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About Me

The focus of my journey is now on trying to help reach the tipping point in positive, scientific based horse training. To bring science into the work, and training out of the dark ages. Having seen the joy that positive reinforcement training brings to both partners in the horse - human relationship over the past 17 or so years, there is no going back...

 

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Targeting

Here you will find all blog posts pertaining to the Equispeak Letter 'T' : Targeting

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February 28, 2017

I will admit, thanks to a friend, that I almost (ALMOST but not really) wish that snow and winter would stay a bit longer. Why on earth would I want that? Well I’ve discovered kick sleds.Now don’t get too excited about me actually doing exercise in the snow and cold. My kick sled is not human powered!

My, now coming four-year-old mini, Eggo was finally ready to really hook to something and start really driving.


I’d put in lots...

November 18, 2016

This year I was fortunate enough to be invited to teach at Heroncrest Stables, near Ottawa Ontario. I was there in the spring and had a great group turn out for it. I got to go back in October and thought I’d share some of the pictures and stories with you now.

In the first clinic I introduced the foundation lessons and we did a lot of human with human learning. I always start this way and often revisit it. By taking the real h...

May 6, 2016

I had the pleasure of teaching in Ottawa this past weekend. There were a great group of ladies with many, many years of combined horse experiences, but only a few who had been exposed to clicker training, and most of those through the dog world, so it was very exciting to see all of them get excited about the possibilities with the horses.

As the weekend unfolded and they could see just how fast the learning occurred they got v...

January 7, 2016

Well, 2015 certainly zipped by. I have now had ‘U’ for a bit over a year. Many people would not have been happy taking this amount of time to get to where we are in our relationship, but I have both the luxury, and experience to be able to do feel confident in this decision. And ‘U’ has certainly proved it to be the correct decision.

‘U’, when he first arrived, did not want anything to do with humans. He would stand with his he...

October 7, 2015

It is hard to believe it has been almost a year since ‘U’ came to live with me. It has been so wonderful to watch him change from a sullen, depressed horse that would stand in the back corner of his stall with a grumpy face and go away air about him into a bright eyed, nicker when he sees anyone and trots over to get a scratch kind of guy.

I know there are those of you thinking that that must have taken a lot of time and effort...

March 3, 2015

So, I hope all of you had a look at the video clip from the last blog. I’m pretty sure a lot of you out there may have looked at the video and thought ‘I don’t see any issue here,’ and I know that many people would be happy if their horse looked and acted like this, but I’m looking for more. I want that dance partner that flows with me and matches my energy, my movements around the ‘dance floor’ whether I’m on the ground or on...

December 2, 2014

The second key revolves around Ken Ramirez’s definition of an advanced training technique. An advanced training technique is anything that requires experience to use well and which two or more trainers cannot agree on. I have always loved that definition. In the horse world we really need to pay attention to what Ken is saying. When someone is greener than green, what are they told? They need to get tougher with their horse. I...

October 28, 2014

In the November/December issue of Horse-Canada, in my article “Starting Them Young: Clicker Training Foals,” I mentioned two new games – Magic Hands and Touch the Goblins.

The goal of magic hands is to have the horse maintain a light contact between the part of his body you are touching and your hand, usually the shoulder. As you move and stop and turn it is his job to stay glued to you through the contact of the hand as a guid...

December 2, 2013

Let’s look this week at how clicker training can help every day issues like deworming.

Is your horse easy to deworm or does he run at the sight or smell of the dewormer tube?

Again a lot of where you begin will depend on just how bad your horse is to deworm.

So some data to gather before going in and writing your training plan.

1) Can I walk into the stall with the dewormer and how does he react?
2) Can he sniff the tube?
3) Can I...

November 19, 2013

After a week’s worth of practicing you should be ready to bet that $100!

Once this ‘going to the target’ behaviour is solid and predictable (see the Eggo stationary targeting video in last week’s blog) you can start to build on the blanketing behaviour. As always, we are going to break this down into small steps so that the horse is successful, ideally every time. How far you need to break the steps down will depend on your hor...

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