I just wanted to share this sequence of pictures. Too often there isn’t anyone taking pictures of the amazing things that happen with the positive reinforcement training. Bernard of Deamphoto.biz happened to be at this clinic/demo. He did a great job getting some fun pictures so I wanted to share them. He is a great photographer as well as a great guy! Also, he invented some clever things, like the salad spinner for one! I hope that you enjoy the pictures.
As many of you know jumping issues are one of my favorite things to address with horses. Given my history and where I got started with horses, that probably isn’t too surprising. As for Stormy…I start this process going from point A to point B (person to person), at liberty. As they get the A to Bs worked out from a good distance, I introduce jump standards with a pole on the ground. I begin to turn it into a jump. The criteria slowly increases. The positive reinforcement keeps them engaged and enjoying the process even though it becomes more difficult. They become invested in the training process so they will make choices to face their fears (for Stormy it was the liverpool). He had a free choice the entire time…no whips, chutes, body positioning, no coercing at all. This makes the behavior solid since it is truly a choice…not the lesser of two evils, so to speak. When they go through this process, the change in confidence is amazing and it carries over to more than the jumping issue. If you have any questions about the free jumping and overcoming any jumping issues please don’t hestitiate to ask or comment.