The Art of Natural Dressage

Working with the Horse's Initiative
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2011 9:39 am 

Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:46 am
Posts: 44
Birgit wrote:
Could it be that you have had bad experiences with horse trainers?


I could not begin to explain the bad experiences I have had with so called experts... It would take me a week and it all went to cost of my own horses :sad:

And almost all of them tell you excactly what to do and seek to blame the horse in stead of the owner (because it's the owner who pays in the end of the day)...

Don't have more time to explain, nore to read more for now. Will catch up tomorrow!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:11 pm 
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This is such a helpful thread! Thank you all for your postings. :applause:

As this is such a pivotal topic and such helpful responses, maybe one of the admins could merge/copy with the politeness thread? I think the answers given here will be very helpful for many people to come. For me, meeting rudeness with politeness and treats is the archetypal difference from R+ methods to any other horse handling philosophy.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:21 pm 
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Houyhnhnm wrote:
As this is such a pivotal topic and such helpful responses, maybe one of the admins could merge/copy with the politeness thread?


I'd rather not. This is mainly because this thread is about a problem an individual person had, and making personalized threads part of the stickies as soon as they fit with the general topic would turn the stickies into huge collections of posts, so it would be very hard to keep an overview. And although this thread deals with politeness in some parts, I think that's just one part of it, and many posts made here would be off-topic in the politeness-sticky.

But when this thread was started, I added a link to it into the 'Links to threads' topic, so it should be very easy to find anyway. :smile:


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 02, 2012 2:34 pm 
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Romy wrote:
But when this thread was started, I added a link to it into the 'Links to threads' topic, so it should be very easy to find anyway.
Wonderful, thank you! :cheers: Considerate as always, Romy :kiss:. No wonder your horses are as polite as they are :).

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:32 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2011 8:46 am
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Hello everyone

It's been a long time since I had the chance to reply. I've been reading along and have put some of the tips given into practice.

Because of the weather lately, we haven't been doing an awfull lot, but on the rare ocasions we did train, things were nice. I keep the sessions a lot shorter and end them before he gets overexcited. This works well.

I'll give a longer update as soon as I can!

Thanks everyone for thinking along!


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:34 pm 

Joined: Fri Aug 09, 2013 5:14 am
Posts: 28
Location: Victoria, Australia
This has been an excellent dialogue to read through (I did have to skim bits due to time!) :smile:

I wished I had of had this when I was at that point with Kami. She displayed very similar behaviour to Falco (but does not rear). Food treats made her excited and nervous (aggressive). I loved reading the suggestions and it has served to reinforce the way I had to work with her (I did not get this type of dialogue from NHE or anyone else!). I did have to stop using food for awhile because I did not feel I could cope with it - it was much wiser and safer to avoid the conflict for the time being. After all what was the rush ?? What has taken years could have taken months but I guess that was our journey together :f:

Thanks again everyone for all the thoughtful contributions you have made here and the time and effort that has gone into them !! :yeah:


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 3:17 am 

Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:02 pm
Posts: 8
You know, fjords are a tough, wild-type little horse. I own one and when she came to me, you'd think we had a mustang on our hands. What you spotted as pushing behavior and not really wanting to give you space is classic of horses who have been independent of humans for so long, they really don't see a reason to depend on anyone. In these moments, you need to use your body language... especially because he is a gelding and thinks more like a stallion than a mare. Boys don't want to be soft and cuddly right away, they really need you to let them know that you aren't going away and aren't backing down. Only once you two have sorted that out can you start to get some work done. With fjords and similar types, you need to push them off about twice as much as you invite them in until this gets sorted out. Fjords are also a serious little workhorse and get bored very fast if you aren't challenging them mentally and physically. Personally, I would also not recommend treats for these guys either, as food rewards get very distracting to them and can be a source of frustration, at least in my opinion. More dependent horses don't seem to have this issue as much, but horses who are very independent do seem to.

Also, it is extremely important that you not lose your cool. When stallions, (or geldings) push and shove each other, it really isn't about being angry, but a couple of rowdy stupid boys having fun. If you can take back your space without directing anger towards the horse, chances are you've just passed the test to him. I recommend a little dose of humor and, as my mother always said, "a bucket of don'chamesswithme." Be patient and be firm. Best of luck!


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:49 am 
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UsualDreamFarm wrote:
What you spotted as pushing behavior and not really wanting to give you space is classic of horses who have been independent of humans for so long, they really don't see a reason to depend on anyone. In these moments, you need to use your body language... especially because he is a gelding and thinks more like a stallion than a mare. Boys don't want to be soft and cuddly right away, they really need you to let them know that you aren't going away and aren't backing down. Only once you two have sorted that out can you start to get some work done.


My experience has been the exact opposite. The more independent and the less careful a horse has been, the more our interaction benefitted from me becoming even more careful and polite, not less. If you want to read more, here is our Encouraging politeness sticky. :f:


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