The Road to the Horse

I just watched a DVD of the Road to the Horse. A revolution in horse training it isn’t. At the end of the event, not one of the horses could even walk a circle in a confident and relaxed manner. There was an obsession with harassing horses with tarps, flags and ropes. It went on … Read more

The Buck Stops Here

A couple of friends of mine… I’ll call them Chris and Macca – because these are their names, looked at a horse to buy the other day. The mare was eight years old and hadn’t been ridden for two or three months. Macca saddled the mare, hopped aboard and trotted around. “Canter her so I … Read more

It’s nobody’s fault but your own

Lots of people go to clinics to watch a ‘wild’ bucking horse being ‘tamed’. It’s high time for everyone to realise that a young horse is frightened and terrified when he bucks. Yet I’ve seen trainers make a joke of it or say, “It doesn’t matter, he’ll get used to it. He has to work … Read more

Don’t Sit On The Fence

I watched a horse starting competition on video the other day. One of the trainers left his saddle in the round yard with the horse, explaining that this allowed the horse to look at the saddle and get ‘used to’ it. When the horse walked over and sniffed the saddle, the crowd clapped as though … Read more

Too Many Horses Can’t Cope

Due to bad handling and bad training, thousands of horses never reach their full potential. Many horses don’t make it past the ‘breaking in’ stage. Many others are ‘blown up’ by the use of too much pressure and too much force during their training. These days, trainers everywhere chase horses with flags, ropes and tarps. … Read more

One Step at a Time

When I was about 14, people often sent ponies to us to be ‘broken in’. I got the job done on weekends and after school, with my father’s help. Looking back, we took a pretty crude approach. For the first few days, we put the girth and mouthing gear on and left the pony in … Read more