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Horse confidence issue.. or??
 Moderated by: DrDeb  
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Jacquie
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 Posted: Thu Dec 20th, 2007 09:02 pm
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Hi

Just to say I have been reading and lurking here on this thread for a while now and it has obvious relevance to my bucking pony issue in another thread. Presssure of Christmas and my heavy work load means I cannot participate fully now, but hope to do so soon. Sunny can really concentrate on me for a long time while I do the trick training, however he does not have that same focus on Flo, his young rider.

Florence is definately a bit of a shark as she is young and ambitious - and always compares herself to her friend and her pony, who are very successful in competition. At 13 it is hard for her to see that, while her pony is bucking like a maniac at a show, and performing perfectly at home.

I am working on her and the pony! It is a difficult combination. 
 

Jacquie

Julie
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 Posted: Wed Apr 23rd, 2008 05:07 am
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Hi Dr Deb and all,

This was such an interesting and helpful thread.  The mannering steps have been so informative was wondering if we could expand on the next step?

My horse is doing the mannering well at home in familiar surroundings but when out and about he is loosing focus. How does mannering and Birdie cross over. Does mannering help to maintain the birdie.  Is mannering a prerequisite to everything.

These are just some questions in my head. I am off to read Birdie book now.

Regards  Cathie

ladycfp
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 Posted: Tue Oct 21st, 2008 12:03 pm
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Are these lessons continued elsewhere on the Forum?

Tammy 2
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 Posted: Tue Oct 21st, 2008 02:15 pm
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You could become a member and order the 2008 podcasts which come on CD.  They cover this and are very, very good and even more in depth than this thread.

 

 

ladycfp
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 Posted: Tue Oct 21st, 2008 05:02 pm
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Yes, thanks, Tammy. I have joined and ordered the podcasts (wish they were online!) and also the Birdie Book. Hopefully they will arrive this week. I just wondered if there were more "lessons" in the meantime.

Tammy 2
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 Posted: Tue Oct 21st, 2008 05:29 pm
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Yes, I know it is hard to wait but, there is soooo much reading to do here in the meantime - have you read all the articles in the knowlege base ??

Also, on Josh Nichols website, there are a few really good articles there.

Tammy

 

 

ladycfp
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 Posted: Tue Oct 21st, 2008 09:08 pm
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There IS a lot to read and digest. I have read the Nichol's article from Equus and many of the threads here, but not all of the knowledge base articles yet. To be honest, there is only so much screen time I can take- I really prefer the printed word. Fortunately my "Kinship with All Life" arrived today, so I will tackle that next. I need to figure out how I am going to read the Birdie Book on CD. I think I will see what Kinko's would charge to print it for me.

DrDeb
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 Posted: Wed Oct 22nd, 2008 04:04 am
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Dear LadyCFP: You won't be able to get it printed at Kinko's. The only way to print out the Birdie Book is to dub it over into Word, then print it from there. This will work on both text and illustrations -- just highlight what you want to print (I would do it in sections, part of a chapter at a time), right click and then "copy", then toggle over to Word where you have opened a blank page. Then right-click and "paste". After it's pasted in, save it to a file on your hard drive, then print it in Word.

The Birdie Book was the very first effort I made at making a book-length product on CD-rom. Subsequent to that time, we found a way to make these kinds of things better, so that you can print directly from the PDF file. So it's quite easy to print anything else we offer, i.e. "Inner Horseman" back issues, or the Poison Plants book.

Glad to hear you're about to read "Kinship" -- it's a book with a great deal of relevance to what we would like to be doing here. Best wishes -- Dr. Deb

neal
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 Posted: Sat Oct 25th, 2008 05:51 am
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dr. deb,i like your approach to horse training, i worked as a cowboy for many years an broke lots of horse , i should rephrase that i rode lots of horses that were half broke. however i new there was better ways to communicate with horses , so now i,m persueing as much trinjng knowlege as i can  in hope one day i can have horses again ,  i read other trainers methods an i think as much as i read about you on equine i like your approach to training . this teaching on manners is very good  i hope to see more of your philosophy in the days to come . thank you for sharing your knowlege with horse lovers.   neal

ladycfp
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 Posted: Sat Oct 25th, 2008 08:54 pm
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Well I have finished "Kinship" and the first chapter had me wondering, "Is this the right book?" then the next chapter had me reading the table of contents looking for the horse story, then, finally, it started to sink in a bit.

I will be traveling for the next week to AZ and will have plenty of quiet time in a surrounding I consider charmed to think about the person I take to the pasture to interact with the horse I am so focused on changing.

AtLiberty
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 Posted: Tue Nov 18th, 2008 12:59 pm
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I am a bit confused about the shifting of weight for the backing up. First I thought I just misunderstood what was written here, but today I got the Audio CD and there it is very clearly stated: One should shift the weight over the front foot that is not moving backwards by moving the head over it to unweight the one that is supposed to move.
I did try that and it seemed to work just the opposite around. So I concluded I had mixed it up, that as backwards means movement on diagonals, the weight shifts actually on the hind leg behind the foot that will move backwards. So the head should be moved over the foot that is supposed to go backwards.
When asking for a forward step as the feet move be differently, so there the head should go over the foot that stays in place.

Now I got the CD it became clear to which direction I was supposed to move the head. I was moving the head bit downwards to the side, maybe that makes the difference? I got two different horses, but both seem to move the frontfoot to which I direct the head.


AtLiberty
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 Posted: Sun Nov 23rd, 2008 12:32 pm
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Bump

How does the weight shift, when a horse prepares for making a step backwards and how forwards?

kuuinoa
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 Posted: Sun Nov 23rd, 2008 05:35 pm
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Hello.

I haven't been able to have a horse for many years, so I don't know if I can really help but here's how it appears to me.  Since the movement is by diagonals, in order for the hind of one diagonal to move backward, it must be freed by weighting the opposite end of that same diagonal.  So, if the right hind is going to move back, the left fore must be weighted in order to free it.  Does that make sense?  I hope so.  I can see it in my head on my "virtual horse" (about 25 years old by now).  If I am doing this all wrong, please someone let me know so I can retrain my horse!

K.

 

DrDeb
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 Posted: Sun Nov 23rd, 2008 07:13 pm
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I'm not sure where anyone got the idea that I was talking about weighting the feet during mounted backing on a CD. The entirety of the audio CD -- I mean the recent CD on mannering -- deals with working with the horse from the ground.

And there I am asking you merely to look at the front feet, so that you get the idea that in order to move, let us say the right forefoot, the horse must first have his weight upon the left forefoot. He must UNweight the foot that is intended to move.

Further, I suggest, especially at first, that you try to select the forefoot that it looks like he would have chosen to move if he were doing the choosing. Usually this will be the forefoot that happens to be farthest ahead. If the forefeet are equal, you may choose either one.

As to the back feet, you do not need to worry very much about them; the animal will arrange things himself, at first, when you are first learning. HE already knows how to move all of his feet, you see.

When you are in the saddle and asking the horse to back, it begins in the same manner: you just think about the forefeet. If the horse starts to back and then seems to get "stuck", usually this will be because his forefeet have indeed backed up but the hind feet have not picked up, so that the horse gets to where he's standing over very small ground. When this happens, take it as a sign that you have been overpressing the horse, and just stop and wait, and the animal will get himself untangled. Next time, when you begin, go lighter with your hands and also angle your upper body forward a bit in the saddle, so as to unweight the hindquarters. If you hustle the horse back, overpress him with your hands, or heavily weight the back part of the saddle, all three of these things can have the effect of causing the horse to overweight the hindquarters, which makes it difficult for him to pick up either hind foot. Bottom line, to go backwards the horse must first LEAN his body a little bit forwards.

For this reason, and also just to obtain sufficient energy, you must ensure that the horse is not backing up BECAUSE of whatever you're doing with the reins. In backing, the reins are for one purpose, and that is to forbid him to move any leg forward. The reins are, you will recall, not "really" connected to the mouth; they are really connected to the feet. The right rein is connected to the right feet, and the left rein is connected to the left feet. So you begin by remembering that your hands are to BLOCK the forward action of the feet.

Then you add the stimulation of the calves of your legs, whose basic meaning to the horse should be, "raise the life energy within your body". So you bump him with the calves of your legs, but you do not permit any forward motion of any leg. This presents something of a conundrum to the horse, which he will resolve by doing one of three things:

(1) rearing

(2) squidging sideways

(3) attempting to pick up and move one or more legs backwards

If he does the first, or you feel that's what he's liable to do, STOP IMMEDIATELY and ask him to move vigorously in a forward direction.

If he does the second, just wait him out. And check your hands to see that they're not just a tad too weak. You do not want to teach the horse that, if he just presses forward or sideways a little harder, he can break through your hands.

If he so much as makes the tiniest effort to step backwards, DROP THE REINS and all forms of calf stimulation, and pet him until he smacks his lips. And let him totally rest for at least as long as you were making demand. And then walk forward on loose reins, and then go do something else for a little while before you again ask him to back. The second time, I promise, he'll back much sooner, much lighter, and much more correctly.

As to "correctness", yes, lifting the feet in diagonals is correct. But it isn't going to happen with all horses at the first few tries, or even at any time. The lighter you make your hands, and yet they're still effective at blocking the forward motion; the lighter you make your legs, and yet they're still effective in raising the life; and the straighter and more evenly balanced the horse, the more likely it will be that he'll back two, three, four, or more steps in perfect diagonals. -- Dr. Deb

Last edited on Sun Nov 23rd, 2008 07:18 pm by DrDeb

AtLiberty
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 Posted: Sun Nov 23rd, 2008 10:32 pm
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Dear Dr. Deb, thank you for your answer, but I did not talk about mounted backing. Not sure why you did get that impression, yet I am not a native speaker.

I stand beside the head of my horse and have my hand on the leadrope. I look at the front feet and should move the head to the side of the one further back, so to have the horse unweight the other front for stepping back. Yet it seems, my horse does work just the opposite around, especially when both fronts are side by side and either could step back as easily.
My horses usually do take also a step with the diagonal hind usually. Maybe that is the reason? Should I rather try to have only the front legs move instead?

I can see that they shift their weight backwards to prepare for a back step. Did I understand correctly, that this is not desired as it can get the hindlegs stuck? So I should maybe have the weight shift first more to the side upon that front leg before asking for the back step?


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