Thursday, January 5, 2017

Carson James and confidence

"you CAN use exposure to certain objects as a lesson to build lifelong confidence and courage into the horse."
This is Carson James in the written word How to desensitize a horse. Somehow, seeing written down gave me a new insight. The bigger picture of doing the obstacles and desensitizing is to build courage and confidence.
When I am throwing a rope over his back and around his feet OR when I am showing him new things and helping him accept them, my goal isn't just to teach him not to flinch or move. My goal is to help him build his confidence and encourage his courage.
It is a confidence builder for me as well when I see we are working together. We can handle this. Even if the horse is having issues, I can figure out a way to present things to help the horse.
If I brush the horse and handle his feet if I am doing my job right I am building confidence in the horse that I will not harm him.
If I show the horse an object like a whip or a ball or a rope and I am doing it right the horse will not only accept the object but will feel more confident.
I suppose part of me knew that but another part of me didn't realize that goal of confidence is the goal I am working to achieve through all the walks in the neighborhood, the work on a lead line, the round pen work, etc. When the horse can look to me and feel confident and look at the outside world and feel confident, we will be doing great.
I rewatched desensitizing video and read the chart and the inspirational email and I am sure I will do the same again. And I am going to keep the confidence factor in mind as I do the desensitizing and the other training I am working with on the horse.

It snowed. Here is Tanka kicking up his heels in the snow.  So cute.

Feeling good! It snowed so I took Tanka out to the big pen so he could blow off some steam.
We had a great session of pressure and release free style with no halter. He followed me like a puppy, turned his fore and did okay on turning his hind quarters. He started pawing at me so I backed him up. All was well until I went to halter him and he ducked out and ran away. Oh no you don't. Chased him off and came in the house to warm up. I will win round 2. Geez, it's cold out there.

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