Okay, our horses might be spoiled but babying your horse doesn't hurt anything right?
In today's blog I'm going to share why it might actually be detrimental to baby your horse...
Horses in their 'natural' environments source their own food, protect themselves from predators, and navigate their own social dynamics. But in our domestic lives with horses we do all this for them and then some...
There is a term known as learned helplessness that I want you to be familiar with before we continue this conversation
If we do too much for our horses we condition them to expect certain conditions which may even cause them to shut down emotionally. A horse that is emotionally shut down won't offer new behaviors, which when we are advancing our training with a horse we want them to do just that!
This affects not only their daily lives but also our training, a horse that is shut down and unwilling to try things is a horse that doesn't have options. The same thing can happen to people, when we aren't given the opportunity to make our own choices.
How can we fix this? Give you horse more credit for his intelligence level - he is probably smarter than you think he is. Give him the opportunity to make connections from cues to behaviors, rewarding even the slightest try. Remember that his ancestors have survived through harsh environments, so the rain probably won't kill him!
Now I want you to think about a way you tend to 'baby' your horse and how you can think about graduating into letting him be a 'grown up' - share in the comments below!
Meet the Bloggers
Miranda and Julia bringing over 20 years of experience in the horse industry in a wide variety of experiences and disciplines. Here on this equestrian blog we'll share our horse experiences, tips, plus advice on surviving as an adult amateur rider.