Are you trying to strengthen or improve your relationship with your horse? Building a relationship with your horse takes time, but there are some simple ways that you can help to improve that relationship. Consider these six tips.
Groundwork is an excellent tool in creating or improving your relationship with your horse. Groundwork can be done at any stage in your horse’s training – even if you’ve owned him for years, you can still strengthen your relationship by using groundwork. Groundwork teaches your horse to respect your space and to read your body language, while you also have the chance to observe your horse and learn from how he reacts to you.
Try Out a New Discipline
Trying out something totally new, like a new discipline, can help both you and your horse to grow and trust each other together. When confronted with a new discipline or some other sort of obstacle, you and your horse will need to work together to succeed. New disciplines can increase your versatility and your experience.
Groom Your Horse
Grooming your horse can help to relax your horse while building his trust in you. Horses mutually groom each other in a showing of affection, and taking the time to groom your horse can build your relationship. Grooming is also an exercise in trust, as you ask the horse to let you touch all areas of his body without resistance.
Care for Your Horse
Sometimes one of the best ways to get to know your horse better is to be the person who cares for him. Putting your horse in a self-care situation gives you the chance to see your horse multiple times per day. Your horse will learn that you are the person who feeds him and takes him outside, rather than as the person who shows up once a day to ride.
Building and improving a relationship with your horse takes time and patience. Remember to stay patient with your horse as you work with and train him. Losing your temper is a sure way to lose your horse’s trust, and it will then take you even longer to build up your relationship.
Spend Time Together
You don’t have to be actively riding or grooming your horse to improve your relationship with him. In fact, relaxing activities like hand grazing or hand walking your horse can go a long ways toward improving your relationship. Simply spending time with your horse can pay off in improved trust and a stronger bond.
What methods have you found were successful in improving your relationship with your horse?