Trust is key in your relationship with your horse. When a horse trusts you, they look to you for guidance, especially in unfamiliar situations.
A horse that trusts its human companion is calmer, more confident, and better equipped to handle new challenges.
Follow these 7 simple steps to build a strong, trust-filled relationship with your horse.
1. Hang Out Together: Spend time with your horse without any work agenda. This helps them understand that being around you isn’t always about tasks and training. It’s about companionship too!
2. Discover Their Favorite Scratch Spot: Horses love a good scratch! Find out where your horse loves to be scratched. It’s a fantastic way to bond and can be used as a rewarding gesture. Remember, horses groom each other, and this mimics that natural behavior.
3. Reward-Based Training: Positive reinforcement goes a long way. Always reward your horse when they do something correctly. This encourages them and strengthens your bond.
4. No Forcing Towards Scary Objects: It’s tempting to make your horse face its fears by forcing them towards scary objects, but this can backfire. It might just increase their fear. Respect their pace and comfort.
5. Safe Environment for Scary Things: Introduce new and potentially scary things to your horse in a place they feel safe, like their home paddock. Use rewards to encourage them. This method helps them associate new experiences with positive outcomes, boosting their confidence.
6. Consistency is Key: Horses thrive on routine and predictability. Be consistent in your actions and responses. This reliability makes you a safe and trustworthy figure in their eyes.
7. Be Patient and Understanding: Lastly, patience is vital. Building trust takes time. Understand your horse’s needs and fears, and work with them, not against them.
By following these 7 steps, you’re on the right path to creating a deep bond filled with understanding and mutual trust.