#48 Your Horse is Smart - Mine is Stupid
Many times I'll hear how smart one person's little darling is or how "stupid" he is. It doesn't work well thinking in those terms - smart and stupid - the sweethearts aren't human - they are simply what they are.
It is true that some horses do seem to catch on quicker than other horses - well, so what ? - it just simply takes more repetitions and clarity for some sweeties to understand what the heck it is you are asking them to do.
Often, but not necessarily, it's your fault - you may not be clear in your instructions, or more often than not, you are not consistent in what you are asking, or you never really let him know that he got the right answer, or is getting it. (meaning, you kept doing what you were doing instead of stopping what you were doing when he is starting to get on the right track - "the release")
Other times, he simply needs more time - "it takes the time it takes" - a great motto for a horse person to understand.
My Jose - used to take FOREVER to get something - but through the years we understand each other so well that it no longer takes him very long to "get it" any more. It is a huge difference.
Horses have different personalities which also influences their learning speed. Some, like my Jose, have - had - so much fear in them - that it intruded on their capability of concentration for learning - their attention was split between fear and learning.
Some have an obstinate nature - (a human term) - they are passive aggressive and have more whoa than go - you need to keep the lesson interesting and take lots of breaks or they become bored stupid and just could go into their own little zone. (my Pozo)
Others are incredibly "human oriented" - they want to learn simply to please you - and get so darn excited in trying to get the right answer that they end up doing everything they know & every trick they know, all at same time. (my Dusty)
It is up to you to know and try to undertand your horse as well as you can - he deserves it - he will get what it is you are trying to teach him in his own good time - YOU ARE NOT ON A TIMELINE or you shouldn't be working with horses !!!
You are there to enjoy them and they should enjoy you.
Take the time it takes - there is no hurry.
Adventure Horse Riding in NYS Mary Dixon