Horse Problems Australia
Post Office Box 1361,
Victor Harbor, SA. 5211




Horse Problems Australia,
Post Office Box 1361,
Victor Harbor, SA. 5211


by John O'Leary



Just about every problem that a rider gets with horses is caused by a slow progression of "Learned Evasions"

These evasions are what causes all of the resistances that horses give riders' and are the prime driving force towards the learning of how and why to resist. Evasion can give a horse relief from the incompetence of a rider or just plain simply get them out of working properly.

I call these "Learned" as if a newly broken in horse stayed with a professional, it probably wouldn't learn many of them. It would stay soft, round, easy of the leg, responsive and keep all the nice attributes which make a good horse. Problem is though, that most green horses go to riders who may not be professionals' and this is why these horses go through the process of learning how to get out of things. Just like kids. This is one of the reasons I produced my 'Green Horse' DVD.

So what are some of these "Learned Evasions" and how do horses pick them up? Here are some examples:

  • A handler leads a horse up to a horse float for the very first loading. The handler isn't watching the horse's head and it is allowed to look around the side of the float instead of in it. It learns there and then that it can evade by walking around the side of the float as so many do. I have see thousands of these.

  • A handler leads a horse up to a float and the horse baulks, standing slightly off the side of the back ramp. The handler turns the horse away from the float, leads it around a small circle to line up straight and re-approaches the float. The horse has been taught to evade because it was given "Reward and Relief" for not going in the float. The horse should have been loaded up over the side of the ramp.

  • A person goes into a paddock to catch the little darling. Horsy runs away for an hour and the owner continually follows it around. The horse lunges the owner who is getting mighty frustrated and the horse knows it. The owner then goes and gets a feed bucket and rewards the horse for lapping the owner. The horse has learnt an evasion tactic.

  • The horse lifts its head up high when the owner attempts to bridle it. It finds that the higher it lifts its head the more difficult it is for the owner to get the bridle on and ride the living daylights out of the horse. The horse graduates to hiding its head around to the side, between its legs, pulling back and breaking the twine and so on.

  • Little Suzy is doing flatwork. Circles in fact. Every time she comes around to pass the exit of the arena, her horse bulges out towards that exit. She does nothing about it except pulling more on an inside rein. Pretty soon the horse accidentally finds itself out of the arena altogether and Suzy finds an ever increasing fight on her hands as her horse has learnt another evasion.

  • The owner want to worm the horse, a classic evasion time. The horse drags them across the car park or yard. From the very first step the horse takes, it has learnt to evade and will be instantly spurred on to further and much more intensive evasion with meaning because of the 1 metre travel in the first instance. The exact same thing is with clipping too. Instead, the horse should have been tied up. No evasion....end of problem. They give up.

  • Running out from a show jump is another one. If the horse never achieved the first run out in its career, it would never do it at all. The bad things are learnt quickly and the good things are learnt slowly in horse training. The Rider should have had someone remove say the top rail and made the horse walk over or through the jump regardless. Never to learn an evasion. Ever circle such a horse and re-approach and you have taught the horse the greatest evasion of all.

Horses evade to Communicate, not that they want to be naughty. Have a read of this:


  • Horses can read your mind 100% of the time

  • There are no naughty horses, only dumb Trainers

  • Horses only want to try until they are not heard.

  • So called 'naughty horses' are only communicating with you in an effort to make you listen.

  • Horses that Buck or Rear have only graduated to screaming through not being heard prior

  • You can arrive at a place where I am. To be able to read the mind of the Horse 100% of the time

  • Horses know if you care. They also know if you REALLY CARE.

  • Horses all want to please, until they are mistreated or confused.

Here are 27 of such Horses.



7 HOURS AND FEATURING 27 HORSES CRYING OUT FOR HELP. An in depth look at what not to buy and why, what Horses are pre-disposed to unsoundness and why.

If you ever consider Buying a Performance Horse, watch this Production and it may save you Thousands!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Email me for the free 145 Page E-Book.



Evasions can escalate all the way up to buck jumping and rearing. They build upon each other, increase in intensity, spread to all manner of other behavioral problems and in most cases are really caused by the failure of riders' to nip them in the bud in the first instant.


"An ordinary Trainer cannot hear a Horse speak, a Good Trainer can, a Great Trainer can hear them whisper and a Top Trainer can HEAR THEM THINK"

"Wear your Heart in your Hands"