Do you ever look at your horse and think, “Wow, I never thought I'd own such a beautiful horse” or “My horse is too good for me” or “I can’t do XYZ because I don’t want to ‘ruin’ him/her”? Don’t get me wrong, we all love our horses and think they are marvellous because they are, but occasionally we get that ‘special’ one. That’s the horse that we never really ask quite enough of, not because it isn’t capable of performing at a higher level but because we don’t want to ‘push’ it or decide that horse doesn’t want to do it for some reason.
It’s these horses that often develop behavioural problems such as biting, kicking, bucking or rearing and I feel the problems arise simply because of this ‘special’ status we give such horses. Notice I’m not calling the horse spoilt or lacking respect, it’s neither of these things. The issue is simply one of inadequate training – we’ve stopped short of the level we would easily achieve with another horse.
I come across these ‘specials’ often and have even managed to find one here in India. Yes, he’s a very beautiful horse. Yes, he has very good breeding. Yes, he had a difficult start in life and is now only a two-year-old. In all respects, he’s your classic ‘special’ horse.
It’s not uncommon to leave the gelding of colts late here in India, which adds a further layer of complication to many young horse’s lives and can lead to them being treated in a considerably harsher manner. Thankfully this particular ‘special’ is now in a calm and safe environment and receiving the training he requires to enable him to live a happy and productive life.
Do you have a ‘special’ horse that has developed some less than ideal behaviours? If so, check the webinar page and sign up to attend The Specials Webinar where we will be discussing how best to go about addressing this rather common problem in an ethical, humane way that leaves your horse wanting to engage with you and learn more.