This post has been circling around in my brain for a few months now and today is the day I'm going to try to put my thoughts down on, well not paper obviously, pixels? would that be the correct term?
|photo to break up the wall of text
There are a number of famous horse trainers that I follow on the various socials. One has a page on FB that is mostly for followers to ask questions. To be completely honest I read some of them and I cringe. The ones that make me shudder are ones that go like this:
hey, I have this 4 year old mare that I've been building a relationship with. I hang out with her in the pasture and when she turns away or looks unhappy I back up and give her space. She's getting more and more communicative but now when I go in the pasture she pins her ears and charges at me. I wonder what I have missed in her communication and how can I repair the damage?
Then others weigh in about her lack of awareness of the horse's communication and that she needs to back up but not to worry, in 20 years she'll be able to stand within 5 feet of her horse. Okay, the last part is sarcasm on my part but you get the the idea.
Don't get me wrong, I'm a firm believer in building a positive relationship with my horse. I've literally dedicated hours to it. But I don't know of any good relationship that exists without boundaries. And I worry that in our drive to have positive relationships with our horses we ignore this concept. I worry that we believe that if we can just listen and meet all the needs of our horses there will be a wonderful symbiotic relationship that is pure magic.
|establishing boundaries with Quaid
|screen grab from yesterday's lesson