The Art of Natural Dressage

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:10 pm 
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Continue with the scratching, and do it on deep dust, or on sand. It is the trigger (the natural one) for the lay down response.

You might be doing this already. But don't stop with the scratching.

And think in terms of rewarding the response as it escalates.

Here's where the big challenge lies.

Catch that moment when you see the horse drop his shoulder in prep for laying down and REWARD IT, even if the horse stops to get the reward. Once you have the shoulder drop you own the cue and response. At that point you simply hesitate a moment longer from time to time.

And I say this because there is a vice. And it's the laying down and rolling with saddle, and sometimes with rider vice.

So YOU have to have control. And just waiting for the horse to lay down without a cue and then rewarding is a no no...and in fact should be in any activity that might result in injury.

Note how folks work on spanish walk. Very much on cue, and extinguished if done spontaneously. (At least I hope so.)

Just a random thought.

Donald

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 2008 1:27 am 
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Rave tried to roll with my saddle on one day and I freaked out, so he won't lay down near me now- at least he hasn't in a long while. Since winter is in full force I dont think we'll be doing much bathing :ieks:

The targetting idea sound nice :alien:

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2008 11:30 am 
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Well, here is a video where I'm making Fáni lay down, by using my body-language :)
http://www.hestegalleri.dk/html/vid_vis.asp?VideoID=13421

But I don't like the beginning of the video where I make him kneel down on a leg.


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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2008 3:23 pm 
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Bianca wrote:
You can also wash your horse (when it's warm) and wait 'till they begin to roll over :D
Or have always treats in your pocket for situations when your horse will lie down by him/her-self.
This is the way I trained Evita because this way its totally separate from other exercises, which I find useful.


That is an excellent one! :clap:
Now waiting for summer to return... :huh:

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:42 am 
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The same way MJ learned it.

Then I would go with her so she would get confortable having me around when she is lying down.

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 4:59 pm 

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Hello all, I am new here. I love the idea of using as little pressure and tack as possible so that's why I am here. I began with Parelli (laying myself on the line here, ha ha) and have learned a lot; my passion is bridleless riding. I can already do what you guys call run with me and run to me and some mimicry. I already use as little pressure as possible but love the idea of shaping things more willingly and naturally so that's why I'm here. I currently use the string around the neck (cordeo) but support as needed with the stick (which I understand is less than ideal so will be working on phasing that out). I already learned to use a 'click' and a food treat for my food oriented introverted mare and it works great. I love the idea of cues and what Donald said about the importance of an initiation cue so that the horse doesn't start to do wanted behaviours at the wrong time.

Re: Donalds scratching comment, are you referring to the scratching being a pawing of the ground? Sorry for the silly question ;)


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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 7:26 pm 
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Janelle,

I'm not Donald, but yes, the "scratching" is pawing or scratching the ground.

I'm not so much a stickler for making sure the horse has a cue to do it the first few times. I can add that in (and have) once the horse is showing a willingness to lie down.

With Tam, the first couple of times he laid down, it was totally his idea and I just happened to be there with a treat (I always have them with me). I approached carefully when he went down, and he allowed me to come to him and give him a treat. So then I knew he could be comfortable with me being close when he was down. Some horses are, some aren't.

Watch what horses do when they lie down. You can train or just reward for each separate piece of the puzzle.

1) They put their head down and sniff the ground. Often they will wiggle the top lip back and forth in the dirt...stirring up the scent and getting information from the ground.

2) They will likely paw the ground (the scratching).

3) They will bring the hind legs under themselves to some degree. Some horses bring them just a little under, some bring them under very far. Tam also stamps a hind leg (why, I don't know, but he does).

4) They bend the hocks in the hind legs at the same time as they bend/fold the knees in the front legs. The hind leg bending may preceed the front legs folding.

5) Cisco then literally crashes to the ground. Tamarack then just lowers himself a little more gracefully to the ground.

With Tam, as soon as I passed the stage of jsut rewarding his own idea to lie down, I began to use a cue (Donald will be happy with this!!) - actually several cues from the horse's point of view.

I trained for the head down.

I trained for the hind legs to come forward under the body, while the font feet remain in one place (the Goat on a Mountain Top).

I am in a crouched position near Tam's front leg (this is a body language cue for Tam). You can just bend over, or you can actually sit on the ground if you really trust your horse not to step on you. If they will step on you, then it's possible that the trust factor isn't quite there yet, and then I would wait until it's more solid before asking for a lie down.

I used my finger to ruffle through the dirt beneath Tam's nose, and rewarded him if he mimicked that a used his lip to play in the dirt as well.

I bend over beside him (facing the same direction he is) and paw the ground with my foot, and reward him for pawing the ground too.

I tap the ground with my whip or my hand and say, "down".

If he stamped his back foot, I rewarded him.

If he bent his hocks, I rewarded him.

If he buckled his knees, I rewarded him (even though this stops the lying down process for him).

I rewarded him for all the possible behaviors that he normally uses before lying down. All of them. He then knew that every possible one could earn him a reward.

Then, I would NOT reward one. So he would try another. He might get rewarded for that one.

Then I would skip rewarding for another one, and he would try yet another one.

One day, I skipped them all, and he went to lie down. I rewarded before he got all the way down, so he got up again. Silly me.

Then the next time, I skipped rewarding for all of them again, and controlled my enthusiasm a little better, and he laid down completely.

Just be patient. The whole process took quite some time with Tam, but it was worth it. He has a much more sold and ready down than Cisco does.

And yes, he did try once to lie down with the saddle one. He got two people screeching at him, and he stopped.

I actually would not mind if did lie down with the saddle on, but I know he would then roll...which I do not want! It did not scare him from ever trying to lie down again. And if I need to leave him loose with my saddle on (to go refill with treats), I simply take one stirrup (I use a dressage saddle) and thread it through the reins. This keeps just enough tension on the rein to keep him from doing his lying down ritual.

IF I'm leaving him for more than a minute or two, I just take the saddle off and he's free to roll. He gets itchy if he sweats a little, and I can't blame him for wanting to roll...so I'd rather leave him the freedom to roll and relieve himself.

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 8:46 pm 

Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 4:43 pm
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wonderful, thank you! A year ago I'd see these things people did with their horses and it seemed so out of my reach. Now that I understand (have for a while) to break it down into tiny steps and rewarding each try, it's amazing. Sometimes I need the mental help to break it down but I'm getting there!


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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:08 pm 
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Donald Redux wrote:
So YOU have to have control. And just waiting for the horse to lay down without a cue and then rewarding is a no no...and in fact should be in any activity that might result in injury.

Note how folks work on spanish walk. Very much on cue, and extinguished if done spontaneously. (At least I hope so.)


Oops, we are messing it all up again. 8) ;) Not only that almost all our exercises can be offered without a cue (except for some dangerous examples, like rearing close to me for Summy... although not for Titum), but especially lying down is an exercise where I even prefer the horse offering it all by himself.

For Pia, lying down and sitting is just her way of expressing that she either wants a reward NOW, that she is very excited from our wild play or that she wants to do something especially nice. Well, or that she just feels like it - and I love it. :smile:

With Titum I also hardly ever ask for it but reward it big time when he offers it all by himself. This is because lying down is en exercise they only want to do under certain circumstances, like when the ground is nice enough, and they just know better when those circumstances are right. Contrary to that, they feel comfortable with things like rearing under almost any circumstances, so I feel much more relaxed about asking for this.

I guess that what is a No-Go depends much more on the people and horses involved, their goals, their experiences and the situation, than on some general rules that are supposed to apply for everyone. :smile:


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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:45 pm 
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Oh, it's not messing anything up! I do this a lot with Tam because he offers cool things on his own and none of them are dangerous. If he rolls on my saddle, well, I'm sure it will be uncomfortable enough that he'll only ever do it once!

With Cisco, I take offers and reward them simply because he's such a quiet soul that I feel it's a way to let him know that I just love what he feels like offering. Again...nothing dangerous. But as a war horse 8) , he will, on a slight lift of a rein or the cordeo, gladly jambette right at any enemy, coming within inches of them.

I think we're about ready to slay dragons! :twisted:

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:28 pm 
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Guilty! :blush:

Noodle offers jambettes and 'spanish nearly walk' all the time!

Yes - she has caught me a few times in the shin! And yes - I will extinguish some of it later - I guess I do extinguish some now not least because otherwise that's all we'll train for if she has her way - she loves it so! But I don't want to flatten any of her enthusiasm and she is just learning that she can work the treat dispenser!!!!!

Interesting stuff about the lie down - we will have a go at this at the next ideal moment.....

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2009 8:50 am 
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Quote:
Guilty!

Noodle offers jambettes and 'spanish nearly walk' all the time!

Yes - she has caught me a few times in the shin! And yes - I will extinguish some of it later - I guess I do extinguish some now not least because otherwise that's all we'll train for if she has her way - she loves it so! But I don't want to flatten any of her enthusiasm and she is just learning that she can work the treat dispenser!!!!!


Yup, me too! 8) ;)

Shin bonking has happened occasionally as well...and we're working on the "please don't do this when you're likely to clip Leigh on the shin" as part of a larger "this is what personal space actually means" project with Circe. (Not a concept she came equipped with!) ;) I created this possibility, in part, because I've been cueing her to work towards Spanish walk while standing in front of her. And she has SUCH a lovely extension! But, while it's done with energy, it's not done with force, so the contact is mild -- usually more surprising than anything!

Both my guys offer leg lifts/jambettes a lot -- they are one of the few things so far that they offer on their own, and I love that and want to encourage it. They think it's a really fun game!

Right now, I don't want to say "no, you're wrong" with this kind of exercise -- I'm really trying to eliminate that message except in moments where they're doing something that I really don't like.

Sometimes I'll push past it when I'm asking for something else, reward it for a couple of lifts instead of what I'm asking for, and then say "that's lovely, but can we try this now?" and ask for the new movement again. That seems to make sense to them. Circe almost unilaterally is wiling to shift gears after one or two asks, and I'm finding that it's an indicator with Stardust -- if he's up for the other movement/exercise, he'll shift gears quickly, too. If he doesn't want to do the other exercise, he'll continue to offer the leg lift.

I guess this is a version of our highly unscientific free shaping experimentation! :)

Leigh

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:52 pm 
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Quote:
Shin bonking


:D :D :D

Quote:
Both my guys offer leg lifts/jambettes a lot -- they are one of the few things so far that they offer on their own, and I love that and want to encourage it. They think it's a really fun game!


Yep! Us too!

Although today I realised that the jambette is her way of asking for a treat. Aha, thought I! Maybe I should teach her another way of asking for a treat! So I tried to teach her, this was our first exercise in the session, to do a stand and look slightly away (therefore no nose in my pouch!) to ask for a treat. I taught this to Karena and she does it so nicely that I just have to reward it whenever I catch it! But it is subtle so its easy to miss. Well Snudes went through the whole gambit of most beautiful and long, teo pointing, stretching as far as possible, jambettes!!! Oh how cruel not to celebrate them!! But, she quickly got the new idea. Immediately after this short lesson I asked her to walk away from that spot to a new spot, AND THEN..... wahay, double wahay.... we did jambettes til your heart is content and overflowing to bursting!!!!!

So I digress further from the topic.... In an attempt to come back to topic - I got to be with Kaz during a lie down.... oh bliss!!!! And this was after we had done a bit of free leading and very mild chasing (lame old girl!!!). We were heading back to the others and there was a yummy, scrummy patch of rolling ground... she was all nose to the floor and getting ready to buckle at the knees,.....hang on, hang on... says Mama (can she hang on for long enough for me to take off the rug and not interrupt the pattern)...... and sure enough, mission accomplished. A glorious naked roll!!!! I even managed to treat her while she was down, but I was afraid she would choke cos she had it in her mouth while she was rolling back and forth (overly worrying mama!) and I couldn't hold her attention to treat her down there before coming up. But it twas a cool exercise and so much fun to be beside....

I missed Noodle - she rolled while I was at the other end of the field with Kaz. And when I stripped her she didn't wanna go for a mud bath. SHe just doesn't have that wallowing gene that Karena does!!!! :f:

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:10 am 
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asthis is something that i am working on at the moment, and i am expecting that it will take a long time, i have found some links of different people doing lay down. i am posting them ere so i can refer back to them :D :D :D


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNMdib9Gctc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZ0ymOuzFh8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qt4pTJGEUzc

does anyone have any other ways? :f: :f: :f:

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 Post subject: Re: 2: Lie Down
PostPosted: Thu Jul 09, 2009 8:21 pm 
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Great Thread!
I looked for it because I just started pracising lie Down.

My inspiration was the new book of Jean-Francois Pignon gave my husband as birthday present.
In this book Pignon gives some instructions how to do things and there I read the first time about a lie down without using compliment and/or foot lunge by a professional trainer. He teaches the horse to take the head down and than touches the front legs with a whip until they knee down. I liked this idea very much but becase his introduction is very short I looked in here for more inspiration and - found it! :yes:

Especially Karens hints are very usefull!!! And the videolinks Jessplum put in also, only they don't show how they came there... But the result is nice and shows that the horses do it like a natural lie down and haven't been forced to do it. By the way: I wasn't aware that Parelli workes with mirroring!?!!

I pracitsed with Filux about three times and what e does is putting the head down, scratching with one or both front legs and somtimes stomping with one hind leg. It already looks already a little bit like what horses do before they lie down by themselves so I think we are on a good way. I suppose I just have to be patient and go on with it. :smile:



I'm very happy about your reports about the self-offered leg lifts/jambettes. :D Filux does this alos very often: This is one of his favorite things he offers very often to get rewards. He didn't kick me yet but because I'm a little afraid :ieks: I tried to change it into the very much less dangerous Ramener - and it worked! I asked for and rewarded Ramener a lot and now this is what he offers mostly to get rewarded! (But also still enough Jambettes...!)

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