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Does Your Horse Think You’re Boring?

October 24th, 2013 by admin

If your horse could talk would he say that he looks forward to spending time with you or would he nicker over to his pasture buddies that you are the most boring person in the world?

Our horses are no different then us, they enjoy having some fun every now and then.  If all you do is get your horse, quickly brush him, throw on the saddle, head to the arena and work on the same thing you were working on 3 weeks ago…chances are your horse is bored.  Now I’m sure that none of you would intentionally want to make your horse dull and tuned out but that is exactly what we do if we never get creative and spice our riding time up.

Taking your horse out on a trail ride is one of the best things you can do for him.  If this is a new challenge, be sure to ride only with others who have calm, seasoned mounts.  You can still train while trail riding by asking your horse to move his shoulder over, side pass into a ditch, go over a downed tree instead of going around it.  Just be creative and your horse won’t even know he is working.  Hum, imagine going to work and not even realizing it! 

Another thing I do if I need to stay indoors is to make a square out of ground poles in the middle of the arena.  I will trot over the corners, through the middle, side pass around the edge or get him to stop inside the square at both the trot and canter without stepping on a pole.  Let your horse “rev it up” a bit as you float your way around the arena.  Play some lively music to keep up the tempo.  If your horse breaks into the canter don’t punish him; just keep him moving right over the poles and don’t allow him to drift too far from the square so he doesn’t think he can just take off around the rail.  Be sure to keep focused on where you are going by turning your head in the direction you want to go and don’t look down as you cross the poles.  Listen to your horse as you go over, are his hoofs clipping the poles or is he picking up his feet and going over smoothly? 

There are so many ways to spice up the time spent in the saddle and remember that your horse will be a more willing partner if he has something to look forward too.  That doesn’t mean that you abandon your serious work, but all work and no play makes for an unhappy relationship.