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Re: [RC] Being the Herd Leader - Marv Walker

ABut whichever type of headgear anybody may choose to use to communicate
with their horses, they are decieving themselves if they don't
acknowlege that this is a HUMAN communication tool, and that for it to
be effective at all, the horse must learn "human."  Round pens, halters,
carrot sticks, EVEN just raising your hand are all human tools.  Horses
don't have round pens, halters, carrot sticks or hands.

Personally, I have found that my horses are plenty smart enough to learn
to respond to the assortment of human communication tools that I have
used on them.  I confess, they are tools designed by humans specifically
for communicating with horses, but they sure as hell ain't things that
my horses use to communicate with each other :).

There are plenty of people for whom the "communicate in horse" concept
works very well.  And if it works for you, fine, use it.  However, there
are also lots of people who just can't seem to make it work for them,
and they get mired down in it and think themselves useless because they

If you can't make the concept work for you, that's also just fine.
Since it is entirely possible that the reason you can't make it work for
you is that the underlying premise is flawed.  You are not a horse, and
your horse doesn't think you are a horse, and it never will. :)

I don't know what a horse thinks I am. You say it doesn't think I'm a horse - how do you know that? How do you explain it acting like I'm a horse, or at the very least, responding to me in a horse-like manner when I present it with horse-like actions?

I'm not challenging here, just questioning; email doesn't present
tones well.

The devices you mention, and others, are physical controllers.  We
use them to apply force in some manner.  Since we don't have the
speed and the obvious indicators that a horse actually has we have
to adapt and grab a tool(s) as an extension of our being to make up
for our shortcomings.

We also can use the tools as signals.  When you feel this, do this.
THAT is the same thing a lead mare does.  The fact that I'm using
something different than the mare to get the point across does not
mean the horse doesn't think I'm a horse.

If I use a round pen to create a barrier area of my own choosing,
it doesn't make me unhorse like since the herd dynamic ACTIONS
are what I'm presenting.  If I use a longe whip to quickly increase
my reach, I'm merely substituting that for my teeth and hooves.
It is the actions that are important not the mirroring.

When we drag a horse into our world and expect it to conform in
the normal horse training sense we strive to reach a happy medium
over time.

Some do.

Most don't.  They send any horse they can't reach that happy
medium with down the road, reproduce it or whatever.  For every
1,000 horses in existence I'd be real surprised if 20 of them
have reached the happy medium point.

There are those who have reached the happy medium point and
they are going along just fine, more power to them.  If it ain't
broke, I'm the first to say, don't fix it.

But if you want an easier, smoother, faster way to quickly go
beyond the happy medium point, then I suggest YOU go out into
the HORSE'S world and become a leader being.  You establish
leadership and control of the horse in its world then you lead
it into the human world.

It isn't the fact that people don't understand it that makes them
feel inadequate.  It is the desire to do it when they cannot that
makes them feel inadequate.

I have seen moose treat a guy with moose antlers on his head like
they would another moose.  There are goose decoys the size of
VWs.  There are documented instances where plains dwelling
Indians crawled among buffalo herds with just a hide draped over

Marv "Not sure if a horse thinks I'm a horse or not, but it sure
acts like it does." Walker

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[RC] Being the Herd Leader, k s swigart