Recent News for Behavior & Handling

Article

Understanding Horses Part 10: Stand Still

October 01, 2007

Horses often need to be restrained for the veterinarian, farrier, or groom. Foals present particular problems, as do horses that might have been mishandled or who have never been taught to be patient and respect their handlers. Here are a few tips... Read More

Article

Oral Attacks

October 01, 2007

Q: We have an Arabian who, for some reason, has taken to chewing on the horse trailer when we are at a show. He has never done this before. He started gnawing on the fender. We tied him away from the fender, and he started chewing... Read More

Article

Defecation Behavior

October 01, 2007

Q: Why do some horses at our barn poop in the same place every time, then some others seem to go anywhere?


A: We certainly don't know the full answer, but I can tell you what we do... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 9: Sans Twitch

September 01, 2007


Anderson believes twitched horses are dangerous, and twitches aren't needed to tube, clip, trim/shoe, float, deworm, or medicate a horse.
I have no... Read More

Article

Smart Mare, Smarter Vet

September 01, 2007

I am doing some positive reinforcement-based behavior modification for needle shyness in a draft broodmare. This mare is just too big and strong for the old-fashioned restraint methods of working around the problem. She has quite a repertoire of... Read More

Article

Hoofing It with John Henry

August 11, 2007

If you've visited the Kentucky Horse Park sometime in the past few months, you might have noticed a small, dark brown gelding, utterly unremarkable apart from his obvious age, walking with purpose with bright eyes and pricked ears among the sleek... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 8: Teaching the Movements

August 01, 2007


It's important to teach your horse to respect your personal space

(Editor's Note: Last month we discussed the start of using pressure to work on ground... Read More

Article

Bitless: A New Breed of Bridle

August 01, 2007

What is the difference between The Bitless Bridle and other cross-under bitless bridles (CBBs) versus the traditional type of bit-free bridles such as the hackamore? Even more importantly, what are the advantages and disadvantages of the CBBs versus ... Read More

Article

Training Your Horse for Procedures--And Everything Else

July 21, 2007

"It is our responsibility to have the horse so well trained that we can do whatever we need to do without a problem," he stated. "Our horse does not have the right to hurt anyone. It's not because the vet smells funny that a horse hurts him... Read More

Article

Positive Reinforcement

July 01, 2007

Can you explain the concept of positive reinforcement training? What exactly does it mean? I was recently in New Zealand, where I was with a group that seems "converted" to what they call "all-positive training." It sounds like good old-fashioned... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 7: Yielding to Pressure

July 01, 2007

I'm going to start discussing ground manners by talking about a 2-year-old colt from Arkansas who hadn't been handled much. He wasn't mean, he was just uneducated.

I use a rope halter to give me a little more leverage and "bite" if the horse... Read More

Article

Lessons Learned, Again

July 01, 2007

Sometimes we need to hear the same things again in order to learn them. Or maybe it's not the learning, but the applying what we've learned. I had to call Dr. Andy Anderson after reading his column this month and put his lessons into practice at... Read More

Article

Fireworks and Horses: Preparing for the Big Boom

June 30, 2007

Learn how to help prepare your horses for the inevitable flashes of light and deafening noise of fireworks.... Read More

Article

Gender Issues: Training Stallions

June 29, 2007

By Ron Meredith, President, Meredith Manor International Equestrian Centre

Some people make a big deal out of a horse's gender and say people should handle horses of different sexes different ways. We work with every horse, regardless o... Read More

Article

Gender Issues: Training Geldings

June 02, 2007

By Ron Meredith
President, Meredith Manor International Equestrian Centre

Years ago, I had a client with a 2-year-old Arabian colt that she wanted to keep as a breeding stallion. The colt was argumentative and constantly... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 6: Trailer Loading, Part 2

June 01, 2007

Last month we talked about how to aggravate the horse to load into a trailer. Remember, this isn't beating the horse or getting angry. It's like the horsefly being able to make a 1,000-pound horse move. You merely make it more comfortable to be... Read More

Article

A Late Start

May 01, 2007

I have a 5-month-old colt that was never halter broken. According to the breeder, it appeared that at one point a halter had been put on him, and the experience was traumatic for him.

Since he came home with me, I have been spending time with... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 5: Trailer Loading Part 1

May 01, 2007

The reason most horses don't load in trailers is that owners have studiously trained them to not load. Horses learn this by accident. The horse gets led up to the trailer and decides not to go in and turns sideways. Then the owner leads him away an... Read More

Article

Calculating the Equine Attention Span

April 28, 2007

Using operant conditioning, scientists have quantified horses' attention spans, and they have drawn some conclusions that could help horse trainers and owners better understand their charges and how they learn.

The researchers at... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses Part 4: An Epic Day

April 01, 2007

People are shocked that I give my horses treats. I tell them there's a big difference in giving your horse treats, and him demanding treats. My horses don't demand treats. I don't show them treats before I catch them. Consider my horse Epic. I give... Read More

Article

Let Nature Work it Out (Shy Stud Colt)

April 01, 2007

I desperately need some advice about my new colt. He is a 2½-year-old Gypsy Cob named Geordie. He was raised in a herd, then separated as a yearling colt, and ran with a colt herd until I imported him to Australia. He is naturally gentle and not... Read More

Article

Herd Instincts: Sparring

March 26, 2007

My horse was seen biting another horse in the throat. They were up on their hind legs supposedly playing when all of a sudden my horse made a very unusual move, according to the witness, and bit the other horse in the throat. The other horse ran an... Read More

Article

Horse Management and Care (AAEP 2006)

March 01, 2007

Various horse management and health care tips offered by equine professionals at the AAEP 2006 Convention.... Read More

Article

Understanding Horses: Basics #2 and #3

March 01, 2007

Last month we started talking about the three things every horse needs to know to make his rider happy. My hero, champion reining horse owner and trainer Dick Pieper, told me I had been making the training of my horses way too complicated. "You... Read More

Article

Hormone and Drug Use in the Stallion

February 01, 2007

Many hormone and drug treatments could have a negative impact on the endocrine system, so it's best to avoid using them altogether in the breeding stallion. However, Sue M. McDonnell, PhD, Certified AAB, of the University of Pennsylvania's School... Read More