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You Can't Lie to a Horse

You can’t lie to a horse in training. If you tell a horse you need x y z but don’t enforce x y z, you are lying. For example, if you need your horse to stand still and not walk off, but they take a small step and you don’t remind them of the rule, you lied. Next time they will take a bigger step and receive a negative response from you, well because you actually now noticed, but you previously told them a small step was okay... because you honestly weren’t paying attention to the details.

Reinforcement is key. Mean what you say, say what you mean in your actions during a session so your horse can have faith in you.

You can’t lie to a horse about how you feel. Horses live off instinct and quick decisions and they know if you’re scared, tense or excited. If you are mad, impatient or careless, chances are your session will go downhill fast. If you’re scared, indecisive or passive/wimpy, chances are you’ll be taken advantage of or dismissed. I would know. First hand and from experience, I’ve gotten hurt, and have seen horses get hurt from attempting to train in the wrong frame of mind. I’ve also healed horses and been healed myself in moments where it was all just right. This is a reminder to take each interaction and moment at a time. Do NOT ignore your intuition, as long as it’s genuine. They’re just a horse. And you’re just a human.

You can’t lie to a horse about who you are. A horse will always tell the truth. They will reflect to the world who you are as a person, rider and trainer. Hopefully, the things that get reflected most are consistency, kindness, and sincere try.

You can’t lie to your horse, and your horse won’t lie to you. Be prepared to see your own truth. ”

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