Prey vs Predator - The psychology of horses

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This episode of speaking the horse language, we cover prey versus predator. And training dogs versus training horses. Once we've established a trusting relationship with a horse, I'm going to show you some tools that you can use both on the ground and in the saddle. Because if it doesn't work in the ground, it's not going to carry over into the saddle. So we're going to problem solve with these tools to try and achieve results and to get your horse to trust you and feel safe and confident with you. And also for your energy to emit this confident vibe.

Yeah, because speaking the horse language, it's all about body language, which is basically what we're going to be talking about today. Yeah, body language, how to control it, how to use it, and how to make the horse listen to us and how to deliver those messages in the horse language, you know, not from a predator standpoint, but from the horses point of view. I think it's very important that I establish first, what's the difference between being a predator giving off that predator vibe and being a prey animal. Because horses in the wild they're prey animals. And us as human beings, naturally, we are predators. That's why our eyes are on the front of our face and on the side like horses.

So when we're dealing with mastering our body language, because before we even grab the horses, that's what we need to do. We need to be aware of our own body language, and what kind of signals or vibe or energy levels we're giving off? And is it a predator vibe, or is it a prey animal vibe, are we you know, slouching and not very confident. You know, there's all kinds of different signals that we can be giving our horses because they just understand body language. So it doesn't really matter my words specifically, what's the tone of my voice? What is it that my you know, my energy is is omitting to my horse because the is what is going to help you either be successful when working with horses, especially young horses, or you know if you're going to have some difficulties or run into some problems.

So when I'm talking about a predator bot, some examples might be, you know, facing the horse directly. So right now, you know, I'm putting all of my energy here. Yeah, this is where my energy is. And it's coming from here. And this is my energy, and I'm facing directly what it is that I'm looking at. And now to take some of that pressure off.

Yeah, all I did was turn a little bit. Yeah. So here, my energy is full force onto the horse. And now I've just removed some of that pressure, some of that energy, simply by turning my shoulders. You'll notice this a lot when we lunch. Yeah.

But just these small little details. That's what the horse needs. It's all about the data. Details. Another big tool about body language, which I think human beings we forget is very important with horses is actually our face, our face, our facial expressions. So, you know, when my mayor is pinging our ears at me, do I make a face?

You know, Do I seem scared? Or do I sort of make a face and her sort of pin my ears, my imaginary ears at her? Because she responds to that. I do have a mare and you're going to see her today? Yeah. And and she kind of makes little faces.

So I just make little faces. And then she understands, you know, that I'm alpha. So it doesn't escalate much further than that. She's kind of like, No, I'm alpha. And I say no, I'm alpha. And then it finishes.

I think a lot of horse people because we have dogs in our life, a lot of horse people. And we try and train horses like we train dogs, which, yes, some you know, if you learn how to train animals in general, some of it does. Also over carry over. But dogs are predator animals. They're predator thinking. So we actually train dogs very differently than we train horses, though some of it's the same like my vibe.

Yeah, I'm alpha, I'm head of the pack. That's the same. Yeah, with horses, I have to be alpha horse. But the dog I have to be Alpha Dog pack leader. So that's the same. But I think because a lot of people they think about dogs, when they try and carry it over to horses and it just doesn't work.

So with the horse, it's actually not about punishing them so much. There's so much reward that is needed. And I think as humans we forget to reward them. And reward doesn't just mean petting them. That's actually a very predator thing to do is pet your horse really obnoxiously. But reward by releasing the pressure, relaxing.

Ah, taking a deep breath, I think that is the biggest reward that your horse can get. Because when you're relaxed, that means there's no danger. Yeah, when you're relaxed and you can breathe, they will themselves relax and they'll feel more trust for you because they know, okay, I'm with my human, as long as I'm with my human, and they keep me safe. And I know that if she's worried about something she's going to tell me, but right now she's really relaxed, so I should be relaxed too.

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