrote:
I don't mind :-)
I had a discussion with grand prix dressage rider who bought a bitless bridle from me.
He explained that what he was doing, to him, was art. He was the artist and dressage was the painting.
I responded that if that were so, the horse would have to be the tools (brushes and paint) in his example.

I then explained that what I was doing for me, is being part of art. I see the horse as the artist, his movement the painting and me, as his tools...


Wow, this is truly beautiful. The horse is the artist. That's a good explanation of the feeling I have when Bella and I "work", because it's not work at all, to me it feels like I am part of a beautiful piece of art. Perfect! I know for her too there is the same feeling. Odd as that may sound.
Thanks, such a fabulous way to explain/express it.

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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 12:29 pm 

Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:02 pm
Posts: 1072
Location: UK Worcester/Hereford border
http://www.effem-equine.com/Waltham%20- ... horse.html
This paper has been kindly reproduced with permission from the Proceedings of the BEVA Specialist Days on Behaviour and Nutrition. Ed. P.A.Harris et al. Pub. Equine Veterinary Journal Ltd.


What do you mean by ETHOLOGY ?
Introduction to above paper:
Ethology is the study of the function and evolution of an animal's behaviour in its natural environment. Why should ethology be an important consideration for veterinarians? Being familiar with the norm allows the veterinarian to know when they have been presented with the abnormal - this is the case whether we are considering physiological or behavioural parameters. Understanding not only what is the normal behaviour, but why a certain species of animal has developed its repertoire of behavioural responses can often be invaluable in determining the root cause of many problems, or even preventing them from arising. The modern horse fulfils a variety of roles in today's society and few, if any, truly reflect its natural state. Our current methods of equine management mean that many of our horses are being kept in more alien environments than, for example, many ruminants. Ruminants tend to be kept for most of their lives in herds and often out at pasture, which may be considered similar to their natural environment. Unlike the dog, another social domesticate, the horse does not live with us as part of our group, and while many horses have the opportunity to socialise to some extent with their own species, many are not kept in their natural state as part of a herd or constantly out at pasture.

etiology, aetiology
1. the branch of medical science that studies the causes of diseases and the factors underlying their spread.
2. the accumulated knowledge of disease causes. — etiologist, n. — etiologic, etiological, adj.
See also: Disease and Illness
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

the science of causation. — etiologic, aetiologic, etiological, aetiological, adj.
See also: Philosophy
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

the science of the causes of natural phenomena. — etiologic, aetiologic, etiological, aetiological, adj.
See also: Nature
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

the study of the causes for and origin of any phenomena. Also spelled aetiology. — etiological, adj.
See also: Origins
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

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Susie xx
http://www.flickr.com/photos/piepony/


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 12:59 pm 

Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:02 pm
Posts: 1072
Location: UK Worcester/Hereford border
I think speaking aloud is helpful to both horse and human.
If I was riding I can either be a complete passenger, quiet, wrapped in my own thoughts or I can be an active participant.

To ride a young horse I need to explain what I am asking for. I am the television transmitting station, my horse is the television and receives and translates the signal into pictures on the screen.

I could say trot on - but trot where and at what speed?
If I can maintain clarity such as trot at 4 mph for 50 paces towards the oak tree, or walk at 5mph on a left 40 metre circle, by saying this out loud I am making the focus clear for both of us.

Speaking out loud requires controlled breath out, if there is tension or hurried speach or a change in octave it reminds rider and horse that the rider needs to breathe properly, otherwise the words run into one another and clarity is lost. The horse is receiving a picture with static interference. Hearing the modulation oneself can be useful in maintaining clear focus in passing an unambiguous message.

My now retired instructress had no problems in being clear in her own mind which leg should move first in order to achieve a particular movement. When she rode my previous young Thoroughbred ( who was buried in our field over 2 years ago now), he understood from her mind clarity and her easy body movement what he was being asked to do.
He performed each new pace, direction change, voltes with my instructress and then translated my more befuddled requests into what he approximated they most resembled from my instructress's requests. This was always easier for him when I spoke as well as rode as it suggested to my body which leg should remain still or move .

I think if Josepha with her understanding of dressage and movement were to ride Daniel or Arthur they would be able to show a reasonable shoulder-in or travers.
However my riding would have me sit on their backs and attempt to work out whether I should ask for head still, or a slight turn or which leg should be first to be placed in a sequence.... I would confuse them unless I had a good instructor on the ground to guide me and help me be clear by 'hearing the spoken words' and imagining until I grasp what the feel should be.

I want to trail ride and hack and my horses can perform all manner of high school jinks at liberty without my input, so I know that this is rider block and not an equine problem.
If I were clear as to what I should be doing myself then I could express this verbally and clarify for my horse.

Arthur is only sat on for 5 minutes maximum since he is only 3 years old and no questions have been asked of him, although he does seem to enjoy his longlines, perhaps he knows Shire Horses tend to work and maybe he wants to graduate to ploughing? xx

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Susie xx
http://www.flickr.com/photos/piepony/


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 1:19 pm 
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Hi Susie, how about walking the shoulder in yourself a long the track so you know what it feels.
Then walking it next to your horse while your asking it of him.

Then get on and take the same position: body tall and long, hips stay straight (move forward, like the horse's hind quarters) and shoulder turn in (like the horse's shoulder) this means in practise that your inside shoulder comes back. Outside rein ( of you have one) supports by saying (stay on the track please), inside rein lifted a bit, touch-release-touch release. Your long inside legs asked the inside hind leg more under by sqeezing the abdominal muscles a tad with each stride (the moment the inside hind leg as starting to move forward) you can feel that when the abdominal muscle contract away from your leg.
If you have only one or two steps, hold, reward like crazy and do nothing for two days (the both of you) so it can sinck in :) 8)

If your ride with cordeo, instead of reins: ask with the cordeo the neck and shoulders a little inwards, but as soon as the horse wants to go on the circle put it straight again and keep repeating.
Wish I could just come out and help you with that, one time would be enough I am sure :)

And no, I do not always get perfect shoulder-ins from every horse, silly :funny: :kiss:
It takes time for me to with every new horse who is new to doing it with a rider :-)

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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:00 pm 

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 5:26 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Dallas County Texas
Pie Pony,

From Wikipedia:
Etiology (alternatively aetiology, aitiology) is the study of causation, or origination. The word is derived from the Greek αἰτιολογία, aitiologia, "giving a reason for" (αἰτία, aitia, "cause"; and -λογία, -logia).

Long, long ago, (longer than I care to admit) I needed to know WHY people were having so many 'bad horse/behavioral problems' with their horse.

Because.......I personally had found them to be the most caring, loyal, logical creatures on the face of the earth filled with an overabundance of ability to 'make my heart sing.'

So my quest was for 'why.'

WHY did everyone else, (that I could see in the horse world at the time) seem to think they were just the opposite?

And I found out after thirty years, (and as many or more thousand hours of research and study.)

I'm definitely not a 'trainer,' (never was, never will be). :roll:

So, when people ask, I simply say I'm an 'equine etiologist' because that's what I have done, and what I do, (explain to people WHY they have a problem with their horse and how to alleviate the supposed 'problem').

Chuck & Kids
Lady, Able, Sundance, Boss & Combustion
( And Rebel & Nikki )

_________________
We can not solve the problems WE have created with the same thinking that created them


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:09 pm 

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 5:26 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Dallas County Texas
Quote:
Do you mean a whip or a clicker or something a like?


Yes, (I was tactfully trying to avoid using the word 'whip' as many seem to view it as an 'extension' and I personally feel that no matter WHAT the 'intent' or personal description for it is, it's STILL a 'whip' which alters our perception and mindset).

And I am not referring to any specific time during your training, but overall from the first time you work with any horse throughout to the 'finish.'

Thanks!


Chuck & Kids
Lady, Able, Sundance, Boss & Combustion
( And Rebel & Nikki )

_________________
We can not solve the problems WE have created with the same thinking that created them


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:34 pm 

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 5:26 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Dallas County Texas
Quote:
I think speaking aloud is helpful to both horse and human.


Very true! (At times.) ;)

Quote:
If I was riding I can either be a complete passenger, quiet, wrapped in my own thoughts or I can be an active participant.


Gosh, I don't think I could do that. I don't think I know how! :ieks: :sad:

Hard to explain. :sad: When Able and I go out riding, we are constantly talking to each other, (even when we're not saying anything).

Humph. That doesn't make sense does it. :roll:

Or DOES it?

DARN this is difficult to put into words!!!

One more try....

The second I mount up, I cease to be 'me.'

'ME' disappears. Vanishes, wholly and completely without a thought.

I am suddenly part of the.....

ARRGH This is hard to put into WORDS!!!!!!!!!

sigh......

I am INSTANTLY part of a whole, part of an entity, that is greater than Able or myself ever could be. I am instantly consumed by this 'feeling' of belonging.

Like something was missing in me and is now grown whole again, (kinda).

OK!

It's also sort of like going back and visiting where you grew up as a child too.

Nah, well KINDA. But that is the closest my limited command of the English language can take me. :sad: :blush: :sad:

Quote:
To ride a young horse I need to explain what I am asking for. I am the television transmitting station, my horse is the television and receives and translates the signal into pictures on the screen.


For me it's like being hard-wired inside my head, (?heart?) in a way that both sends AND 'receives' at the same time, (only we don't exactly use 'words.'
Quote:
Arthur is only sat on for 5 minutes maximum since he is only 3 years old and no questions have been asked of him, although he does seem to enjoy his longlines, perhaps he knows Shire Horses tend to work and maybe he wants to graduate to ploughing? xx


I do the same with all my kids. I DO believe firmly in what, (I believe) the race people call 'loading.' That is, very CAREFULLY increasing bone density and bone mass.

I spent quite a bit of time with Combustion, our resident stallion, just sitting on him without EVER asking anything from him in his pasture. Those were beautifully 'quiet times,' good times of sharing nothing and everything.

HAR! That reminds me of our 'first ride' when I DID ask him to remember all the things I taught him him previously on the ground! What a surprise I got THAT day! :ieks: :ieks: :ieks: ROFL! LMGO!

I have a video of it but it's rather boring and terribly 'amateurish' as it is one of the first ones I ever made. :blush: :blush: :blush:

Chuck & Kids
Lady, Able, Sundance, Boss & Combustion
( And Rebel & Nikki )

_________________
We can not solve the problems WE have created with the same thinking that created them


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 11:15 pm 

Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:02 pm
Posts: 1072
Location: UK Worcester/Hereford border
Quote:
I have a video of it but it's rather boring and terribly 'amateurish' as it is one of the first ones I ever made.


Is it on a website, what is the http: link? Can you post it in Photos & Videos on this site?
What you share with Able, I had that with my arab pony when I was a teenager who did not analyse anything and had little instruction barring Pony Club Camp annually, I was part centaur riding my TB mare through my 20's and 30's, we just did what felt right, played, rode, snoozed and jumped fences I would never dream of attempting without her want and athleticism.

These days I am more aware of my own physical limitations, There were none when I was younger, just 'of cause we can' endless possibilities.
Now I am too aware of my responsibility to my horses because the traffic moves quickly and sometimes thoughtlessly along narrow roads without verge or sidewalk/pavement around snaking bends, up and down hills.
I need them to be seen, to respond and to take notice.
My boys are so very good being led out but I have to ensure they can do as well under saddle because with my somewhat problematic hip I am unable to walk as far or as often as I might like in order to expand their ranges, let them sniff to see which horses have ridden through the woods or across the fields and bridleways.
A few decades ago they would have gained much more experience to date with in hand outings and picnics, so I will take the time to keep them safe or remember to buy a lottery ticket and move to somewhere resembling where I am 40 years ago, with less traffic.
Susie xx

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Susie xx
http://www.flickr.com/photos/piepony/


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2010 11:59 pm 
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Posts: 3688
Location: Pacific Northwest U.S.
PiePony wrote:
Quote:
I have a video of it but it's rather boring and terribly 'amateurish' as it is one of the first ones I ever made.


Is it on a website, what is the http: link? Can you post it in Photos & Videos on this site?
What you share with Able, I had that with my arab pony when I was a teenager who did not analyse anything and had little instruction barring Pony Club Camp annually, I was part centaur riding my TB mare through my 20's and 30's, we just did what felt right, played, rode, snoozed and jumped fences I would never dream of attempting without her want and athleticism.

These days I am more aware of my own physical limitations, There were none when I was younger, just 'of cause we can' endless possibilities.
Now I am too aware of my responsibility to my horses because the traffic moves quickly and sometimes thoughtlessly along narrow roads without verge or sidewalk/pavement around snaking bends, up and down hills.
I need them to be seen, to respond and to take notice.
My boys are so very good being led out but I have to ensure they can do as well under saddle because with my somewhat problematic hip I am unable to walk as far or as often as I might like in order to expand their ranges, let them sniff to see which horses have ridden through the woods or across the fields and bridleways.
A few decades ago they would have gained much more experience to date with in hand outings and picnics, so I will take the time to keep them safe or remember to buy a lottery ticket and move to somewhere resembling where I am 40 years ago, with less traffic.
Susie xx


We, we older AND members, need to start getting serious about apprentices. That would solve many problems and begin the new generation who are sure to surpass us ways we cannot imagine, just as my generation could not have foreseen the youth of today that explore the byways of relationship with their horses.

It would not have occurred to me in 1965 that the play of my own childhood with horses, and the play I saw later of other children, would begin to replace the performance horse work I was doing. How glad I am that when I arrived here, in these later years I found those children and they, the rascals, are taking over the WORLD.

That makes me happy.

I likely will not be able to keep Bonnie so I am casting about. Yes, that's it.

Donald, Altea, and Bonnie Magdalena

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


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 12:17 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:59 am
Posts: 43
Chuck wrote
Quote:
One more try....

The second I mount up, I cease to be 'me.'

'ME' disappears. Vanishes, wholly and completely without a thought.

I am suddenly part of the.....

ARRGH This is hard to put into WORDS!!!!!!!!!

sigh......

I am INSTANTLY part of a whole, part of an entity, that is greater than Able or myself ever could be. I am instantly consumed by this 'feeling' of belonging.

Like something was missing in me and is now grown whole again, (kinda).

OK!

It's also sort of like going back and visiting where you grew up as a child too.


Words I wrote a while ago (goes with the image below) Kinda says the same thing.

Home

When I sit on this back I feel like I've stepped out of a blizzard into the warmth and comfort of a cozy wood stove and I've come HOME.

And the magic is, she allows me to be there. That never ceases to amaze me.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 1:29 am 

Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 5:26 pm
Posts: 51
Location: Dallas County Texas
Quote:
And the magic is, she allows me to be there. That never ceases to amaze me.


One more......

When I first mount up, that very first second, it feels as if I have been holding my breath, living in limbo, in some nether world of numbness, since the last time I was 'home.'

Chuck & Kids
Lady, Able, Sundance, Boss & Combustion
( And Rebel & Nikki )

_________________
We can not solve the problems WE have created with the same thinking that created them


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:45 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2007 4:10 am
Posts: 3688
Location: Pacific Northwest U.S.
Heart_of_Equus wrote:
Quote:
And the magic is, she allows me to be there. That never ceases to amaze me.


One more......

When I first mount up, that very first second, it feels as if I have been holding my breath, living in limbo, in some nether world of numbness, since the last time I was 'home.'

Chuck & Kids
Lady, Able, Sundance, Boss & Combustion
( And Rebel & Nikki )


Mmm...well said.

I ask myself from time to time if we were not indeed evolved for each other.
When I am gentle and kind and generous to my horse I sense they too have some realization of "rightness," to our union in being mounted and traveling together in this way.

Donald, Altea, and Bonnie Cupcake.

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


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 1:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2010 4:15 pm
Posts: 584
Location: Georgia (USA)
Been watching this thread mainly, as I don't have anything specific to add... but...

I have felt much the same way about the partnership between horse and rider since childhood. Almost centaur-like. It's what's kept me coming back even when the connection was broken by the pressures of showing, high standards and trainers. Ultimately it's not only a part of my blood and life and being but something I believe I was meant for. On those evenings many years ago when Diego and I would wonder off through the woods to watch a sunset I doubt he would have objected to the idea either.

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Diego's Journal
There's no more looking back - no more grey skies black.


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 Post subject: Re: Friendship training
PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:45 pm 

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2010 11:59 am
Posts: 43
oh, I LOVE how I feel no 'eye rolling' on this forum :D :applause: :D :applause: :D :cheers:


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