Along with all the more ‘serious’ stuff I do with my horses, I love to teach tricks. They’re just a lot of fun and they make me smile. Because they’re easy, stand-alone behaviours, my horses seem to love them, too. They become something we just love to do together.
For that reason, they become an effective reward in other training sessions. I’ve used them to bring more fun and joy into healthcare and handling behaviours, loading, overcoming boredom when on boxrest and loads more. For example, my pony, Toby, isn’t a fan of being groomed (cuddled, yes. Groomed to remove dirt, not so much.). So, we intersperse grooming sessions with tricks such as ‘smile’, ‘count’ and ‘catch’, which he loves and makes the grooming much more enjoyable for both of us.
However, most of the time, my horses and I just play around with some trick training when I don’t have much time or we’re just hanging out together at the stables with no particular agenda. They boost our relationship and are simple no-pressure fun together!
Here are the steps so you can teach your horse, too. Enjoy 🙂
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