Natural horsemanship = communication, understanding and psychology
- The imparting or interchange of thoughts, opinions or information by speech, writing or signs.
- Communication is 2 or more individuals sharing and understanding an idea.
*Sharing AND understanding an idea…
This means that we offer our idea to our horse and then LISTEN to what they think about that idea. Sometimes we will need to offer our idea a few times before the horse will understand. We must not rush or force the issue.
As the human we must trust that our horse will respond. This is a HUGE thing for me. I offer my idea to Billy Blaze and sometimes he needs a little time to think about what I’m asking. If I get in a hurry and push him, that will disengage his brain and he will be reacting to what I’m asking instead of thinking it through. When I give him the time to think it through he retains the information better.
“In order to obtain horsemanship through communication, we must learn not to assume.” Pat Parelli
When we assume that our horse will do something because, “He did it yesterday!” we set ourselves up for failure. They don’t always feel good about what they did yesterday. If you set your horse up to succeed using positive reinforcement you have a better chance of causing the good behavior to become the pattern.
Positive reinforcement happens AT the fact.(releasing the pressure)
Reward is something that happens AFTER the fact.(treats, cookies, grain,etc.)
When we use positive reinforcement that equals doing less sooner rather than more later.
On our quest for the perfect communication with our partner we must always remember to be flexible. What worked yesterday may not work today. We must bend like a tree in the wind so we don’t break.