DbarH Equine Training. Natural Horsemanship.
Medicine Lodge Valley, Dillon, Montana

Foundation Training

"When a rider takes responsibility for her own learning, this encompasses almost all of the hours that she spends in the saddle: she uses this time to clarify the difference between right and wrong, to reinforce the correct neurological patterns and to strengthen her muscles. (And as she does this, she automatically helps her horse to do the same.)"

- Mary Wanless
Ride With Your Mind,1991

What I look for in each horse in determining how the horse will be taught:

~Personality of the horse - lazy, fighter, nervous, or willing

~Environment personality - human surroundings the horse was exposed to.

~Variation in personality - mental and physical influences.

Three basics:

~Absolute trust in the human- The horseman has to figure out how the horse thinks and what it will take for the horse to willingly submit to the horseman.

~Resistance being useless -The horse needs to have confidence in the horseman by being convinced that humans are kind. What you teach your horse to do will make a permanent impression in to the horses mind until determined other wise. Teaching the horse to think for himself and do a task freely.

~Understand what is wanted and how to do it -A horseman must acknowledge that a horse does not know the humans language, nor thought patterns.

Reward and Punishment:

~Reward - treats, physical touch and voice. The horse knows food is eaten when he is comfortable. We offer a small treat after a horse does what was asked thus the horse will be willing to do task again without hesitation. Incorporating the voice and a couple of rubs on the neck when giving a treat reassures the horse that the tone of the voice and the rub are good signs. When the horse becomes more advanced with each task the voice and rub will replace the treat more and more .

~Punishment - If the horse does not do what is asked then the horse does not understand what was asked of him. Repeat in a calm manor. If the horse is lashing out with the intent to severely hurt the human the horseman must make the horse believe that the human is the hierarchy in a fair manor as would another horse in the pasture.


Utilized with the Reward and Punishment System

~Mechanical - The horse be taught that the use of lead lines and reins should be light and finally not at all. Not depending on the human to pull ,frame or grasp with such items endlessly.

~Verbal cues - instead of lunge whips, the lack of communication on the ground and in the saddle . Use a different word for each different task.

~Body actions- A eager horse will do a task buy watching your actions on the ground if taught along with the verbal cues. While mounted the horse will be very receptive to the riders movement of the inner body whether the rider knows it or not. The importance of the rider being balanced and not hindering the horse.



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Donna Hildreth 1998 - 2009
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