Spending time experimenting and learning about our body language is always helpful. As Josepha mentioned, she has the ability to focus within herself and take all focus off the horse (making herself very small...Josepha, I got the mental picture of Alice in Wonderland when you first mentioned this, working with "Dangerous"...you are magical!).
You're making me blush Karen.
But I have learned this from Jamie very well and after Jamie thought me (it took many years...)
I saw horses doing it over and over to each other.
Even more so, the alpha mare is the least 'present' in the herd when all is well.
I can't wait to set up a herd to study (plans... tell them some other time).
I love Josepha's idea of the plastic bag. Something that makes noise that can tend to bring a horse out of whatever "zone" they fall into when they react like this. Josepha, if you were to use the bag...can you describe how? And where is your focus when you use it? I'm assuming you do not directly challenge the horse when using the bag (ie, look right in the eye)...or do you? Or is it situation specific? Can you explain more please?
Oh yes, of course, I always forget to explain what I am doing. It's a common problem I have which irritated Ralph sometimes. When I see something in me head, I fail to grasp that others do not see that
With Ino, I use the bag when he comes up to me. I know from experience I can not get him away from me anymore, once to close, and then it gets dangerous (don't tell Ralph, or else he won't let me train alone with Ino...
). I have to make sure that when he does come close, it is all on my terms.
So when he comes up to me I hold the bag in front of me and let it make as much noise as possible and then jump up and down a little towards Ino while looking straight at him with my eyes wide open, all my energy turned towards him and pushing him off.
When he starts walking I stop jumping, let my eyelids 'hang a bit' like I am sleepy and watch the spot behind him, I keep my breath low and deep. The bag is just there, but not in action.
I reward with my voice.
When I want him to walk (I normally do not pressure a horse into walking, but in Ino's case he has to on doctor's orders) I do the same thing as above but then from behind and with the bag on the end of a lunge whip. I direct my gaze to his hind quarters as soon as he starts moving.
As soon as Ino moves, I reward and do the same, with the lazy eyes and lower energy, but keep walking with him, so there is enough energy for walking, but he does not need to be stressed.
When he fals into a relaps of fear of being chased or for pain while walking, I could whip the lunge whip with bag behind him untill eternity. So I don't. It would only make him go deeper en deeper within himself and then without warning, attack.
Instead, I put it in front of him. As soon as he changes direction he snaps out of it and walks again while I reward.
After 3 sessions it gets better and better.
I can ask Ralph to film it... but I am inclined to think: Don't try this at home.
You really have to have a certain intention, with this sort of thing and this type of horse. You have to exectly know what you are doing and why. Reason and intend is everything with horses and especially with those like Ino and Dangerous.
When trying just to chase them off for getting 'above them' as is normal within a lot of NH methods, will get you in serious trouble as I have seen over and over.
These are the sensitive, intelligent, troubled, experienced horses, that demand an explanation, pure heart and clear intend.
Thanks everyone, glad its not just me experiencing this then! I will have a read of the posts you suggested and see if anything else pops up. I thought maybe I was doing something wrong. I get the feeling he thinks he has got it right and Im in the wrong for not telling him he has and clicking/treating, He never shows agression when he has a halter/rope/bridle on, just when his head is totally free. I will work on backing up , which he does do, and giving me more space, which he isnt that good at yet.
Well, it may very well be that (from his point of view) you are mistaken. But there are other ways of expressing that. Simply ending the session makes him see that very soon, I am sure
I think you are handling this very well.