Horses

Dear Jerry,
My Topic, once again, is horses. Not just horses in general though but training them. Horses are very big animals and can be intimidating to most people. As you probably have guessed, I own a horse. I have been riding horses for eight years and started training just in the past year and a half. In the past year though I bought a thoroughbred (which are bred for racing and are high-strung, a hard headed breed of horse). After the first many months in a lesson, I got bucked off my horse, Jon, on the transition into a canter. I had a shooting pain in my back and everything went black. My mom and trainer carried me out of the ring because I couldn’t walk. I went to the hospital turns out I did not break my leg or anything, I broke my tailbone. Long story short ended up moving barns and I started training with a new trainer. She helped build me and my horse’s confidence back up and I started riding again. Slowly but surely I started riding more and more, doing more and more stuff with him. I am now in the middle of training him to jump. Thanks the amazing help of my trainer me and Jon are currently jumping three foot…keep in mind I went from being terrified of getting back on him to jumping three feet and being totally confident in four months. Why did I tell you this story? Because it’s an example of what the right training can do! I learned that the way I was taught to ride was totally wrong. I also learned that if I lunge my crazy horse before I get on he will be calm and listen better.
Yes, training horses can be a very unnerving thing, especially when they are in a bad mood and threatening you. I don’t think anything of it anymore because I’ve been around them for so long, but for a new horse owner, it can be pretty terrifying! The main thing you have to do is stay calm, because they can sense fear. If they sense your fear they’ll take advantage of you and try getting away with bad habits, believe me…I know this from experience, it’s not fun. So just stay calm and confident and show them whose boss, because if you are firm they will be intimidated and most of the time will listen. Whereas if you get nervous then they will know and get away with things and your life could be in danger. By the grace of God I had an amazing trainer who helped me learn how to train a horse.
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