Problem Solving

Occasionally, when I am in a bookstore, I will see a book or magazine about problem-solving. 
Out of curiosity, I will open it up and see what it has to say. And it's usually always about the basic problems that people have with their horses, such as; trailer loading, speed control, stopping, head tossing and many other things. The author will talk in detail about exactly what your horse is doing, and then it will give you the how to fix it next.  And then they will go to the next problem and tell you how to fix that problem.

On the same page, there are a few pictures showing you how to do a particular technique.

This technique may work but does it really solve your problem? It may work for a day or two.

However, usually the problem comes back or a similar problem comes up. So did we solve the problem? Not really. Because the horse just figured out another way to get the relief he needed. What am I talking about you ask? We didn't solve the problem. I believe it should be called solution solving or root cause solving. A problem is a problem and the only way to solve it is to know the root cause of this problem. Then you will be able to solve it and prevent it from coming back and causing other problems to arise.

So let’s talk about what a problem is.
A problem occurs when the horse applies unnecessary resistant’s and showing unwanted bad behavior when you ask him to do something. There are many names that have been applied to this behavior like:

·         Hard- mouthed

·         High headed

·         Spooky

·         Stubborn

When bad behavior starts, the first thing people want to do is send their horse to a trainer. Ask the trainer to put 30 days on him. The trainer does a good job, and the horse goes home, but in a week or two, the horse is back to being resistant again.
Now, the owner decides to get a severe bit and use heavier hands, to accomplish something as simple as a stop, back up and turn. With a heavier bit being used, the level of discomfort arises, and the horse usually begins offering additional unwanted, such as hollowing his back and throwing his head to get some relief. This, in turn, often causes the rider to add even more pressure and equipment, such as a tie down, draw reins, and the like, to keep the horse’s unwanted behavior under control. Of course, this only causes the horse more discomfort, usually creating even more behavior issues, which causes more strife between horse and rider, and so on.

In these examples, as well as almost any others that might be used, the problems stem from a lack of understanding on the human’s part of what the horse is learning during training. It’s a very common occurrence for us to think we are teaching one thing while the horse is learning something else entirely. Unfortunately for both horse and handler, this is usually the very type of thing that almost always leads to unwanted training issues that end up with the horse needing to be taught later.

I have put together a program, Making Horsemanship Simple, that if used, you will avoid making mistakes by a lack of understanding. You will see a positive change in your horse the first day.
Because,  I understand that behind every behavioral or training issue, there is always a root cause. As horse people, I believe it is our responsibility to try to understand what that cause might be and then start there, rather than always relying solely on training to solve the problem.



Understanding your horse

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