|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
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
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
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
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
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.
'LISTEN TO YOUR
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.
you ever consider Buying a
Performance Horse, watch this
Production and it may save you
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
"Wear your Heart
in your Hands"